SOA revisited...

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Feb 26, 2003
Currently I am elbow deep in the process of SOA's in 2 FJ40's. I am just about done with the rear's, we are in the process of having our new spring perches made, and the shackles are hung. Everything is going OK so far, but the front is going to be another animal altogether. I have read all the tech links on this site, and a few more, and still have a couple of questions. First, the steering. I am going to go with a new FJ60 PS conversion, and have almost all of the pieces already, but the arms have stumped me. I am trying to make it out as cheap as possible, and buying a complete HY-Steer is out of the about making them. &nbsp:Does anybody have any diagrams, CAD, or even just measurements to make these new arms from. It's on a 73 and a 78. There is a shackle reversal on the 73 and maybe on the 78 if it makes any difference. I think we are going to cut and turn early next week, but I really want to get the rears finished up this weekend. Also, does anyone know what angles the pinions should be rotated to the T-case??? I'm sure there will many more questions along the way, but I have to get to the shop right now. I'll check back tonight. Here's a teaser pic.
the angle for the Cut&turn is very much vehicle specific... I went 17* total... 5 for caster, and 12 for the pinion, shich sits it just 1-2* above pointing actually at the t-case, since the pinion will drop under torque, and when the suspension droops.

That long u-bolt was a BITCH!
I seems to me you guys are making the soa overly complicated and expensive. I just did my 40 with the marc whately method which works very well.
That cut and turning of the front axle is'nt really necessary when you lenghen the wheelbase by turning the springs around. marc makes the steering arm himself. I used one of his. Aqualu also makes a very nice steering arm for a reasonable price.  
we also use off the shelf dodge spring perches and ford truck front shock mount. Using those off the shelf parts sure save a bunch  of time and money. Right now I'm just using stock 40 driveshafts that have been lengthened that seem to work just fine. For brake lines add the front line to the rear and scrounge another rear line for the front. I've seem alot of 40's running around up here set up basically this way with some minor variations. The ford truck shock mounts were a recent discovery I think. Mine came in well under $1000.00 including the rauncho 9000's, bushings, fancy downney shackles, steering arm, driveshafts and farming out the spring perch and shock mount welding. The result is an exellent off road suspension that has better highway manners than before. Those of us who have done the soa this way cant really see why you would want do it any other way. Driving is believing :beer:
Do you know the part numbers for the Dodge spring perches? I have been grinding and cutting and welding for 2 days and I cannot get satisfied. I really think I need to get these and get on with it!

I dont have the dodge part # right off hand. Have to wait till tomorow to get it. You still have to grind the perch on the front axle to fit around the diff. But that goes real quick. The result really was quite sastisfatory.
Do you know the part numbers for the Dodge spring perches?  I have been grinding and cutting and welding for 2 days and I cannot get satisfied.  I really think I need to get these and get on with it!


They are in the Mopar performance catalog. lots of parts guys can't find them if you call them Dodge parts.

You're gonna be pissed that you wasted two days messing around. The Mopar perches are cheap and well made.
Thanks guys...I cannot order them today b/c of the holiday, but if someone can post the part number tommorrow, I can just call from work and order them. Yeah, I am upset that I wasted 2 days on them with no results, but my tax refund should be here soon and I am waiting on that to buy new poly bushings and greaseable pins, and also some black rockcrawlers. I think I am going to have to go with 35's when it is done.
Go to the Tech area, Woody's SOA, near the end of the article the part # is given. I used it and just installed them, so the # is still accurate.
Do those dodge perches work for front and rear?? Goung to do a 83 fj-60 this winter .
For the Y steering arm, you can go cheap by purchasing another one (Right arm) About $40 and do a little triming on it; cut flush the cylinder metal piece, invert it by placing it flat ends. You'll notice that the eyes are not looking directly. Notice that there are two different arms for the 40 series, There are some knuckles with longer studs separetion. Don't know which years, but it happen to me. The rod fits just right in even though is up side down, but like in the 60 you have open the upper eye a little bit more.

P.S. Sorry, kind of fast , Got to go.
Let us know!
Dodge perches work front and rear, but do take some trimming on the passenger front. IIRC, the part # is also stashed in "cruiser facts" for easy reference.
strangely enough, I didn't have any problems with steering arm clearance, pinion angle or axle wrap on my SOA. :D

Seriously, there are a few web sites that describe dirrerent methods for making double steering arms. I like the one where you drill out the holes on the top one to big enough to get a socket in, mill the two tops flat and weld them together. Then you can use stock length studs and cone washers.
I ordered the perches this morning...$9.90. I feel bad for wasting the whole weekend trying to aim my 4.5 inch grinder as a precision tool. Oh well, you live and learn. I'll be picking up my perches tommorrow, and I need to order my new poly bushings and pins as soon as my tax money comes back. Once I get all the pieces, should I bolt the rear up, put the truck down, and check it all out before I weld the final placement of the perches? This would make the most sense to me, but I am new ;) Also, for the steering arm, do you only need to make mods on one side? Why? I think that I am going to use FJ60 PS with FJ80 tie rod ends. I'll cross that bridge when I get to it, right now my focus is on finishing the rear and getting that right. I'm sure I'll be back soon. Thanks again to all the guys who don't flame you for simple questions - I love this board for the people who are helpful, know what they are doing, and not smart @$$'s who are here to help anyone that has a question. When this SOA is finished, I think I'll need to send out some :beer: to everyone who helped. Cheers!

we can be smart asses if that's what yer used to...heh heh

yes, tack perches, place full truck weight on axles, recheck angles and such, then weld up. Grinding out those welds is not fun.

You need to double the passenger side....drivers side remains the same, since the tie rod still goes beneath the springs and only the drag link gets moved above.

I did a custom double arm on mine....and regret not just doing the hi-steer immediately. has arms for both the 79+ knuckle pattern and the 78-older pattern, at a good price. Also check out and, to name a few...

If yer using 80-series ends, just spend the extra $200-250 for the histeer and be done with it.

The biggest reason for spending the cash for the hysteer, if you want to run 80 series rod ends, is that buying the giant metric left hand thread tap will set you back about half the price of the kit. If you want to build your own rods, run gm 1 ton, american taps are muuuch cheaper-$35 vs $ can then weld your toyota arms shut and ream for american tie rods...
You'll have to buy another pitman arm(read: flat) for the FJ60 p/s box. That or you will have some serious steering bind when you flex the LH front wheel up. Also, fj 80 TieRodEnd's will not fit in the factory taper in the fJ60 arm. Plunk down some money for Sky's pitman arm or find a scout box. I junked my FJ60 installed setup once I did the spring over because of the proximity of the spring to the TRE, b/c no one made a flat pitman arm at the time.

Just go with a Scout box. FJ60 box will be too much $$$ to make work. Then get a wagoneer pitman arm (nearly flat, with the right taper for GM 1 ton TRE's too)
All I can say is WOW!!! I think that I have gained almost 7 inches of lift. 35's are no longer an option, they are a must! The rear is up on the axle, but not welded or anything. I am going to wait a couple of days cause I am going to clean up the axle, new hard brakelines, bearings, seals, and I am going to swap my front and rear diffs and weld the rear. I think I should have the rear mounted and off the jackstands early next week. The one thing that is holding me up is the parking brake assembly. It is a 78, and I took the drum off tonight. I think once I clean it all off with brake cleaner it will make sense, but does anyone have an exploded diagram of the parking brake??? Thanks in advance...


P.S. I am 6'5'' and I can now sit up under the rear of my cruiser!!!!
Also - I think we are going to CNC our HY-Steer arms... anyone have any tips or models????
check SOR for a decent diagram of the park brake. If you need new shoes I've got extra sets I'll let go cheap :D

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