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Old 05-04-2011, 03:23 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default clacking sound when steering!

hi guys...
i noticed that the when i'm near the end of the steering action (both left and right turns), i hear a clacking sound and feel it at the steering wheel...this means that when i'm steering left or right, and nearing the point when i could not steer anymore, i hear the clacking sound.

a mechanic said that the problem is coming from the tie rod. He said that when i had a suspension lift (2.5 inches), this created stress on the tie rod. I took some fotos so u guys could have a look...
do i need to put a spacer on the tie rod to radius arm joint? or any suggestions?
i also did not change the stock panhard rod...
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Old 05-05-2011, 11:35 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Lets start by clarifying the terminology. The Pitman arm that is on the steering box is not a radius arm. A radius arm is on the Axel end of one of the stabilizing 3 links in a coil spring setup. (not sure if the Jimny has a radius arm or not) The rod that connects to the pitman arm is called the Drag link. The tierod that the shop was probably talking about links the wheels together by the idler arms. There shouldn't be any need to lengthen that since the wheels didn't get any further apart. The drag link isn't traveling any further than it would normally travel either, but it's going to be further away from the steering box if you have a lift, and it will be at a sharper angle. This would mean you have to adjust the steering wheel so it's not cockeyed at center position, but you wouldn't have to turn the wheel any further than normal to go from lock to lock, and the idler wouldn't have to be any longer. Some more info regarding the steering geometry, the further from horizontal your drag link is, the more bump steer you will have, that's why the further you lift it the more important it is to use a drop pitman or high steer arm to correct the drag link angle. 2.5 inches isn't really significant enough to justify changing to a drop pitman or a highsteer arm.

The only thing that raises an alarm with me is the panhard bar. If you do have a stock panhard bar, it needs to be adjusted if you change the suspension height. The panhard bar is designed to keep the axel at the centerline of the vehicle. One wheel can drop, and the other wheel will lift the same distance. If you drop or raise both wheels at the same time, a panhard will push or pull the front axel to one side or the other. If you lift the vehicle without adjusting the position of the panhard, it will pull the axel to one side and mess up the entire geometry of the front end steering.
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Old 05-06-2011, 05:11 AM   #3 (permalink)
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thanks for the info baratacus! i'm such a newbie that i can't tell which part from which....sorry.

anyway, some update on my problem... a mechanic informed me that my axle was moving when i turned the steering wheel (we raised the car to check underneath)...i think this is because of my stock panhard.

another mechanic said that my CV joint might have been damaged (therefore the clicking sound).

i'm thinking:
1. install an adjustable panhard
2. if the problem is still there, check the CV.

or is it better to check the CV first, then install the adjustable panhard?
i'm also encountering steering play....
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Old 05-06-2011, 09:32 AM   #4 (permalink)
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if the axle is moving it's because of the panhard. The steering play is probably from worn bushings and stress on the steering linkages due to the panhard being out of alignment with the lift. If the CV joint is dammaged then you'll need to replace or repair it, but don't do that untill you've fixed the problem with the panhard or you'll just stress and damage your new parts.
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Old 05-06-2011, 01:24 PM   #5 (permalink)
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that makes sense baratacus....
i will install an adjustable panhard and see how it goes...
thanks for the advise...will post an update soon!
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