Loose Steering Gearbox - Diesel Truck Forum - TheDieselGarage.com
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post #1 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-13-2013, 12:26 PM Thread Starter
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Loose Steering Gearbox

Does anyone have this problem or any solutions to a loose steering gearbox? Apart from the tires on my truck being worn out on the inside from the chamber on the straight axles the truck has some really sloppy steering. I tried to tighten it up at the adjustment screw but it doesnt seem to have made any difference. Even while just sitting in the driveway and turning the steering wheel the gearbox give a nice gear clunk and will move about 5-10 degrees of play while the engine is off. Thanks in advance.

90' 1 Ton Dodge Diesel 4x4 Stock 12v. 5-speed Getrag. Custom 6'' Alcan Springs. 35'' Toyos.

2002 Dodge 2500 Cummins Automatic Stock.
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post #2 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-13-2013, 03:51 PM
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If the slack is in the sector gear, what you do is turn it fully to one side, then loosen the lock nut and turn in the screw fully, back it out 1/8 of a turn and lock the nut. drive it slowly turning it full right then full left if it is stiff at the ends back it up slightly keep doing this untill it is free both ways.
One other thing to check is have someone gently shake the steering back and forth and you touch the individual joints looking for slack. Check the steering shaft, for slack, also, be sure the bolt holding the input yoke is tight.
Just a thought!

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post #3 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-17-2013, 05:50 AM Thread Starter
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Are you referring to that adjustment screw that requires an allen wrench, right on top of the gearbox? The slop is definitely the gearbox. My dad and I went over everything from the column to the rods and the gearbox was the only thing with play in it. Wasn't sure if it was safe to run that adjustment screw in a lot and tighten it up or not.

90' 1 Ton Dodge Diesel 4x4 Stock 12v. 5-speed Getrag. Custom 6'' Alcan Springs. 35'' Toyos.

2002 Dodge 2500 Cummins Automatic Stock.
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post #4 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-17-2013, 02:59 PM
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Yes that is the one!
What I do is first spray with penatrating oil, then from the top, beside the radiator on many units you can use a long extension with a flex, and a deep socket. You can break it loose, put wrench on the nut so it stops on something and then use an allen socket to turn the adjuster in.
I have done quite a few with good results, check the steering box mounting bolts also.
Just a thought!

1988 ford van fresh overhaul, 1991 nissan pick-up 1993 Caprice 2000 GMC S10 Blaser 2007 nbs 3500 GMC 4x4 crew-cab long box 17 inch single wheels Duramax Alison. BW turnover Ball. Furakawa FL35 loader. Retired, HD mechanic, worked on engines all my life. Fabricator welder. electrician. in the process of finishing my new shop. Live in Rock Creek B.C. Wife has a fruit stand.
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post #5 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-17-2013, 11:39 PM
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Originally Posted by Johnp3 View Post
Yes that is the one!
What I do is first spray with penatrating oil, then from the top, beside the radiator on many units you can use a long extension with a flex, and a deep socket. You can break it loose, put wrench on the nut so it stops on something and then use an allen socket to turn the adjuster in.
I have done quite a few with good results, check the steering box mounting bolts also.
Just a thought!
John is this the same on a Ford too? I have messed with mine some but if the procedure is the same I will give it a try Friday.

I was worried it would bind up if I tighten it too much.

Early 2004 F-250 4x4 CC 6.0


2nd owner, ARP studs 1 at a time, Some parts missing in the exhaust path, BD intercooler hoses, Blue spring, MC filters, Sinister coolant filter, Exhaust manifold gaskets, WARN lockouts, Gold coolant, zoodad mod, autometer boost gauge, high idle mod, Scangauge 2, SCT X3 tuned from KEM, autometer fuel pressure gauge, Archoil 6200 in the fuel, FICM by Ed w/ATLAS40, autometer pyro gauge,'08 Alum Rear Diff cover, 5w-40 Rotella T6 w/ Archoil 9100 in it, zert in the slip joint, harpooned fuel tank, 6.4 banjos


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post #6 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-18-2013, 02:00 AM
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Same thing, I do not remember sizes, but have done those also they are all the same, Dodge GM and FORD.
Be sure you check the mounting bolts, I have found many that become loose.

1988 ford van fresh overhaul, 1991 nissan pick-up 1993 Caprice 2000 GMC S10 Blaser 2007 nbs 3500 GMC 4x4 crew-cab long box 17 inch single wheels Duramax Alison. BW turnover Ball. Furakawa FL35 loader. Retired, HD mechanic, worked on engines all my life. Fabricator welder. electrician. in the process of finishing my new shop. Live in Rock Creek B.C. Wife has a fruit stand.
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post #7 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-19-2013, 01:52 AM Thread Starter
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That was my concern to that you can tighten too much. Any reason why the wheels need to be turned to one side?

90' 1 Ton Dodge Diesel 4x4 Stock 12v. 5-speed Getrag. Custom 6'' Alcan Springs. 35'' Toyos.

2002 Dodge 2500 Cummins Automatic Stock.
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post #8 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-19-2013, 01:59 PM
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That is the way it should be done.

You will have the most wear in the center of the screw and the least at the ends, so you will need to turn the wheels to one side to get it right.
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post #9 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-19-2013, 02:13 PM
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That is the way it should be done.

You will have the most wear in the center of the screw and the least at the ends, so you will need to turn the wheels to one side to get it right.
That makes sense!

Early 2004 F-250 4x4 CC 6.0


2nd owner, ARP studs 1 at a time, Some parts missing in the exhaust path, BD intercooler hoses, Blue spring, MC filters, Sinister coolant filter, Exhaust manifold gaskets, WARN lockouts, Gold coolant, zoodad mod, autometer boost gauge, high idle mod, Scangauge 2, SCT X3 tuned from KEM, autometer fuel pressure gauge, Archoil 6200 in the fuel, FICM by Ed w/ATLAS40, autometer pyro gauge,'08 Alum Rear Diff cover, 5w-40 Rotella T6 w/ Archoil 9100 in it, zert in the slip joint, harpooned fuel tank, 6.4 banjos


Not a diesel mechanic in real life but I play one on the Internet
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post #10 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-19-2013, 08:33 PM Thread Starter
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Got the wheels turned to one side and sure enough she's all tight. Thank you guys!

One more question since it still relates to the gearbox, could too much fluid in the system cause the same problem or slightly the same problem?

I'm thinking the big *** mud terrain tires I have grabbing every groove is still some of the issue.

Thanks again!

90' 1 Ton Dodge Diesel 4x4 Stock 12v. 5-speed Getrag. Custom 6'' Alcan Springs. 35'' Toyos.

2002 Dodge 2500 Cummins Automatic Stock.
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