1. #1

    cj steering box options

    My steering is terrible and just plain unsafe. While taking the box out the other day I realized why. The shaft (sector shaft?) attached to the pitman wobbles, the coupler at the box is shot. The upper joint that meets the column under the master cylinder gives the wheel 10 degrees of play alone. ..you got it, its just plain silly to attempt any normal driving, not dare take it of road lol. So I'm looking at a new shaft, try to find a borgeson knock off with u joints. And a steering box, prob needs ball joints, tie rod ends, but that's another thread.

    I want variable rate steering. J20, early camaros, H1 etc are options, does anyone know of other options? So far the cheapest is the camaro..plus being newer prob has less wear..no?

    Anyway, I don't want another cj box. Expensive and no variable rate steering.

    Thanks again!
    http://www.cardomain.com/ride/815022 long sold.. now its a 78 cj7, 304 auto at, AMC 20 and disco front d30. 4WD is only a drive shaft install away. What I'd do for a couple of wide d44s, d300..

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
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    Re: cj steering box options

    Doesn't sound like the box is bad at all, Your cj steering shaft is rebuildable unlike the wranglers. You can buy a rebuild kit for the coupler at the sector shaft at the box, the upper column has a bearing with a plastic cage and is known to wear out. Both are cheap, and the fix is pretty easy although you do have to take the shaft out to do. for the box, not sure what variable rate is, but If you do need a new box, I would look for the 70,s-mid 80,s Camaro's box,(known as the 76 box) it has 4 mounting holes and tighter than stock steering. The bottom of the box should have a 76 stamped into it under that round cover piece by the bumper (don't know what you call that). It is a very popular box for cj,s. there are 2 different variations, easily identified by input shaft where coupler fits.
    one is 3/4-30 splines and other is 13/16 by 36 splines, 77 down manual had 3/4, p/s 13/16, 77 up all 13/16.
    Last edited by 69jeepcj; 11-06-2013 at 05:43 AM.

  3. #3

    Re: cj steering box options

    Hmmmmmm. It has the 76 stamp on it.
    Makes sense as the more I go over this thing the more I notice its a frankenjeep. The po didn't know much about cars, wanted a beach jeept to cruise in and got in over his head or wallet. I'm assuming he bought it from the guy who did the mods I'm finding.
    I'm thinking I may just replace the shaft and to start and see how it drives.
    http://www.cardomain.com/ride/815022 long sold.. now its a 78 cj7, 304 auto at, AMC 20 and disco front d30. 4WD is only a drive shaft install away. What I'd do for a couple of wide d44s, d300..

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
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    1,993

    Re: cj steering box options

    Unless the box is actually bad, it should drive pretty good after getting the new coupler and upper bearing. Those two bearings can cause a lot of play in the wheel, especially the lower coupler. The 76 box is a very good box and I would not get rid of it unless something actually went wrong with it, many people want them. I have replaced these part in the past on many jeeps and it drove great after. My current jeep needs the upper bearing done soon.

  5. #5

    Re: cj steering box options

    Newer boxes are O-ring which opens up another can of worms, but I like the Grand Cherokee box. J20 is for massive tires.
    '87 Comanche 4x4 lifted 5 1/2" on 33" tires 4.0L/AW4/NP242 $3500
    Perfect combination but too small to haul my Grand Kids and wife in.


  6. #6

    Re: cj steering box options

    Today I checked all the links to find the play. Its up top at the upper joint below the MC and the lower (coupler) end where the shaft meets the box and the drivers side tie rod end
    Bought the coupler rebuild kit and tie rod end tonight to install tomorrow.
    After its all together im hoping to be able to tighten the sector shaft nut to further eliminate the play and then worry about the upper shaft play at a later date. I'll post results when I'm done.
    http://www.cardomain.com/ride/815022 long sold.. now its a 78 cj7, 304 auto at, AMC 20 and disco front d30. 4WD is only a drive shaft install away. What I'd do for a couple of wide d44s, d300..

  7. #7
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    Feb 2012
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    Re: cj steering box options

    If its the upper "UJOINT" in the shaft I don't think they make a replacement joint for that (not sure though). I think just the lower coupler and the upper bearing where the shaft go,s into the column at the firewall is whats available for rebuild, don't think you can get the little ujoint up toward the top of the shaft. Are you sure its the ujoint and not the bearing. If it is the ujoint itself I would not put the coupler kit on until you find out if you can get a joint for the shaft. I have not seen a cj shaft with a bad ujoint in it before though, so make sure it is actually the joint and not the bearing just above the joint. There is a cover over the end of your steering column where the shaft connects that is held on with a coat hanger sized wire clip, take that clip off and slide the cover off to see the bearing.

  8. #8

    Re: cj steering box options

    Actually, Napa carries that joint, but I can't recall the part number. I know on the FSJs you can swap the lower section of an XJ column and get rid of the rag joint.
    '87 Comanche 4x4 lifted 5 1/2" on 33" tires 4.0L/AW4/NP242 $3500
    Perfect combination but too small to haul my Grand Kids and wife in.


  9. #9

    Re: cj steering box options

    Nah its def the upper ujoint. I took out the shaft to make it easier to do the couples down below to realize hell, I went this far let's see what I can do to the top to eliminate all the known play. Then my neighbor trots over and says hey let's drill that out and put some grade 8 bolts in there in place of those rivits and you'll have a new upper ujoint... BAD IDEA.

    So after burning through a couple hardened bits with the drill press and gobs of oil, we decide even if we get those rivits out, I'm gonna be all white knuckles driving it since the factory put that much energy into putting hardened steel digits in that upper ujoint.

    So I have an HD shaft on the way one with real replaceable joints upper and lower if I'm lucky, should be here weds. I'll return the coupler kit and make some metal art out of the old steering shaft with my mig. I'm ready to drive this thing.
    http://www.cardomain.com/ride/815022 long sold.. now its a 78 cj7, 304 auto at, AMC 20 and disco front d30. 4WD is only a drive shaft install away. What I'd do for a couple of wide d44s, d300..

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Cincinnati, Ohio
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    Re: cj steering box options

    cool, too bad the upper joint was gone and you had to buy a new one $$$$.

  11. #11

    Re: cj steering box options

    Ya no kidding. That thing was 140. Arrived today, install tomo. Its a nice piece though. Replaceable ujoints top and bottom. Feels nice and solid with absolutely no play whatsoever as I twist it in my arms.

    With my luck lately I could see replacing this thing to find the box isn't as good as I thought. FINGERS CROSSED
    http://www.cardomain.com/ride/815022 long sold.. now its a 78 cj7, 304 auto at, AMC 20 and disco front d30. 4WD is only a drive shaft install away. What I'd do for a couple of wide d44s, d300..

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
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    Re: cj steering box options

    im surprised that's all it cost, I was thinking more like 2something. While you have the shaft off, you may want to replace that lower column bearing before putting the shaft in, will make the steering feel just that much tighter. good luck

  13. #13

    Re: cj steering box options

    That damn shaft is too short. Starting a new thread.
    http://www.cardomain.com/ride/815022 long sold.. now its a 78 cj7, 304 auto at, AMC 20 and disco front d30. 4WD is only a drive shaft install away. What I'd do for a couple of wide d44s, d300..

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