Mr Goodwrench's Evil Twin
Join Date: Jul 2018
Location: Littleton, Co
thebadwrench is offline
Re: Steering play
If it's been a few months since you checked out the steering system, I'd check it again now. A part that was in good working condition a few months ago may now have slop in it. I would get a friend to sit in the truck and move the steering wheel ONLY through its range of play, wiggle it back and forth. Tell them as soon as they feel resistance in one direction, go the back the other way. Do this with the front wheels on the ground and the truck not running so the front wheels themselves stay as stationary as possible.
While they are moving the wheel back and forth, look under the truck and look at the tie rods, inner and outer. Any play in them should be fairly visible by checking it in this manner. Also look at the drag link, there should be no up and down movement in it. If there is, it'll need an idler arm (VERY common in these front ends), a pitman arm or both. If the play is in the rag joint, just like the tie rod ends it should be fairly easy to see. The steering box could be sloppy too, in which case you'd see the input shaft of the steering box moving but little to no movement in the pitman arm.
How do you know the toe is perfect? How is the tread wear on the front tires?