Cross-over on 3" lift? (1 Viewer)

ntsqd

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None of the search terms I tried found much worth knowing, but I'm sure that it's been covered ad naseum. Back in the day I recall reading that 3" lift was marginal for cross-over steering.

NOTE: This is NOT high steer, just cross-over. No interest or desire to go to high steer. I built the cross-over arm a hunert years ago, well OK, about '98, and am just now getting around to installing it.

I'm interested if anyone has old threads on this topic saved or bookmarked. I'm thinking that I'm probably looking at oil pan mods as going taller isn't an option either. That is nothing new to me, just don't want to have to pull the pan if I don't have to.
I've not yet made any changes to the frame, so box position has yet to be decided on.
 
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KLF

Frame waxer
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I have about 3" of lift, and ya it's about minimum, although it is also dependant on who's arms you are using, the design, etc. In my case, it's not the tie rod that's the problem, it's the draglink that hits my frame on the passenger side, so it wouldn't matter if I had hi-steer or not. I had to install a taller bumpstop on that side to protect it, I have only about 1-1/2" of up-travel on that side.

Going to the trouble of installing crossover without converting to hi-steer at the same time is an invitation to bent tie rods. Do it.
 

ntsqd

technerd
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I've not yet managed to bend the Marlink tie rod that has been on there for 5ish years. I'm not a crawler, I pit desert racers and am an explorer. Er... I guess the PC term is now "Overlander". Whatever. Point is that I don't need high steer for the way that I use the truck. If high steer resulted in a lower drag link attaching point than my built-up arm, then I might consider it. What I do not like about the high steer arms that I've seen thus far is complete disregard or ignorance about what Ackerman is, what it does, and why it's important to the handling of a truck that sees lots of highway miles.

Hum, 1.5" of up travel is totally unacceptable. I need to get that arm mocked up and see if I'm in the same boat.
 

bkg

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Oct 1, 2004
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doable. Run an Aqualu arm with the TRE on the bottom. You won't be able to use shims or highly arched springs, but it's doable. Did it with 2-2.5" lift on an 85 without a problem.
 

KLF

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Did it with 2-2.5" lift on an 85 without a problem.
On an '85, I can believe it. The SA-era frames have more arch in the front, the IFS frames are almost straight.
 

ntsqd

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I should have clarified, this is for Patch, an '84 Xcab.



I can tell that I'm going to loose that fog light mount as it attaches to the former swaybar mounting points.

I need to get the double arm off the housing that I was building up and put it in place on the existing axle. I'm tempted to go ahead and order a stock position length Marlink for the drag link. Guess I need to ask them how deep they tap the tube......



I'm starting to think that I'm looking at having to cut off the upside down upper and make one that sits lower. Fortunately already I bought the reamer for my FJ60 project.
 
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ntsqd

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Lowering the bump-stops would be the very, very, very, very, very last option. At this lift I'd sooner revisit the J-Arm and add Section Modulus where it matters.
This is not a crawler, up travel is important to it's use in chasing desert racers. I really should use an IFS truck, but this one came to me for less than the cost of the 4.88's & lockers installed.

I did get the chance to mock-up the RS steering arm. I can see where having the upper taper upside down would be a huge bonus. I'm thinking that I'll have to step-bore that hole and make a flanged bushing with the taper inverted. There isn't enough there to simply run the reamer in from the other side. It wouldn't clean-up much more than 50% by the time the TRE is seated correctly.
 

ntsqd

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What I've got so far:



The drag link is pretty close to the spring, but when it was on top it was far too high. I might end up with a small bend in the drag link to allow full stuff - full left lock turning. As it is now the drag link hits the spring a little short of full left lock. I've debated bending the pitman arm up as the drag link is running at the bottom end of the ideal range of angles at ride height.
 

ntsqd

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Dredging this one up from the depths, I've got the box about as high as I could get it on the frame and still have the front bolt sleave go through the frame. In retrospect I'm not sure why I felt that I needed that. It could have gone above the frame and bought me more left side spring to pitman shaft clearance. Oh well, too late to change that.

A crack was found in the LS spring, so now I have OME's under the truck. Major delay in getting the spring bushings set the project back a bit. ARB didn't have any and it took a while for the boat to come in. The OME pack is enough thicker that the pin-up mounting of the drag-link at the steering arm isn't going to work. I've found that the worst case condition is left side full bump coupled with full left turn. If everything clears there it will clear nearly everywhere else too. Full right bump with full right lock is a consideration, but not near as close as the full left bump & lock combo.

Sooooo, I guess that I'll be modifying the steering arm with a new drag-link mounting ear that goes pin-down but lowers that end so that it still clears the frame.

So my next question is has anyone spaced the steering box off the side of the frame enough to clear the spring? It's looking like 1-1/16" 1-1/8" would do the trick. I'm not thinking of cheezy tubular spacers, more like two or more laminated plates like the attached.
box spacer.jpg
 
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My hysteer setup goes down the freeway just fine, seems like to much screwing around to reinvent the wheel.
 

ntsqd

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Unless you can make your truck available to me to test drive such a statement has no value. What is acceptable to you may or may not be acceptable to me. I come from a road racing fab & prep background. Trucks that some guys around here are perfectly happy with I would not consider driving across town except in an emergency. They're fine for them, but are not what I'm willing to settle for.

I can make the necessary mod to the steering arm for $20 (material) and some garage time. A high steer kit will not solve the current spring vs. pitman shaft issue. The only thing that a high steer kit could possibly gain me is a marginally faster truck due to a lighter wallet.

I know that by not following the "formula" that I'm sort of out here on my own, but a bolt-on/weld-on "kit" truck doesn't suit my needs. They're all biased towards rock crawling. I do very, very little of that. I find it boring to run a trail just for the sake of running it, only to do the same thing again the next time that I happen to be in the same area. I want to see what's along the trail and at the end of it.
Back in the old days of the ORC email list there were guys who'd done this sort of experimentation. Where'd they all go?
 
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I think what you've done there is great! I might even fab something like this up for my '80 that sees light trail and long distance "overlander" miles for work. Crossover steering is way better than stock, especially when lifted over 2".

As for the Hy-Steer, for your application since you have this fabed arm working, I wouldn't bother, but I have a set of marlin arms on my '94 and I have to say the handling is top notch. Far superior in every way than stock solid axle steering. No bump steer whatsoever and flawless tracking with no stabilizers or anything. Somebody somewhere has the ackerman figured out. FYI I do a bit of autocross and am a driving enthusiast in general and have messed with alignment and handling enough to know what you're talking about...

Like I said though, good job! Keep it coming. I'd like to see when you get it all worked out.

How are the bilstiens?
 
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I just gave a cross-steer arm like that to Mark Algazy (Marks Off Road), bet you'd save a darn big penny on it. Call him at (818) 953-9230.
 

ntsqd

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Thanks for the input. I've no doubt that the X-over will steer better. The slight vagueness in the stock steering has always been a sore spot. When I noticed that the steering wheel was approaching 1/3 turn left to go straight I figured that the J-Arm wasn't long for this world.

Those Bilsteins made it possible for me to keep the truck. Until I got rid of the Rauncho's I was thinking of offing it. They are the best mod that I've made. Notice that they are the old school yellow 5100's. Even when pushing hard off road I don't really notice them fading. Which is odd, they should be more easy to fade. Second best mod are the GM 63's with remote res 7100's on the rear. I should scrounge up a set of 7100's for the front one of these days.....

I finally got the truck sitting on all 4 tires yesterday afternoon. Nothing about this project has gone well. Every step has had issues that shouldn't have happened. The RS wheel stud's thread look good, but need to be chased as they are screwing up the lug nuts. The RS rebuilt caliper has bunged inlet port threads and will need to be replaced along with the -3AN adapter. The springs came fast, but there were no spring bushings in this country for over a month. ad nauseum. argh.......
Good news is that the front OME's resulted in the same ride height. Can't wait to be able really drive the truck and see how they perform.

I will need to modify the RS steering arm. Currently the drag link limits left turns to something significantly less than full lock. I figured that would be the case, but I had to get it out of the way so that a time valued project could happen. Once that project is complete I'll work out the exact game plan, but I think that turning it full left while the left tire is at full compression will give me the first interference point (drag link at top of RS spring) and I can set the height of the upper portion of the RS steering arm based on that. I will need to check that arrived-at height doesn't result in frame contact at full right turn, full right compression, but I believe based on previous testing that it will clear.
 

ntsqd

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Initial cycling looks REALLY promising!
A thing of beauty it ain't, but it'll work. Installed pics to come once that happens. The POR-15 is curing right now.....
IMG_0921.jpg
 

ntsqd

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Originally it was a second steering arm turned upside down, but that was too tall. I articulated and steered to the closest to the worst case that I could simulate in my driveway, laid a piece of 1/4" stock on the top of the leaf spring (to set the minimum clearance) and set the drag link on it and marked where the top of the arm needed to be relative to the TRE on the end of the drag link.
Then I set up the arm in the mill and cut into it. Pretty scary set-up, took some teeth off the rougher from flex, but I couldn't find a more rigid method of holding it. The inserted block is Cold Roll 1020 Steel as is the rib welded on top. Having the Xcut FJ80 taper reamer has been a huge bonus!

Pics haven't happened because I haven't remembered to get the camera out and take some pics. It is installed and today, for the first time in over 5 months, I drove the truck to work. Literally every step of the way has fought me. Night before last I tried to put the front wheels & tires on, but they had been balanced with clip-on weights, and those didn't clear the TRE boots. Argh! Last night I had them re-balanced using stick-on weights.
 

ntsqd

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Well, I've been driving this truck on and off for about a month. It needs something. I've been pondering adding a steering damper.
A former alignment mechanic friend suggested last night that it has too little Caster. It does not wander on the road, but the steering effort is virtually nil. Feed-back is great, it's just that steering effort is tiny. One-wheel bumps also tend to upset it. I won't call it classic bump-steer, but something is going on. The Bils 5100's on the front are old enough that they are old-skool yellow Bils. I have a set of newer Bils that have never been installed and I plan to put them on the truck just to see what that does for it. Ultimately I need to pony up for a set of 7100 RR's as that is what the rear has under it.
 
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you will have to lower the bump stops some or it will hit the pan. trust me I have a good dent in the oil pan.

more news.

get a wire brush and get that por out of the tre mount area and the cone washer area.
under the kind of pressure those parts are under it will turn to goo and you will have loose parts.
also where it mounts to the knuckle. same deal.
 

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