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My first Jeep, and its trying to kill me!

Discussion in 'General Jeep Discussion' started by CJ'sYJ, Oct 25, 2016.

  1. Oct 25, 2016 at 5:32 PM
    #1
    CJ'sYJ

    CJ'sYJ [OP] Member

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    So I just landed myself a 95 YJ. The previous owner swapped out the stock axles for 2001 XJ axles. Not sure if this has anything to do with my issue or not. So the issue is in the steering. It seems to go where it wants to. for example I'll be driving and it pulls to the left, so I will keep some tension on the steering wheel to the right so I don't make an unwanted hard left. Then the nature of the road or whatever changes the wheels direction. So now I have tension on the steering wheel to the right when the wheels decides they want to go right now too. So in return I'm now driving off the road. So this is a constant battle to keep the jeep semi straight and out of oncoming traffic and guardrails.
    1. line from pwr steering pump to steering box is broke/leaks
    2. no sway bars
    3. Again XJ axles. Not to sure about the other components
    4. I did just put a new stabilizer shock in
    5. I haven't noticed a huge amount of play in joints/bearing as of yet.
    Thanks for the help!
     
  2. Oct 25, 2016 at 7:24 PM
    #2
    C2T

    C2T Well-Known Member

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    2.5" AEV Dual Sport lift, 35" Treadwright Guard Dogs, Black Rock Wheels, AEV Front & Rear Bumpers with Tire Carrier, Fuel Caddy 10 gal. Aux. fuel tank, Warn 9.5ti, 125' synthetic winch line, front axle skid, 20" LED light bar , Bilstein Shocks, steel steering skidplate,
    IMHO.....

    There are a number of things that can cause this kind of wondering. Wider tires have a tendency to wonder more than thinner ones....HOWEVER, a proper alignment with a proper caster adjustment for your tire size comes to mind first. This assumes your steering and axle components are, in fact, good. Double check your tie rod ends, and all ball joints in your steering. Check that your steering box is secure, I see them come loose from time to time and that causes similar complaints as yours. The ball joints on your steering knuckles need to be checked too. Check your spring packs and make sure the hangers are properly tightened. Check your U-bolts on the spring packs...make sure your axle is not wondering around on your springs If those are all good...then find an alignment shop familiar with aligning modified/lifted 4x4 vehicles. I would bet on alignment but that does not matter until we make sure the rest of the stuff is in good shape.

    My 2 cents...

    Good luck!!
     
    JKBob 25, VOZ and OFFGRID like this.
  3. Oct 26, 2016 at 6:46 AM
    #3
    CJ'sYJ

    CJ'sYJ [OP] Member

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    Thanks, Here is a picture I took of the parts in front steering related. Compared to what I have looked up Looks like stuff is in the wrong places and things are missing. any thoughts on that? Also pic of steering wheel position with wheels dead straight. Now I know just because the steerig wheel is off center doesn't necessarily mean alignment issues. 20161026_090816.jpg 20161026_090835.jpg
     
  4. Oct 26, 2016 at 7:03 AM
    #4
    OFFGRID

    OFFGRID Well-Known Member

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    1979 Jeep CJ7, 258, TH350, NP208
    Howell fuel injection, header, HEI distributor, TH350, NP208, SOA lift with YJ springs in the front & GW springs in the Rear. AMC20 with G2 1 piece chromos trussed, Dana 30 with G2 chromos and 760x ujoints and MM Stainless Hubs, Geared 4.56. Tom Woods shafts, Metal cloaks, Caged, 37" Toyo MTs.
    I agree with Richard. Your YJ is 22 years old, and probably needs a little love. What your describing is called wondering or hunting. To fix this you definitely need to replace all rubber bushings on you springs and hangers to take out the slop of the old bushings. This is an inexpensive project if you do it yourself. maybe $25. Next I would replace ball joints and tie rod ends. Re installing the sway bar will help when passing or being passed by big trucks. YJs also came with track bars front and rear. The front one does help keep a straight line and provide more responsive steering, but CJs never had them and drove fine without them so your choice on the track bar. After all of this is done and you still are finding some hunt and drift, say a quarter turn left or right of the steering wheel before you feel a response, you may need to rebuild your steering gear box. The parts to replace everything listed above except for the swaybar, trackbar, and steering gear box; and includes upgraded polyurethane bushing kit at Oreilly's is $235.93 Another $40 maybe for power steering hoses. If you want to replace the rear bushings as well another $50.
     
  5. Oct 26, 2016 at 7:16 AM
    #5
    OFFGRID

    OFFGRID Well-Known Member

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    Houston
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    1979 Jeep CJ7, 258, TH350, NP208
    Howell fuel injection, header, HEI distributor, TH350, NP208, SOA lift with YJ springs in the front & GW springs in the Rear. AMC20 with G2 1 piece chromos trussed, Dana 30 with G2 chromos and 760x ujoints and MM Stainless Hubs, Geared 4.56. Tom Woods shafts, Metal cloaks, Caged, 37" Toyo MTs.
    yj axle.jpg

    Circled in red is the adjusting sleeve that will straighten up your steering wheel. I believe you turn it forward to make your steering wheel adjust to the right and of course visa versa. Circled in green I believe that the "draglink" or tie rod end coming off the pitman arm should attach here. Can anyone else confirm this? I'll try to find time to drive out to the shop this week and see if that is how my 94 YJ that I recently purchased is set up. The XJ axles and YJ axles are the same, but the newer axles tend to have better gearing and therefore it is generally cheaper to find a set of used axles and swap them. For example, My 94 YJ came with 3.07 gears in it. I found a set of axles with 3.73 gears in them for $150 and swapped them in.
     
    Last edited: Oct 26, 2016
  6. Oct 26, 2016 at 7:24 AM
    #6
    CJ'sYJ

    CJ'sYJ [OP] Member

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    Looking at this diagram I have found for a Grand Cherokee. The one along the bottom looks like a drag link and the tie rod that should be connected to it isn't there. 2012-11-07_180846_1.gif
     
  7. Oct 26, 2016 at 7:35 AM
    #7
    OFFGRID

    OFFGRID Well-Known Member

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    Howell fuel injection, header, HEI distributor, TH350, NP208, SOA lift with YJ springs in the front & GW springs in the Rear. AMC20 with G2 1 piece chromos trussed, Dana 30 with G2 chromos and 760x ujoints and MM Stainless Hubs, Geared 4.56. Tom Woods shafts, Metal cloaks, Caged, 37" Toyo MTs.
    That diagram may not work with leaf springs. Check your clearances. XJs are coil sprung so there is nothing to get in the way of the linkage. The way your YJ is set up now should work for you though if you want to go to stock it looks like this.YJ Steering.jpg
     
  8. Oct 26, 2016 at 1:08 PM
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    C2T

    C2T Well-Known Member

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    With a system as modified as yours, I would suggest getting some professional assistance. Your drag link is bent (should be straight), it looks like your stabilizer (dampener) is contacting your pumpkin (see mark on cover), and who knows what else. You cannot set it up like stock as the draglink would contact the leaf springs.

    For this, I would highly suggest you look for a local shop which "specializes" in modified 4x4.
     
  9. Oct 26, 2016 at 1:30 PM
    #9
    CJ'sYJ

    CJ'sYJ [OP] Member

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    Yeah the Drag link has also been shortened I think. Its welded together. I just put that dampener on there. I hadn't noticed the mark until you just pointed it out. I guess I was just kind of hoping that there was a kit or someone knew just what is needed and what is best for a YJ with XJ axles. I have been researching and I have seen so many different set ups on these jeeps
     
  10. Oct 26, 2016 at 5:59 PM
    #10
    OFFGRID

    OFFGRID Well-Known Member

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    Howell fuel injection, header, HEI distributor, TH350, NP208, SOA lift with YJ springs in the front & GW springs in the Rear. AMC20 with G2 1 piece chromos trussed, Dana 30 with G2 chromos and 760x ujoints and MM Stainless Hubs, Geared 4.56. Tom Woods shafts, Metal cloaks, Caged, 37" Toyo MTs.
    I believe that you can run the YJ stock steering on your setup. You can buy it all for less than $200 at Oreilly's. If it doesn't fit take it back. The other thing to do would be to find a front YJ axle that matches the back axle gear ratio, or find a set of YJ axles. They are readily available and you can easily find a set for $300 or less. They usually come with the steering linkage attached.
     
  11. Oct 27, 2016 at 4:19 AM
    #11
    CJ'sYJ

    CJ'sYJ [OP] Member

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    Yeah I was looking at stock steering and thought it looked like it would work. Then again maybe not because of the SOA. Either way looks like YJ tie rods have been used. I'm going to plan on replacing them. The boots are broke exposing the ball joint.
     
  12. Oct 27, 2016 at 7:41 AM
    #12
    C2T

    C2T Well-Known Member

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    I would think you would need, at least, a deeper drop in the pitman arm or you are going to put the draglink into the left side springs on a left turn. That is likely why they linked where they did.

    In fact, trying it in the stock position may explain how the draglink got that downward bend in it to start with.

    Good luck with the project...I hope you keep us informed on your progress. :)
     
  13. Oct 27, 2016 at 9:16 AM
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    OFFGRID

    OFFGRID Well-Known Member

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    Oh yeah. I didn't notice that. Check out www.rocky-road.com They have a drag link designed for a SOA lift that is very affordable.

    Now that you mention it looks like you may have 70s wagoner front spring packs. They are quite a bit thicker and are more preventive against the axle wrap that is common with SOA lifts.
     
  14. Oct 27, 2016 at 3:01 PM
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    CJ'sYJ

    CJ'sYJ [OP] Member

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    stock spring packs according to previous owner. Said only thing he has replace are axle and he custom made the steering knuckle.
     
  15. Oct 31, 2016 at 6:37 AM
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    CJ'sYJ

    CJ'sYJ [OP] Member

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    Update! As C2T and OFFGRID mentioned. Spring bushings seem to be my biggest issue. I lay under the Jeep while my wife moved the steering wheel back and forth. Massive amount of play in those bushings. So have some new ones and a new power steering hose ordered.
     
    chris4x4 likes this.
  16. Oct 31, 2016 at 11:55 AM
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    OFFGRID

    OFFGRID Well-Known Member

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    Howell fuel injection, header, HEI distributor, TH350, NP208, SOA lift with YJ springs in the front & GW springs in the Rear. AMC20 with G2 1 piece chromos trussed, Dana 30 with G2 chromos and 760x ujoints and MM Stainless Hubs, Geared 4.56. Tom Woods shafts, Metal cloaks, Caged, 37" Toyo MTs.
    Great. There is always some play there. Look at the ball joints and tie rod ends as well.
     
  17. Oct 31, 2016 at 11:57 AM
    #17
    CJ'sYJ

    CJ'sYJ [OP] Member

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    I jacked the jeep up and tries to wiggle the tire. They seems to be no play in balls joints or anything.
     
  18. Jul 22, 2017 at 7:08 PM
    #18
    JKBob 25

    JKBob 25 Well-Known Member

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    Another old one I ran across that was interesting. And no end result. Any one have an update? I may never need it. Knowledge is never a bad thing. :)
     
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