Jeep Wrangler Forum banner
  • Hey everyone! Enter your ride HERE to be a part of JUNE's Ride of the Month Challenge!

1 - 18 of 18 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
110 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a question for those who know the answer.... My LJ has a 4 inch lift, unknown brand as the shocks are ProComp an the springs are Rancho. The PO had a dropped pitman arm installed. I've read on many threads that it isn't necessary for the dropped arm to be installed, and even wrong to do so in some applications. I had a shimmy/DW issue recently that I finally corrected with a new HD TB from Currie. With all I've read, should I consider replacing the pitman arm? Would a picture of the steering components help? I will eventually have a Currie correctlync steering system installed. Should I just wait for that? Any help would be greatly appreciated!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
971 Posts
A dropped Pittman arm is like any other device that moves the load farther from the support bearing [steering box] it increases load on that bearing due to increased leverage. the same principle applies to wheel spacers.
 

·
Knows a couple things...
Joined
·
49,389 Posts
I have a question for those who know the answer.... My LJ has a 4 inch lift, unknown brand as the shocks are ProComp an the springs are Rancho. The PO had a dropped pitman arm installed. I've read on many threads that it isn't necessary for the dropped arm to be installed, and even wrong to do so in some applications. I had a shimmy/DW issue recently that I finally corrected with a new HD TB from Currie. With all I've read, should I consider replacing the pitman arm? Would a picture of the steering components help? I will eventually have a Currie correctlync steering system installed. Should I just wait for that? Any help would be greatly appreciated!
It isn't a matter of load on any bearing that a dropped Pitman arm causes a problem with. The issue is geometry... a dropped Pitman arm places the drag link and track bar on two different planes which causes bump steer... which is where the steering is forced left/right as the front suspension moves up/down over bumps/dips in the road.

Yes, do replace that dropped Pitman arm with the OE factory Pitman arm. The TJ's improved steering geometry makes a dropped Pitman arm unnecessary and installing one only wrecks the geometry causing the bumpsteer. Yes dropped Pitman arms were required for older Jeeps like CJs and YJs after a suspension lift was added but that stopped being the case when the TJ came out with its improved steering geometry.

The only time a dropped Pitman arm should be installed, and this is a rare modification, would be if an aftermarket dropped driver's side track bar mount was also installed. The Pitman arm and driver's side trackbar mount must be the same... both must either be undropped (preferred) or both must be dropped... one can't be dropped without them both being dropped.

I'd replace the Pitman arm with the factory Pitman arm as soon as its convenient, install the Currectlync (a superb steering system) when you can. And don't let some yahoo at a 4x4 shop tell you a dropped Pitman arm is required for your TJ... while that may be true for most other 4x4 vehicles, it's not true for a TJ.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,979 Posts
A dropped Pittman arm is like any other device that moves the load farther from the support bearing [steering box] it increases load on that bearing due to increased leverage. the same principle applies to wheel spacers.
And just to clarify his statement about wheel spacers: The load seen at the wheel bearings is exactly the same regardless if you use wheel spacers or use wheels with the same amount of (less) backspacing. There is no difference in load.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,006 Posts
I in the same boat as the OP. The PO installed a dropped pitman arm. But I just got a stock one today in the mail!! Gonna try and put it on this weekend.
 

·
Knows a couple things...
Joined
·
49,389 Posts
Here's a quick visual on what Jerry was saying. The first picture shows the proper relationship between track bar and drag link. The second shows what it looks like with a dropped pitman arm.
Those are good illustrations to explain the geometry, I hope you won't mind me saving them for future use! :)
 

·
Read Only
Joined
·
365 Posts
Hey.. first WOW that first pic has a hell of a bend on the Tie rod end (by the pumpkin)
Second Why do Lift manufactures include the pitman arm drop when the kits are specifically for TJ's. I mean if they weren't needed wouldn't they save a few bucks not putting them in?
 

·
Mostly old school..!
Joined
·
12,149 Posts
Hey.. first WOW that first pic has a hell of a bend on the Tie rod end (by the pumpkin)
Second Why do Lift manufactures include the pitman arm drop when the kits are specifically for TJ's. I mean if they weren't needed wouldn't they save a few bucks not putting them in?
That bend in the tie rod is a factory bend. It's a ZJ Tie rod. Dropped pitman arms are a hold over from the YJ leaf spring days. The big companies that are mass producing kits in China basically have very little R&D anymore, and are more just into copy and paste.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
715 Posts
I'm in the same boat as the OP, previous owner installed a lift with a drop pitman arm, and my geometry looks just like the 2nd Rough Country pic. Along with replacing the dropped arm with an OEM one, would I also need to get an adjustable track bar?

Thanks.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,202 Posts
I think water dogs illustrations are correct except the pictures are backward. Usually, in an attempt to get the two to be on the same plane,after a lift, or supplied by the lift kit manufacturer, the drop pitman arm is installed.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,808 Posts
I think water dogs illustrations are correct except the pictures are backward. Usually, in an attempt to get the two to be on the same plane,after a lift, or supplied by the lift kit manufacturer, the drop pitman arm is installed.
False. Lifts do nothing to the relationship of the angle between the draglink and track bar. It just increases the overall operating angle. Second you add a DPA you mess with the relationship. DPA are paired with trackbar drop brackets in order to reduce the operating angle of both bars.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
46 Posts
I am getting the currie front end and replacing my drop pitman arm with stock one either Monday or Tuesday. I will post before and after pics and give an update. I know it will be better than what it is now.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
46 Posts
Hey guys I just wanted to give an update. I had my currie steering and factory style pitman arm put on today. I drove it home with out the stabilizers on it so I could paint them to prevent future rust problems. It drove straight. No more road walking. I have heard of people driving without them, but never though I would be able to in my jeep.
 

Attachments

1 - 18 of 18 Posts
Top