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Old 07-20-2020, 12:07 AM   #1
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Default steering issue

I have a 1987 nissan SE 4x4 that just started to have a steering issue. There is a lot of play in the wheel when turning and just before the truck starts to turn it seems to turn the opposite way for a split second. This started out of nowhere, I did not hit anything and there is plenty of fluid in the reservoir. Any ideas? Gear box perhaps? How do I troubleshoot to find the problem?
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Old 07-20-2020, 12:31 AM   #2
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Have somebody wiggle the steering wheel while you look for play in the steering components.
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Old 07-20-2020, 02:13 AM   #3
cadillacdude1975
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Not playing the bad cop here, but it is 34 years old.....it probably needs every steering & suspension component replaced. If one part is worn out and causing problems, then everything else has the same age, wear and tear etc.
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Old 07-20-2020, 11:32 PM   #4
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Sometimes these steering and suspension tests work better if you take the front wheels off the ground just a TINY bit, enough to see air under your front wheels. Jack up point should be on the frame of the truck. Use jack stands if you have them.

Makes it easier to wiggle the wheel, and the parts will move easier. Better diagnosis sometimes. You can also play around with the other front end parts, since they won't have any load on them from the truck sitting on the ground.
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Old 07-21-2020, 12:28 AM   #5
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thanks to all. When I tested turning the wheel the shaft moves almost a half rotation before the wheels actually turn. I am assuming the gear is busted so I ordered another one. Hard to justify 250 bucks for a old beater but it is better than buying a new one.
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Old 07-21-2020, 02:53 AM   #6
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Let us know if that fixes it.
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Old 07-21-2020, 03:57 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joetruck View Post
thanks to all. When I tested turning the wheel the shaft moves almost a half rotation before the wheels actually turn. I am assuming the gear is busted so I ordered another one. Hard to justify 250 bucks for a old beater but it is better than buying a new one.
I have to ask whether or not you have the Factory Service manual on this truck, or...whether you have done steering gear fixes on these trucks before?

Just saying it's tricky. ('Don't let the metal ball fall out...don't scratch the oil seal..." bunch of warnings in the FSM. Not sure, but maybe your preload adjustment is off. I am not an expert on doing steering gear by any means. The manual says you should check (basically steering components) if the steering wheel is slack. I dunno...

I do have a copy of the FSM for your truck in PDF. And on this manual, the links in the PDF actually work. (long story) Contact me at adventurebooksofseattle AT G Mail if you don't have a copy of your FSM. Can't send these in a PM. They run 1200 pages and 25 megs or so.

EDIT: You ordered the part, okay. If you don't have the FSM, and you aren't sure how all this is done, email me and I will gladly send it to you. There are about five pages in the FSM, with good pictures, on doing steering gear repairs and replacement.

Old Ford trucks and vans were FAMOUS for loose steering gear boxes. Oh, brother. I once took a 72 Ford van on a 16-month road trip all over the USA. (late 70's) That wheel...you had to turn it a third of the way around before it started to work. There was an adjustment or something on the box. But playing with it only made the wheel harder to turn. Still was loose LOL.
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Last edited by XoXSciFiGuy; 07-22-2020 at 03:30 AM.
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