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Re: Walter's (95 Dodge B2500) restoration plans...
RamVan2500 #707098 April 17th 2016 7:52 am
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This morning I took the internals of the steering gear out of the parts washer for rinsing. They came out really nice. I didn't take photos of the parts before the cleaning, but they were varnished like the engine was... I began the prep process by installing all of the various seals onto the parts. I still have to pull the pitman off and strip the rest of the housing. Then remove the rust from the housing, prime, and paint. Then assemble.

Here are some photos:
https://drive.google.com/open?id=0B2IjmQ5Cc2XGaWg5SHUtZ1lrbWM

Re: Walter's (95 Dodge B2500) restoration plans...
RamVan2500 #707109 April 17th 2016 4:07 pm
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Alrighty, I couldn't stand sitting inside the house any longer. Once the not so promising weather cleared I went outside. I finally got around to cleaning up the transmission cross member and the 5th and last floor pan section. I have it laying in place, tomorrow I shall weld it in.

I also took photos of the frame damage front end. I also cleaned up the center link and laid some primer on it, tomorrow I can paintith it! Oh boy. I also cold galvanized the front exhaust hanger bracket and temporary placed the new attaching hardware.

https://drive.google.com/open?id=0B2IjmQ5Cc2XGZ01CelBReDlLdms

Re: Walter's (95 Dodge B2500) restoration plans...
RamVan2500 #707143 April 18th 2016 5:50 am
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I think yours are the very first photos I've ever seen posted of the insides of one of these steering gears - thanks for sharing! It looks far less intimidating spread out on your bench than it does in the service and parts manual.

Makes me wonder if I should try mine, which is becoming a bit moist at the output shaft; these things just don't improve with age! Were there any particular techniques or special tools you used to simplify the process?

Did you use the Edelmann 8513 or 8538 rebuild kit? Do you like the quality and fit of the kit parts?


-It's been such a LONG TIME... BlueShift>> 1981 Dodge Ram B250 Custom Sportsman Maxi Van


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It's what you learn after you know it all, that counts...

Are you living to work, or working to live?

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Learning from my own mistakes is good, learning from yours would be much better! [Linked Image]
Re: Walter's (95 Dodge B2500) restoration plans...
Ram4ever #707147 April 18th 2016 9:23 am
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Thanks, I will have more photos soon. The steering gear is actually very simple. I have learned that the service manual blow outs always make things more complicated looking, but it is mostly because you see so many seals. When I rebuilt my transmission some time ago the blow outs looked to be very intimidating, but the key to simplify any rebuild is to break things up into unit assemblies. Then rebuild each assembly and then put all the assemblies together. With this technique a person can easily rebuild a transmission from start to finish in about 2-3 days with your average shop tools. Anyways to answer your questions.

The only special tool you need is a pitman arm puller, snap ring pliar, and an arbor tool. The arbor tool can be bought for about 20 bucks, but one can easily buy a steel rod for a few bucks and use that. This tool just holds the recirculation balls in place so you can insert the rack piston into the housing and feed the worm shaft.

The rebuild kit I bought was Edelmann 8524, as listed in my parts table https://drive.google.com/open?id=0B2IjmQ5Cc2XGamIxVk1xdUxUdUE (File Walter_Parts).

Rockauto has it for the least amount of money. It comes with everything you need to rebuild it, every seal and the bearings. The only discrepancy is with the pitman shaft bearing, one style has a flange and one does not, but you can use the only without the lip, you just have to be careful not to press it in too far!

The seal quality is superb and fits together nicely. I couldn't complain about the seal kit at all. My only complaint is how difficult it is to remove the pitman arm haha.

The most important thing is to keep the unit clean and to clean all of the parts. If there is varnish remove it, this ways things slip together nicely and you do not risk damaging seals.

I will have some more photos later though. I still have some cleaning to do on some parts and the chemical rust removal takes a few days, like watching paint dry lol

Re: Walter's (95 Dodge B2500) restoration plans...
RamVan2500 #707154 April 18th 2016 3:00 pm
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Hey Thanks! I just ordered a kit. smile -And I'll be looking forward to your additional pictures.

I have to chuckle; it's practically hilarious my being intimidated by it. Before I got into repairing mainframe computers to the component level, I used to rebuild old school electromechanical teletypes, paper tape punches, and IBM card punches; things of dizzying complexity! But as you said so very well, the FSM really does a great job of making it seem overcomplicated! The special tools in particular make it seem out of reach. But you sure did it! smile

With as hard and costly as it is to get a good rebuilt gearbox, it may be a worthwhile thing to to post as many details of your rebuild as possible, to encourage others to try their hands at their own rebuilds.

Just in case it isn't obvious in your pictures, when you say arbor tool, do you mean an arbor press? I've got both an arbor press and a hydraulic press.

The good news is that I have a spare gearbox out of a B300, which I believe to be in nearly new condition, so if I mess anything up, I can send it out to Red Head and bolt my spare in! smile


-It's been such a LONG TIME... BlueShift>> 1981 Dodge Ram B250 Custom Sportsman Maxi Van


[Linked Image]

It's what you learn after you know it all, that counts...

Are you living to work, or working to live?

[Linked Image]

Learning from my own mistakes is good, learning from yours would be much better! [Linked Image]
Re: Walter's (95 Dodge B2500) restoration plans...
Ram4ever #707156 April 18th 2016 4:37 pm
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The special arbor tool is C-4175 as per service manual. It is nothing more than a shaft that is inserted into the rack piston while removing the worm shaft. The purpose is just to hold the balls in place while the worm shaft is out of the rack piston. Note that the worm shaft and rack piston are inserted at opposite ends of the housing and are separated by the housing, so it is necessary to first insert the balls with the worm gear installed, and then remove the worm gear onto to reassembled the two pieces back together inside of the housing. I made it sounds more complicated than it is, but when you get yours apart everything will make sense. Looking at photos and hearing words are only 100x more complicated than just taking one apart.

If you have a hard time removing the pitman arm like I did, I figured out that if you use a 2 lb engineers hammer (sledge hammer) and hit the end of the pitman arm very hard a few time it helps to loosen it up. Don't worry about bending the pitman arm because it simply cannot happen. The pitman arm is going to be the strongest component on the entire vehicle...

When I assemble the unit I will have photos detail the entire assembly and some notes to help guide those along the way.

I did take some more photos, in addition to photos of other things I completed today.
Note in the photos that there are two needle bearings, the one with the flange is the old bearing. The new bearing doesn't have a flange, because it is the wrong bearing, but you can still use it. The trick is to install the bearing so it is flush with the housing internally. Otherwise you can order a replacement bearing, the part number would be on the bearing itself.
https://drive.google.com/open?id=0B2IjmQ5Cc2XGZnpJaWxpeUxSZ0E

Be careful with the hammer. I managed to damage the housing. I bent the lip of housing a little, but it is still good enough to use. I also damaged the treads on the pitman shaft, but I used an angle grinder to grind down the damaged tread and used the old nut to clean the remaining treads. This is usually what happens when I get tired and frustrated, damage... However I was still able to save everything to do a safe rebuild.

After assembly I will go over the adjustment procedure, just to clarify the service manual. smile


OH, I was curious about the seals. I looked at the old seals and they are made by the same manufacturer as the seals that were in my rebuild kit.

Last edited by RamVan2500; April 18th 2016 4:44 pm.
Re: Walter's (95 Dodge B2500) restoration plans...
RamVan2500 #707157 April 18th 2016 4:38 pm
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Got the pitman arm off today, and let me say it was a... I also painted the center link, welded the last floor piece in. I still have to weld underside a little, but it's in! Oh I also cleaned some more steering gear parts and laid those out for assembly. I have the steering gear housing soak in my parts washer. Tomorrow I will pull it out and rinse it. Here are the photos:
https://drive.google.com/open?id=0B2IjmQ5Cc2XGZnpJaWxpeUxSZ0E

Re: Walter's (95 Dodge B2500) restoration plans...
Ram4ever #707158 April 18th 2016 4:43 pm
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Originally Posted by Ram4ever
Hey Thanks! I just ordered a kit. smile -And I'll be looking forward to your additional pictures.

I have to chuckle; it's practically hilarious my being intimidated by it. Before I got into repairing mainframe computers to the component level, I used to rebuild old school electromechanical teletypes, paper tape punches, and IBM card punches; things of dizzying complexity! But as you said so very well, the FSM really does a great job of making it seem overcomplicated! The special tools in particular make it seem out of reach. But you sure did it! smile

With as hard and costly as it is to get a good rebuilt gearbox, it may be a worthwhile thing to to post as many details of your rebuild as possible, to encourage others to try their hands at their own rebuilds.

Just in case it isn't obvious in your pictures, when you say arbor tool, do you mean an arbor press? I've got both an arbor press and a hydraulic press.

The good news is that I have a spare gearbox out of a B300, which I believe to be in nearly new condition, so if I mess anything up, I can send it out to Red Head and bolt my spare in! smile


If you've worked for IBM you should be able to rebuild anything, plain and simple.

Re: Walter's (95 Dodge B2500) restoration plans...
RamVan2500 #707286 April 20th 2016 4:41 pm
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Today I was planning on just removing the brake calipers so I could exchange them, but I figured since I had the van up I would strip everything. So I removed the old control arms, ball joints, springs, strut rods, shock absorbers, you name it I took it out lol.

I attached photos of the van currently, some parts. I also painted the center link, so photos of the finished product are up as are photos of the steering gear in the vinegar solution. I took a wire brush to the steering gear and the rust fell off except for a few bits, so I put it back in to soak. In a day or two is should be ready for primer and paint.

https://drive.google.com/open?id=0B2IjmQ5Cc2XGQVpGeU8wTml2a2M


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