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HB32 07-29-2002 06:47 AM

Vega box install
I am mocking up the location for my steering box in my Ford powered deuce and have a few questions to ask of those in the know. Should my pitman arm be level with the ground? Should the steering rods be parallel with each other in height and seperation?
Does this geometry change greatly with the movement of the front end?
The box seems to sit on an angle to achieve the steering rods to be parallel which in turn causes the pitman arm to be farther from the ground at the ball joint end ( not level). I have looked at several cars for ideas and find different variations. Also, the box is hard up against the engine mount which I guess should`nt be a problem or is it?
Do to the location of the frame engine mount it is not possible to bring the box higher. I am using a TCI pitman arm and a Flaming River box.Should I be using a shorter/longer arm? Once again thanks to all who respond. Roger

SirSpeedy 07-29-2002 09:01 PM

HB32- (nice handle-what body?)

It is not critical for the pitman arm to be level. The tie rod and drag link should be parallel, and in the same plane front to rear. This is at ridehieght, with the wheels centered. As for the geometry changing during movement, it does. The idea is to elimate bumpsteer, which occurs when you are traveling in a straight line and encounter a bump in the road. Not when the wheels are already turned.

You say the ball joint end(forward end) is higher? That seems rather odd, as generally the end of the pitman is tipped down. Do you have the chassis at the approximate ride hieght? The input shaft of the box should be angled up toward the firewall. If it is angled down, you will need 3 U-joints(and a sperical support of the floating shaft), which is really odd in a small block Deuce.

As for the box hitting the mount, depending on the style of mount you are using, you may have to trim/relieve the mount to accomodated the box. You will need to add additional gusseting or support to the mount where you cut/trim the existing mount.

Let me know how you get along, I've built over 100 '32 chassis, with SBC, Ford, Nailhed, Hemi, pinched, kicked, IFS, IRS, etc - Happy to help you where I can.

scumdog 07-30-2002 01:25 AM

Hi, my understanding and experience is that the 4-bars and drag links should run parallel and be the same lenght to eliminate "bump-steer" which happens when the drivers side wheel hits a bump and goes upwards, if the drag link is too short it will "pull" as it runs through a different arc and will make the car dart to that side, same effect if the drag link goes up from the steering box to the steering arm on the back of the spindle or stub axle (I have seen lots of T-buckets like this), it also makes the car dart to the drivers side as the car goes over a bump. Hope this helps, Tom
p.s. with radius rods the same applies - you could try mounting the s'box forwards a bit and run a drag link to the opposite side stub axle behind the front axle, a "cross-steer" set-up. My cousin did this on his duece and it worked a treat.

hotroddon 07-30-2002 06:42 AM

It is important that the drag link and tie rod are parralel to the ground and each other. It is important to try and keep the pitman arm parrallel to the ground, otherwise it will cause the drag link to move up and down as you turn keeping it from staying parrallel to the tie rod. The tie rod will be parrallel to the axle but the drag link can actually be angled in this plane with no adverse effects. Cross steer set ups like this are relatively simple to setup if you keep the above facts in mind and you MUST use a Panhard Rod, Axle Center Bearing or Dead Perch (no Shackle) on one side to eliminate bump steer and shimmy. Bump steer by the way can happen when the wheels are turned from center also, not just when going straight. we normally work to eliminate or correct or it in the straight ahead position as this is when it is most noticable. The Panhard rod is the perferred method to keep the axle located. Good luck with your car, Don

HB32 08-14-2002 09:31 AM

Thanks to all who responded. I have decided to move my engine mounts back 1 1/2 inches to allow the box to sit higher which should allow proper positioning. Roger

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