Center arm questions

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ScottFJ40

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I was wheeling this past weekend, and I heard a clicking as I turned the wheel back and forth. As I had my wife turn the wheel, I noticed the center arm moveing, due to 2 loose bolts. I am going to put new bolts on and tighten them down. It looked like there may had been some play in the center arm itself. How do you determine if it needs a rebuild? Do they sell the center arms complete, or do I need to rebuild it myself?

I have mini power steering, would i be better off just ditching the mini power and doing a sag conversion?

Thanks
 
73lndcrsr

73lndcrsr

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IMO any time you can get rid of some of the TREs you will be better off. I went with the saginaw conversion after nearly breaking my hand on the trail.


The center arm is easy enough to rebuild though the parts can get a little pricey. I think the bushing is about $40 just for it. i have seen rebuild kits for the whole thing for $100-$200.

If you see lateral movement in the center pivot, you have either and adjustment to make or a rebuild to perform. I checked mine by having someone move the steering wheel while I watched for movement in the center arm. It should not move, other than the pivot.
 
cruiserdan

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Scott,

The OEM center arm kit for your 78 is an 04453-60021. The list price for that kit is $197.73. I'm surprised that your housing didn't crack or break with 2 loose bolts. One of our club members had the same thing happen to his 40 In Moab this spring, midway through Poison Spider Mesa and his housing cracked. Lucky for him another guy had an on-board welder to band-aid him back togther to get him back to the pavement.

Regards, Dan.
 
Chef

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That's gotta be dealer list pricing, I think the last one I got from MAF was $75, and that was pretty recent...I could be wrong tho. For $200 I'd be going saginaw:) $25 gearbox at the salvage yard, $25 pillowblock at napa, and spend the rest on real tie rods and ends...And remember, volvo 240 saginaw pumps have cruiser width pulleys:)
 
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ScottFJ40

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Thanks for the replies. How do you adjust one?
 
Degnol

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Scott, you loosen the topmost bolt on the centerarm, then tighten the top part of the housing till it is tight, then back off 1/4 turn, then retighten the bolt. Then recheck for play while someone turns the wheel. I'd use grade 8 bolts on thet housing while you're at it.
Ed
 
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rick_d

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center arm is one of those items you don't buy from the dealer.

$75 is OK price from MAF, but it's MAF.

heartoftexasoffroad.com (HOT) was running a special,
5 piece tie rod kit and center arm for $99 (japanese made spares). I don't know what HOT (robert) wants for just the center arm.

My belief is if the OEM spec replacement parts were cheap enough, people would actually try to RNR their steering first before going to sag, scout, etc. HOT agreed with this idea hence the special. On dedicated trail rigs, PS is a must. Daily drivers, fix what you have.
 
Degnol

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I agree, just rebuilt my centerarm with a kit that I got from Robert and it looked like high quality goods. His kit does not have a new spring with it, but most everyone uses the old spring because the new springs(if included) are too big and very difficult to re-assemble. Robert sells good stuff, he's a cruiserhead first and a merchantman second. He wouldn't sell anything that he wouldn't put on his own cruiser. I believe I paid $47+ shipping.
GL
Ed Long :)
 
cruiserdan

cruiserdan

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Rick,

I agree with you, I did think it pertinent information to mention the OEM piece. If nothing else, it makes the other stuff seem positively cheap ;) . Or, maybe even better, a great excuse to go to power steering. :D
 
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ScottFJ40

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Re:Center arm questions **new info**

OK, I adjusted my center arm today, after installing beefier grade 8's.
Check out what I found though, missed it on the trail because of liberal dirt coating.

Anyone have any repair ideas?
I have an underhood welder, just don't know how to weld yet ;)
Sorry to the bandwidth impaired.
Oh yeah, adjusting the center arm, and adding nice snug fasteners made a world of difference, I can drive it down the road one-handed, woohoo.
P1010012.jpg

P1010010.jpg

P1010011.jpg
 
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ScottFJ40

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I'm taking it to my local welding shop, guess I shouldn't play with this.
 

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