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Thread: Steering Shake

  1. #1
    Newbie Chedder2002's Avatar
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    Default Steering Shake

    some times when I take a left turn on surface street/Hwy's or go over a bumpy road at 40+ MPH my steering wheel shakes pretty good. I have a 4 in faptech lift with 32 in BFG ATKOs. Any Idea what i can do to fix this or a product i need to get to help. Thanks


    Bert USAF
    Alamogordo, NM

  2. #2
    The Cow Shall Rise Again theyeti1775's Avatar
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    Death wooble?
    Yeti

    Jeep Cherokee - Stock for now
    "Long Live The Cow Beast"
    http://www.virginiakrawlers.com/forums/
    http://www.beltway4wd.com/


  3. #3
    Buy My Bike! 05warrior's Avatar
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    Balance your tires, check every nut/bolt you took off/loosened when your lift was installed for tightness. Also check every nut/bolt in your steering system for tightness, check your ball joints, and tie rod ends. that should get you started
    Annoy Liberals....
    Work hard and be happy


  4. #4
    Administrator miljeep's Avatar
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    I have the same issue, sort of. When I hit a bump, my right tire shakes like hell and it does get pretty scary at higher speeds.

    Here is something that was posted on this board for another post, but rather than pointing you to another post, I will just copy and paste it here. but ditto on checking the tightness of everything. Make sure everything is torqued as stated in the installation instructions.


    Read all about it....

    As you have already found out, Death Wobble, the horrible front end vibration that starts when one wheel (usually the right) hits a bump around
    40~50mph, is the worst possible downside to having a coil-sprung vehicle with a track bar setup such as the WJ, XJ, ZJ, and TJ use. Death Wobble is also extremely difficult to try to diagnose, because it is actually caused by slop in the entire steering system as a whole, not by one component. To diagnose correctly, one needs to look for "play" everywhere there is something that could have "play" in it. It's time consuming, and downright dangerous while you are in "test phase", trying to exorcise this demon from your Jeep.
    The thing I tell people to start with is a visual inspection. Spend 10 minutes under the front end and visually inspect each one of the steering
    components for shiny steel, which would be indicative of metal that's moving around when it's not supposed to be. Pay careful attention to the track bar, as it's usually the culprit in most cases. If any of your bolts are even the least bit loose, Death wobble can manifest itself and make your life a living hell.
    If everything looks to be "normal" and you've checked bolt tightness on the
    track bar, the next thing to do is to start with an alignment, making sure
    that caster is set correctly as well as toe-in. If you have been offroading
    and have bent your tie rod even slightly, it'll throw off the alignment. Plus,
    it's only $40 or so.
    If you are certain that it's set correctly and you've not replaced any other
    front end components recently that may have caused the oscillation to
    begin, I tell people the next most suspect thing is the factory front track bar.
    Over time, the tie rod end on the upper portion of the bar develops "play" in
    it, and the lower end has a rubber isolator bushing in it that allows the
    oscillation to occur. Aftermarket bars generally come with urethane bushings that allow much less "play" in the way of movement than the factory rubber bushings do.
    The problem with most aftermarket track bars for the Jeep is that they also
    come with either a heim joint, Johnny joint, or tie rod end on the upper end of the bar, which works fine for a while, but wears out over time, leaving you right back where you started, with a mess in your shorts, a temporarily deaf right ear from the wife screaming, and the frustration with your entire Jeep in general...NOT good. The reason why I created my Track Bar Conversion for XJs and ZJs is to eliminate that problematic (and expensive to have to replace when it wears out) joint as well as for the additional flex benefits. If you are running an XJ or ZJ with more than 3" of lift, I highly recommend you check it out. Another product we have found to work VERY well in getting rid of Death Wobble is our exclusive SuperDurometer Track Bar Bushings, which are also available for the Track Bar Conversion. They are about twice as hard as the typical polyurethane bushings that come in most aftermarket track bars, which are typically made by Daystar or Energy Suspension. They are also one of the least expensive replacement parts in the steering components, so they make sense to try first. Many aftermarket track bars as well as the stock track bar are
    completely ineffective in managing Death Wobble due to their "effective
    angle of operation" if you are above 3" of lift. Bear in mind that another
    alignment is necessary after replacing any front end components if Death Wobble still remains. Sometimes you get lucky and don't need one...but be wary.
    The next thing to check is your steering stabilizer. I recommend replacing the stabilizer along with whatever worn components that you find under the
    front end, as the combination-punch is typically more effective than the parts alone, since DW shakes EVERYTHING, and loosens up other components at the same time.
    I've found that replacing the stabilizer alone often times doesn't eliminate
    death wobble directly, but that it usually helps with some additional poor
    handling characteristics that cause the onset of Death Wobble, such as
    wandering, and a new one seems to tighten up the entire steering system.
    I ONLY recommend the OME SD40 stabilizer because it seems to be tighter than the other models on the market. It's also the most heavy duty. This stabilizer is something that I recommend to everyone who is having trouble with DW because it's one of the least expensive parts to replace.
    Here are some other components to check over for looseness or improper
    movement:
    Tie Rod Ends, ball joints, Track bar mounting bracket bolts, steering box
    bolts, and track bar ends. Another product that we've made due to a need, is our ZJ Steering Box Brace, which holds the steering gear box tightly, allowing the additional stresses of running larger-than-stock tires be directed to the frame rails, rather than to the three little bolts that hold the gear to the frame, which get loose and if they do, will snap and leave you stranded. I don't currently make one for the 6cyl ZJ, but if you have an XJ, you can find one at www.barnettperformance.com.
    Another source of Death Wobble is over-inflated tires (you should have
    around 30psi in stock tires and far less the larger your tires are. See Boyle's Law and consider how much more volume of air you have in your 33" tires compared to stock. I run around 18psi in my 37" tires).
    The last thing that I can mention that has caused Death Wobble in the past is hub bearings. If there is a little slop in them over the years and miles, they MAY indeed help to cause the oscillation as well. I mentioned them last because they are the most expensive to replace and least likely to be the root of the problem. While you have the front end apart, you should consider adding some offset upper ball joints to your Jeep to return the caster back to what a stock Jeep would be if you are running say 4" of lift or more. I don't necessarily recommend this for the '93~'95 full-time 4x4 (NP249 transfer case) ZJ models, though, because it tends to add more vibration to the front drive shaft since you are also turning your pinion angle downward in conjunction with the caster angle improvement...you can't have one without the other.

    Hopefully this short checklist gets you started on the right foot and helps to cure your Death Wobble.

    Very Sincerely,

    -=Kevin=-

  5. #5
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    If just the steering wheel shakes when you hit the bump, and then it smoothes out as you continue driving then I can actually say I know the answer. You're looking at the wrong thing to fix this gaurenteed. Welcome to Alamoghetto NM. IT"S THE ROAD. Even my wifes Highlander doesthat sometimes. And my LJ does it in the same spots everyday to and from work. The roads on and off base here suck. I found that if you have enough , you don't notice the shaking as much, J/K.

    But if it's more than that, maybe you should go over the suspension and steering looking for loose components.

  6. #6
    Administrator miljeep's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scooter LJ View Post
    If just the steering wheel shakes when you hit the bump, and then it smoothes out as you continue driving then I can actually say I know the answer. You're looking at the wrong thing to fix this gaurenteed. Welcome to Alamoghetto NM. IT"S THE ROAD. Even my wifes Highlander doesthat sometimes. And my LJ does it in the same spots everyday to and from work. The roads on and off base here suck. I found that if you have enough , you don't notice the shaking as much, J/K.

    But if it's more than that, maybe you should go over the suspension and steering looking for loose components.
    you two know each other?

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    Nope, just got a PM from him today saying he was new to the base and wanted to hook up with some guys to go wheelin. Have to see what we can do.

  8. #8
    does this guy ever wheel? Hitechredneck's Avatar
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    99% of the time it is the trac bar. ALOT of lift kits comes with a new trac bar and tells you to use the stock bolt on the axle side of the trac bar. BUT the metal sleeve inside the lower bushing 90% of the time is set up for a 7/16th bolt but the stock is not that. i think it is a 3/8. so it allows the bushing to move around on the bolt. you dont notice it right off the bat when you put the lift kit on cause you torque the shit out of it and it smashes the bracket down onto the bushing. but after a while things stretch and the bracket starts loosen up from the bushing. This creates slack and "wiggle room" that is what will get the death wobble started. I dont know why kits dont address the problem, i think it is cause they dont wanna pay to have a nut welded onto a little piece of steel to stick back there. I have fixed about 10 tjs with this problem. i hope you get it worked out. best way to tell is pull the track bar of the bottom bracket and see if the bolt has wiggle room inside the bushing.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Scooter LJ View Post
    Nope, just got a PM from him today saying he was new to the base and wanted to hook up with some guys to go wheelin. Have to see what we can do.
    That is MJ at work right there...the reason it was formed.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hitechredneck View Post
    99% of the time it is the trac bar. ALOT of lift kits comes with a new trac bar and tells you to use the stock bolt on the axle side of the trac bar. BUT the metal sleeve inside the lower bushing 90% of the time is set up for a 7/16th bolt but the stock is not that. i think it is a 3/8. so it allows the bushing to move around on the bolt. you dont notice it right off the bat when you put the lift kit on cause you torque the shit out of it and it smashes the bracket down onto the bushing. but after a while things stretch and the bracket starts loosen up from the bushing. This creates slack and "wiggle room" that is what will get the death wobble started. I dont know why kits dont address the problem, i think it is cause they dont wanna pay to have a nut welded onto a little piece of steel to stick back there. I have fixed about 10 tjs with this problem. i hope you get it worked out. best way to tell is pull the track bar of the bottom bracket and see if the bolt has wiggle room inside the bushing.
    See, if you go with a Rubicon Express kit, it addresses that issue...no wobble on mine. ( yet, knock on wood)

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