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Forum Index > Discussion > Steering play

Mark P 8 months ago
ActivityRank: 0
My steering has a dead spot in it. What I’m trying to describe is I have to move the steering wheel about 2 inches before it starts changing the direction of my 66 CDV. Now that I’ve completed the installation of air bags it’s time to get an alignment, so I’m thinking it’s probrably a good idea to get the steering play sorted before completeing the alignment. That being said I’m seeking feedback on what to replace in order to eliminate or possibly reduce this sloppy steering. 
Steering gear first? Tie rod bushings? Both?

Night Flight 8 months ago
ActivityRank: 0
As a starting point, check the test for steering wheel play at the beginning of Section 5 on Page 9-6 of the Shop Manual.  I have About 2" of play off center when static but it is not very noticeable when driving.  Pitman arm or thrust bearing adjustment seem to need attention.
Mark P 8 months ago
ActivityRank: 0
Thanks for your feedback. I was reading that section and it refers to a “Spring tension scale” who the heck has one of those? Not me, do I really need one to fix the problem? It goes on to say “Adjust pre load by tightening adjuster plug.....” does the steering gear need to be removed to adjust? The only reference to adjusting I find in the shop Manuel is fig. 9-36 with  it out of the car.  

Thanks again!

clsalamo 8 months ago
ActivityRank: 0
Mark,
You should check out ALL the steering components first to verify where the play is.  Drag link, tye rod ends, pit,an arm, idler arm, etc.  Check these out first for physical looseness before you start anything on the steering box.
Greg Surfas
Night Flight 8 months ago
ActivityRank: 0
As the manual states, this is a quick check of the steering box.  Not of the rest of the steering components.  Agree that all components need to be checked.

This section also states that the there are potential on-car adjustments in lieu of box removal.
rajeevx7 8 months ago
ActivityRank: 0
You would need to jack up both lower control arms to unwieght the lower ball joints to do a full inspection. I wouldn't  assume it's the box without getting some eyeballs on it.

If you want to save money, take the car to a "free alignment" check and ask them what needs to be fixed.
Or, pay $10 for a front end inspection at a Firestone and a master tech will tell you what needs to be done first. 

Once you see what and how to check the parts it's a lifelong skill that you can apply to all your vehicles:-)
Mark P 8 months ago
ActivityRank: 0
That’s what I was thinking since it needs an alignment anyways. I did replace the lower ball joints when I did the air ride.  

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