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Steering has a little play in it !!


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ratrace2
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Nov 27, 2012, 7:13 PM

Post #1 of 13 (1708 views)
Steering has a little play in it !! Sign In

Hello all.

I have 1998 Chevy s-10 2wd automatic pickup.

Last week I replaced the "rag" joint with a Flaming River billet u-joint in the steering and I replaced the Idler arm with a new Raybestos (out with the autozone stuff) Professional Grade part (LOL).

Finally, I adjusted the mesh screw on top of the Gear box, about a half turn.

Also, I replaced inner/outer tie rods, idler arm, center link last year; ball joints are good, upper and lower.



OK, The steering was realy tight and then it loosened up a little bit. I'm trying to get the "little" bit of loose out of the steering.

Now the question: To buy or not to buy a new (reman) gear box.

Any ideas guys.


(This post was edited by ratrace2 on Nov 27, 2012, 7:19 PM)


Discretesignals
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Nov 27, 2012, 7:56 PM

Post #2 of 13 (1683 views)
Re: Steering has a little play in it !! Sign In

Where is the play at now?





Since we volunteer our time and knowledge, we ask for you to please follow up when a problem is resolved.


ratrace2
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Nov 27, 2012, 8:11 PM

Post #3 of 13 (1679 views)
Re: Steering has a little play in it !! Sign In

can't tell!!!

well, it's not in the steering linkage,it's all new.
The only thing that is left is the Gear box.


(This post was edited by ratrace2 on Nov 27, 2012, 8:13 PM)


Discretesignals
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Nov 27, 2012, 8:13 PM

Post #4 of 13 (1673 views)
Re: Steering has a little play in it !! Sign In

Hmmm. You can't tell where the play is by having someone move the wheel back and forth (engine off wheels on the ground) while you lay under the vehicle and watch for loose components?





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ratrace2
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Nov 27, 2012, 8:22 PM

Post #5 of 13 (1671 views)
Re: Steering has a little play in it !! Sign In

it's tough, to tell. The wheels turn with the wheel, stopped. Driving you can feel a little bit (1/4) of slack in the steering. Just enough to make it tough to steer at 90 Mph, ya know.



The question is: reman gear box: good/bad ???

I looked on rock auto and other places and they are all remanufactured.


Discretesignals
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Nov 27, 2012, 8:25 PM

Post #6 of 13 (1666 views)
Re: Steering has a little play in it !! Sign In

Our shop hasn't had any troubles with reman steering gears as of lately.





Since we volunteer our time and knowledge, we ask for you to please follow up when a problem is resolved.

(This post was edited by Discretesignals on Nov 27, 2012, 8:26 PM)


Hammer Time
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Nov 27, 2012, 8:29 PM

Post #7 of 13 (1660 views)
Re: Steering has a little play in it !! Sign In


Quote
Finally, I adjusted the mesh screw on top of the Gear box, about a half turn.


That is a big mistake. You cannot adjust a worn steering box. That adjustment is there for initial, factory setup only.

When a steering box wears, it only wear in one spot, the straight ahead position. If you tighten down on the gear, it will bind in all other positions and be dangerous to drive.

If it's worn, replace it.



~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

We offer help in answering questions, clarifying things or giving advice but we are not a substitute for an on-site inspection by a professional.



ratrace2
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Nov 27, 2012, 8:55 PM

Post #8 of 13 (1638 views)
Re: Steering has a little play in it !! Sign In

Yea, that's what I keep hearing, Thanks hammer.

I'll just get a "reman", I guess they workout the slack in the whole thing somehow. I was kinda wondering why no one was offering new gear boxes.

Thanks guys


Tom Greenleaf
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Nov 28, 2012, 2:11 AM

Post #9 of 13 (1612 views)
Re: Steering has a little play in it !! Sign In

Ditto - Don't mess with the gearbox. They are adjustable and if you need to, it is probably toast but you probably just made it toast yourself. Doesn't much matter now and note what HT said that they are set for straight ahead for zero lash. The design is to allow lash when turned to allow for the different arcs of wheel travel.

This was something you paid attention to mostly on vehicles without power steering and still needed to know just how to do it.

Probably too late but put the adjustment back to where it was if you indexed it with little chance of that fixing anything now. Look for a reman or good known used as IMO most can last near forever if not messed with or run low on fluid,

T


ratrace2
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Nov 28, 2012, 8:46 AM

Post #10 of 13 (1588 views)
Re: Steering has a little play in it !! Sign In

OK, well, got an education on this topic real quick.

Thanks all, new gear box in the works.

Just one question: If the gears are what wears out on the original units, then what is rebuilt when you get a remanufactured gear box. Do the rebuilders put in new gears, or just the bearings and seals???


Tom Greenleaf
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Nov 28, 2012, 9:13 AM

Post #11 of 13 (1583 views)
Re: Steering has a little play in it !! Sign In

I'm not going to search it all out but the box is mechanically a worm like gear with ball bearings following their path like a screw. The balls or passages can wear and make freeplay. In the maze of design is that it will increase the freeplay while turned off of dead ahead to accommodate the track of the wheels which can't just plain be in parallel.

More problems with power steering units include leaks or power assist issues not the "recirculating ball" part of the design. If that adjustment is made too tight you would notice zero freeplay but wheel would not return to center by itself at all or easily via just the caster effect of alignment of wheels.

Once too tight you are screwed if it isn't corrected instantly before any use by my own experience in adjusting many when non power steering was popular even in large vehicles. Those you did need to make sure there was oil in the boxes once in a blue moon, metals were not quite as strong and you could take up that lash. That was ages ago. Vehicles 1970s and newer using this "Saginaw Recirculating Ball" gear box to me have just plain stayed fine right up and over 1/4 million miles till vehicles croaked in general.

I really don't know what a reman one really include but my guess is cleaning out junk from being run low on PS fluid and a trashed PS pump with valves and seals. Not so sure you can re-machine the guts for the principle action if worn.

Next time if you think the gearbox has the play and not some other front end part just put the key to release steering and turn the wheel's bar going into it watching the Pitman arm and just feel how much it turns free - engine off. Many have a steering damper and use small u-joints too but rarely are the problems without some accident history or something not normal.

This gearbox is age old and still used. To reduce the freeplay feel and get more accurate steering a rack and pinion set up is the common choice,

T


Hammer Time
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Nov 28, 2012, 10:36 AM

Post #12 of 13 (1577 views)
Re: Steering has a little play in it !! Sign In

Yes, it wears a flat spot in the worm gear so i suspect they do replace the gears.



~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

We offer help in answering questions, clarifying things or giving advice but we are not a substitute for an on-site inspection by a professional.



ratrace2
User

Nov 28, 2012, 7:22 PM

Post #13 of 13 (1562 views)
Re: Steering has a little play in it !! Sign In

WOW, anyone want some toast????
I got bunches of it.

Thanks much all for the input and sharing the many years of knowledge and talent with me.

You guys are the best......wow.






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