Dodge RamCharger Central banner
1 - 6 of 6 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,906 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Subject: steering wheel spacer and loose steering

1. steering is way loose and my pick up is all over the road.

what can be done with that?

2. my steering wheel keeps locking down and depressing the horn. i had to pull the fuse on the horn and back up lights. is there a spacer that is broken or misplaced. if i order a replacement wheel will this kit contain the neccisary items or can i pull it off, use the stock wheel and just replace it.

theo/stuper
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
298 Posts
I would look first at the steering coupler. A worn steering coupler can cause drifting just as you described. I had a lot of play when turning and the vehicle drifted all over the road. I rebuilt the steering coupler and it reduced the drifting by about 85%. I believe that others have had the same result. You can buy a rebuit kit at the dealer for about $17. There is also a how to on this site about how to do the fix.
Good luck.

David
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
3,113 Posts
You will have to check everything on your steering and front suspension to figure out what is going on with your wandering. DBGIL is right about the steering coupler, also you need to check your tie rod ends, steering box play, ball joints etc. You didn't say if your truck has a lift or is 4wd this info will help the site help you.

As far as the steering wheel goes, I think before you go ordering new parts ($$$$) see if you can get a Factory Service Manual or borrow one or maybe someone on the list can email you the right pages concerning your steering. I would pull the wheel off and go through the column making sure all the parts are there (I would bet they are) and look for loose bolts or screws. The tilt wheels have a habit of working loose over the years. Not a big deal you just retighten four bolts with a bit of blue locktite on them and the steering is fixed. You could have a broken part inside the column, or the ball bearing races/retainers are broken.

In short get a auto parts store to loan you a steering wheel puller and dig into it. Let us know more facts about your truck, 4 wheel or 2wheel drive, lifted or stock suspension, stock size tires or wider/taller aftermarket ones.

Good luck

Chris
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,326 Posts
I'm in the middle of my column as we speak. If you plan to dig in all the way down to below the tilt knuckle, you'll need a pivot pin remover and a Torx socket (my torx bolts are E8's), and a wheel lock remover would be nice too (I managed without this tool). When you put it all back together, use plenty of grease where the factory did, and as mentioned before, use thread locker on those bolts.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,906 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
77 dodge w200/m880

np 203

4wd

tilt

727 tranny

it only has 59k miles

looks like it wasn't maintained but never driven either.

not looing for something expensive just trying to get it back into running order

theo/stuper
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
3,113 Posts
To piggy back on Mopar4x said. You will need the torx sockets, and pivot pin pullers. The lock ring was easy on mine as the steering wheel puller I borrowed (from O'Reilleys) had several tools one of which I used to depress the spring plate to remove the lock ring (this will all be clear once you get your hands on a service manual) To pull the pivot pins I used a socket with a washer on one end and a long machine screw to thread into the pin. Then just tighten and they will pull out. All the above assumes you have a wobbly steering wheel. If you rebuild your steering coupler ($8.00) and find out you have a loose steering wheel ($3.00 for some locktite) is about as cheap as you can get. After that you will be spending some $$ tie rod ends, ball joints etc. Steering boxes are not cheap. Absolute worst case your frame could be cracked where the steering box bolts to the frame (you can visually check it).

A '77 will have worn out parts (from age) regardless of the mileage. Do your best to figure out where the slop is on your steering. Have a buddy turn the wheel back and forth while you observe the steering shaft and linkeages etc. Steering coupler play is pretty easy to see, tie rods are harder but I usually judge the tie rod condition by how wasted the dust boots look. (now that I have urethane I'll have to come up with a new method!)

Good luck

Chris
 
1 - 6 of 6 Posts
Top