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Thread: Question about steering knuckle caps

  1. #1

    Question about steering knuckle caps

    Been trying to set preload on steering knuckle caps ,put in new cups and bearings but cannot get proper preload. The caps I have do not have shims on the bottom caps.

    was supposedly been a cj3b front axle. Can only get 4 pounds of pull with out any shims in top cap , I know u can put washer on cap bearing stud and increase pre load, but finding the right washer is gonna be a problem , how about new caps to cure my problem ?

  2. #2
    Super Moderator bmorgil's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2018
    Northwestern Ohio
    A change was made in the 3A from the 2A on the axle. There was material added (left in place) on the lower pin cap surface of the knuckle. This ended the .058" spacer from prior model years. All the king pins are shimmed from the top after that. A lot of axles had barely enough preload right out the door back then. The "Washer Fix" is the way to get it done. Find a thin machine washer if you can. Something that is more like a thick shim, machined on both sides. McMaster Carr will have something. I think start around .050" +/- thick. I cant find my notes on this one. I have forgotten the diameter of the washer you will need. Post the measurement when you get it. This is a good subject that often comes up. Others will certainly be looking for shim washers. To get the washer thickness right would be difficult. So you want the thinnest flattest washer you can find that tightens it up to slightly over spec. Then shim it back under the top cap with the factory shims to the specification, try to stay on the high side.

    On your other thought, there is a good chance that every component you change will change the preload. How much and which way of course you don't know. Just drop in a washer and shim it back to specification and you are good to go.

  3. #3
    Tnx bmorgil , just a quick eye ball measurement looks about 5/8 ID by 1 OD inches , McMaster has em in stainless steel in set of 18 in stainless steel in various thicknesses but pricey for 35 dollars a set but just what the doc needed . Tnx for the link . You have been a great help to me .

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