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unstable driving... all over the place! scarry

Discussion in 'Intermediate CJ-5/6/7/8' started by pauldana, Apr 14, 2009.

  1. Apr 14, 2009
    pauldana

    pauldana pauldana

    Lancaster, Ca
    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2009
    Messages:
    41
    Replaced all leaf spring bushings, added a stabilizer bar from front axial to frame.. great improvement... BUT still by no means safe... can some one help?
    feels like a small boat on a big open ocean.
     
  2. Apr 14, 2009
    mb82

    mb82 I feel great!

    Charlottesville Va
    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2003
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    2,715
    How much lift and what type?
     
  3. Apr 14, 2009
    dauntless_powered

    dauntless_powered SUB Chief

    Groton, CT
    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2003
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    1,000,069
    There is much more info needed here. Got any pics of the current setup, any lift, any work done by you or previous owner to the steering/suspension? What size tires, etc etc....
    Also please feel free to fill out your rpofile so others know where you are from, you never know if someone is right in your backyard. Also welcome to the board!!
     
  4. Apr 14, 2009
    pauldana

    pauldana pauldana

    Lancaster, Ca
    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2009
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    41
    ok... went back and edited my profile.... but here it is... a 2" lift rancho suspension with rancho shocks, all new.... New poly bushings. 304 v-8, 12.5 15lt tires, I am the original owner. gave it to my brother and he had it for about 5 years and beat the s@^t out of it... got it back from him and have been doing a complete restore to give it to my youngest son... Andhere we are...
     
  5. Apr 14, 2009
    mb82

    mb82 I feel great!

    Charlottesville Va
    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2003
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    2,715
    Have you checked the frame for cracks? When is it getting out of control, when you are on the gas on the freeway at random or just completely at random?
     
  6. Apr 14, 2009
    timgr

    timgr Jeepin' Nerd 2020 Sponsor 2019 Sponsor

    Medford Mass USA
    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2003
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    20,861
    Did they give you any caster shims with the lift kit? Sometimes a lift will change the suspension geometry and it will have to be corrected with shims. You can adjust the toe-in (by changing the tie rod length) and caster (with shims) fairly easily.

    Otherwise, it should drive straight and stable without any heroic efforts. Check that there is no play in the steering - look at all the components from top to bottom. Have someone sit in the Jeep and slowly turn the wheel back and forth while you watch for looseness.
     
  7. Apr 14, 2009
    pauldana

    pauldana pauldana

    Lancaster, Ca
    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2009
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    41
    Mb82- No cracks today... had some in the past but plated them,,, will check again. "When is it getting out of control, when you are on the gas on the freeway at random or just completely at random?" everywhere... its as if the jeep was mounted to a water bed.

    Tmgr--Did they give you any caster shims with the lift kit? Sometimes a lift will change the suspension geometry and it will have to be corrected with shims. You can adjust the toe-in (by changing the tie rod length) and caster (with shims) fairly easily. What??? this jeep has 4 leaf-springs... Does it have these shims?
    Check that there is no play in the steering - The Box is loose and bolts seem to be very tight... I know this is a problem and I am not sure how to linch it down tight...

    look at all the components from top to bottom. Have someone sit in the Jeep and slowly turn the wheel back and forth while you watch for looseness. Done this... it seems to me more than anything that the wheels seem to be loose, they can move 1/8 to 1/4" how do I get this play out?

    Also, the tires are 15 years old but have full tread... week side-walls possibly?
     
  8. Apr 14, 2009
    timgr

    timgr Jeepin' Nerd 2020 Sponsor 2019 Sponsor

    Medford Mass USA
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    Aug 10, 2003
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    The shims aren't a factory thing. The factory springs are designed so that the caster is proper with the factory springs installed. When you install lift springs or lengthened shackles, the geometry of the suspension can change. The shims are used to correct the geometry (caster) back to factory specs.

    You're going to have to figure it out. The steering box is not supposed to be loose. If the steering box bracket is broken, that will allow the steering gear to move, even though the bolts are tight.

    You'll have to be more specific. If the wheels move in and out, it could be the ball joints or the spindle nuts could be loose or ...

    No. Maybe out of balance, but not weak.
     
  9. Apr 14, 2009
    pauldana

    pauldana pauldana

    Lancaster, Ca
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    Apr 14, 2009
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    41
    "it could be the ball joints or the spindle nuts could be loose" ball joints look good... how hard is it to tighten the spindle nuts?

    Where do these shims go?
     
  10. Apr 14, 2009
    scott milliner

    scott milliner Master Fabricator

    Seattle Wa.
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    Dec 17, 2002
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    2,075
    With those wide tires, deep ruts in the road will cause the Jeep to suddenly steer out if them. This could feel like a boat ride.
     
  11. Apr 14, 2009
    pauldana

    pauldana pauldana

    Lancaster, Ca
    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2009
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    WAAAAYYYY more than that!!!
     
  12. Apr 14, 2009
    timgr

    timgr Jeepin' Nerd 2020 Sponsor 2019 Sponsor

    Medford Mass USA
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    What year is this Jeep? Do you have the factory manual? The spindle nuts are behind the locking hubs, if you have them.

    Caster shims go between the spring and the axle pad. Caster is the angle of the knuckle pivot with vertical.
     
  13. Apr 14, 2009
    cj6/442

    cj6/442 Sponsor

    Fallbrook, Calif
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    Feb 6, 2008
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    jack up the front end and wiggle the tire. top to bottom that would check the wheel bearings .side to side would check the links. anybody got a quick pic of the caster shims he needs . I don't have a camera handy.
     
  14. Apr 14, 2009
    Yellow CJ6

    Yellow CJ6 New Member

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2009
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    You need 6-7 deg of caster on a Jeep to make it stable at any speed. The caster is changed by putting shims between the axle and spring. put the thick part of the shim twards the front of the jeep. (if the spring is under the axle) Loose wheelbearings, tierod ends, steering box mount, worn out steering box, etc will all make the jeep wander.
     
  15. Apr 14, 2009
    pauldana

    pauldana pauldana

    Lancaster, Ca
    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2009
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    41
    The thick part of the shim faces forward? are you talking about the front or rear axle? I had the rear axel taken off and the feet re-welded to match the lift. nothing done to the front.
     
  16. Apr 14, 2009
    cj6/442

    cj6/442 Sponsor

    Fallbrook, Calif
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    I agree, messing with the rear has nothing to do with it,I think it's all in the front end, really could be ALOT.... all of the above,and shocks, align
     
  17. Apr 14, 2009
    MrCamo

    MrCamo New Member

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    Apr 14, 2009
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    i would suggest you blew up a tie rod end, did these get replaced?
     
  18. Apr 14, 2009
    MrCamo

    MrCamo New Member

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    Apr 14, 2009
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    On my 78 Cj we cut the knuckles off of the ends of axle tubes, then rotated the knuckles back to their factory location. if you shim your axle to compensate for a lift, the tires are pointing into thr ground instead of in front of you, this is why you would rotate the steering back after you have rotated the axle to get a better pinion angle. this is a step most people skip due to cost or laziness, or negligence. my 6" lifted jeep on 35's drives like a caddy
     
  19. Apr 14, 2009
    MrCamo

    MrCamo New Member

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    Apr 14, 2009
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    i should add that the shims between the axle and the springs are to re-align your pinion angle with the t-case, and do not as part of their design give a hoot about your steering angles. i suggest having yur spring perches knocked off the tubes and rotated back as apposed to using spacesr shims.
     
  20. Apr 15, 2009
    2manytoys

    2manytoys Member

    minnesota
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    Mar 28, 2007
    Messages:
    282
    You can put shims in the front to correct caster.
     

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