Ram B1500, B2500, B3500, 1999-2003

Adjustment

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WARNING
Steering gear must be adjusted in the proper order. If adjustments are not performed in order, gear damage and improper steering response may result.


NOTE
Adjusting the steering gear in the vehicle is not recommended. Remove gear from the vehicle and drain the fluid. Then mount gear in a vise to perform adjustments.

Overcenter Preload




NOTE
Before performing this procedure, the worm bearing preload adjustment must be performed.

  1. Rotate the stub shaft with a 12 point socket from stop to stop and count the number of turns.
  2.  
  3. Starting at either stop, turn the stub shaft back 1 / 2 the total number of turns. This is the center of the gear travel.

    Click image to see an enlarged view

    Fig. View of the steering gear centered; adjustment screw (1) and master spline (2)

  4.  
  5. Place the torque wrench in the vertical position on the stub shaft. Rotate the wrench 45 degrees each side of the center and record the highest rotational torque in this range. This is the Over-Center Rotating Torque.
    NOTE
    The stub shaft must rotate smoothly without sticking or binding.



    Click image to see an enlarged view

    Fig. Rotate the wrench 45 degrees each side of the center (1) and record the highest rotational torque in this range

  6.  
  7. Rotate the stud shaft between 90° and 180° to the left of center and record the left off-center preload.
  8.  
  9. Repeat this to the right of center and record the right off-center preload. The average of these two recorded readings is the Preload Rotating Torque.
  10.  
  11. The Over-Center Rotating Torque should be 3-7 inch lbs. (0.40-0.70 Nm) higher than the Preload Rotating Torque.
  12.  
  13. If an adjustment to the Over-Center Rotating Torque is necessary, first loosen the adjuster lock nut. Then turn the pitman shaft adjuster screw back (COUNTERCLOCKWISE) until fully extended, then turn back in (CLOCKWISE) one full turn.
  14.  
  15. Re-measure Over-Center Rotating Torque. If necessary turn the adjuster screw and repeat measurement until correct Over-Center Rotating Torque is reached.
    NOTE
    To increase the Over-Center Rotating Torque turn the screw CLOCKWISE.

  16.  
  17. Prevent the adjuster screw from turning while tightening adjuster lock nut. Tighten the adjuster lock nut to 36 ft. lbs. (49 Nm).
  18.  

Worm Thrust Bearing Preload



  1. Mount the gear carefully into a vise.
    WARNING
    Do not overtighten the vise on the gear case. This may affect the adjustment

  2.  
  3. Remove adjuster plug locknut.

    Click image to see an enlarged view

    Fig. View of the adjuster nut (1), steering gear (2), lock nut (2) and punch (4)

  4.  
  5. Rotate the stub shaft back and forth with a 12 point socket to drain the remaining fluid.
  6.  
  7. Turn the adjuster in with Spanner Wrench C-4381. Tighten the plug and thrust bearing in the housing until firmly bottomed in the housing about 25 ft. lbs. (34 Nm).
  8.  
  9. Place an index mark on the housing even with one of the holes in adjuster plug.

    Click image to see an enlarged view

    Fig. Place an index mark (1) on the housing even with one of the holes in adjuster plug

  10.  
  11. Measure back (counterclockwise) 0.20 in. (5.08mm) and mark housing.

    Click image to see an enlarged view

    Fig. Measure back (counterclockwise) 0.20 in. (5.08mm) and mark housing (1)

  12.  
  13. Rotate adjustment cap back (counterclockwise) with spanner wrench until hole is aligned with the second mark.

    Click image to see an enlarged view

    Fig. View of the first mark (1), second mark (2) and spanner wrench (3)

  14.  
  15. Install and tighten locknut to 80 ft. lbs. (108 Nm). Be sure adjustment cap does not turn while tightening the locknut.
  16.  

 
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