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steering vibration - Printable Version

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steering vibration - naa10104 - 09-27-2019

Hello,

      Have posted about this in the past ... still chasing the Gremlin !  At app. 39-45 mph I have a noticeable left/right shake of the steering wheel.  Feels like it is in the front end to me. All the front end components were replaced as were all the shocks a few years ago.  Front end was aligned.  Vehicle tracks straight.  More recently I had the drive shaft balanced and replaced the Harmonic balancer.  Within the last few weeks I was told by not one but two mechanics after evaluation that I had a bad front right tire and wheel. (Magnum 500's).  Since the tires were 7 years old I decided to get a new set of Cooper Cobra Radial GT's.  I ordered a new Magnum 500 wheel from Jegs which was manufactured by Vintique. Took it to the tire shop to have it checked before tire was mounted.  The brand new wheel was bad, worse than the one I am replacing.  Sent it back and ordered a new wheel from Coker Tire.  Wheel manufactured by Specialized Wheels.  Coker Tire checked it before they shipped and it was fine.  My tire installer also checked it and agreed.  He mounted the new tire and balanced it with no issues.  The shake is still there. I have had an old school transmission shop check the drive line and they found no issues.  I also determined that my right rear brake drum was warped and not spinning smoothly, I have replaced that.  


       What am I missing ? Could it be an issue with wheel bearings, they seem fine, no noise ?  Can the steering box cause this kind of issue ?  My steering box is original and does leak a small amount of fluid.  Any advice would be appreciated.  Thanks


RE: steering vibration - Ed Raver - 09-27-2019

Wild guess but you might check the steering box mount bolts. I had this death wobble on a car in my teens and that was it.   Ed Raver


RE: steering vibration - Don C - 09-27-2019

You might try a different tire shop. I had a vibration problem and finally took mine to a different shop, problem solved. Either the shop I normally went to had a worn out machine, or it was out of calibration.


RE: steering vibration - naa10104 - 09-27-2019

(09-27-2019, 01:01 PM)Don C Wrote: You might try a different tire shop. I had a vibration problem and finally took mine to a different shop, problem solved. Either the shop I normally went to had a worn out machine, or it was out of calibration.
Both good suggestions, I think the tire balancing issue is good since I have been to two different shops. Any other suggestions would be appreciated.  THanks\
Steve


RE: steering vibration - Hemikiller - 09-27-2019

Jack the front end up and check the front end for looseness - upper and lower ball joints, tie rod ends, pitman and idler arm. Any of those being loose could cause your problem.

It's possible you still have a bad tire or rim. Have someone spin the tires one at at time. Watch the tire from the front for any bulges or signs of the tread wandering left<-> right. Watch it from the side to look for bulges and any obvious out of round conditions. Do the same thing with the rims. If you don't see anything, repeat the process for the rears, if those look okay, then I'd swap them front <-> rear and test drive.

In my experience - 99% of the time when you have a steering wheel moving, it's a bad tire with a shifted or broken belt.


RE: steering vibration - naa10104 - 09-27-2019

(09-27-2019, 02:20 PM)Hemikiller Wrote: Jack the front end up and check the front end for looseness - upper and lower ball joints, tie rod ends, pitman and idler arm. Any of those being loose could cause your problem.

It's possible you still have a bad tire or rim. Have someone spin the tires one at at time. Watch the tire from the front for any bulges or signs of the tread wandering left<-> right. Watch it from the side to look for bulges and any obvious out of round conditions. Do the same thing with the rims. If you don't see anything, repeat the process for the rears, if those look okay, then I'd swap them front <-> rear and test drive.

In my experience - 99% of the time when you have a steering wheel moving, it's a bad tire with a shifted or broken belt.
Tires are all brand new, replaced a bad rim and all have been balanced.  Front end is fine. I checked the 3 bolts that hold the steering box to the frame rail and they are tight.  Could there be a problem inside the steering box ?  Does this sound like an alignment problem ?  Thanks

steve


RE: steering vibration - Stanglover - 09-27-2019

Just my thought on it. If all else checks out front and back, then I would for sure look at the steering box. I take it is power? without re-reading, I'm not sure.
There could be a few things inside that I think might cause a problem. The sector shaft bearing shot, the sector shaft "teeth" are badly worn or the rack piston is badly worn. However I think you would more likely feel the car wandering around more than shaking side to side. If the PS box is original, good chance it needs a rebuild anyway, so might be a good time to look at that option. You can buy a quick ratio already to bolt on. Several rebuilders out there to chose from.
Geoff.


RE: steering vibration - naa10104 - 09-27-2019

(09-27-2019, 04:16 PM)Stanglover Wrote: Just my thought on it. If all else checks out front and back, then I would for sure look at the steering box. I take it is power? without re-reading, I'm not sure.
There could be a few things inside that I think might cause a problem. The sector shaft bearing shot, the sector shaft "teeth" are badly worn or the rack piston is badly worn. However I think you would more likely feel the car wandering around more than shaking side to side. If the PS box is original, good chance it needs a rebuild anyway, so might be a good time to look at that option. You can buy a quick ratio already to bolt on. Several rebuilders out there to chose from.
Geoff.
It is power and both the steering box and pump leak a little fluid.  They are original to the car.  Don't want to keep throwing more money at this problem, but probably couldn't hurt to rebuild/replace those two components.  Thanks
steve


RE: steering vibration - Stanglover - 09-27-2019

(09-27-2019, 04:21 PM)naa10104 Wrote:
(09-27-2019, 04:16 PM)Stanglover Wrote: Just my thought on it. If all else checks out front and back, then I would for sure look at the steering box. I take it is power? without re-reading, I'm not sure.
There could be a few things inside that I think might cause a problem. The sector shaft bearing shot, the sector shaft "teeth" are badly worn or the rack piston is badly worn. However I think you would more likely feel the car wandering around more than shaking side to side. If the PS box is original, good chance it needs a rebuild anyway, so might be a good time to look at that option. You can buy a quick ratio already to bolt on. Several rebuilders out there to chose from.
Geoff.
It is power and both the steering box and pump leak a little fluid.  They are original to the car.  Don't want to keep throwing more money at this problem, but probably couldn't hurt to rebuild/replace those two components.  Thanks
steve
 Good call. Your life might depend on it!


RE: steering vibration - Stanglover - 09-27-2019

You might want to check out Lares Corp at www.larescorp.com Go to catalog, power steering and manual steering gear, load your year and engine etc and look for remanufactured power steering box number 806. It does NOT give a ratio, so I guess it would be the stock 17.5:1. You may be able to send yours in for rebuild and return especially if it's a variable ratio SPA-T (on the tag), didn't look into that option. You would also need to buy a 201 rag joint coupler. Use one of those anyway even if you don't buy the box from them
There is also www.powersteering.com , www.steerandgear.com in Ohio to list a couple.
You could rebuild your own. However from my own experience, the main problem won't be buying a rebuild kit, Rock Auto, Edelmann 7858 comp. with bearings, but the lower end of the sector shaft will in all likelihood, be scored from years of dirt build up. There is no dirt seal as there is on the input shaft. The way to fix that is have a machine shop turn the damaged area and get it hard chromed and ground to size = expensive. I do know they can be bought already done, but no idea where. I redid my own as I am/was a machinist with a helpful ex-boss and a shop full of equipment.
My own 'story' started when I sent my V/R box to a nearby rebuilder who royally f'd it up and I decided I'd better figure it out for myself. That's how I know resurfaced sector shafts are available as he installed one and that's about the only thing he did right.
There are many video's on YouTube, but beware, lots are from people who really don't know too much. None the less, there is useful info to be gleaned from them.
To get rid of play on the steering wheel, do NOT just tighten the adjuster screw on the box cover. Some adjustment is in order, but only about 1/4 to 1/2 turn clockwise. Much more than that and you could ditch the car. The way is to replace the 22 or 24 balls in the ball screw is with a larger size ball. Ford list 5 or 6 sets, but you'll not find any these days. They are measured to 5 decimals. There have been post on this subject if you care to search.
Sounds a bit daunting I know, so probably best to buy outright. If you go that route, look for a quick ratio conversion like 12.7:1.
Geoff.