A year or so ago we put the finishing touches on what we thought would be the strongest possible steering system we could build for our Jeep. Just when we thought that it was as strong as it could get along came Sam’s Off Road with two more super strength parts for our Jeep. Like the Super Heroes of our childhood fighting evil villains, the guys at Sam’s Off Road in Tulsa, OK are constantly building new and stronger parts to ward off the 4-wheeler’s biggest foe, trail breakage. Although not able to leap tall buildings in a single bound, I guess these guys are modern day 4-wheel drive Super Heroes. The newest creations to come out of Sam’s shop are a gargantuan steering gear box bracket and one big-time, super-strong Pittman arm. I have seen many a Pittman arm snap under the incredible stress of big tires and even bigger rocks. The wall-of-shame in our shop is adorned with evil-doings of our arch enemy, trail-breakage. Fantastic broken parts like twisted and broken axle shafts, grenaded ring and pinion gears, one half of a crankshaft and more bent, twisted, folded, spindled and cracked Pittman arms than you can shake a stick at. One Pittman arm in particular twisted almost 20 degrees (like a licorice stick) and bent sideways another 10 or so degrees with out breaking. While it was great that it held together, getting back home proved to be very interesting with almost no right-hand turn left in the wheel.
With the new Pittman from Sam’s Off Road now installed on the Jeep, I am sure our bent and broken Pittman Arms are now a thing of the past. The new Pittman arm is made of a solid piece of 7/8” thick steel that doesn’t neck down in the middle like a stock cast arm. It is splined to fit the stock Saginaw steering box used on all Jeeps. Sam’s Pittman arm is also 1” longer than stock to create a bit more leverage for turning big tires. Sam can taper drill the Pittman arm to accept a stock tie rod end, straight through drill it for using Heim joint ends or send it undrilled; just let them know what you need. To install the new arm simply remove the old Pittman arm using a puller, if you don’t have one, any good auto parts store will rent you one for a few bucks, and install the new one. Be sure to note the position of the old arm prior to removal so the new one can be line up the same, install the included lock washer, Loctite the new nut and torque it down to 100 lb/ft.
The second super strength product we installed from Sam’s Off Road is a new Steering gear box frame bracket. This new bracket replaces the three-piece catastrophe that Jeep originally designed to hold the steering box to the frame. Last year during Easter Jeep Safari in Moab, UT, I had a thrill packed ride back to town with a friend of mine that had us all over the road and praying for our lives after the stock brackets on his Scrambler cracked and came loose from the frame. Needless to say after this near death experience I was sure there had to be a better way to mount a steering box. Sam’s new Bracket is made from ½” steel plate and is welded into one piece rather than the 3 used originally. The new bracket also has a third mounting hole on the top to triangulate the upper mount for even more strength. The mount is simple to install. Just remove the steering box from the old brackets, remove the old brackets from the frame, bolt the steering box to the new bracket, and bolt the new bracket to the frame. The new bracket comes with all new grade 5 bolts and washers and lines up perfectly to all of the stock holes in the frame and cross member. The whole installation took about an hour with two guys. This install can be done by one person, but due to the weight of a steering box and the new bracket we suggest you invite a friend over for a cold beverage and trick them into giving you hand!
Once again Sam’s Off-Road has amazed us with two new super stout products help defend evil and keep our Jeep steering straight and free of trail breakage. If you want to ultimate in strength for your Jeep, give the guys a Sam’s Off Road a call and they’ll be happy to help you out.
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