Thread: FJ40 steering slop.

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
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    Wauconda, IL
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    Default FJ40 steering slop.

    My 78 FJ40 has a small amount of play in the steering at the wheel. What is the most likely cause of this play. all the ball joints feel good, how can i check the steering box if I don't have someone to help out?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
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    Parker County Texas
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    How much play at the wheel? They all have some play at the wheel, being as how they are old-fashioned worm-drive steering gears, not rack and pinion.
    '80 FJ40, '86 FJ60, '07 FJC
    N5MUD Parker County ARES/RACES
    4x4ham.com
    TLCA # 16550

  3. #3
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    Mar 2010
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    Wauconda, IL
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    the steering wheel moves about 2 inches, 5-10 degrees.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
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    132
    I assume its a stock non-powersteering system ??
    That much play is not bad. But if you are real fussy and want to track it down,,,
    You should get someone to help just oscillate the steeringwheel left&right as you examine all the joints.
    (anybody of zero technical skill can at least manage that !)

    If all the tierod ends seem tight, One common area of play is the front steering bellcrank joint.
    Observe it rotates precisely on its axis, has no side to side play.
    Its an easy fix to replace the its guts, Or you might be able to clean it up, squeeze its spring tighter and obtain a bit more life out of it.

    The steeringbox has an adjustment of its sectiongear.
    But unless the steeringbox is really bad off, One should not fuss with it. tightening that gear may help when the steering is more or less centered, but it may end up being too tight as the steering reaches its extremes of travel.

    Some people cry about FJ40 steering being an archaic sloppy system, what it is... It was meant to be that way.
    They forget Landcruiser is intended work & be repaired under 3rd world tough conditions.
    Spreading the load so to speak over multiple tierod ends and spring supported steering bellcrank is much easier to fix in the field than a beat to hell steeringbox.
    Last edited by Verkstad; 04-21-2012 at 02:57 AM.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
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    Parker County Texas
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    2" 5-10 degrees is normal and safe (as long as your tie rod ends are OK). It just feels scary until you get used to it, if you're used to modern rack and pinion steering.
    '80 FJ40, '86 FJ60, '07 FJC
    N5MUD Parker County ARES/RACES
    4x4ham.com
    TLCA # 16550

  6. #6
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    Mar 2010
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    Wauconda, IL
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    I'm fine with it, Ive driven vehicles that are alot worse. My wife thinks it's unsafe. I told her that it just takes some getting used to.
    I am guessing that the bellcrank joint is the cylindrical unit that 's attatched to the frame just behind the front bumper on the drivers side. I have seen rebuild kits, they have a cone shaped shaft and a spring or two. I could handle that no problem.
    Thanks for the expertise and advice.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Renton, WA
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    39
    I solved a LOT, but not all of my steering slop on my 40 with a center arm rebuild -->http://man-a-fre.com/parts_accessories/centerarm.htm
    2002 Discovery - Kalahari
    1974 Land Cruiser FJ40

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
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    Wauconda, IL
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    Any tips on adjusting said steering arm. I did a search and was unable to find any instruction.
    from what I can see from the kit photo, the top cap is threaded, do I tighten the cap? If so, how much. I assume that I will know if I over-tighten it.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Sandy, UT
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    6,842
    The Factory Service Manual has the protocol for tightening the center arm assembly and it does work assuming your center arm 'cup' and 'cone' still have some appreciable amount of life left in them. It is a wear item and thus will eventually need to be replaced. I'll try and remember to grab the FSM and post the instructions.
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