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Track Bar Bolt Spinning

Breto31

TJ Enthusiast
Joined
Nov 30, 2020
Messages
326
Location
Kentucky
I did the ZJ upgrade to my track bar and tie rod last year, but I’ve been looking into my front track bar torques because I feel like I have a slight wander in my front end. The axle side is very tight, but the frame side is supposed to be 110 ft lbs, and I’m almost positive it’s not.

Today I went in and tried to tighten the frame side (that has the tie rod bushing on it), and the bolt is spinning freely with the nut when I try to tighten or loosen it (and it’s VERY easy to twist both ways) I tried to stick a small punch through the hole in the bolt for the cotter pin (to hold it in place while I tightened the nut), but it just bent the punch with ease.

Any ideas on how I can keep the bolt in place and get this thing tightened down?
 

Wtrask

TJ Enthusiast
Joined
Jul 26, 2019
Messages
353
Location
Maine
put A floor jack with a block under the rod end and jack it up to put pressure on it that should work.
 

LONGJP2

TJ Addict
Joined
Aug 11, 2019
Messages
2,328
Location
Illinois
IIRC, I don't think there's being a ZJ trackbar upgrade.
However, it sounds like this would be a good time to upgrade to an aftermarket adjustable one.
 
OP
Breto31

Breto31

TJ Enthusiast
Joined
Nov 30, 2020
Messages
326
Location
Kentucky
IIRC, I don't think there's being a ZJ trackbar upgrade.
However, it sounds like this would be a good time to upgrade to an aftermarket adjustable one.
You’re right, it was the tie-rod and drag link that I did from the ZJ. However, I did also upgrade the track bar with a new Moog one at the same time, so I just got confused.
 
OP
Breto31

Breto31

TJ Enthusiast
Joined
Nov 30, 2020
Messages
326
Location
Kentucky
UPDATE: I tried the pry bar. I pried up on the track bar/tie-rod end (forcing down on the differential), but it did nothing - if anything, it made the bolt/nut easier to spin.

RE: Using the Jack - I’m not sure how I can get a floor jack and block to the frame side of the track bar to apply pressure. The actual tie rod and axle are in the way.
 

Jablinski

Mud as Clear
Supporting Member
Joined
Dec 26, 2020
Messages
160
Location
Colorado
UPDATE: I tried the pry bar. I pried up on the track bar/tie-rod end (forcing down on the differential), but it did nothing - if anything, it made the bolt/nut easier to spin.

RE: Using the Jack - I’m not sure how I can get a floor jack and block to the frame side of the track bar to apply pressure. The actual tie rod and axle are in the way.
I recommend using an impact wrench in these spinny situations
 

Jerry Bransford

TJ Guru Moderator
Staff Member
Supporting Member
Joined
Nov 9, 2015
Messages
23,748
Location
Fleming Island Florida
What works for me is to place a deep well socket on the nut with either a breaker bar or ratchet handle on it. The bracket will prevent it from rotating more than slightly. Then use a breaker bar, torque wrench, or impact wrench on the bolt to tighten it.
 
OP
Breto31

Breto31

TJ Enthusiast
Joined
Nov 30, 2020
Messages
326
Location
Kentucky
What works for me is to place a deep well socket on the nut with either a breaker bar or ratchet handle on it. The bracket will prevent it from rotating more than slightly. Then use a breaker bar, torque wrench, or impact wrench on the bolt to tighten it.
I guess I don’t understand what you mean. Whether I use a socket or a wrench, the bolt/but still spin together.

I used a deep well socket initially to try to tighten it. After tightening for about 5 mins and getting nowhere, I switched to a regular wrench, and that’s when I could see that the bolt and but were spinning together.

Just in case I called it the wrong thing, the attached/circled location is what I’m trying to tighten. The nut on the top of the track bar TRE….. I can’t get an impact driver in there due to the tight spot.

D1E1DAF3-21EF-44FB-A289-85C164DF9528.jpeg
 

Fughuert

TJ Enthusiast
Joined
Nov 26, 2018
Messages
367
Location
New England
What works for me is to place a deep well socket on the nut with either a breaker bar or ratchet handle on it. The bracket will prevent it from rotating more than slightly. Then use a breaker bar, torque wrench, or impact wrench on the bolt to tighten it.
There is no bolt only a nut and a stud.
 

LONGJP2

TJ Addict
Joined
Aug 11, 2019
Messages
2,328
Location
Illinois
UPDATE: I tried the pry bar. I pried up on the track bar/tie-rod end (forcing down on the differential), but it did nothing - if anything, it made the bolt/nut easier to spin.
For this to work, the pressure needs to be right under the TRE, not just the bar. The idea is to increase the friction of the taper to keep it from spinning. Also, you'll want to use a jack to take advantage of the weight of the vehicle.
Maybe try removing the joint and clean up both the threads and the taper.
 
OP
Breto31

Breto31

TJ Enthusiast
Joined
Nov 30, 2020
Messages
326
Location
Kentucky
I tried the floor jack on the TRE, and the pry bar on the TRE. Nothing changes. Still spins freely in both directions, easily.

I went ahead and dropped it at my local shop to have them check it out. Most likely they’ll have to cut it off, but a pretty strong consensus thinks that because it spins freely so easily, the TRE is bad. I went ahead and grabbed another Moog bar from the parts store and took it with me just in case.
 

Vtx531

TJ Addict
Joined
Nov 17, 2020
Messages
1,050
Location
Kalamazoo, MI
Cut it off, hope they honor lifetime warranty, start over with clean/new threads and make sure to use proper torque and possibly some loctite.