View Full Version : What about making your own drag link?
06-30-2003, 08:58 AM
I know alot of people are fearful of welding on certain critical parts of a truck, but a good welder can connect two pieces of metal better than a solid piece. I was looking at prices of custom made drag links for my cross over, and was thinking it would be easy to just cut my current drag link, extend it to the length I need, and weld a tie rod to the end. When you think about it, your knuckles are welded and so are shafts and other steering components.
My plan was to weld the two halfs, then slip a larger pipe piece over the weld, and weld around both ends. It would never come apart. And I'll never be cruising down the road at 50 anymore.
Just seems like alot better option than paying $150 for a custom made one.
06-30-2003, 09:07 AM
I made mine the EASY way.... ;)
I bought two tierod ends... identical
Then I got two stock adjusters..identical
I got a 1" solid steel rod... milled 2.5" of each end down to 7/8" and had left-hand threads (7/8x18) cut into the rod....
I can adjust both ends of the draglink and change both ends when they are worn with no worries of having to make new parts....
Total cost of the custom work was around $40 for machining...
[ June 30, 2003, 03:08 PM: Message edited by: River Beast ]
06-30-2003, 09:13 AM
I was also thinking of the same thing, but don't have access to the machine work. But the pitman side already has the adjuster, so I think this would work just fine. Just need to make sure I have everything lined up straight when I make my measurments. I was thinking about the tie rod(replacement one day) and figure, I have never replaced one anyway, and I will probably never put more than a few hundred miles a year on, so what the heck. If it ever wears out, I'll just cut and weld again. Thanks, Dennis
06-30-2003, 10:28 AM
i was thinking of doing this myself at one time and figured the best way was to get your length of steel you need and put two heim joints in the ends. one with a reverse cut and one with regular cut. this way you could adjust the tie rod with ease smile.gif also, i just like heim joints better than tie rod ends.
06-30-2003, 01:11 PM
My friend and I used a tie rod to build my drag link. We didn't even go to the trouble of sleeving it. We just cut a piece out of the tie rod, the cut the adjustable piece off my old drag link, and welded the two together. If you look at my drag link you can't even tell it's been cut and welded. And this was several years ago back when my Jeep was a daily driver. I even drove it to and from school which was a 3hr freeway drive. I run hydro steer on it now, still no probs. So yea, it's safe.
06-30-2003, 01:23 PM
I wouldnt recommend putting a pipe sleeve over the weld and then welding the ends of the pipe. If you do that then the stress will be on the pipe to rod welds, and they tend to break easily. I'd put some deep bevels on both ends of the rod, then weld with E-7018. Never break!!! My .02
[ June 30, 2003, 07:24 PM: Message edited by: kyjman ]
06-30-2003, 01:30 PM
I took the rod to a machine shop and just paid to have it milled and threaded....
06-30-2003, 03:20 PM
BTW, steering-knuckles, pitman-arms, tie-rod ends and all links are one-piece forgings. No welding anywhere along the way.
Not to say it couldn't work, but a machined-down tie-rod would not depend on the quality of someone's welds.
07-01-2003, 12:30 AM
i made my drag link and tie rod from scrap welded seam tubing and heim joints. i justwelded a nut into the tubing for the heim joint. i dont drive it on the road anymore,but i do pull it with a towbar and i beat on it pretty hard in the woods. no prollems with my welded in nuts. smile.gif my low-quality heims are starting to wear,but no prollems with the links.
id prolly not weld the tie rod right to the rest of the drag link. if you cant get a rod threaded like RB did,id weld the conecting sleve to the drag link to make future changes easier. you can then carry spare tie rod ends and you may be very glad that you did it that way if you have trouble with one in the middle of no where and can just thread a new one on
i used all the same thread for mine. that way 2 spare heims fit anywhere on the system. if id uses left and right hand threads id have to carry 4 in order to have 2 spare for each thread. i have to take one end off to adjust it,but thats not a big deal to me. somethin else to consider anyway...
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