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KCrisp 06-07-2010 10:57 AM

Removing steering stabilizer shock?
What tool do I need to remove this? There is a tapered shaft down into a tapered hole and it won't come apart. Does this require one of those pickle forks I've always avoided buying? Thanks.

blkrubi88 06-07-2010 11:39 AM

I just did mine about two weeks ago, this is what I used to get mine off!
Pitman Arm Puller by Autocraft - Part AC567/W142 - Advance Auto Parts

KCrisp 06-07-2010 12:41 PM

So you push it up from below by applying pressure to the threaded end of the shaft that sticks out when you take off the castellated nut?

Vaultzz 06-07-2010 12:56 PM

I drilled mine out :D

Neil F. 06-07-2010 01:03 PM

No need to buy. Autozone and Advance Auto bot have loaner tools.

jjseel 06-07-2010 01:04 PM

Pickle fork worked for me

snwchris 06-07-2010 01:23 PM

BFH (hammer) will work as well, just watch finger and where your hitting.
Also spray with some PB blaster to soak in there as well.

blkrubi88 06-07-2010 01:59 PM


Originally Posted by KCrisp (Post 646736)
So you push it up from below by applying pressure to the threaded end of the shaft that sticks out when you take off the castellated nut?

That's correct!

KCrisp 06-21-2010 11:04 AM

I am embarrassed to say I am still working on this. (Jeep is at a vacation home.) I tried beating on the threaded end with a hammer. Would not budge. I tried a manual pickle fork, but it would not move it no matter how hard I hit it with a 5 lb sledge. I think at 1" wide the pickle fork is a little too wide and misses the 19mm shelf on the part. I tried the pitman arm puller, pushing up on the threaded end from down below. It crushed the end of the bolt down to the hole for the cotter pin, but would not budge it. I used a breaker bar on the puller for more leverage and eventually the jaw snapped off the pitman arm puller.

So next? A pneumatic pickle fork? Heating up the metal around the shaft with a torch? Cut the thread off at top and bottom and try the pitman arm puller again. Obviously now the thread won't take the nut any longer so I can't decide to forget about it. The shock damper is obviously totally shot and has no resistance (113K miles) and I have the new part so I do want to finish it up.

amberfire 06-21-2010 11:11 AM

Soak the B@$*%& with PB-Blaster overnight. Then place a large hammer against the shaft that the damper goes into, while holding that tight against the shaft, strike the shaft 180 degrees away from where you are holding the hammer still. The idea here is to shock the shaft to help loosen the taper. Several hard hits may be necessary to loosen it.

Melissas6570 06-21-2010 11:14 AM

I used a pickle fork.

rrich 06-21-2010 12:52 PM

Sometimes you can put a tie rod end puller on it, tighten it up, then wrap a rag around it and soak it with PB Blaster overnight (The soaked rag keeps the PB Blaster soaking in.) Leave lots of tension on the puller overnight.

A few times the next morning I've found sometime during the night it came loose.

If next morning it's still stuck, heat the metal around the stud - a propane torch should be enough heat. Once it's hot, tighten the puller more and tap tap tap in it.

When putting on the new one, use a little anti-seize on the taper and the threads - for next time.

Jerry Bransford 06-21-2010 01:13 PM

The tapered stud that passes through the drag link can be removed with nothing more than a BFH... but not used in the way most would consider. A cool way to get that type of joint apart is to simply give the SIDE of the part it passes through a few big healthy whacks with the BFH. I have used this technique for years (learned it from some local friends) for working on my front end and it works well. In fact, I used it to remove my tie rod ends this weekend to install a new type of tie rod. A small smooth-faced one-hand sledgehammer works perfectly for this job.

Pounding on the stud via the nut won't usually do it and going out to buy a puller or pickle fork isn't necessary.

So exactly where am I suggesting you hit with a BFH? Look at the track bar the stud passes through and you'll see that it is larger where the stud passes through it. Give that raised area up to a half dozen hard whacks & the stud will pop out. If it doesn't, give it a few more & be sure to put a little muscle behind them.

When anyone in my local group goes to install a steering upgrade like Currie's for someone, this is the method used. It can pop all of the front-end's multiple tapered fittings loose in a minute, much faster than using a pickle fork or puller. It works, it really does. Once you get the first one popped out, you will then have the knack for doing it in the future.

I wish I had a pic here at work to post that shows what I'm talking about, I'll post it tonight if anyone still wants it by the time I get home. :)

KCrisp 06-21-2010 01:20 PM

I know where you mean to hit it, and I will certainly try it. I don't see why it would twist the stud loose since the tapered post will not be twisted by this. The rubber on the shock end would absorb the stress. But I will give it a shot. Thanks.

amberfire 06-21-2010 01:24 PM

What Jerry said is the same thing I said, just in a different way. But It doesn't twist anything lose. You are actually "shocking" the taper. So be sure to hit the track bar not the shock.

KCrisp 06-21-2010 01:27 PM

Got it. Sounds satisfying.

Jerry Bransford 06-21-2010 01:27 PM

The stud doesn't need to be twisted to release it. Virtually the entire front-end is held together with these tapered studs & none are twisted to remove. The rubber bushing in the stabilizer won't affect this operation, it won't absorb any of the shock that causes the stud to pop loose from the swaybar if you are correctly smacking the trackbar right next to where the stud passes through it. :)

rrich 06-21-2010 02:10 PM

Jerry's way is the easy way - it usually works. But when it's really rusted in --
Since the puller crushed the end of the stud so much it's one of those bears.

Jerry - did you put on the Currie of find something else better/stronger? I have broken 2 of them - one the ball end nut stripped off the stud, Currie said the end isn't replaceable (one of these days I'll see if I can press it out.)
The other I snapped in the middle. Since the tie rod is a forging it's possible it had a flaw or void spot in it. No warranty on either one.
Got my third on there now.

There's gotta be something better.

Jerry Bransford 06-21-2010 10:11 PM

1 Attachment(s)
What end did Currie say was not replaceable? Certainly their tie rod ends are replaceable and their tie rod is available separately.

While my new-to-me TJ came with a pristine Currie steering system on it, Savvy came out with a replacement tie rod that they have figured out how to make it straighten out on its own after being bent once the pressure is relieved. I replaced my Currie tie rod with one this past weekend.

Savvy used some magic heat treatment on 4340 steel & they haven't been able to bend one badly enough for it to not spring back on its own. That's what I replaced my Currie tie rod with, I'll carry my old Currie tie rod as a spare, most likely for others who managed to bend theirs. I have bent my Currie tie rod 3-4 times so while it's not easily bent, it will bend... and actually Currie made it so it will bend before something else breaks. Savvy's, I'm told by its developer (Blaine) will go back straight on its own after coming off the rock. Kind of like the Alumiflex tie rod was supposed to but didn't for very long.

Here's the pic I mentioned earlier, it shows where to hit it if you needed to remove the tie rod end, for example, from the knuckle. This photo isn't mine, I would actually use a small smooth-face sledgehammer for this job, the hammer in the photo is really too small for the job.

Jerry Bransford 06-21-2010 10:28 PM

P.S. This is a link to the new Savvy tie rod I just finished installing... pretty cool if you wheel where even the toughest aftermarket tie rods can get bent... Utlimate 4130 Heat Treated Tie-Rod for the Currie Steering Its key benefit is that it can bend to keep something else from breaking but spring back afterwards.

rrich 06-22-2010 04:37 AM

"""""What end did Currie say was not replaceable? Certainly their tie rod ends are replaceable and their tie rod is available separately."""""

That's odd - when I called them they told me the ends were not replacable - it was the passenger end. And they said they would not sell me just the tie rod, I had to buy both tie rod and drag link together. All that had happened was the castle nut pulled - stripping the threads on the tapered shank - only the cotter pin held it. I forced a lug nut on it to get home.

The other time the tie rod snapped in the middle. To get home I borrowed someone's stock set-up - both drag link and tie rod. He He - I think it might have been my old one I'd given away a couple of years before. Again I had to buy both tie rod and drag link.

I think I still have the tie rod with the stripped stud (I'll look tomorrow,) thinking I'd probably be able to press out the old one and replace it - even though Curries Customer Service said it's not possible. They made it - it wasn't born that way, it can be taken apart.

When I called them again later when I snapped the tie rod - they said "they do that sometimes."

The Savvy description sounds like the ends are not pressed in, they screw in, making them easily replaceable. Good!

Next time - if there is a next time - I'll get the Savvy.

After I posted last time I remembered a difficult steering damper replacement I did. (Why is it when you do something for someone as a favor it always goes wrong?)
No matter what I tried it was rusted in so bad nothing worked - (Jeep was a beach runner in Texas.) I removed the tie rod, cut the stud off flush then put it in my press.

Bang - I had almost a full 20 tons of push on the stud when the side of the tie rod split instead of the stud breaking free. Pieces flew like bullets - one got my hand! Even though the side of the stud was exposed now, the stud was still stuck like it was welded.

That incident made me convert the press to air over hydraulic - so now I can stand back away from it to apply the air if need be.

Ageless Stranger 06-22-2010 05:41 AM


Claw hammers are for carpentry work! :doh:

Jerry Bransford 06-22-2010 10:04 AM

Rich, I personally have purchased just the tie rod itself with nothing else (not even the TREs) from Currie and that is where I got the spare tie rod I carried in my last TJ. Tie rod ends are also separately purchasable, not sure who you are talking to but that is also definitely true. Next time you need something from Currie, contact Gerald at Savvy (Savvy Offroad) who is also a Currie dealer who can discount their prices.

Ageless Stanger, I already explained that's not my photo (I just found it on the web) & that I instead recommend a small smoothfaced sledgehammer for that particular job. :p

rrich 06-22-2010 04:32 PM

Well, that was about 3 years ago - I wonder if they changed their policy.

Thanks for the tip - I'll call him if I - or someone else needs something.

rrich 06-22-2010 05:18 PM

OOOOOPS - I just looked. It's the drag link that the ball joint stripped out on. I thought it was the tie rod. It happened right at the right knuckle, but the actual tie rod doesn't extend that far. It connects to the drag link a few inches back.
The end of the drag link is what they said isn't replaceable.

Where the other one snapped was next to the bulge where the tie rod connects. Inspecting the broken ends it looked like the metal had a void in it before forging.

Here's a couple of pictures of the stripped one. The broken one was trashed long ago.

KCrisp 07-12-2010 09:47 AM

I tried a couple more suggestions. I sprayed it with PB Blaster, let it soak overnight, then tried hitting it hard with the sledge many times in hopes of loosening it up. This did nothing. I took the compressor up there and got a pickle fork for the air hammer that was narrower than the manual one I got from Harbor Freight Tools. It drove into the gap nicely, but without loosening things one bit. Now the air pickle fork is jammed in there solid, no amount of beating on it, prying on it, etc. will budge it. (I have now broken a HFT manual pickle fork and a pitman arm puller on this little project.)

Since the pitman arm puller crushed the threaded end of the fitting anyway, I figured next I would try using the Sawzall to cut off the threaded portion below and at the top, presumably freeing up the pickle fork in the process. I could then drill out the middle of what remains and hopefully it will come out. Any other ideas?

Brad[LK1] 07-12-2010 09:58 AM

Did you take the nut off? haha...Jerry's way should work, you just gotta get a whole lot of ass behind it. Someone may have overtighted the last one and messed it all up? Hope the cut and drill method goes well if you try it...

KCrisp 07-12-2010 10:09 AM

here's what it looks like
1 Attachment(s)
For your general amusement I took a photo of it. The nut does appear to be off.

Brad[LK1] 07-12-2010 10:20 AM

Dang! Now might be a good time to give the track bar a few good whacks since you have the fork wedged in there with some pressure on the stabilizer...maybe heat the track bar a bit too being careful not to get the stabilizer too hot

Jerry Bransford 07-12-2010 10:56 AM


Originally Posted by Brad[LK1] (Post 685262)
Dang! Now might be a good time to give the track bar a few good whacks since you have the fork wedged in there with some pressure on the stabilizer...maybe heat the track bar a bit too being careful not to get the stabilizer too hot

Read post #13 above, you don't need anything but a BFH applied to the SIDE of where the tapered stud passes through. You don't need heat, you don't need a pickle fork to get the steering stabilizer or any other part of the steering system's tapered fittings apart. I do this all the time and I don't even own a pickle fork and neither have I ever needed heat.

Trust me, the procedure in #13 works. Many use it, I can have the entire steering system apart using that method before anyone can get a single tapered fitting apart using a pickle fork, even with heat.

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