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Discussion Starter #1
I had steering wheel shimmy and a low humming/ howling noise so I figured it was time to replace the front wheel bearings. After replacing them and the front brake calipers I took it in for an alignment. They said my alignment was pretty far off but they got it back into specs, no surprise. The issue though is that I still have some pretty severe steering wheel shimmy at about 60 MPH, in fact it may be worse than before I did the bearings. I do know that I have a rip in each CV boot so those will be getting replaced this fall but could a CV joint cause the steering wheel vibration? I would think I would hear popping or clicking when making sharp turns if my CV was failing. I also wonder if I don't have the dreaded wheel balancing issue on my BF tires that so many have ached over. Anyway this forum was the reason I felt comfortable enough to do the wheel bearings on my own and all in all it was a simple operation even with discovering 2 malfunctioning calipers as well. I feel confident that I tightened the castle nut to 174 ft/lbs and that the 4 bolts on each hub where torqed as tight as I could go. Not having the extenders its hard to tell how much I torqued them though. Anyway, thoughts? Opinions? Just curious if anyone has any insight.
 

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Discussion Starter #2 (Edited)
Just a little background, FJ has all new rotors, pads as of last year. I replaced both front brake calipers when I replaced the Front bearings due to each side showing seizure of the bottom inside piston. The front bearings were the Dorman hub/bearing kit with spindle seal replaced on each side. I don't off road and I don't go mudding or anything like that. We have river land on gravel and sand/mud roads that we travel to once a week in the good weather. So nothing out of the ordinary that should wear down parts outside of normal driving.
 

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What are Wheels torqued to? Are they alloy?
 

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I know this may sound super simple but look to see if you knocked a wheel weight off. I knock them off a lot offroading and I will get a steering vibration. I always start simple because everything else gets expencive :) Hope this helps
 
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Discussion Starter #6
I thought I responded to this earlier to thank everyone for their responses but it didn't post. Either way, Thanks for the replies. I will try the air pressure first, then if I still get vibration I will take it to my favorite Discount tire store for balancing as I could have lost a weight on the gravel roads somewhere. This doesn't seem like its related to the work I did, yet. Unless I got a bad bearing which would be on me for my choice of part. I will close the loop once I figure the issue out. Maybe it will help others in the future(or be a reference for me to figure out WTF I did).
 

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Also it is worth checking the front tires I have seen some defective tires myself, long story short, some tires are heavier on one side versus the other side, also it is best to re-check the alignment since camber and caster we will have a dramatic effect on pulling to one side.


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Discussion Starter #8
Tires balanced and rotated and the issue has righted itself. Apparently I will need new tires soon as the alignment and lack of rotating my tires has lead to uneven wear. I will probably go with Cooper tires next time and steer clear of the BFG or any aggressive all terrain at this point. I don't off road, 90% of my driving in interstate. When I finally pick up the gas sipper and make this more of a weekend vehicle then the fun can start.
 

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Tires balanced and rotated and the issue has righted itself. Apparently I will need new tires soon as the alignment and lack of rotating my tires has lead to uneven wear. I will probably go with Cooper tires next time and steer clear of the BFG or any aggressive all terrain at this point. I don't off road, 90% of my driving in interstate. When I finally pick up the gas sipper and make this more of a weekend vehicle then the fun can start.
Michelin LTXs are nice and last awhile as long as you rotate em, excellent road/highway manners. Glad your rig is running true again!
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I had Michelins on a Blazer back in 2001 or so. I don't remember much about them. That might be a good thing though. Discount Tire here in Omaha has been awesome. They walk me through everything each time I am in there. I also explain to them, as in this case, the symptoms and what has been done to the vehicle. I will definitely be getting my tires through them here in the next couple of months. I have to take the wife to another continent first before more money can be spent on the car. Something about 10 yr anniversaries and all that. I had to promise not to blow another grand before we left on tires. My opinion though is it doesn't matter when its spent, money spent is money that is spent. I'm also starting to think I might be able to handle doing a 3" lift now since I had to take the entire front apart already. I am much more comfortable with it now. That would mean I could put 285s on in place of the stock size :)
 

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Speaking of blowing money. Just make sure your lower control arm alignment cams are not seized up before you lift. If they are, and you lift, you might get it "in spec" but you might not retain enough adjustability to still have a 'nice ride'...it might lack caster and want to wander around on the freeway.

You can put 285s on it stock...so just do that anyway.
 
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I developed the same thing this weekend after bending an inner tir rod in trail. Now i have that humming at 50-60 mph. Had the tie rode replace, front wheels balanced, and re-aligned, but it's still there... Next thing on the list was wheel bearing , since my wheel got squeezed hard , then next thing is checking my drive shafts for dents that would unbalance it. I don't have BFs i run Coopers , so i doubt it the tires. Let us know what you find, i will too ;)

 

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I developed the same thing this weekend after bending an inner tir rod in trail. Now i have that humming at 50-60 mph. Had the tie rode replace, front wheels balanced, and re-aligned, but it's still there... Next thing on the list was wheel bearing , since my wheel got squeezed hard , then next thing is checking my drive shafts for dents that would unbalance it. I don't have BFs i run Coopers , so i doubt it the tires. Let us know what you find, i will too ;)

Wow that's a wicked bend! Deserves a spot on the Trail Carnage thread....with story :grin
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Wow that thing is way bent! You are following the same series of items that I did. Like I mentioned the noise was the driver side wheel bearing so I just replaced them both. The wheel shake was due to the alignment and uneven wear. I worsened the wheel shake by getting the alignment but it was quickly resolved by rotating the craptastic tire off the front to the rear. In your trail damage picture I would have to say that you may have a damaged power arm as well. Just looking at that bend I have to think either the spindle or the power arm may have sustained damage as well. Oh and I may take Iwash's advice and put the 285 tires on the stock ride. I'm assuming there is a slight rub if I make sharp turns though.
 

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Wow that thing is way bent! You are following the same series of items that I did. Like I mentioned the noise was the driver side wheel bearing so I just replaced them both. The wheel shake was due to the alignment and uneven wear. I worsened the wheel shake by getting the alignment but it was quickly resolved by rotating the craptastic tire off the front to the rear. In your trail damage picture I would have to say that you may have a damaged power arm as well. Just looking at that bend I have to think either the spindle or the power arm may have sustained damage as well. Oh and I may take Iwash's advice and put the 285 tires on the stock ride. I'm assuming there is a slight rub if I make sharp turns though.
Power arm ?
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Front driveshaft, CV joint, whatever name you have created. I don't even pretend to know the official name. This is why I never refer to myself as a mechanic. I am You Tube certified.
 

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Front driveshaft, CV joint, whatever name you have created. I don't even pretend to know the official name. This is why I never refer to myself as a mechanic. I am You Tube certified.

Axle ;)
 

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Discussion Starter #18
So new calipers up front, new front wheel bearings, an alignment, and new Cooper tires and the FJ rides like new again, except,,,,,,,,,, I feel some sort of low vibration that comes and goes. Comes on at about 40 and gets worse until about 65-75 and then just stays steady. This occurred after the bearing and caliper replacement and continues with the new tires. I was hoping the horrible wear on the old BFs was causing the issue but it continues. Oh well. More research. First things first though eventually I will crawl back under and double check my bolts on everything I loosened.
 
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