Steering box adjustment

Brakes, Suspension, Rims and Tires

  1. C- Bodies Rock

    C- Bodies Rock New Member

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    Hi folks..just signed on..need tech advice..I assume I am posting on the proper thread?..Steering box woes..bought a '69 Fury with steering issues..sloppy..I was told by my regular mech that there was no adjustment..I had him put in a NAPA rebuilt box..just as sloppy as the original..sent me out the door with thumbs up..checked with shop that specializes in front ends..they said the box was defective and there was no adjustment..OK..bought a Delco box from Rock..had it installed by this shop..they sent me out the door with the box as sloppy as the other 2..this is definitely a box issue..all other steering components are in good shape with a fresh alignment (again)..steering is seriously sloppy and requires constant attention to stay in a straight line and feels notchy.. I am done with my former mech and ready to raise hell with the front end shop..is the box adjustable?..if so, how to?..will adjustment mean another FE align?..thanks to all who know about such things..
     
  2. polara71

    polara71 Old Man with a Hat

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    There is an adjustment though Ive never done it. My curiosity is why is it so "sloppy" ? I realize theyre not as tight a s a new car but even my highest mileage C isnt sloppy
     
  3. C Body Bob

    C Body Bob Old Man with a Hat FCBO Gold Member

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    There is a very small amount of adjustment. Seems like 1/2 turn. Loosen lock nut & 1/2 turn with screwdriver. Retighten lock nut & make sure screwdriver doesn't move. Too much will damage gear. Check your coupler. They usually have a lot of play on these old cars. I drill a hole & install a zerk fitting in mine so I can grease it. Headers can get in the way however.
     
  4. C Body Bob

    C Body Bob Old Man with a Hat FCBO Gold Member

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    Also check that lower controll arm bushing
     
  5. Turboomni

    Turboomni Old Man with a Hat

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    I just checked the manual as I own a 69 Fury and as a matter of fact purchased mine last year in Jamestown NY.
    I couldn't believe there was no adjustment. So I checked both the power and manual steering boxes in section 19 of the service manual as you didn't specify which you have. There are adjustments for both and doesn't look very hard to do. Unless I am missing something I think possibly everyone you went to is missing something. You didn't mention that they even tried to adjust it. Do you have a service manual ? Even if you don't do your own work it is good to know what is going on and interesting I might add. I'm sure more experienced guys than me on these cars will chime in.
    In my case I thought when I got my Fury the steering box was loose or worn out. After further inspection I found the whole front end was original to the car. I called my steering wheel a rudder it was so bad. The whole front end was replaced and the car had a steering wheel again!! Not saying this is your problem,,,just my story. We would love to see pics of your car.
     
  6. Davea Lux

    Davea Lux Old Man with a Hat FCBO Gold Member

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    See the post below from Mr Fixit dated Sept 14, 2016. There is a slotted screw on the top of your steering box. Loosen the jam nut and follow the instructions in the FSM. Most rebuilds are shipped set to factory specs, sounds like you had a run of bad luck. Also check the connector for the steering gear input shaft for excessive play. These have been know to wear out and will mimic a loose steering gear. Have a helper move the steering wheel back and forth slightly and note any free play in the connector. If it has any free play, it is worn out and needs to be replaced.

    Dave
     
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  7. traintech55

    traintech55 Senior Member

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    Even tough the others have covered the adjustment procedure, most of the newer technicians, (or so they like to be called), are only used to working on the newer cars with rack and pinion steering, (which is not adjustable). You need someone like us old timers.
     
  8. C- Bodies Rock

    C- Bodies Rock New Member

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    The box is sloppy as hell..not the coupling.. when I wiggle the steering shaft I can see the input to the box moving in and out and hear it clunking when wiggled..all front end components are good with new ball joints and aligned after box installed (today)..(Turboomni-done at Barmore)...can anyone give me a source of FSM that won't cost me $100?..anywhere someone has posted the FSM on the web?..I do all most all my own work..but, somethings are better left to a "professional" ..(yea, right)..
     
  9. Big_John

    Big_John Illegitimi non carborundum FCBO Gold Member

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  10. C Body Bob

    C Body Bob Old Man with a Hat FCBO Gold Member

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    I've heard good things about rebuilt units from Lars Corp. They may be able to re-rebuild your new unit & get it tighter.
     
  11. Wollfen

    Wollfen Old Man with a Hat

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    Check the pic below, the arrow shows where the adjustment will be done, there is a lock nut that you will loosen, then adjust the bolt either by an allen key (as the one shown) or it will be a slot that you can use a screwdriver in. Adjust this about half a turn at a time, locking it in place again then testing full turn left to right.

    mopar steering box.jpg
     
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  12. Davea Lux

    Davea Lux Old Man with a Hat FCBO Gold Member

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    It sounds like the rebuilder did properly set the end play on the input shaft. You are probably going to need another gear as the jam not adjustment will not fix this problem. This is a manual gear right?
     
  13. C- Bodies Rock

    C- Bodies Rock New Member

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  14. C- Bodies Rock

    C- Bodies Rock New Member

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    Nope..P/S
     
  15. Davea Lux

    Davea Lux Old Man with a Hat FCBO Gold Member

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    Go ahead and do the adjustment and see if the clunk goes away. My guess is that you will still have an end play issue that will eventually eat the seal on the input shaft.
     
  16. C- Bodies Rock

    C- Bodies Rock New Member

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    Thanks to all for the info guys...downloaded FSM..in section 19 there is the procedure for "gear shaft adjustment"..procedure starts with drop center link ...yes, no, maybe?..if I tweek it a little and test drive..then tweek a little more if need be, will I be on the right track?
     
  17. Ross Wooldridge

    Ross Wooldridge Senior Member FCBO Gold Member

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    In addition to the box there are two connection points requiring inspection which can add sloppyness:

    1) The rubber coupler or rag joint up near the firewall. Often hiding under a tin heatshield they are notorious for cracking and becoming dangerously sloppy. Don't ignore checking it out. Replacements are drying up, but there are alternatives.

    2) The slip joint coupling just in front of the steering box. Often overlooked because people don't know how to rebuild them, rebuild kits are easily available.

    Both these items need to be in perfect shape to eliminate any slop in the steering that the box will simply magnify.
     
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  18. Yatzee

    Yatzee Active Member

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    I have owned many a car and one truck that had alignments done so well, you could literally let go of the wheel and the vehicles tracked straight down the road for a long distance - regardless of slop in the box. The one I had done on my Fury was performed by an older mechanic from the era of the car. He told me, form years of experience, that the book values were crap because they didn't take the camber of the road into consideration. The way he set the "toe" was mainly on the right side of the front end. This compensated slightly for the tilt of the highways. I know what you're thinking, but no the right tire isn't worn more than the left, and the car tracks perfectly. Lack of toe on the front will cause the car to wonder as will negative caster. I think that the people you went to don't know their arse from the opening in a beer can because sometimes readjustment has to be performed for any particular car. Alignment determines a cars driving quality. You may have slop in the box or you may have the feeling of induced slop from a bad alignment technician.
     
  19. Davea Lux

    Davea Lux Old Man with a Hat FCBO Gold Member

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  20. Davea Lux

    Davea Lux Old Man with a Hat FCBO Gold Member

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    Usually, it works best to jack up the car to take the load off of the front tires. Center the front tires, and adjust the gear until you can no longer move the adjuster screw. Now back it off 1/4 turn. Start the car and turn the wheel from lock to lock. If resistance is felt, back off the adjuster another 1/4 turn and you should be good to go.