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Steering adjustment questions; 84k5 after lift installed

Discussion in '1973-1991 K5 Blazer | Truck | Suburban' started by Ben Malinski, May 27, 2002.

  1. Ben Malinski

    Ben Malinski Guest

    Okay, I give up. What's the secret! I have been farting around with this for one week and I still can't get it right. Installed a 4" lift, Rancho, and installed the steering arm. Everything is done correctly according to the instructions. Why then can't I get a better turning radius?!?
    Before the install, I could make certain turns both right and left; going into parking spaces, garages, etc. now I have to back up and try again each time!
    I have adjusted the sleeve. Many times in fact. I have removed the sleeve completly and rethreaded both ends equally. I've centered the wheel and made sure the turn radius was equal left and right. I've adjusted the sleeve so that boths ends of the tie rod were touching inside the sleeve! And adjusted them out so that they were each on the second or third thread and then tightened the sleeve bolts. Still can't get it corrected! Help! Turning left seems to be the problem right now. Right turns seem okay.
    I thought about turning one end of the tie rod first, let's say 5 or 6 turns and then connect the other end and see what it does. Any suggestions?
     
  2. tRustyK5

    tRustyK5 Big meanie Staff Member Super Moderator GMOTM Winner Author

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    I just replaced my drag link ends last weekend. With the drag link assembly not on the truck I turned the steering wheel all the way left, then counted turns as I went all the way right. Then I turned it back half that amount so that the steering box was 'dead center'. I had my wheels perfectly straight already...so I grabbed my tape measure and took a rough measurment between the pitman arm hole and the steering arm hole and made my drag link that length (give or take 1/4")
    I then installed the drag link on the steering arm first and with the sleeve loose I adjusted it until the other end went into the pitman arm. Once the castle nuts were torqued I checked the steering wheel position and made a slight adjustment to get the steering wheel straight.
    It turns equally left and right and the steering wheel is dead straight for the first time in 3 years or so.../forums/images/icons/smile.gif

    When you did your lift did you change tires and rims at the same time? Less backspace and wider tires kill your turning radius...

    Rene
     
  3. Ben Malinski

    Ben Malinski Guest

    Naw, I left the same tires and rims on. Following the same way you did it, how does it differ from just adjusting the sleeve? I did it your way, I removed the castle nut and the arm, counted the turns, etc. a little ove a turn and a half each side and then reinstalled the parts, nut and new cotter pin. Didn't work for me though. I'm going to try it one more time following your instructions.
     
  4. tRustyK5

    tRustyK5 Big meanie Staff Member Super Moderator GMOTM Winner Author

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    All you want to do is make sure the steering box is dead center when the tires are pointed straight. You'll prolly need to adjust the sleeve a little to get the wheel perfect...
    If you set the drag link significantly longer or shorter than that you will decrease your ability to turn one direction or the other.

    Rene
     
  5. txbartman

    txbartman 1/2 ton status

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    After my installation, I, too, had a problem with turning. My problem was turning to the right, though. Turned out that my u-bolts had come loose on the axle and when i would steer to the right (steering arm pusshes back), the whole axle was moving!

    After you feel as though you have it right, put it up on jackstands and be underneath or in front where you can see the components and have someone else steer it back and forth. This is the best way to see if there is a problem. If it looks okay, put it on the ground and do the same test. Mine wouldn't move the axle when on stands (as the tires were off the ground so there wasn't enough resistance). But, when I put it on the ground, it was obvious immediately.

    One more thing, did you install a steering damper/stabilizer? If so, that could be limiting your travel. Disconnect it for your steering testing.
     

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