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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey there, title says my issue. Occasionally on a bumpy road or even just tuening or accelerating, the front suspension will begin to death wobble like it was the last thing itd ever do. Wobble is more managable at speeds above 35 mph, anything below is nearly impossible to control and I am forced to pull over and stop or risk causing and accident. I will provide a picture of the front suspension, it is all mechanical, no power steering.
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Dont mind the torque wrench sitting under the leaf spring. If anything jumps out at you or you have any ideas, let me know !!
 

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I have a similar suicide front end on my '18 Dodge without a Panhard rod and it is as good as any straight axle car I've had and that includes both drag link and cross steering street rods.. I'd say with the Panhard rod the frame to axle movement should be controlled. A longer Panhard rod would better. I'd look at the king pins and tie rod ends. Worn king pins was a common problem "back in the day" on old Fords. Other than that I don't have a clue.
 

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Put a steering stabilizer on it , best $20 you'll ever spend . Let the naysayers ,the " Band-Aids "bunch watch as you drive by smiling while they spend tons of money & time replacing , adjusting & worrying ! ( After making sure nothing is broken , worn out or unsafe) Go on most any old cast site & type in death wobble ,there's no definitive , consistent cause ,lots of possibilities & speculating though.....( everybody's an expert ). LOL. This is mine installed on the drag link !
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What is the caster angle? I am not familiar with these type of front ends but all front ends need good caster angle. Someone on here should be able to advise you what a good angle is for this type of setup. I would say at least 4 degrees minimum.
 

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I'll assume all front end pieces are tight such as kingpins, steering linkages and steering box. Two things to help with the handling is caster set at 6-7 degrees. Yes, that alot but works well with that type front end. Next is the toe in. Should have about 1/8" toe in to provide "pressure" on the front end. Take a hard look at your steering box. Is there play in it?
 

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+1 on the stabilizer. My T bucket had a terrible wobble. Nothing the traditionalists recommended worked. Put on a SoCal speedshop stabilizer and the wobble instantly went away. I could drive that car at any speed with one hand.

Pete Chaporis stated once that no straight axle car left his shop without a stabilizer. Just look at the all the straight axle trucks that come from the factory with stabilizers. Must be something there or the factories wouldn't spend the money to put them on. BTW - The Socal stabilizer appeared to be a modified VW Beeltle part. Yep. They came with them too and were reported to be hard to drive without one. Just because Ford didn't install them in the 20's and 30's (mainly because tubular hydraulic shocks weren't widely available untill WW2) doesn't mean they don't have merit.
 

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What is the caster angle? I am not familiar with these type of front ends but all front ends need good caster angle. Someone on here should be able to advise you what a good angle is for this type of setup. I would say at least 4 degrees minimum.
When I worked at Ford dealer there was a recall on the 4x4 straight axle for a death wobble, the solution was a caster shim to add more caster. That was back in the front leaf spring days.
A steering stabilizer couldn't hurt. I was wondering why the panhard bar appears to be non-parralel to the axle and the ground. With that axle and spring you have very little travel to compensate for in the panhard travel, which should be in the sweet spot of the arc.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I have a similar suicide front end on my '18 Dodge without a Panhard rod and it is as good as any straight axle car I've had and that includes both drag link and cross steering street rods.. I'd say with the Panhard rod the frame to axle movement should be controlled. A longer Panhard rod would better. I'd look at the king pins and tie rod ends. Worn king pins was a common problem "back in the day" on old Fords. Other than that I don't have a clue.
Will definitely check those out. Thanks
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Put a steering stabilizer on it , best $20 you'll ever spend . Let the naysayers ,the " Band-Aids "bunch watch as you drive by smiling while they spend tons of money & time replacing , adjusting & worrying ! ( After making sure nothing is broken , worn out or unsafe) Go on most any old cast site & type in death wobble ,there's no definitive , consistent cause ,lots of possibilities & speculating though.....( everybody's an expert ). LOL. This is mine installed on the drag link ! View attachment 619638
Any idea where I could find some of these? Or would it have to be custom. Do they just mount from the frame to the steering apparatus?
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I'll assume all front end pieces are tight such as kingpins, steering linkages and steering box. Two things to help with the handling is caster set at 6-7 degrees. Yes, that alot but works well with that type front end. Next is the toe in. Should have about 1/8" toe in to provide "pressure" on the front end. Take a hard look at your steering box. Is there play in it?
No play in the steering box.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Oops I forgot about a steering damper. Thanks for others suggesting one. I've never needed one but I know others that have. They go between the tie rod and frame. Go with the VW ones.
Do you know a link I could follow to be 100% sure I am getting the right ones? I am on Socal Speedshops website right now but just want to be sure.
 

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Jackson76, I can't tell from the picture you posted if your car is a batwing car or a 4 bar in the front. If its a batwing car and your batwings are solid (non hiemed ends) and you don't have enough caster you are going to have to relocate the aft batwing pickup point to be lower toward the ground, or remove the mounts on the axle and locate as needed to achieve the desired caster. If it's a 4 bar then it's easy, just adjust the 4 bars to achieve the desired caster. I run a total of about 10 degrees but the car has a rake of about 3 degrees, so a total of about 7 degrees. I also run, as has been suggested, 1/8" of toe. My car has Vega cross steer with a steering damper. I would check all you numbers and see where you are at. The death wobble is nothing to mess with.

Keith
 

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What is your toe and alignment?
Good video below explaining how to check toe and alignment side to side;


Once the wheels are pointing the same way(side to side) we get into the fun on just checking things over.

Bushings, bearings, and balance. Write that on a toolbox that you keep your alignment tools in because a majority of the time just checking those things will reveal a issue.

A stablizer is a band aid just like changing toe may mask a bad bearing. Going through and just measuring/grabbing things on/off the ground will reveal a issue a majority of the time.

I have bought several death wobble nightmares that were fixed by a bit of time and checking things with a unbiased view.

Dont assume anything like your suspension being straight because your frame is.
Or say it is doing it at this speed so it can't be this. Check everything over from the rubber to the steering wheel.

With your setup it could be something minior like a simple bearing to the beam itself being out of tolerance.
 

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What is your toe and alignment?
Good video below explaining how to check toe and alignment side to side;


Once the wheels are pointing the same way(side to side) we get into the fun on just checking things over.

Bushings, bearings, and balance. Write that on a toolbox that you keep your alignment tools in because a majority of the time just checking those things will reveal a issue.

A stablizer is a band aid just like changing toe may mask a bad bearing. Going through and just measuring/grabbing things on/off the ground will reveal a issue a majority of the time.

I have bought several death wobble nightmares that were fixed by a bit of time and checking things with a unbiased view.

Dont assume anything like your suspension being straight because your frame is.
Or say it is doing it at this speed so it can't be this. Check everything over from the rubber to the steering wheel.

With your setup it could be something minior like a simple bearing to the beam itself being out of tolerance.
Well looky there. It only took 15 posts for one of the " band aid" bunch to show up .LOL !
 

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Hey there, title says my issue. Occasionally on a bumpy road or even just tuening or accelerating, the front suspension will begin to death wobble like it was the last thing itd ever do. Wobble is more managable at speeds above 35 mph, anything below is nearly impossible to control and I am forced to pull over and stop or risk causing and accident. I will provide a picture of the front suspension, it is all mechanical, no power steering. View attachment 619522
Dont mind the torque wrench sitting under the leaf spring. If anything jumps out at you or you have any ideas, let me know !!
My T-bucket would get to 50 MPH or so and death wobble. I went through the front end and ultimately found that I had a tire out of round with an internal belt separation. Not visible to the eye but my tire guy found it on his balancer.
 
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