Instruction to fix your vehicle steering shaft
It’s pretty straightforward; here are some instructions to help:
- Remove 2 bolts holding the rubber/cloth coupling to the lower shaft
- Remove tire for access.
- Drive out roll pin–don’t hit too hard without using a steel block to jam between the steering box shaft and the frame, or you will hammer the roller bearings in the steering box.
- Pull the shaft and coupling off the splined steering box input shaft.
- Remove retainer & rubber cover, use a punch to knock the retainer pin near the “mouth” of the coupler out of the way, and pull steering shaft out of the coupler box.
- Clean out grease and drill & tap for a grease zerk near the roll pin end so you can grease the coupler in the future, and also use grease to force out any water that gets in.
- Replace sintered iron “shoes” and reassemble coupler with new moly wheel bearing grease/aluminum complex (it’s very water resistant in addition to working well). Tap retainer pin back into place, install rubber seal and retainer.
- Slide coupler onto steering box input shaft being careful to rotate so the splines match correctly so the roll pin goes in without interference (Look to see that the roll pin hole is unobstructed all the way through the coupler, shaft, and coupler again).
- Install a new roll pin (Dorman makes a longer one than stock that I like better, 5/16″ x 1.5″).
- Reinstall two bolts holding cloth/rubber coupling to lower steering shaft.
Inside the coupler at the steering box end is type of C.V. joint which can be repaired.
First remove the shaft and coupler from the truck, then remove the rubber seal and retainer from the coupler. Drive the small roll pin from the coupler housing to remove the steering shaft from the coupler.
Separate the shaft from the coupler (notice how the pieces that make up the C.V. joint go thgether). There is a 3/8 pin that goes through the steering shaft and holds the two plates that make up the joint, these plates allow the steering shaft to move telescopically within the coupler housing. The slack in the coupler was caused by the steering shaft hole (where the 3/8 pin goes through) being worn out and enlarged.
The fix in this case, was to weld the pin inside the hole of the shaft, then carefully grinding the weld down so that it doesn’t interfere with the side plates of the joint.
Then reassemble the joint and pack it full of grease before putting the rubber seal and retainer back on. Install the shaft back on the truck, take the truck for a test drive and start smiling!!!!