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frustrated could it be the gear box??

Discussion in '1973-1991 K5 Blazer | Truck | Suburban' started by RESTORE89, Aug 28, 2001.

  1. RESTORE89

    RESTORE89 1/2 ton status

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    i have been battling with a strange feel in the steering on the 89 for a few months now, and i thought i had it narrowed down to a wheel bearing, only to get ready to do a bearing job on both front wheels and they are both very tight with no play
    the problem is about 4 months ago i had a front end alignment done, and for a short while after things were peachy, and then i started noticing i was having to make a lot of very small adjustments to keep the truck in the lane, and thenit started getting worse
    i had play in the steering column under the hood
    thought it was the bearing and plastic sleeve, only to find out the shop left the nut off the steering wheel and the shaft slipped down enough to allow the bearing to slide past the sleeve
    i repaired that, but now i am still having this squirrley feel
    checked for a cracked frame at the box, but everything is tight there
    SUGGESTIONS PLEASE!!!!!!!!!!

    It needs a bigger motor.
    what's in it now?
    doen't matter it NEEDS A BIGGER MOTOR
    89 350tbi/700r4h/np208/4.11's
     
  2. lgk5

    lgk5 1/2 ton status

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    Re: getting very frustrated

    is it lifted?
     
  3. Emmettology 101

    Emmettology 101 3/4 ton status

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    Re: getting very frustrated

    Check and make sure all your tierod ends are tight and good... And also check your balljoints!

    Mike

    <font color=green>"It's like a sore dick deal, You cant beat it!"</font color=green>

    <a target="_blank" href=http://www.geocities.com/emmettology101>www.geocities.com/emmettology101</a>
     
  4. RESTORE89

    RESTORE89 1/2 ton status

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    Re: getting very frustrated could gear box be the trouble???

    the truck is not lifted and has 33-12.50 on 8 inch rims
    i have replaced tie rod ends and sway bar bushings as well as shocks, and the ball joints seem to be tight
    is there a special way to check ball joints also i hadnew u joints and the drive shaft balanced
    i do not know what else to do!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    It needs a bigger motor.
    what's in it now?
    doen't matter it NEEDS A BIGGER MOTOR
    89 350tbi/700r4h/np208/4.11's
     
  5. BigTex

    BigTex 1/2 ton status

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    Re: getting very frustrated could gear box be the trouble???

    What about your frame? Have you checked the infamous area for cracks?

    "Constipated people don't give a crap!"
     
  6. RESTORE89

    RESTORE89 1/2 ton status

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    Re: getting very frustrated could gear box be the trouble???

    checked for frame crack by putting the side of the wheel against a concrete ramp
    and had a bud turn the wheel while i was looking at the frame and the gear box, and saw no movement

    It needs a bigger motor.
    what's in it now?
    doen't matter it NEEDS A BIGGER MOTOR
    89 350tbi/700r4h/np208/4.11's
     
  7. muddin4fun

    muddin4fun 3/4 ton status

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    Re: getting very frustrated could gear box be the trouble???

    to check the ball joints, lift the wheel off the ground and grab the top and bottom of the tire and see if you can get it to move back and forth that way. It shouldn't wiggle...you might could allow a little play...I don't know how much play you can allow. I think past a 1/4" they need to be replaced. If there is play, you might also do a lube job on them and see if that takes the play out before you replace them.
    How old is the steering stablizer? Check the draglink too and see if there is play there.
    Also, check the swaybar bushings to see if they are worn.

    It's been lovely, but I have to scream now.

    <a target="_blank" href=http://www.geocities.com/muddin4fun79blazer>My wonderful site</a>
     
  8. Pugsley

    Pugsley 1/2 ton status

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    Re: getting very frustrated could gear box be the trouble???

    How is your stabilizer? With 33's, the OEM unit is only marginally up to the task. Other areas to look at are wheel balance, caster, gearbox adjustment, and just for s**ts and giggles, tighten the wee out of the box to frame bolts.

    If the shoe fits, get another one just like it
    <a target="_blank" href=http://pugsley.alloffroad.com>pugsley.alloffroad.com</a>
     
  9. RESTORE89

    RESTORE89 1/2 ton status

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    Re: getting very frustrated could gear box be the trouble???

    when i put the new shocks on i used the matching trailmaster ssv stabilizer and i did the check by trying to move the wheel top to bottom and i get less than zero movement
    i will try and tighten the bolts to the frame, and my next step is to take the truck to another alignment shop, unless any other ideas first
    i think wheel balance should be okay. i just recently had new wheels and tires installed
    i know how to adjust the gear box from the top nut, but i read somewhere ther is another adjustment where is this and what does it adjust?????????

    It needs a bigger motor.
    what's in it now?
    doen't matter it NEEDS A BIGGER MOTOR
    89 350tbi/700r4h/np208/4.11's
     
  10. Pugsley

    Pugsley 1/2 ton status

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    Re: getting very frustrated could gear box be the trouble???

    The wheel balance I thought of because of my Blazer - it tears standard weights off of the left front wheel - you have to use stick on. As for the other adjustment, I'm not sure what that would be.

    If the shoe fits, get another one just like it
    <a target="_blank" href=http://pugsley.alloffroad.com>pugsley.alloffroad.com</a>
     
  11. Seventy4Blazer

    Seventy4Blazer 3/4 ton status

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    re check the rag join on the drag link. both top and bottom. have somebody move the wheel as you observe. just do small movements with the truck NOT running. yes it is harder to turn. but if it is easy then hard and the tires are not moving then that is your problem. they can look in decent shape and be bad. mine were the same way and i had the same problem. till the rag joint ripped open. now i know what is wrong.

    let me know how it comes out.

    Grant


    1974 Chevy Blazer Cheyanne. but it is on 33's now, with saggy old springs. i am in Yuma Arizona if ya got any parts for me.
     
  12. tom

    tom 1/2 ton status

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    Re: getting very frustrated could gear box be the trouble???

    Had similar experiece with my '91. Everything seemed tight but it still wandered on the road. Put on an ORD steering brace (about $100) and the problem went away. The brace is a bolt on that forms a triangle with the left frame rail and the front crossmember. It worked for me.

    <P ID="edit"><FONT class="small">Edited by tom on 08/29/01 01:14 PM.</FONT></P>
     
  13. Emmettology 101

    Emmettology 101 3/4 ton status

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    Re: getting very frustrated could gear box be the trouble???

    Two other things that came to mind, have you checked to see if your steeing and pitman arms are tight?

    If everything is either tight or new, i would have to agree to get a brace!

    Mike

    <font color=green>"It's like a sore dick deal, You cant beat it!"</font color=green>

    <a target="_blank" href=http://www.geocities.com/emmettology101>www.geocities.com/emmettology101</a>
     
  14. dyeager535

    dyeager535 1 ton status Premium Member

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    Rag joint isn't on the drag link, its on the intermediate steering shaft, but : ) (thats the shaft that runs int eh engine compartment from the steering box to the firewall area)

    Seriously, these CAN and do go bad. All you have to do is put the wheel against the curb, pop the hood, and have someone turn the wheel against the curb, while watching that fiber joint. If the joint has a lot of play in it, replace it, or get another shaft with a good one on it. Not a GM "buyable" part, they want you to pay for the whole shaft. Check it out, its easy, and can affect steering.

    Dorian
    My tech/links page: <a target="_blank" href=http://www.dorianyeager.com/index2.html>http://www.dorianyeager.com/index2.html</a>
    No anti-theft measures on your truck? No pity when its stolen
     
  15. RESTORE89

    RESTORE89 1/2 ton status

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    yeah, i couldnt place therag joint on the drag link, but i did the check witht the truck NOT running, and i can move the steering wheel about 15 degrees with out the tires moving, but the rag joint is tight, so it must be the gear box right??????? the truck has over 200K miles on it, but that is the only thing in the steering i have yet to replace
    thanks for the ideas
    chris

    It needs a bigger motor.
    what's in it now?
    doen't matter it NEEDS A BIGGER MOTOR
    89 350tbi/700r4h/np208/4.11's
     
  16. Triaged

    Triaged 1/2 ton status

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    The steering box has a spot in it where it is the tightest from the factory. It is in the center of the travel. If when the shop did your alignment they moved the steering wheel from the center position there will be more slack in the steering (the shop took the easy/wrong way out of getting the steering wheel straight). Take the steering wheel back off and align the marks from the factory. Than adujst the steering tierod till the steering wheel is straight. This is how the shop should have done it.

    '71 Blazer CST w/ a 400sbc, 4" lift, 36" Supper Swampers, and alot of rust
    <a target="_blank" href=http://community.webshots.com/user/triaged>See it Here </a>
     
  17. dyeager535

    dyeager535 1 ton status Premium Member

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    I've never seen the steering wheel marks everyone refers to, but oh well.

    The steering wheel cannot be off "center" by more than about one "spline" unless someone has done some serious grinding on the lock plate. Yes, i've seen this done, and yes, some idiot did the wrong thing to try and adjust the wheel.

    The steering wheel contact plate (the plastic one that is held into the column, has the plastic tip that pokes through the lock plate and into the steering wheel) can move anyway you want. EXCEPT that the lock plate is keyed to the shaft in the column..that piece can NOT go on wrong. So, without breaking off the horn contact plate "tip" or cutting a bunch of metal out of the lock plate, the steering wheel can't go on wrong.

    Not sure when they started keying the lock plate, but I'd assume 73-91. I *know* his is keyed. Correct steering wheel center adjustment on a 4wd is at the drag link.



    Dorian
    My tech/links page: <a target="_blank" href=http://www.dorianyeager.com/index2.html>http://www.dorianyeager.com/index2.html</a>
    No anti-theft measures on your truck? No pity when its stolen
     

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