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post #1 of (permalink) Old 12-05-2002, 07:20 AM Thread Starter
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New steering box, steering wheel of center

I have the garage heating up to fool with my tj today. My steering box started leaking, and was under waranty, so I took it to the shop, and they replaced the box. When I got the jeep back, the steering wheel is clocked to the left when the wheels are straight. I went back, believing that they had gotten the pitman arm or steering shaft off a few teeth. Their excuse is that with the new box, now I need to have it alligned which of course is not under waranty.

I can't see how that could be true. I have replaced boxes in my shop, and have never had this problem. sounds to me like someone's attempt to make some more money. If the box was a upgrade, or diffrent I could see it, but it is supposed to be the stock replacement.
I am going to get under it and see if the pitman arm is straight in relationship to the wheels, if so I eill try to pull the shaft out and clock it back in place..

They also told me that it was impossible on that jeep to be pff because the steering shaft and gear only go on one way. Is this correct all of them I worked on in the past could be off quite a bit depending on how you install the various components.. Any Ideas??
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post #2 of (permalink) Old 12-05-2002, 07:38 AM
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Re: New steering box, steering wheel of center

So let's see, before you went in, your steering wheel was straight, your alignment was good I'm assuming, but your box was leaking. You had the box replaced under waranty, and when you got it back, the wheel was clocked left. Seems to me that you should get it back fixed the right way. If that means they need to do another alignment to get it there then that;s their responsobility.

as for alignment of teeth on itman arms and Steering shafts, I couldn't say on TJ's but on the Waggy and CJ one's I've seen, the Pitman only goes on one way due to a big groove in the teeth, you'd have to have it off by a full turn. the steering shafts: My old manual CJ box had a horzontal groove for the retaining bolt that you had to align the coupler up to (same as my old Mini) on the waggy, the groove for te bolt went all the way around the input shaft so it was infinitly adjustable.... Agian, I don't know on the TJ, but I THINK I recall see my buddies old TJ box and it had a groove all the way around like the waggy.

I'd take it back and insist that they do it right, if the Service manager won't work with you, get the dealership manager involved and tell him how dissapointed you are with their willingness to do the job right, and fix it when it's wrong.

Brent
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post #3 of (permalink) Old 12-05-2002, 08:40 AM
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Re: New steering box, steering wheel of center

they jacked it up.... heres how...
when you remove the steering shaft on a tj the steering wheel will rotate if you dont have the ignition lock on. they are probably off by a full rotation or 2... now, I really dont trust the mechanic that told me this, but I have heard that he wires in the steering wheel for the horn and the airbag will only turn so many times.. therfore, if the steering wheel is off centered like you describe, and the wheel has been turned a couple times, its possible that the airbag and horn wires wont work.... i cant really say for sure, but I do know my horn doesnt work on my tj after I swapped my box out, but the steering wheel was still perfectly straight.
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post #4 of (permalink) Old 12-05-2002, 09:46 AM Thread Starter
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Re: New steering box, steering wheel of center

Yes the alignment in the front end was fine, wheel pointed straight with the wheels. now the alignment seems to be fine, but the steering wheel is not straight.

Just read in my manual that if the steering wheel turns that it can cause damage to the air bag system. Bet your mechanic was right. The bottom end (arm) looks like it can only go on 1 way, and is very similar in position as to where it was orignaly. I think the wheel has indeed turned while off.

Elusive: I cannot tell without removing the shaft, is the steering shaft a one way only connection or can it be a off a tooth? It appears that with the wheels straight that the bolt is in a wierd spot. I bet they turned the wheel to remove the bolt and never compensated for it.

in looking at the clock of the steering wheeel it is turned about 1/8 of the way.
How can I tell how many turns out the steering wheel is?

I am thinking of removing the box and re doing it. One of the fittings appears to be leaking. That was the orignal reason for getting it fixed got tired of the oil on the floor. I do not know why I let them touch my jeep, should have just told them to give me the box and call it even.
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post #5 of (permalink) Old 12-05-2002, 09:58 AM
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Re: New steering box, steering wheel of center

I'd first count how many turns from center, left and right lock are. if they aren't equal I'd take that up with the Stealership, and have them check the airbag system too, because you have concerns about it working..... and add that they wouldn't want a lawsuit filed on them when thje air bag doesn't deploy when you need it to now would they!!! I bet that gets them stepin' and fetchin'

brent
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post #6 of (permalink) Old 12-06-2002, 05:20 PM Thread Starter
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Re: New steering box, steering wheel of center

Equal Left to right, Just like before.. I am going to try to take the shaft up straighten the wheel and put it back on.. Will that work??
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post #7 of (permalink) Old 12-06-2002, 05:29 PM
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Re: New steering box, steering wheel of center

It will be equal if the got it off on the shaft, the stops are in the box. I have to agree that the shop should have aligned under warrantee, and also you may have damaged the clock spring for the airbags already. Take it back and have them do the job right, and check that the clock spring hasnt broken.
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