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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Good evening everyone.

I have a '79 CJ5 I bought several years ago and I'm finally getting back to the rebuild.

I have a question about the front steering. From what I can tell it looks like the previous owner used a Big Daddy's tie rod and drag link kit. For the tie rod he drilled out the ends and threaded it for left and right threaded heim joints. He also drilled out the end of the drag link for a heim joint. He drilled out the knuckles and ran and ran grade 8 bolts through with alignment washers.

Fundamentally it looks like it should work. You can loosen the lock nuts on the heim joints and turn the tie rod and diagonal link and everything seems to move freely and be fully adjustable.

I just wanted another opinion since it is the steering and I don't want to have catastrophe on the road.
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I have included a few pics of the setup,
 

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Looks good to me. If you have been turning the tie rod, make sure your toe in is correct.
You might want to flip your shocks over. If it takes a hit, it's better on the tank than the shaft.
Also, if they are RS5000's, they are a harsh riding shock for a CJ.
 

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I would check those bolts thoroughly...measure them to see what size they are, and verify the grade, hopefully Grade 8. You can look up a recommended torque for that bolt, and make sure that they're tightened to spec.
The reason I say this is that mounted as they are in single shear, you have only the friction to hold them in place. If those are shoulder bolts with a tight fit (as in interference, anything less is a clearance fit) in the knuckle, not so much of a concern.

There's a reason why most steering components use tie rod ends with tapered mounts...
 

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I've had heims and drilled knuckles for going on 7 yrs now. Driven more on road than off and at least two days a week. They're still tight, no issues.

Sent from my SM-A015A using Tapatalk
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for the advice on the shocks. It is a Skyjacker lift and shocks. Once I go through the whole thing it will be getting an alignment. It is definitely out now. I plan to pull the shocks to paint match with the body color and swap out the red bushings and boots with black.

The bolts are grade 8. I'll pull one today to measure and see if they are shoulder bolts.

IIRC there was a kit to drill and taper the knuckles. I wonder if this is still a possibility or if the holes have already been over drilled too much for this to work?

Still a ton of work to do. Front end, wheels, tires, brakes..... Labor of love right.
 

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I know Jim Crabtree offered to make some custom tapered inserts for someone on the board. If your holes are oversized, you may be able to work something out with him.

Thanks for the advice on the shocks. It is a Skyjacker lift and shocks. Once I go through the whole thing it will be getting an alignment. It is definitely out now. I plan to pull the shocks to paint match with the body color and swap out the red bushings and boots with black.

The bolts are grade 8. I'll pull one today to measure and see if they are shoulder bolts.

IIRC there was a kit to drill and taper the knuckles. I wonder if this is still a possibility or if the holes have already been over drilled too much for this to work?

Still a ton of work to do. Front end, wheels, tires, brakes..... Labor of love right.
 

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I know Jim Crabtree offered to make some custom tapered inserts for someone on the board. If your holes are oversized, you may be able to work something out with him.
That would have been me over-drilling my knuckles cause i just couldn't leave well enough alone. Wanted them just a tad more seated after I did it the first time and see where that got me :surprise:

Jim's a great guy and did help me out. I'm sure if you gave him the measurements he might be able to figure something out.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Yes it is a Matkins frame. Good eye!

Once I get a minute I'll pull the bolts and mic the holes. I might have to look up Jim and see if he can help out. Thanks for the tips and suggestions.
 
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