Front Axle boot blown & steering box slop - Off-Road Forums & Discussion Groups
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post #1 of (permalink) Old 11-10-2003, 08:16 PM Thread Starter
 
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Front Axle boot blown & steering box slop

Well, haven't posted in a while. Seems I was catching up with the rest of the cars in my yard.

I have had the truck up on the rack at the hobby shop looking for suspension parts that are responsible for the wandering it seemed to have. Turns out it's just the steering box, at 130,000 it's a little sloppy, but after the alignemnt it is a lot better. Ok, I can deal with that.

I'll have it rebuilt or find a low-miles box and swap it out.

What I didn't expect was that I missed a blown CV boot on the front right, outside joint. No idea how long, I don't recall ever noticing it before. [img]images/graemlins/cussing.gif[/img]

I'd like to get the shaft rebuilt, rather than get an after market replacement. What kinda job is it pulling it out? Special tools?

Ok, to remove the IFS,
<ul type="square"> [*]Remove shock - replacing it anyway [*]Remove large nut on axle shaft (34 mm or ?)[*]Pop lower ball joint - to gain some room[*]Remove Sway bar end link - replace it?[*]Remove bolts holding CV shaft to axle tube shaft.[*]Pop CV shaft from hub - BFG &amp; wooden block or is there a tool[*]Miss anything?[/list]
[img]images/graemlins/chairfall.gif[/img]

Ok, thanks
DG
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post #2 of (permalink) Old 11-11-2003, 12:05 AM
 
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Re: Front Axle boot blown & steering box slop

as fa as i culd tell looking at mine, it didnt look like it was going to require anything other than ordinary tools you'd have in the tool box.
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post #3 of (permalink) Old 11-12-2003, 12:25 PM
 
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Re: Front Axle boot blown & steering box slop

when i replaced mine i think i just moved the shock out of the way... didn't have to take the ball joints loose... just took the nut off the end of the shaft and bolts on the other end and out she came.. really easy. i replaced it with a new shaft from autozone... i think it was around a $100 and lifetime warranty... easy job...
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post #4 of (permalink) Old 11-23-2003, 10:09 PM Thread Starter
 
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Re: Front Axle boot blown & steering box slop

Well couldn't get the CV axle out. I moved the shock out of the way, popped the tie rod and took out the CV flange bolts. I rounded out one of the 3 bolts at the Spindle (not sure I needed to remove it anyways). Didn't want to pop the ball joint unless I was gonna replace it. I didn't have any upper ball joints on hand.

In fact, when I checked the supposed "bad boot" out it wasn't torn. Grease from the upper ball joint dripped down and greased up part of the boot. I washed the grease off and went over the boot looking for cracks, there were none.

The steering box still has slop. some one in the shop mentiined a set screw adjustment, Anyone?

I replaced front rotors and pads, and rear shoes and axle seals (again). The front caliper had a torn boot around the piston. It didn't leak, and I was not sure about opening up the ABS system to replace the caliper.

So I bolted it back up. Might run by a local shop to get them to change the caliper.

What is the procedure for bleeding the ABS system after replacing a caliper or a wheel cylinder?

96 K1500

Thanks
DG [img]images/graemlins/thud.gif[/img]
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post #5 of (permalink) Old 11-24-2003, 01:59 AM
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Re: Front Axle boot blown & steering box slop

I think it's the same whether you have ABS or not. I have rear ABS and I just have someone pump the pedal til it's firm, open up the valve how ever many times it takes until there's no air and close it up. Easy with 2 people.
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post #6 of (permalink) Old 11-24-2003, 08:26 AM
 
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Re: Front Axle boot blown & steering box slop

RE: Steering box slop. Did you check the pitman and idler arms? If one is bad it'll fell like steering box play. The nut that holds the pitman arm on the steering box can be tightened, the shaft is tapered. I have 35's and they put a lot of strain on the linkage. I just replaced both arms and 1 tyrod over the weekend. First I thought the pitman arm nut was just loose, but after tightening it I could see the play in the ball joint at the end of it. Jack up one front tire a bit and give it a wiggle and watch the steering linkage for any play. It doesn't take much to feel like a lot at the wheel.
On the axle removal, I have a 94 2500 w/6 bolt wheels. I live in the Arctic and our top speed limit is 40 kilometers per hour so I removed my sway bar for more flex and ease of axle swap. With the sway gear removed I can swap out an axle in the snow in about an hour. I just remove the spindle nut at the wheel and the 6 bolts at the pot and it'll slip right out. If you have trouble with the 6 nuts (I break CV's regularly so mine don't get a chance to seize) use a little penetrating oil and then heat. Always use a new spindle nut. One time I didn't and it loosened while I was 4 wheelin' a few miles outta town. The spindle holds the front wheel bearing together. When the nut loosened, I wrecked my bearing and had to drive home with the tire leaning at a 20 degree angle and had to grease the rotor and pour water on it every few minutes to cool it since it was dragging from the lean angle. By the time I got to the road the rotor had worn through the caliper bolts and there was a groove dug halfway through the rotor.
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post #7 of (permalink) Old 11-24-2003, 06:04 PM Thread Starter
 
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Re: Front Axle boot blown & steering box slop

T,
Yeah I went over the front steering componets. Nothing but the box has any more movement then you'd expect from 130,000. I would have never looked at the box, until someone suggested it because there really isn't any slop in the ball joints, idler or tie-rod ends.

I thought about dropping the sway, but the angle of the sway bar bolt in the lower A-Arm wouldn't allow a long socket to get up to it. [img]images/graemlins/cussing.gif[/img]

I'll get it next time, just have some upper ball joints on hand in case I tear the boot.

Are the lower ball joints "press in" from the bottom like older GM passenger cars?

I almost replaced the front right caliper (torn caliper piston seal - not leaking) but was worried about getting into the brake lines since working on ABS is new to me.

Got any tips for the ABS (bleeding, etc)?
[img]images/graemlins/spank.gif[/img]
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post #8 of (permalink) Old 11-25-2003, 08:13 AM
 
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Re: Front Axle boot blown & steering box slop

I'll be surprised if it's the steering box. Mine is original. I blow at least 1 pressure hose a year and got in a bit of a frame twister that put so much strain on the front end that I boiled the PS fluid trying to hold the wheel straight till I got through. (pic) My buddy made it through but his rig isn't quite as flexy as mine (pic-next frame).
Did you jack up one side at a time? With one tire firmly on the ground try to rock the other back and forth with your hands at 9 and 3 o'clock. Then jack up the other side and do the same. You say it doesn't have any more movement than you'd expect, but there should be no movement. Watch the pitman arm on the steering box as you wiggle the tire to see if it rocks on the shaft at all. If you can wiggle 1 tire while the other is on the ground then the problem is probably in the linkage since it connects the 2 together.
I had a shop replace my balljoints so I'm not sure, but I do have a spare in my toolbox,(top or bottom??) and it is tapered.
I've never bled an ABS system. My truck only has the little anti-lock-the-rear-wheels thing. I bleed the usual way, pump up and hold the pedal and open bleeders starting with the one farthest from the master cylinder. I used to work at a bike shop and for hard to bleed brakes we used a vacuum pump. You can get one at crappy tire fairly cheap.
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post #9 of (permalink) Old 11-25-2003, 08:18 AM
 
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Re: Front Axle boot blown & steering box slop

Not so flexy rig.
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post #10 of (permalink) Old 11-25-2003, 04:52 PM Thread Starter
 
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Re: Front Axle boot blown & steering box slop

The truck is a 96 with ABS so I can't just crack the lines and bleed the system like standard brak systems. [img]images/graemlins/tongue.gif[/img]

I have had the truck up on a lift a couple times looking for mmovement. There any any. At least in the suspension/steering parts/wheel. I did not look at the box, the shop that rotated my tires told me about it when I asjked them to look.

I do not have tire wear, and the alignment is new. It just wanders, which makes steering sound reasonable. I can get a used box for $125 locally. Might try that first.

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