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Thread: moving TJ steering box forward

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    moving TJ steering box forward

    I stuffed some 44 Rockers onto my TJ to test fit for next winters snow wheeling. I can almost make them fit but it would be a lot better if I pushed my steering box forward about an inch so I could adjust my long arms to push the front axle forward an inch anyone come up with any reason not to?


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    Whats the WB now?

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    About 98 total. front pushed as far as I can for steering and back moved back a few inches as well. With the leafs (yes leafs) and blocks in the back I could clear the 44s, so in the back I can just move to a 4 inch lift leaf, up front they hit on a hard compressed turn in the back of the wheel wells, i figure an inch will do it - I am pretty much to the body tub now on the lower corner and shaved hood. I was figuring just drilling and sleeving the frame in new bolt locations slightly forward and there looks like enough travel in the slip joint on the steering shaft, I'll have to make a new front drive shaft but I don't think it should overly effect the front coils - but if they do I'll have to move the coil buckets forward - or get a set of coil overs and re do the front.

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    You can clock the box and reuse one of the holes. As far as coils go, best bet is to move the axle end brackets back.
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    perhaps another option at this point would be to consider fully hydro. take the steering box right out of the equation.
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    Not on this rig, I still drive it on the street on the 39s and it does 70mph easy with a finger on the steering wheel. I had full hydro in my CJ and there is no way I could manage that. I will be raising it for winter and lowering it for summer. It took me about an hour to dial down the front coils and take the blocks out last week to change over to trail wheeling size - I want to keep that option.

    ---------- Post added at 09:25 AM ---------- Previous post was at 09:22 AM ----------

    I'll have a look at the clocking option to see if it will give me enough. I have a dynatrac pro rock 60 up front so not a lot of room to do things on the axle. Shock would have to move back as well and I am already bending the shock bracket on the axle end. Further out and it would bend more often with more leverage thats why I though moving the entire coil bucket and shock bucket forward.

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    Quote Originally Posted by alstick View Post
    Not on this rig, I still drive it on the street on the 39s and it does 70mph easy with a finger on the steering wheel. I had full hydro in my CJ and there is no way I could manage that.
    You should look into why your full hydro didn't work well. Unless it was a long distance highway DD, I would suggest sticking with full hydro. There are bunch of us that drive full hydro on the street/highway and it handles fine. You get a little wander from the slight internal leakage of the orbital but it is certainly no worse than trying to use bias ply 44" tires with a way undersized box and a band aid hydro assist ram. A properly set up system works wonders. Choosing the correct orbital seems to be the number one issue when it comes to quirky handling.
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    still no full hydro in this one. I did not say my hydro did not work it was the only way to make my CJ work, obital was matched to the ram 3 1/2 turns lock to lock, cooler, large res etc.... I was running 46 Claws and I loved it but I drive this TJ a lot and full hydro is not legal in any way, I want that mechanical link in my steering for safety as well. I have drivin this one for 4 years with no ram or steering stabilizer (PSC box, pump and res plus a cooler) and its been great best steering rig I have had in years its only when I stepped up to 40s and bigger in the snow and in Moab with the 40 sticky MTRs that I have had any steering issues. This isn't about steering its about making the tires fit - I'm not messing with something that works as well as this one does on the street - it is getting a ram at the same time though so it can handle the big tires better and I'm taking out the front Detroit for a ARB.

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    as long as you can weld (properly), make a mount and move the box forward. get an extended steering shaft and youre done. but like i said, as long as you CAN weld, not think you can. too many people think they can weld, but they cant...
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    I just did this to my TJ just this past spring. rotated the steering box, moving the front axle forward 2". It worked out really well. Only thing I ran into was the new angle on the steering shaft was into frame so either had to notch frame or move box away from the frame half inch. I moved the box over. I used a hole saw to cut out from the frame 2 of the sleeves that the bolts go thru to mount the box. I had some new sleeves machined up and holesawed the frame again for them to go thru. The one farthest back from the front of the jeep is the one u keep. Just rotate the box so the front most hole is right to the top of the frame but still inside the frame and then the middle hole is only about an inch difference. U will also have to notch the front crossmember to get the box in there. I did mine and still use a Currie antirock. I was moving my axle forward the 2inches and decided to cut out all the coil springs and shock mounts and went with 16" coilovers at the same time. I will see if I have any pics of the box being moved. When u rotate the box the steering shaft angle is much straighter than before and u actually have to decrease the length of the steering shaft, but no need to cut it down the TJ steering shafts have a lot of adjustability in them as far as length goes. There are a few good pics on Pirate about doing this as well.
    Last edited by strattoned; 07-28-2011 at 09:01 AM.
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    I dont take a lot of pics sorry, but this one is off my crappy blackberry. U can see the box is rotated and the old and new holes. The new sleeves are not welded in in this pic yet. I still have the old springs and shocks there too, was mocking up the trackbar bracket and location to make sure everything cleared.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Frame mount.jpg  

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    I get it - thanks. I've already pushed the front axle ahead as much as I can and used the longer than normal (extra 1 inch) Rubicon Express long arms with it so I have some adjustability in the long arms without threading them out to far. The only deal with that is it makes the drag link (dynatrac steering) very close to the tire rod on the tie rod end the two jam nuts touch and I live with a little noise from this - I'd like to correct this at the same time by moving the box - its kind of a creaking noise when the two nuts rub - nothing dangerous just annoying. I might have an issue moving the box over as I have a large AFCO rad and I barely have room for the rad and box now so I will see if I have to notch the frame but that's not a big deal.

    I think I'm OK with the welding part...

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    not sure how low that rad goes but when you rotate the box it drops down quite a bit, I have more clearance to my stock rad now even with the box moved over than I did before.
    I'm using crossover steering so a little different there.
    Im pretty sure you can weld too, lol.
    Saw a thread on Pirate where a guy rotated the box so far the front most bolt was above the frame, I dont know how he got the steering shaft to work but its been done.

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    Quote Originally Posted by alstick View Post
    still no full hydro in this one. I did not say my hydro did not work it was the only way to make my CJ work, obital was matched to the ram 3 1/2 turns lock to lock, cooler, large res etc....
    I understand but when you said "I had full hydro in my CJ and there is no way I could manage that.", it was implied that it might not be working well if it was deemed by you to be unmanagable.

    Quote Originally Posted by alstick View Post
    I was running 46 Claws and I loved it but I drive this TJ a lot and full hydro is not legal in any way,
    Serious question - Are you able to cite the law that addresses this claim? I have found nothing. There certainly isn't anything in the HTA that says it is illegal and there are OEM equipped service vehicles that are equipped this way operating legally on Ontario roads. I have no idea how that pertains to BC.

    Quote Originally Posted by alstick View Post
    I want that mechanical link in my steering for safety as well.
    Really, that is more semantics than anything - mechanical linkage can and does fail as well.

    Quote Originally Posted by alstick View Post
    This isn't about steering its about making the tires fit - I'm not messing with something that works as well as this one does on the street
    I sure don't like to keep beating the drum here but I will respectfully disagree. Seeing how this thread was started about the steering box being in the way of moving the axle forward in addition to the suggestion that full hydro would eliminate said problems and make performance better, I'd surmise that it has everything to do with steering.

    Quote Originally Posted by alstick View Post
    - it is getting a ram at the same time though so it can handle the big tires better and I'm taking out the front Detroit for a ARB.
    So, if you are going to add an assist ram.....

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    I was the owner of 4WD magazine up till last week. I started it in 1998. I will stay on as editor till hey kick me down the road - I was just getting a bit worn out by all the travel.

    I will dig but I know that there must be a mechanical link in your steering system for it to be legal - it has to be collapsable as well. Yes tractors, back hoes etc have full hydro but they are an exception but they are classified differently. No one that I know of who has taken a rig in for a safety has been able to get it to pass with full hydro. My buddy has his inspection licence I'll get him to find it for me If I can't find it. I have had lines fail and pumps fail far more regular than any steering box and it was a bitch to steer my full hydro CJ with no power - there was no way in hell I could take it down the road like that. On the other hand I have driven that same CJ before the big tires from Seattle to Kelowna 6 hours with a steering box with no power - still not fun but I could get home.

    don't get me wrong I loved the full hydro in the CJ it was amazing with the power I had and the big tires - I had rear steer as well running off a second pump off the engine.

    I've driven the TJ with 37s for 3 years and now 39s and I can drive nicely on trails etc with no ram and no steering stabilizer - the only place I'm having issues was with the fat 39.5 pitbulls I ran in the snow this winter and I expect it to be worse with the 44s. The one trail day on the 44s was managable but we were going slow and I was packing snow around the remote res tank all day to keep the heat down. It drives well with the big rubber better than I thought it would but with the friction of tires that big at less than 1 psi its a huge strain on the steering and the fluid heats up fast then I get steering fade. The ram won't stop the heat but will help steer the big tires and I'll add a larger cooler and put a fan on the cooler this time.

    Shot of my full hydro rear steer CJ - parted out a couple years ago now.




    My TJ on the trail tires from last weekend:

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