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How to: Steering mod: Rag Joint to U-joint ZJ Shaft

Discussion in 'Modified 1991-1994 Explorers' started by FR-425, February 2, 2014.

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    1. Benjam

      Benjam Active Member

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      425, is your steering wheel still straight ahead after putting the jeep shaft on?

      Benjam :D
       
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    3. FR-425

      FR-425 Used to be a road here. Elite Explorer

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      No, it turned to the left a bit. Just shows how bad the rag joints were.

      The steering wheel is keyed to the column shaft, so the only way to correct it is to re-adjust the tie rod ends.

      If you mark the the tie rod ends and turn both the exact same amount in the same direction i.e. wheels right or wheels left you can get the steering wheel back to center with out fudg'n up the toe-in.
       
    4. Benjam

      Benjam Active Member

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      Okay good, I'm just concerned about those lower splines being right. My steering wheel is to the right now when I'm going straight.

      I'll have to post pictures later of how bad my rag joints were. Really bad indeed.

      I also adjusted the steering gear and got some play out of that. I have to do an outer tie rod end so I'll align it then and everything should be good and tight!

      Benjam :D
       
    5. FR-425

      FR-425 Used to be a road here. Elite Explorer

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      :thumbsup:
       
    6. FR-425

      FR-425 Used to be a road here. Elite Explorer

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      23,000 miles on the shaft now, a trip to Moab and Plenty of other wheel'n in between.


      Still solid as a rock. This mod is for sure a keeper.
       
    7. Kami808

      Kami808 New Member

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      Last edited: January 22, 2015
    8. FR-425

      FR-425 Used to be a road here. Elite Explorer

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      Hard to say from just that pic.

      But I can see that all three of those in the pic are slightly different from each other.

      To be sure if your going to buy on-line look for 92' - 95' only
       
    9. BKennedy

      BKennedy Elite Loser Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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      I finally finished this mod on my 1994 Explorer. Works very well. Took some play out of the wheel, and don't have to worry about the rag joints exploding. It is very straightforward, just follow the guide. Go for a drive (I went off-roading) and work the steering. Come back and retighten the bolts/nuts.

      IMG_20170405_175023465.jpg

      IMG_20170405_175028881.jpg

      IMG_20170405_175052137.jpg
      I was planning on modifying the shaft by welding on the Explorer's steering gear box side shaft fitting. After 425 sent me his old, worn out shaft, I realized its a cast piece. I didn't want to trust a cast to stamped steel weld, and it was going to be much more trouble than its worth. Ended up doing just what the "how to" states. The steering wheel was only a little bit off. Maybe due to the rod end type steering setup, but any little modification to my steering puts the wheel off-center. It was already off-center the other direction due to a recent pitman arm mod. I have changed out a few steering gear boxes on my Explorer (4) in the years I have had it, and always had to adjust the steering wheel about the same as with this mod.
       
    10. 96EXXLTinCO

      96EXXLTinCO Active Member

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      Getting my hands on a shaft should be no problem (there's a total of 6 92-94 ZJ's in our local upull n pay yard. However, any thoughts as to how having a 3" body lift might effect the length needed? Obviously it would take a longer shaft (yes there's a joke there, I'm keeping it PG) but any idea how much longer? Not sure what's keeping my rag joint together at this point, it looks horrible, and sometimes turning the steering wheel feels like I'm merely giving the truck a suggestion on which way to go.
       
    11. gmanpaint

      gmanpaint Torsion Bar Free Elite Explorer

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      I did this with a 3" BL in the 94. There is plenty of shaft for it. Somewhere towards the back of Pugly's thread is a small write up on it, showing lengths to cut.
       
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    12. 96EXXLTinCO

      96EXXLTinCO Active Member

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      That's perfect!! I'll take a look at that. Thx Greg.
       
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    13. timtimtimajim

      timtimtimajim Elite Explorer

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      One of them is missing it's steering shaft already:D And it was an easy one with half of the engine already gone before I got there
       
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    14. 96EXXLTinCO

      96EXXLTinCO Active Member

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      Oh you're putting one in also huh? Awesome!! Online inventory showed 6 from 92-95. That seem about right to you since you had boots on the ground?
       
      Elite Explorer members see practically no ads, can add their own profile photo, upload photo attachments directly to your posts and Media Gallery, create more private Conversations, and more. Join Today. Your support is greatly appreciated.


    15. timtimtimajim

      timtimtimajim Elite Explorer

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      Yep! hopefully this weekend if I have a chance. But yah, six sounds about right. I was just there Monday so things probably really haven't changed much
       
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    16. timtimtimajim

      timtimtimajim Elite Explorer

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      Thanks @FR-425 for this write up. I just did this mod today and the steering on my Ex has way more feel and is much more responsive. The old rag joints were looking pretty worn out
       
    17. FR-425

      FR-425 Used to be a road here. Elite Explorer

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      :burnout:
       
    18. FR-425

      FR-425 Used to be a road here. Elite Explorer

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      Sorry Photobucket went tits up! working on a solution for images. Geez!
       

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