5.9L 24V Performance Discussion of 24 Valve 5.9 Liter Dodge Cummins Diesels with VP44 Injection Pumps Related To Performance And Longevity

Bomb-proof bolt on 2nd gen steering! Cheap!

  #1  
Old 09-22-2010, 01:39 PM
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cool Bomb-proof bolt on 2nd gen steering! Cheap!

So I went to the dealership and picked up one of their steering "upgrade" packages. It is the one that uses factory '09-'10 steering parts to upgrade your '03-'08 truck to the inverted "T" style steering instead of the inverted "Y" that came factory. It uses a gigantic 1.5" diameter SOLID tie rod... I was anticipating having to make a few changes to get it to fit my 2001 2500 (using a reamer to make the tapers in the knuckles/pitman bigger...) and was totally prepared to do so. BUT, to my surprise, the entire kit BOLTED ON with absolutely zero modification. I didn't have to trim anything for length, didn't have to ream any holes, didn't have to clearance anything... It just fit! I gave it a tape-measure alignment (gave it 1/4" overall toe-in as measured from the outsides of my 35" tires) and straightened the steering wheel. Drives like a dream! I'm sure the KORE springs and Bilsteins I installed at the same time helped, but the steering is much more solid and precise. It also came with a factory style shimmy-shock bracket, but my old and busted skycrapper stabilizer wouldn't fit. So I didn't run one at all. Drove it 100+ miles (~20 or so on dirt) last night and never missed the stabilizer, or the old crappy steering!

This may be common knowledge, but I did several searches and couldn't find anyone who had actually tried the swap. I'm posting here to let you know it was easy, and was relatively cheap! I'm assuming this will only work as a "bolt on" for 01-02 trucks (maybe '00?) but I'm assuming the older 94-99 owners will have to ream out the holes in the knuckles and pitman arm with a tapered reamer. Still not a lot of work for a cheap, huge upgrade!

Mopar # 52122362AF Complete kit including all tie rod and drag link components.

List price was $350, but I got it for wholesale using a local 4x4 club that I'm a member of (most dealerships will offer wholesale pricing to members of auto/4x4 clubs...) So the whole kit only cost me $262.50 + tax!

I hope this info is helpful to someone.
 
Attached Thumbnails Bomb-proof bolt on 2nd gen steering!  Cheap!-imag0089.jpg   Bomb-proof bolt on 2nd gen steering!  Cheap!-imag0090.jpg   Bomb-proof bolt on 2nd gen steering!  Cheap!-imag0091.jpg  
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  #2  
Old 09-23-2010, 12:59 PM
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  #3  
Old 09-23-2010, 01:37 PM
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Originally Posted by bryson View Post
So I went to the dealership and picked up one of their steering "upgrade" packages. It is the one that uses factory '09-'10 steering parts to upgrade your '03-'08 truck to the inverted "T" style steering instead of the inverted "Y" that came factory. It uses a gigantic 1.5" diameter SOLID tie rod... I was anticipating having to make a few changes to get it to fit my 2001 2500 (using a reamer to make the tapers in the knuckles/pitman bigger...) and was totally prepared to do so. BUT, to my surprise, the entire kit BOLTED ON with absolutely zero modification. I didn't have to trim anything for length, didn't have to ream any holes, didn't have to clearance anything... It just fit! I gave it a tape-measure alignment (gave it 1/4" overall toe-in as measured from the outsides of my 35" tires) and straightened the steering wheel. Drives like a dream! I'm sure the KORE springs and Bilsteins I installed at the same time helped, but the steering is much more solid and precise. It also came with a factory style shimmy-shock bracket, but my old and busted skycrapper stabilizer wouldn't fit. So I didn't run one at all. Drove it 100+ miles (~20 or so on dirt) last night and never missed the stabilizer, or the old crappy steering!

This may be common knowledge, but I did several searches and couldn't find anyone who had actually tried the swap. I'm posting here to let you know it was easy, and was relatively cheap! I'm assuming this will only work as a "bolt on" for 01-02 trucks (maybe '00?) but I'm assuming the older 94-99 owners will have to ream out the holes in the knuckles and pitman arm with a tapered reamer. Still not a lot of work for a cheap, huge upgrade!

Mopar # 52122362AF Complete kit including all tie rod and drag link components.

List price was $350, but I got it for wholesale using a local 4x4 club that I'm a member of (most dealerships will offer wholesale pricing to members of auto/4x4 clubs...) So the whole kit only cost me $262.50 + tax!

I hope this info is helpful to someone.
You've not seen anyone do this because it is not right. The tapers are indeed different enough (not to the touch/look) that you will inevitably find the parts installed loosening up prematurely. Something about "improper loads promoting failure" as one suspension guru put it when asked about doing this upgrade.

Not trying to be such a downer on this; and I wish you the best of luck. Go put the truck through some tests on/off road and put some miles on this setup and get back to us on how things work out for ya.

As for 94-98 folk, the 99HD steering setup is about the beefiest bolt on upgrade for steering, short of going to an aftermarket setup.
 
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Old 09-23-2010, 05:52 PM
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Originally Posted by NukleusX View Post
You've not seen anyone do this because it is not right. The tapers are indeed different enough (not to the touch/look) that you will inevitably find the parts installed loosening up prematurely. Something about "improper loads promoting failure" as one suspension guru put it when asked about doing this upgrade.

Not trying to be such a downer on this; and I wish you the best of luck. Go put the truck through some tests on/off road and put some miles on this setup and get back to us on how things work out for ya.

As for 94-98 folk, the 99HD steering setup is about the beefiest bolt on upgrade for steering, short of going to an aftermarket setup.
Believe me...I thought the same thing when I was starting this project, but I did my homework, and took very careful measurements, and the tapers are indeed the same. It was verified with digital calipers, feel, sight... I even went as far as using gear marking compound to make sure there was even engagement along the entire length of the taper. And I took pics.

Note that for the pictures, I put a thin coat of gear marking compound inside the tapered hole only - I did not put any on the rod end itself. The rod end was inserted into the taper until it bottomed out, and then pulled straight out. Looks like a nice match to me. The funny marks at the top of the tapered hole are where the rod end threads bumped it as it came out.

You are right that the older trucks (pre '99 maybe?) have a different size/taper for the tie rod end, but the newer 2nd gens have the bigger version. The 98-99 HD steering is probably the best "bolt on" setup for the older 2nd gens, but it still doesn't compare in size and strength to the 09-10 steering that could be installed with an easy re-taper job on the knuckles and pitman arm.

Hope this helps.
 
Attached Thumbnails Bomb-proof bolt on 2nd gen steering!  Cheap!-imag0098.jpg   Bomb-proof bolt on 2nd gen steering!  Cheap!-imag0100.jpg  
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Old 11-24-2010, 10:37 AM
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Any updates? Is it holding up and staying tight? Alignment good? Im getting ready to do some front end work as well and if this works would love to use this setup!! Thanks for the info.!!
 
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Old 11-24-2010, 10:43 AM
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I know a few people have actually swapped to third gen steering but i think thats spendy
 
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Old 11-24-2010, 10:54 PM
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Looks good, when my '99 conversion wears out I'll be looking at this. Thanks
 
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Old 11-25-2010, 02:27 AM
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do those tie rod ends have grease zircs. looks like they don't, since they are from the dealer. any way very nice set up!
 
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Old 11-25-2010, 10:11 AM
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Originally Posted by SPOOLITUP View Post
Any updates? Is it holding up and staying tight? Alignment good? Im getting ready to do some front end work as well and if this works would love to use this setup!! Thanks for the info.!!
It is still working great, and still feels as tight as the day it was installed. Alignment has stayed right on the money, and I'd do the conversion all over again in a heartbeat.

Scott - There is nothing spendy about this swap - it only cost me $262! You can't even buy aftermarket stock-style replacement parts from AutoZone for that cheap. This is by far the cheapest and best upgrade you can do for your truck (assuming you have a newer 2nd gen with the larger tapers.) Granted, you could swap steering boxes and all that jazz and spend some coin, but my steering box is still tight, and has given me no guff yet.

Ramrob - the ends do not have grease zirks, which isn't awesome, but I checked all the aftermarket suppliers, and nobody else even makes these components yet, so the OEM was the only option.

I still highly recommend this conversion.
 
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Old 11-26-2010, 07:00 PM
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I just put this upgrade on my 2001 ram 2500 diesel today worked great takes 20 minnutes to install plus the alignment and its a whole different truck great cheap upgrade
 

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