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Manual Steering Gearboxes


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Was surfing through some literature in my tech books, and stumbled across something pertaining to changing the fluid out of the steering gearbox. Are the ones on these serviceable, and if so, where are the fill / drain plugs located; and what fluid do they take? I don't recall ever seeing anything in the repair manuals in regards to servicing these things.

 

I know a lot of 2.5s came with manual steering, but I'm not so sure about the 4.0's. Never seen one without a power steering setup. :dunno:

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Jeep uses GM Saginaw power and manual steering gear; here's their instructions for greasing the manual box. back in the day, I always used to lube them using the chassis grease gun, and squirted it in after removing the top cover.

 

A Word About Lubrication

The correct manual steering gear lubricant is GM #12377985 available from most GM dealers.  Or use a good quality lithium based grease (ball joint grease in a tube.)  Today there are probably synthetic types of greases that may be very acceptable as well.  I just don’t have any information on them.  You want grease in your gear for lubrication.  If you substitute oil in its place, the oil will almost immediately begin leaking.

 

Do not overfill the gear.  It only needs to be ¾ full of grease.  You need air pockets in the gear to allow for grease expansion with engine temperature.  Also there is a ball nut inside the gear that traverses back and forth when you steer right and left.  You need air pockets around the nut so that you aren’t always squeezing grease back and forth around the nut and causing friction in the gear.  Lastly, some of the oils will separate out of the grease with time.  Air pockets in the gear help the internal motion of the gear components to mix the grease. 

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The ratio on the manual boxes was something like 20:1 or 24:1. The ratio on the power boxes is 14:1, and I prefer the ZJ box with a 12.7:1 ratio and I'd be even happier with a 10:1 ratio.

 

Don't go looking for a manual box ... you WON'T like it.

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The ratio on the manual boxes was something like 20:1 or 24:1. The ratio on the power boxes is 14:1, and I prefer the ZJ box with a 12.7:1 ratio and I'd be even happier with a 10:1 ratio.

 

Don't go looking for a manual box ... you WON'T like it.

I have a remanufactured manual in the truck. It gets the job done, but sometimes I'd rather have power steering.

 

Thanks for the info Don; I thought there would be some sort of zerk to lube the insides. Might have to tinker around with mine one of these days.

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AMC used to have an option for a 16:1 "Quick Ratio" manual box in the Javelin and AMX. All my Javelins and AMXs were set up with the QRM box. I liked it. The slower 20:1 box was pretty awful. The MJ FSM says the ratio for the manual box was 24:1 -- I don't think I could drive that around the block.

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AMC used to have an option for a 16:1 "Quick Ratio" manual box in the Javelin and AMX. All my Javelins and AMXs were set up with the QRM box. I liked it. The slower 20:1 box was pretty awful. The MJ FSM says the ratio for the manual box was 24:1 -- I don't think I could drive that around the block.

The AMC slushboxes they put into the manual MJ's/XJ's aren't too bad. I wish they had some foresight and had developed a sort of QRM for their Jeep line at the time though. 

 

My only complaint is when I'm driving in neighborhoods or at the grocery store, because you will never be able to make those tight turns, especially when they're packed full.. Of course, everyone always parks around my truck, no matter where I park, so it's a moot point. :doh:

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My only complaint is when I'm driving in neighborhoods or at the grocery store, because you will never be able to make those tight turns, especially when they're packed full.. Of course, everyone always parks around my truck, no matter where I park, so it's a moot point. :doh:

The power steering doesn't change the turning radius -- that's set by the stop on the steering knuckle.

 

The AMC slushboxes they put into the manual MJ's/XJ's aren't too bad. I wish they had some foresight and had developed a sort of QRM for their Jeep line at the time though.

Ask and ye shall receive: http://www.borgeson.com/xcart/catalog/New_OEM_Saginaw_525_Box_161-p-1732.html

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The power steering doesn't change the turning radius -- that's set by the stop on the steering knuckle.

The vehicle turning radius is also governed by the internal stops in the steering gear box itself. For instance the 93-98 Jeep ZJ Saginaw "TC" box's Pitman arm turning arc is 43deg 45min. The max turning arc available for the QR Saginaw TC boxes used in GM vehicles was 43deg 30min (1967-93 Camaros). Most of the others were only about 35 deg. That's why I used the ZJ box; it had one of the quickest gear ratios (12.7:1) and the widest turning arc of all the stock boxes I looked at. And with the curved WJ LCAs, you can crank in the knuckle stops to max and turn on a dime. 

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The power steering doesn't change the turning radius -- that's set by the stop on the steering knuckle.

The vehicle turning radius is also governed by the internal stops in the steering gear box itself. For instance the 93-98 Jeep ZJ Saginaw "TC" box's Pitman arm turning arc is 43deg 45min. The max turning arc available for the QR Saginaw TC boxes used in GM vehicles was 43deg 30min (1967-93 Camaros). Most of the others were only about 35 deg. That's why I used the ZJ box; it had one of the quickest gear ratios (12.7:1) and the widest turning arc of all the stock boxes I looked at. And with the curved WJ LCAs, you can crank in the knuckle stops to max and turn on a dime. 

 

Interesting. Learn something new every day. :idea:

 

 

I'll have to take a gander at this when I get some free time. Dern computers at school are slower than honey.

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