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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I’ve recently been having severe death wobble when hitting bumps on the highway. Recently replaced my upper control arms and track bar. Also Took my jk to the mechanic and they said I need to replace my inner tie rod end and drop pitman arm. To me personally, the drop pitman arm looks fine besides the rusty bolts and and drag link’s tie rod end(maybe the entire drag link?)looks like it’s what needs to be replaced. I would greatly appreciate some advice. Left some picture of my setup below. My wrangler is lifted 4.5 inches, And pitman drops about 4 inches or so. Bought the car with this lift kit and I’m still learning the specs of it.
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In my experience death wobble comes from either excess movement of the track bar (worn bushings or ovalized bolt holes) or worn ball joints. Since you already replaced the track bar (and, while doing so, presumably inspected the bolt holes), I would look at the ball joints and replace if they are worn to the extend of up and down motion. Sounds like your mechanic recommends replacing your tie rod end at the pitman arm. Those are cheap and should be replaced if worn. As for the pitman arm, I’m not a fan of drop arms, but unless there’s something wrong with yours, why replace?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
In my experience death wobble comes from either excess movement of the track bar (worn bushings or ovalized bolt holes) or worn ball joints. Since you already replaced the track bar (and, while doing so, presumably inspected the bolt holes), I would look at the ball joints and replace if they are worn to the extend of up and down motion. Sounds like your mechanic recommends replacing your tie rod end at the pitman arm. Those are cheap and should be replaced if worn. As for the pitman arm, I’m not a fan of drop arms, but unless there’s something wrong with yours, why replace?
In my experience death wobble comes from either excess movement of the track bar (worn bushings or ovalized bolt holes) or worn ball joints. Since you already replaced the track bar (and, while doing so, presumably inspected the bolt holes), I would look at the ball joints and replace if they are worn to the extend of up and down motion. Sounds like your mechanic recommends replacing your tie rod end at the pitman arm. Those are cheap and should be replaced if worn. As for the pitman arm, I’m not a fan of drop arms, but unless there’s something wrong with yours, why replace?
First off, Thank you for the timely feedback, I definitely agree with the tie rod ends being replaced for sure.. would you recommend just replacing the entire drag link?
 

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First off, Thank you for the timely feedback, I definitely agree with the tie rod ends being replaced for sure.. would you recommend just replacing the entire drag link?
Sorry, I meant to say drag link end at the pitman arm. But both the drag link and tie rod ends wear out, so if any of them have play, I’d replace.
 

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First off, Thank you for the timely feedback, I definitely agree with the tie rod ends being replaced for sure.. would you recommend just replacing the entire drag link?
What size tires are you running? Do you wheel it much? With a 4.5” lift I’d assume you have 35-37” tires? If so I’d replace the tie rod and drag link with an aluminum 1-ton setup at the minimum. Maybe even 2.5 ton depending on tire size and use and check for play/wear on the ball joints and see how that does for you.

Drop pitman arms aren’t really favored around here.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
What size tires are you running? Do you wheel it much? With a 4.5” lift I’d assume you have 35-37” tires? If so I’d replace the tie rod and drag link with an aluminum 1-ton setup at the minimum. Maybe even 2.5 ton depending on tire size and use and check for play/wear on the ball joints and see how that does for you.

Drop pitman arms aren’t really favored around here.
What size tires are you running? Do you wheel it much? With a 4.5” lift I’d assume you have 35-37” tires? If so I’d replace the tie rod and drag link with an aluminum 1-ton setup at the minimum. Maybe even 2.5 ton depending on tire size and use and check for play/wear on the ball joints and see how that does for you.

Drop pitman arms aren’t really favored around here.
Yup! I’m running 35s. Definitely will take the advice and replace the drag link along with its tie rods. Just looking for the best one for the best price possible. Been searching for almost 8 hours straight now.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Yup! I’m running 35s. Definitely will take the advice and replace the drag link along with its tie rods. Just looking for the best one for the best price possible. Been searching for almost 8 hours straight now.
What size tires are you running? Do you wheel it much? With a 4.5” lift I’d assume you have 35-37” tires? If so I’d replace the tie rod and drag link with an aluminum 1-ton setup at the minimum. Maybe even 2.5 ton depending on tire size and use and check for play/wear on the ball joints and see how that does for you.

Drop pitman arms aren’t really favored around here.
What size tires are you running? Do you wheel it much? With a 4.5” lift I’d assume you have 35-37” tires? If so I’d replace the tie rod and drag link with an aluminum 1-ton setup at the minimum. Maybe even 2.5 ton depending on tire size and use and check for play/wear on the ball joints and see how that does for you.

Drop pitman arms aren’t really favored around here.
This is probably the best I could do for my budget. Thoughts??and also thank you for your feedback.
 

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Been through this on my 2008 Wrangler X. It started at 45 K miles. I changed out all the rod ends links, track bar, tighten steering gear adjustment, used Kevin’s off-rod track bar urethane bushings, not until I changed out the ball joints on each side did the death wooble stop.
It started woobling again at about 89K, so changed out ball joints on both sides.
Each time the lower joint was wobbly worn out.
At 115K it started doing it again so I found some all metal greaseable ball joints to install. At 208K still working well.
The ball joints originally and the replacements were steel ball, plastic socket and had just worn themselves out.
My recommendations jump right to the ball joints before it wears out all the tie rod ends and track bar, and steering shock again.
Charlie
 

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If you search for planman death wobble you will find a pair of videos that show you how to look for the play in your front end that is causing the death wobble.
I would replace the drop pitman arm with a stock arm and if you need it add a draglink flip. The drop pitman arm puts extra loads on an already marginal steering box.
It is important that the draglink and trackbar are parallel.
 

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As above, it you are replacing anything to do with the drag link, buy a top mount drag link (high steer) and get rid of the drop Pitman arm and go back to stock.

You already have the raised TB bracket so you only need the drag link.

Probably replace the TRE's and the ball joints as well.
 
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
As above, it you are replacing anything to do with the drag link, buy a top mount drag link (high steer) and get rid of the drop Pitman arm and go back to stock.

You already have the raised TB bracket so you only need the drag link.

Probably replace the TRE's and the ball joints as well.
What kind of top mount drag link would you recommend that isn’t too expensive?
 

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If I didn't read too fast, it looks like they're not telling us how much bumpstop extension it requires
I believe 3” is pretty standard with a flip for bumps. Not sure if I’ll flip or not I’m running 3” lift now and 37” tires and don’t have any issues with the stock under mount and I’m not big on changing things just to change them. If it’s not broke don’t fix it kinda deal. Still want to upgrade to at least 1 ton stuff if not 2.5 ton. We’ll see when the time comes though.
 
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