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sjensen24
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Joined: 08-05-2005
Location: Brooklyn Park, Minnesota USA
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I am noticing some issues with the steering.  the wheel feels good and tight but it seems like the car wanders a bit.  Also,  I think I occasionally feel a little resistance when I turn the wheel and then it suddenly responds; like something is hanging up. 

Suspension wear parts are all new.

Is there a procedure for testing to see if the rack and pinion is as it should be?

Jim Ketcham
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Location: Salt Point, New York USA
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Sounds like steering shaft knuckle is hitting exhaust manifold or corner of cam tower. It is not uncommon and is fixed by checking engine mounts and using shims to adjust. I am assuming the steering shaft is good.

You can check it by having someone turn the wheels while you watch the travel of the steering shaft.

Brett Gibson JH5 20497
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Another spot to have a look at besides what Jim mentions would be the bushing at the end of the column going thru the fire wall, Jensen used a plastic material that is basically junk and allows a lot of free play before the steering wheel responds, Delta sell's a bushing but there again they use plastic as well. best bet is to get one made from bronze and it will never wear out.

To check the bushing reach up from under the car and move the steering shaft up and down side to side, it should be relatively tight with not much movement.

Brett

Jensen Healey
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Could be the steering rack.

sjensen24
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thanks for the input.  I will check for interference with the knuckles.  I have experienced that before I put in new engine mounts.  Also the bushing at the firewall.  Is there a way to evaluate the rack without taking it apart?

Jensen Healey
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I'm no expert on steering racks but with the car on stands, grab the tire at 3 and 9 and check for free play while watching the steering wheel. Hold the steering shaft just behind the rack and wiggle the road wheel. This should give you some idea about where the problem is.

I installed a zerk fitting in the plate opposite the steering shaft and, with the gaiters removed, pumped grease into the rack until it oozed out the ends. I know it's not the approved fluid but it works for me.

Kurt

sjensen24
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I occurred to me that I should check for free play in the front wheel bearings.  Any advice on how to assess how tight they should be what would be too tight?

Brett Gibson JH5 20497
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Their are probablby a ton of opinions on this subject but mine for what it's worth is, not to tight not to loose. That said I do tighten them up till I feel the interverance then back then off a smidgin so they feel somewhat free.

Thats about the best I can descibe it.

Brett 



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