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Old 02-10-2013, 12:32 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default 1988 Zuki front end wobbles

Hey all,
I have a stock front axle Zuki and has been lifted 3" and have 33" swampers on it. I have a wobble issue that comes and goes when going down the road about 25mph.

It's intermittent and when I stop then, restart it goes away for a bit then returns. I pull on the wheels to see if the bearings could be loose and I don't get any clunking or loose pull back and forth. The front works fine in 4x4 too. Lug nuts are tight and wheels look straight and vertical from the front.

I'm not familiar with the front wheel assy. I rebuilt the rear 3rd member so I know all's fine back there.

Any ideas here?

Thanks in advance.
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Old 02-10-2013, 01:35 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Yup - google "death wobble"

First - depending on how you lifted the front end - you may have a castor issue. How you fix that depends on how the lift was done.

Second - the castor issue is not the cause of the wobble, the wobble is caused by excessive play in the front end - the castor makes it more noticeable. You need to go through the entire front end, checking for worn parts - king pin bearings, track rod ends, steering box - everything.
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Old 02-10-2013, 04:57 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I was just reading yesterday in the zuk service manual as i am going to be putting a locker in the front differential and replacing all bearings and seals.... and it was noted in the manual to be sure the kingpin bushings are properly shimmed as this would cause shimmy..... like the previous poster said you may have to go thru the whole system but this would be a good place to start..... well after maybe you balance the wheels and check for a straight rim.
Joe
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Old 02-10-2013, 07:40 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fordem View Post
Yup - google "death wobble"

First - depending on how you lifted the front end - you may have a castor issue. How you fix that depends on how the lift was done.

Second - the castor issue is not the cause of the wobble, the wobble is caused by excessive play in the front end - the castor makes it more noticeable. You need to go through the entire front end, checking for worn parts - king pin bearings, track rod ends, steering box - everything.
I got the 88 Zuki from a unknown owner through a friend. The lift was done by him evidently by placing the springs on top of the axle and welding the brackets on top. Crummy job so I think.

I'm not a mechanic but see them daily and hundreds every week. I have service manuals for the Samurai from 86 - 92 if I remember correctly. I have the 86 - 88 in my hands now. I'll look through it and see what I can find in regards to your repair checks.

If you have those manuals you may list the chapter and page for easier location.

Nobody works on these boogers around here it seems.

Thanks in advance.
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Old 02-10-2013, 09:28 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I found great info from posts here and the factory manuals I have. My steering wheel is now in the 12 & 6 position not 3 & 9. I did notice some grease come out of the knuckle area awhile back then stopped (not good huh?) Does the whole axle have to be pulled out to repair the wheel parts?

The bolts being removed here are loosing what part?
The manual doesn't show any other pic's after this, until the next image shown.



What part are these lower 4 bolts holding in he's on now?



I believe the previous images were to be removed in order to pull the axle shaft right?


Being as the grease came out on one side, what would you suggest to repair the issues I posted??

I hope this helps out and thanks in advance.

Last edited by GHOSTMAN; 02-10-2013 at 09:38 PM.
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Old 02-10-2013, 10:13 PM   #6 (permalink)
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If you have your manual go to chapter 17 page 11 (17-11 and refer to the paragraph below fig 17-1-32
I can't help you much more as i have to tear mine apart soon and won't understand it fully until i do the job.... It really looks simple enough.
Joe
Read all of chapter 17 to get an idea of how to do a full overhaul or just take out those four lower bolts and four upper bolts and the upper and lower kingpins to just pull the axle but caution that they must be returned in exactly the same spot and the same direction...... really read all of chapter 17 to fully understand. Joe
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1986-1988 Suzuki Samurai Factory Service Manual
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Old 02-10-2013, 10:53 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Hey Joe, thanks for the page numbers. I read it and now know the king pins are the part in my 2nd picture that has the 4 bolts at the bottom. Is it as easy as removing the bolts and drop that part out and stick a new one in there?
That seems too easy there.

I see I have to pull everything off the spindle in order to replace the knuckle seal. If I do that I'll replace the bearings while I got it all apart. It might have dust in there etc. and this will seal the deal and worries later on bearings smoking and having to yank it all off again.
I'll do both sides while I'm at it so that's knocked out. Now to locate what grease goes back in the knuckle that leaked out.
I got just the guy who'll help me do it for next to nothing.

If you don't have these manuals for the stock Zuki's you really need them as, it helps tremendously with the help from others like this forum.

If anyone else has any tips or tricks, please add it in.
Thanks in advance.

Last edited by GHOSTMAN; 02-10-2013 at 10:58 PM.
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Old 02-10-2013, 11:03 PM   #8 (permalink)
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I've already replaced that knuckle seal on the drivers side and all i did was remove those eight inside bolts and to put the new seal in i cut it with a scissor and put the cut part up at 12 o clock position and bolted it all back together without pulling the axle or taking out the kingpins..... this is an acceptable procedure that i read on a few online installs and it worked perfectly for me and no more leak..... the only reason i am taking it apart now is to put a locker in or i would leave it alone...... oh by the way i just packed it full of grease while the seal was out...... I think it was the Low Range site that had those directions to cut the seal for the install...... I have a habit from driving semis to feel those center hubs when i fuel up or lock/unlock the hubs for an early tipoff of failing bearings...... if one is much warmer than the other side then you have a problem in the early stages and time for a repair
Joe

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Old 02-11-2013, 10:40 AM   #9 (permalink)
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I was hoping that would be the way to go on the seal. Was yours wobbling before hand? Is there any black sealant needed when that outer ring bolts back up!

Now as far as the king pin where those 4 bolts are, is it just an easy unbolt them and pull out the old and plug in a new one and add sealant too?

If so, I'll knock out both when laying down there. No loose wheels or grinding like bearings are bad yet. I don't drive it far on the hunting land and just putt around actually.

Thanks Joe.
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Old 02-12-2013, 12:06 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fordem View Post
Yup - google "death wobble"

First - depending on how you lifted the front end - you may have a castor issue. How you fix that depends on how the lift was done.

Second - the castor issue is not the cause of the wobble, the wobble is caused by excessive play in the front end - the castor makes it more noticeable. You need to go through the entire front end, checking for worn parts - king pin bearings, track rod ends, steering box - everything.
Thank you for all the great information. Are the king pins just as easy as unbolting the 4 bolts and drop out and re-install?

I do have the steering wheel at the 12 -6 not 3 -9 position. Maybe steering gearbox issue too?

I will check out all components when I get back to it this weekend.

Let me know what ya think. Thanks in advance.
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