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A Learning Hobbist
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232 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I think I may have a bit of a problem.....here goes, on my 1979 Chevy truck, K10 4x4, stock ride. I have excessive play in the steering. All the ball joints and tie rods have been replace. I have tried adjusting the steering box, but that has not helped.

It appears that the play is at the pitman arm where it connects to the steering box. I have tried tightening the pitman arm, but that doesn't seem to help all that much. I have not remove it yet, but when I do, I'm afraid that I'm going to find that the splines on the steering box are striped. Is that likely, and if so, is there a fix to that with out replacing that steering box. I am going to replace the pitman arm while i'm at it.

Thanks for the help.

Steve
 

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721 Posts
Look at your frame where the steering box is located for cracks in the frame also. If you see the shaft turn and the pitman arm doesn't imedately move to, your in deep do do! You could wind up trieing to turn the truck and have it strip out totaly and wreck you. A quick and dirty fix would be to weld the pitman arm to the shaft. You would have to keep the shaft cool with wet rags where it enters the box so you didn't melt the seal and not electrocute your self in the water at the same time. Best fix would be to replace them. Also the safest..:thumbup:
 

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Licenced Automotive Technician
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1,625 Posts
Definatly check the frame. These trucks are famous for cracking out around the box's bolt holes. It can be fixed by fish plating it, though. As for the sector shaft being stripped, it isn't very common. Usually what happens is that the pitman arm come loose, and gets driven that way for a while. The sector shaft is very hard steel, ant the arm is cast, so the taper in it gets worn out. So you can tighten it until the second tuesday of next week and it won't fix the problem. my first fix after checking the frame, is to replace the pitman arm.
 

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A Learning Hobbist
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232 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Well the previous owner welded the steering box right to the frame for the reason of it cracking. I'm pretty sure that it seems to be loose around the pitman arm. I have tightened this down a few times which had helped a bit, but like you said, I can do this all I want but it will do nothing.

So do you think that just replacing the pitman arm would solve this problem if thats where it is. I was worried that the shaft would have stripped because this was so loose.


Thanks
Steve
 

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Shop Owner And Troll Hunter
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2,643 Posts
Like posted, it has been run lose and worn the taper. You should be able to just replace the pitman arm and be ok.

Troy
 

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A Learning Hobbist
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232 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Great, thanks......
 

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Shop Owner And Troll Hunter
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2,643 Posts
?????What does boxing with steel plates and useing big bolts have to do with the worn taper in a pitman arm????

Troy:confused:
 

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Licenced Automotive Technician
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1,625 Posts
Looks like you'll have one heluva great time changing that box if it ever packs it in.........

BTW, if you manage to get the box off, the boxing idea is good, although like troy, I'm not sure haw it waould fix a worn taper....... if you do box it, make a template, and drill your holes first. then measure how deep the channel is and weld appropriate size and length steel pipe to the plate. this will make your box up job twice as strong, as well as preventing bowing of the plate when you tighten your bolts up!
 
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