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  #1  
Old November 26th, 2018, 09:04
Criver12 Criver12 is offline
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Stock 99' XJ Memory Steer 140k miles

I have a problem that I'm trying to figure out where my steering will not return all the way to center or at all in some cases.

At full lock in low speeds in either direction the jeep does not steer itself to center. Outside of full lock, the jeep will slowly return to about the 10 or 2 o clock position and stay there.

When traveling straight if I turn anywhere between 10 and 2 it will stay in that position. Outside of those positions it will return back again to 10 or 2. This makes for an interesting highway drive and I have to make a lot of small corrections.

The alignment is good (firestone printout) with 6 degrees of caster, toe and camber in perfect specs. About 700 miles ago the drag link, tie rod, tie rod ends, track bar, axle u joints (dana 30 front), ball joints (non-greasable), and power steering fluid was replaced.

I can rotate the knuckles by hand with some force. Some research led me to tight new ball joints or the steering box.

Anybody have experience with this issue?
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Old November 26th, 2018, 10:21
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Tim_MN Tim_MN is offline
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Re: Stock 99' XJ Memory Steer 140k miles

Bad ball joints would be a likely suspect. I would also check the steering shaft joints.
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Old November 27th, 2018, 10:20
Criver12 Criver12 is offline
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Re: Stock 99' XJ Memory Steer 140k miles

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Originally Posted by Tim_MN View Post
Bad ball joints would be a likely suspect. I would also check the steering shaft joints.
Thanks. With someone rotating the steering wheel there is a very slight click in the u-joint next to the steering box.

I wanted to add that when I hit a big enough bump during the slight left or right memory steer, it forces the steering to return a bit more to center.
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Old November 27th, 2018, 11:22
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Flyfisher Flyfisher is offline
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Re: Stock 99' XJ Memory Steer 140k miles

Have you been adjusting the set screw on the steering box? Some people adjust this screw in an attempt to tighten up the steering. If it's too tight, it won't self-return to center.
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Old November 27th, 2018, 19:33
Criver12 Criver12 is offline
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Re: Stock 99' XJ Memory Steer 140k miles

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Originally Posted by Flyfisher View Post
Have you been adjusting the set screw on the steering box? Some people adjust this screw in an attempt to tighten up the steering. If it's too tight, it won't self-return to center.
I marked off the original position of the set screw and loosened it. The memory steer stood the same and I just had more slop.
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Old November 28th, 2018, 22:11
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denverd1 denverd1 is offline
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Re: Stock 99' XJ Memory Steer 140k miles

Was thinking box may be too tight as well, but that's checked.

My money is on ball joints are still stiff. 700 is really nothing on a new set and there's not enough difference between 10 and 2 for the caster to do its job.

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Old November 29th, 2018, 05:14
Criver12 Criver12 is offline
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Re: Stock 99' XJ Memory Steer 140k miles

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Originally Posted by denverd1 View Post
Was thinking box may be too tight as well, but that's checked.

My money is on ball joints are still stiff. 700 is really nothing on a new set and there's not enough difference between 10 and 2 for the caster to do its job.

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Thank you. I'm going to give it a few thousand miles and see if it improves.
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Old December 2nd, 2018, 13:38
Criver12 Criver12 is offline
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Re: Stock 99' XJ Memory Steer 140k miles

I got around to checking the ball joints. I can turn the knuckle by hand but it is stiff. I took off the knuckle and placed it back on with only the top ball joint attached.

The top ball joint moves with very slight resistance and feels right. The lower ball joint is very stiff and makes turning the knuckle very hard. This is on both sides.

Is the lower ball joint usually stiffer than the upper?
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