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Guest wunntenn

Wandering steering - any advice?

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Guest wunntenn

Two months ago I'd a new chassis put on, new track rod ends, bushes, A-frame balljoint, shocks, springs etc etc so its all pretty much A1 condition. Steering was excellent out of the garage and for the next 6 weeks, but gradually the steering has begun to wander. I've not been offroad yet so have not bashed into anything that would cause this. It's quite noticeable and left to its own devices with me holding the wheel in a straight ahead position I can cross the white line or be in the verge in less than 60m. It can be a bit disconcerting in traffic!

Now I'm pretty competent with a spanner and can do most of the work myself but have little experience with steering components. Before I go back to the garage that did the work ( a couple of hundred miles round trip = expensive for fuel) I'd rather try to rectify it myself as I assume it cant be a major problem, and may just be the various new bits all settling in and requiring a fettle. Tyre pressures are ok and nothing obvious seems loose on a cursory inspection of the steering gubbins.

Any suggestions where to start?

1989 110 2.5TD (19j) with a 200tdi transplant so steering bits are all 2.5TD

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I had similar...

Assuming all your bushes are ok, try tightening the steering UJ's inside the engine bay... A small amount of movement there can cause the drifitng you describe. (If they are tight, make sure they aren't worn.)

Also worth making sure the rear axle bushes and control arm bushes aren't moving at all.

Neil

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check all the fixings, some may hve settled & slackend off slightly.

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Guest wunntenn

Thanks Ralph and Neil, checked the major bits on radius arms, control arms etc and all seems ok. The steering uj at top seems slightly worn, but not excessively so, however when holding and turning the steering shaft connecting the uj's there is a lot of rotational movement - almost an inch of rotation, and the steering wheel moves when doing this (obviously) but the wheels dont (engine off). That degree of movement when under way would apporiximate the amount of correction I'm needing to do. Would I be right to expect there to be very little or no movement in the steering shaft?

Its an odd sensation - hitting a repair line in the road causes the van to follow it, or a strong gust of wind will set me off sideways, feels almost like its hinged in the middle (classic A frame balljoint thing, but its just been renewed).

Could there be something thats worn in the steering box that would allow this degree of movement? It's odd that it happened in such a relatively short time frame - it was ok to start with after the renovation work and within two months and 500 miles its wandering.

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are the steering uj pinch bolts intact & tight ?

check the pre-loading on the front swivels

there should be a large nut on top of the steering box with a allen key [hex hole] in the centre of the nut, you can slacken the nut slightly & slightly tighten the allen bolt then hold ing it still retighten the large nut, hopefully that should take out most of the movement, but don't overdo the adjustement.

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welcome to the fine art of driving a series land rover!!

Most likely the bolts are loose along the steering column shaft or the linkage from the box is loose. I've had this in the bushes before and a quick tighening of the bolts sorted it out.

You should be able to turn the steering wheel, but you'll feel resistance instead of free play.

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Sounds the same as mine. I'd checked all the steering componants and decided it was the steering box. Had it checked at my local land rover friendly garage and they adjusted the box. It improved for about 8 months then started to get worse again. Had it rechecked and was told there was no more adjustment left in the box... New box going on order tommorow....

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