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Crossover for idiots

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by CyberSniper, Jul 2, 2004.

  1. CyberSniper

    CyberSniper 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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    OK, let's say I'm going to do crossover on a 10 bolt with 52" springs.

    I already have Dana 44 flat tops. I also have a 2wd steering box with the correct fittings.

    It seems I'm going to need a stud kit, 1 or 2 arms, a tie rod, and a draglink. Oh yeah, and a new pitman arm.

    Histeer is reasonable for me to do since I need to buy a new tie rod/center link anyway (I don't have one that'll fit properly).

    Shakerbuilt sells stud kits for $25 and sells what appears to be a pair of Histeer/crossover arms for $125.

    I'm still going to need a tie rod, draglink, and pitman arm. What do I need to clear the springs? What is used for a pitman arm (I've seen reference to Ford parts)? Who sells the most reputable/least expensive tie rod and draglink (Sky Manufacturing seems to be popular)?
     
  2. sled_dog

    sled_dog 1 ton status

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    I'm sure the price is $125 per arm. My ORD arms were $150 per arm if I remember correctly, those are for the 60 of course. A bent drag link will be required if you don't have a modified crossmember. Sky or ORD can sell you that. Sky or ORD are the ones I would deal with mainly. Give either one a call they will hook you up with a cheaper price if you buy it all. ORD sells the Pitman arm you need fairly cheap. I believe its a drop arm for a F150.
     
  3. Hossbaby50

    Hossbaby50 3/4 ton status

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    From what I hear Shakerbuilt steering arms don't have the 10* angle built into them and they stress your TRE's in the draglink more. I went with Sky's arm when I did crossover. It is a good piece of equipment. I would recommend them highly.

    The Ford pitman arm you speak of is the #1104 arm from Superlift. That is the arm I am running. You need a 2wd sector shaft to put in your steering box or a 2wd box to swap in. You also need a draglink. I run a bent draglink. It is a custom homebuilt unit. If the 52" springs move your axle forward you might be away with a straight draglink. A member here in AZ runs a straight draglink with 4" lift because he move the axle 1" forward. It clears the engine xmember.

    You can order draglinks from Sky, ORD, etc. If you have the ability to make your own draglink I would go that route though. That way it is the perfect length for you setup, not a ballpark length like the manufacturers will supply you.

    Is your D44 flattop machined and drilled yet? If not that needs to be done.

    Tierod is also something you can order like your draglink. It can be made also. Mine was made by 4x4 Iron.

    If you go to Hysteer then you will need the second steering arm and a tierod for hysteer.

    I personally an not really a huge fan of hysteer. I personally don't see the point but that is another discussion. I am running low steer crossover.

    Harley
     
  4. CyberSniper

    CyberSniper 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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    Well, this is supposed to be "on the cheap". I can probably get the knuckle machined and threaded for $30 or so. I have a 2wd box that'll bolt up.

    I need everything else. I have no stock tie rod so I'd have to buy a new tie rod anyway so why not just go histeer?

    Are the balls and sockets of the TREs getting maxed out or something? Otherwise why does it really matter? The one on the steering box is going to see far more abuse than the one down at the knuckle. This is going to be a trail rig so longevity short of breaking is unimportant. The vehicle is intended to be light (I'm aiming for around 3,000lbs) and the tires small (probably 35-38"). I'd also like to stick with stock half ton TREs as well, I see no need for 1 ton stuff.

    Is there something special about that Superlift pitman arm? Isn't it just a dropped Ford/IFS Chevy/Jeep pitman arm?

    I can probably get tie rods and draglinks made somewhere but I'm not sure if it'd be any cheaper. Do the places that sell these tie rods include the joints or do you have to buy joints as well? Are they half ton stuff or are they one ton stuff?

    52" springs are supposed to move the axle 2" forward which is the only reason why I'd run crossover... otherwise stock steering is sufficient.

    No one seems to make a kit for crossover and/or histeer for a Chevy Dana 44, they just sell you the pieces and parts and don't tell you what they fit. The only kit I ever did find cost $450 and that was out of what I'm willing to spend on a half ton front axle.
     
  5. sled_dog

    sled_dog 1 ton status

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    well if you want hysteer and crossover on a 1/2 ton axle you will HAVE to spend about $450 at the least I'd think. I paid $300 for my arms alone.
     
  6. Hossbaby50

    Hossbaby50 3/4 ton status

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    Crossover on half ton is not cheap.

    Here is how my costs on crossover ended up.

    $150 HD tierod
    $110 matchined knuckles
    $20 2wd steering box
    $75 Ford #1104 arm
    $60 for TRE's for draglink
    $25 for weld in adapters to make draglink
    $25 for 5ft 1.5" .250 wall DOM to make draglink
    $90 for steering arm
    $25 for steering arm spacer kit
    $25 for extended steering arm stud kit

    I am using a standard Chevy 3/4 ton TRE for my truck. All 4 TRE's are the same. This makes finding parts easy and I only have to carry 1 spare TRE. They have a lifetime warranty too. They are all right hand thread. #2234R

    If you have the tools you can build a HD tierod and an HD draglink for about $100 each.

    You can buy 1.5" .250 wall DOM. You need about 9ft. I paid around $5 per foot. Then cut it to the proper lengths and use Poison Spider Customs weld in TRE adapters $13 each. TRE's are $26 each.

    All you need is a chop saw and welder. If you want a bent draglink you need a bender. You need to clean the edges of the tube with a file but that isn't hard. Once the tube is cut to the right length get the adapters in ASAP. Don't let the tube cool down.

    Hysteer is going to cost you more money since you need another steering arm.

    Harley
     
  7. CyberSniper

    CyberSniper 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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    I don't want to be a "shoulda boughta Dana 60" person.

    For $150 I can get two arms and a stud kit to bolt onto Fugly from here:
    http://www.shakerbuilt.com/Products.html

    I don't understand the 10° thing everyone keeps talking about for the Sky arms. It seems to me that the joint on the pitman arm is the one that sees most of the abuse. Sure, 10° would be nice but I'm not trying to get 100,000 miles out of my TREs.

    I figure another $175 for a center link and draglink. Should be able to find a drop pitman arm used for $50 or so.

    You'd think with the popularity of 1/2 ton crossover steering someone would offer a kit for $300 or a histeer kit for 75-100 more.
     
  8. Hossbaby50

    Hossbaby50 3/4 ton status

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    TRE's are more likely to fail if they are at poor angle. The 10* correction is to help keep the TRE's at less angle. They are like ujoints. The more angle the more likely to fail.

    If you can score used parts like pitman arms, HD tierod, draglink, etc you can save money but new the stuff is $$$.

    Harley
     
  9. sled_dog

    sled_dog 1 ton status

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    do you have a bolt on steering brace? a must for crossover
     
  10. CyberSniper

    CyberSniper 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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    Yeah, I know why the angle is there. I'm just wondering if it is really needed. Take the steering box end of the stock draglink. That thing takes TONS of abuse yet still lasts decades with poor servicing. I suspect as long as dirt and water is kept out of the joint it'll be perfectly fine even at an extreme angle. I mean, our TREs are bigger than many small cars' balljoints that ride on the "fingers" of the socket yet they go for 50,000 miles. If I was trying to turn a 7,000lb rig, in the rocks, with the TRE at max deflection that'd be different.

    I'm pretty sure Jeeps, Fords, and IFS Chevy drop pitman arms are the same. I think a stock ZJ arm is dropped but I'm not sure. I'd have to do the research again.

    I'm pretty sure I could score all the TREs I'd need to find at the junkyard. I'm not sure what ones I need though. Doesn't having all RH thread make it difficult to make adjustments? Do those people make LH thread weld-in inserts? Because that'd make the whole tie rod and draglink issue simple. The same guy that'd machine my knuckle is an extremely good welder. He just doesn't have threading capabilities for big stuff that is fine thread.

    I don't even know what kind of tie rod flat tops take. I assume it's the kind that has a sleeve like what is found on the stock draglink as opposed to the 10 bolt tie rods that have two ends and a center section? I've never seen a tie rod on one. Is this HD tie rod you speak of the solid kind? I can probably find good used joints for everything I need I just need to figure out what it looks like.

    Thank you for your help by the way. The clueless is getting clued in at break-neck speed.
     
  11. sled_dog

    sled_dog 1 ton status

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    yes LH inserts are available just about anywhere that does suspension stuff(offroading shops I mean, online as well).
     
  12. Hossbaby50

    Hossbaby50 3/4 ton status

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    Adjusting them isn't to hard. You do have to pop out one end of the tierod and draglink to rotate the TRE in or out, but that isn't a big deal. It doesn't take that much more work then a RH LH tierod. Bent draglinks require you to pop and end out anyway since you can't rotate them.

    I personally would just spend the $120 on new TRE's that will have lifetime warranties. Steering is not a good place to cheap out with junkyard parts that are wearable.

    I know that you can use a stock Jeep arm off one of the models for a pitman arm. They are pretty common at offroad shops that do Jeeps. You can probably score one there pretty cheap since they are just junk to most people. Not sure which one it is though.

    My HD tierod is handbuilt. The way I would build it if I were you is to get 5 ft. of 1.5" .250 wall DOM tube. Cut it to length. Dress the holes with a file and pound the TRE adapters in the tube. Weld them in and your set. The TRE's will thread into the adapters. Just make sure to measure correctly. The draglink is the same, especially if it is straight. I believe the eye to eye length on the 1/2 ton tierod is 57.5" roughly.

    Harley
     
  13. CyberSniper

    CyberSniper 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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    Are 1/2 ton and 3/4 ton TREs the same? I have a bunch of 1/2 ton TREs at my parents' place that I pulled off my truck and another truck because the boots were damaged and a boot kit cost half what a new TRE does. I'm not going to use sloppy junk... I know better than that. I won't even reuse a sleeve on a draglink for this very reason. I'll definitely buy one new one for at the steering box but the other three can be old.

    OK, so I need:
    10' of .250" drawn over mandrel 1.5" diameter tube ... ~$60
    TREs off something that has 7/8"x18 threads ... JY or parts bin
    Adapters that can be welded into the tube ... $60
    Some arms and a stud kit from who knows where ... Wonder if Shakerbuilt will work for $150
    New pitman arm I believe off a ZJ from the stealership ... $55
    Machine my flat tops ... probably $30 or $40.
    Address the steering box breaking frame potential problem with either a bolt in brace kit or make a new crossmember that ties into the winch plate ... $steel
     
  14. Hossbaby50

    Hossbaby50 3/4 ton status

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    I think Sky recently dropped there price some on there steering arms. Sky arms with the 10* correction are $75 each, so they are the same price as Shakerbuilt.

    www.sky-manufacturing.com

    Harley
     
  15. CyberSniper

    CyberSniper 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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    Well, I bent my tie rod on my truck wheeling today.

    No ifs, ands, or buts--Fugly WILL get histeer.
     
  16. 84_Chevy_K10

    84_Chevy_K10 Banned

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    I personally wouldn't do it on a 1/2 ton axle.
     
  17. m j

    m j 1/2 ton status

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    10deg thing on tierod is non important, that is just the Steering Axis Inclination
    just be certain you do not bind the draglink ends, this is the important angle
    the pitman arm new is only about $60-70
    the links will run you less then $4 a foot for tubing and you could reuse your old tierod ends if they are still good or whatever the local Autozone charges for new ones
    I do not know how these guys spend $175 on drag links and tierods!
    I just ordered RETAIL a length of tubing for my tierod and new draglink and paid $5.35cdn a foot (my last crossover link was 31" of tubing)
    I bought a full 22' stick so if you are kinda local or wanna pay shipping I will gladly take a fist full of your dollars for links

    PartsMike sells the kit you are asking about
    I would get your arms from him, I got my pitman from him and I think they now come tapered for the big chev high angle Draglink end
     
  18. CyberSniper

    CyberSniper 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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    Which pitman arm do you run? The one off a Jeep?

    That Parts Mike character isn't any cheaper than Sky Manfacturing. And I saw no pictures of crossover plus histeer. Only histeer.

    Shakerbuilt sells a PAIR of histeer/crossover arms for $125. That's $62.50 each. I don't see anything wrong about his arms other than he doesn't say for what size TRE they're for. I'd like to stay 1/2 ton stuff. I'm not building a rockcrawler. I'm serious when I say I'm aiming for 3,000lbs.

    Where do you get your thread inserts? I'm definitely going to make my own links now that all it requires is welding.

    Money is REAL tight this summer so when I buy stuff it HAS to fit.
     
  19. CyberSniper

    CyberSniper 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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    Why is that? I need a new center link anyway and buying a pair of arms from Shakerbuilt is only $50 more than buying one from Sky. Plus, I wouldn't have a bent center link like I do on my truck.
     
  20. 84_Chevy_K10

    84_Chevy_K10 Banned

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    [ QUOTE ]
    Why is that? I need a new center link anyway and buying a pair of arms from Shakerbuilt is only $50 more than buying one from Sky. Plus, I wouldn't have a bent center link like I do on my truck.

    [/ QUOTE ]

    The stress on the knuckles is the reason I would not do hysteer on a 1/2 ton axle.

    I know you're not getting crazy but a beefy tie rod in the stock location will last a long time and save you quite a bit of money.
     

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