free hit
counters
sj steering rack problem. (esprit s3 na) - Suspension/Brakes/Wheels/Hubs/Steering/Geo - The Lotus Forums Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
lotus-62

sj steering rack problem. (esprit s3 na)

Recommended Posts

Hi, just got a new replacement rack from sj, I have a problem, the inner ball joints seem to be 10mm closer to each other than on the original rack, will this create bumpsteer problems?

 

and second, I can not align the lower u-joint with the upper u-joint the proper way, it looks like the pinion is 30 degrees out in the wrong direction (according to the lotus service notes) question is will I notice this on the road?  

 

thanks, rick

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Upgrade today to remove Google ads and support TLF.

I'd phone Steve at S&J and see what he says....or email them. I have a new rack from them waiting in the queue to go on my S3 turbo, so very interested in the result!!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I did send Steve an email about the u-joints, he does not know, he forwarded my email to his supplier and he told me that they
do not even have instruction how to build them. Also Steve told me nobody had asked him about this and I must be one of the few that knows about mis-alignment (like his customers do not know what they are doing?) I do know why his English customers have no problems because the rack is built for RHD,and just copied for LHD
it looks like his supplier does not know what they are doing and Steve has no clue ether. So I am looking for some other input. The rack looks like it is an early Capri rack, just the pinion shaft is way longer on the capri, (and the price is way lower), pitty I can’t remake the shaft, (and the escort mk1-mk2 shaft is too short!) the rack looks like it can’t be taken apart so I am looking to
rebuild my old rack as I do not know if the new rack will change the bump steer too much.( after all it's a lotus so shit happens, building is half the fun isn't it?)



 

Edited by lotus-62

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You could try and ask Mike at Lotusbits. Ring, don't email.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you are going to keep the new rack, you might as well fit the thing and see if you get any adverse results...my gut feeling is that it isn't going to make a discernible difference.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

When I ordered my rack from Lotus bits Andy Clements told me of some one who had size problems with a new rack they had got. I thought great and when I assembled it all up mine was way to long. Only thing I could think was to lop 20mm off each end. Then looking closer at what I had and the parts list I saw I had got the castings that hold the track rod ends onto the hubs the wrong way round! They look like they should be angled in towards the car but actually should be pointing outwards. 

 

To be honest I dont know if that makes any sense as its late friday night and I have been drinking Stella and red wine! Worth just checking cause you may have the same stupid issue I had! lol

 

Good luck

 

Buddsy



Item 2 is the part I put on wrong, could that be on wrong?

 

CCF11062012_00000-1.jpg

 

CCF11062012_00000.jpg

 

Buddsy

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

stella? why don't you drink Bud Buddsy? LOL

 

I see your point but Nr2 in in the correct way, it's the rack itself, the inner ball joints are 10mm closer and the steel outer tube is 15mm shorter, funny thing is the alu casting for the bearings and the pinion is spot on if measured to the mounting brackets. the tube being 15mm shorter is not a problem and can be solved if i want it is just those ball joints can not be adjusted. (i compared it to my old steering rack that came of the car)

 

rhanks, rick

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Rick,

I had a look on my rack and it seems the inner ball joints are adjustable. They are screwed on to the end of the rack with a lock nut to hold the position. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ok Rick. Seems they are not adjustable. Which means the rack is either totally wrong or it is set to a position that suits a different model.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't quite get what you are saying. But I have a stupid question I was going to ask Andy Clements which is can the length i.e. toe in/out be adjusted on the rack? I have been doing my adjustment by winding the track rod end in or out. Only trouble is they are a tapered fit and once put in are a pain to get out.. My method means I have to take them out of their tapered hole to wind them in a bit further or out a bit further. Also that means the smallest amount of adjustment is 1 full thread. I mentioned this to a Elan +2 owner and he said he thought I should be able to crack the lock nut and wind the steering arm but I don't remember seeing a spanner flat on it?

 

I think its time to brave the cold and get some pictures so we can see what we each have?

 

Buddsy

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

When I took my rack out to clean up, there were flats on the track rod for this. When I repainted them, I went over the flats and obliterated them. ie they are not very flat!

So, now, I hold the rod with adjustable grips and unlock the locknut. That enables an infinitely adjustable toe in/out. One turn is far to coarse. When its done, I smear the (now) bare metal with grease.

Its worth taking it all down and cleaning out the track rod threads with a die to make all this much easier.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Cheers Simon for me its been a while since I really had a good look at mine so will try to get out tonight to see what I have.

 

Buddsy

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You can turn the arm so they are infinitely adjustable. Make sure that you undo the small end of the gaiter (don't twist it up and rip it).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Andy so under the small end of the gaitor is a lock nut?

 

Buddsy

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi.

 

No, the arm should be free to rotate as it is but you'd just need to loosen off the gaiter to not damage that. The arm may be quite stiff as it will be rotating in a ball and cup arrangement. You can use Mole/ Vice grips etc or if that's not working for you I have a chain wrench and pipe vice, either of which should do the job.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Andy you thug! lol  :harhar:

 

Im sure I will get it to move though. 

 

Cheers

 

Buddsy

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Buddsy I have attached a diagram for clarification of what Rick and I are talking about and for your rack adjustment.

 

Firstly the issue that Rick and I are experiencing.

"Distance A" in the diagram is the distance between the ball ends of the track rods (yellow). This distance is different in our new racks compared to the ones we removed from our cars. 830mm vs 820mm. This distance change will change the way the rack behaves during the suspension travel and change the bump steer for better or worse. I suspect worse but we are hoping it is an updated spec originally done by Lotus and hoping a fellow Forum member might know. Anyone?

 

For your adjustment

The Track rod (yellow) will rotate freely on the ball end (pink) via the grip area (marked) which is probably worn away by years of untrained Kwik Fit fitters bodging the job - hence the requirement of vice/mole grips. The Steering rack boot covers the track rod inner ball (not shown) so that will have to be loosened by way of removing the tie wrap that is securing it. Often they spin freely anyway but make sure it doesn't get twisted up.

When you adjust the tracking, make sure you measure the distance from the ball joint ends to a symmetrical part of the rack first and set them so that they are the same on both sides. That way the rack and steering wheel will be centred. If the steering wheel is off centre because that untrained Kwik fit fitter has rotated the wheel because he only adjusted one track rod end (lazy so and so) then remove it and centre it. Now adjust the tracking by the same increments on both side. When complete, make yourself a well earned cup of tea or crack a can of Bud. 

Have fun :-)

 

PS, please excuse the diagram. I knocked up the rack in CAD in 10 minutes- Except the main body of the thing. I had that already ;-)

post-12761-0-29121300-1363103974.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ok now I understand what you are talking about! Pic looks very good nice and clear by the way.

 

10mm difference though doesnt seem a lot out to me. Could be within tolerance?

 

Buddsy

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

BTW Buddsy. If you want to borrow the kit you are more than welcome: Turning plates, Optical gauges and level type camber/caster gauges.

 

I'd offer to do it but I'm currently out of action with 'flu.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Id gladly borrow when ever possible. Im gonna try to get those disk machined soon.

 

No hurry for me by the way its been too cold to even get out there!! lol

 

Buddsy

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

buddsy, 10 mm to short will increases toe-out on bump, I don't like toe-out on bump, makes the front go all over the place, 10 mm too long will give more toe-in still not good but better and I don't worry for drop as there will be less load on the tyre

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  


×