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Author Topic: Steering Box Lubracant  (Read 218 times)

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Offline Chuck Watford

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Steering Box Lubracant
« on: March 06, 2020, 09:14:26 PM »
Tonight, I decided to drain, flush and refill the steering box on my 1964 CJ3B before I put the body back on. According to my Service Manual, the box should have MIL-L-2105B SAE 80 oil. What I drained out was more like molasses, it would barely flow! I pulled the bottom front bolt from the cover and the pipe plug and left it to drain over night. I actually had to pour some parts cleaner solution into the fill hole before it would even start to flow. In my other two jeeps, a 1952 M38 and a 1954 CJ3B, I have had good luck using John Deere Corn Head Grease in the steering boxes. At this point, I think I will go ahead and remove the cover so I can properly clean the inside of the box.  Just wondering what the general thought is on steering box lubrication.
« Last Edit: March 08, 2020, 01:02:18 PM by Chuck Watford »

Online Rus Curtis

Re: Steering Box Lubracant
« Reply #1 on: March 07, 2020, 12:17:40 AM »
Chuck,
On another post, one suggestion to clean/flush would be to swap in transmission fluid (better than my kerosene idea).  Then "exercising" it back and forth may help.  I like the idea of removing the cover to clean, since you're not sure.

What I've found after a lot of searching is the MIL-L-2105B most closely relates to gear oil GL-4/GL-5.  Also discussed elsewhere is that GL-4 is safe for yellow metal, which the steering housing has two (inner/outer) bushings.  Once I knew this was a close match to GL-4, I chose to use it in the steering gear, transmission/transfer case, front/rear diffs (one product - multiple uses).
'54 CJ-3B "Green Gruntt"
Bantam T3-C

Offline Chuck Watford

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Re: Steering Box Lubracant
« Reply #2 on: March 07, 2020, 01:33:01 PM »
I went ahead and pulled the cover this morning, and I am glad I did, pretty nasty inside.




Spent some time with some brake cleaner and a brush, I think I got all the old gunk out.




Now trying to decide on GL-4 or Corn Head Grease.
« Last Edit: March 07, 2020, 02:58:19 PM by Chuck Watford »

Online MikeP

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1950 willys cj3a

Offline Chuck Watford

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Re: Steering Box Lubracant
« Reply #4 on: March 08, 2020, 01:01:31 PM »
Thanks, I think I will order a bottle and try it, save the corn head grease for the steering knuckles!

Online Rus Curtis

Re: Steering Box Lubracant
« Reply #5 on: March 08, 2020, 02:43:49 PM »
Thanks, I think I will order a bottle and try it, save the corn head grease for the steering knuckles!

might be best.  After watching that video, it seems that aggressive agitation is what allows corn head to flow.  Not sure if you'd get enough flow inside the steering box.
BTW, that grease above is virtually the same consistency as the grease called for in the knuckles, i.e. #0 (AKA CV joint lube).  While I do think it could work for the bearings/ worm gear, I'd be concerned that it will flow out through the bushings to lubricate the shaft.   Hopefully it works for you.
« Last Edit: March 08, 2020, 02:46:50 PM by Rus Curtis »
'54 CJ-3B "Green Gruntt"
Bantam T3-C

Offline Chuck Watford

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Re: Steering Box Lubracant
« Reply #6 on: March 10, 2020, 11:37:50 AM »
We'll see. Won't be able to put oil back in the box until the body tub goes back on, hope by the end of the month.