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Need Help For Bad Handling...

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Well,it was time for me to experience some issues it seems...

Some of you may remember I fitted my RR HD (red/white) springs

a while ago,as DD did before me (I have yet to get longer dampers to match but...).

These gave my 90 a nice lift,even with my winch & bumper fitted.

I first had some bad annoying vibes until last Saturday when I finally fitted

Land Rover spring silencer plates (from Discovery # ANR 2938,I have the label somewhere)to the front.

The bad vibes are now gone (this is probably the cheapest alternative route instead of a DC shaft).

These isolators add barely 1 cm more of lift (uh-oh)...

The Cube is quiet as before,but!

I found myself scared to death while on tarmac,

as sometimes (I think when the pavement has some irregularities,corrugations,cracks,whatever)

the steering starts shaking as mad!

I mean it shakes so hard it you can literally feel the whole truck shaking!

I thought I was about to loose another wheel (some may remember) and stopped one side,

but wheeels are ok as the steering etc.

Now what?

I know with a lift the front roll center is raised because

and more "darting" about on the road in response to road irregularities...but this is too much!

Cranked radius arms jump into mind,but I can't afford now.

I have a couple of o.e. arms from a 1986 90 Diesel Turbo laying in the box I could sacrifice

and try to bend in a workshop...just need a precision press and someone who knows what to do...but...

...I don't really know...


The Cube handles fine and go straight if I leave the wheel,is quiet as before.

It's just this horrible shaking which worries me.



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First check the swivel hub preload. If it's not right it will cause steering vibration every time you hit a pothole or corrugation. Don't forget to check it with the Swivel hub seal off. You don't have to remove the seal completly just unbolt it.


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Ouch...I took a CV joint off last winter and it was not a 5 mins job...

Do you mean the torque setting or those thin spacers under the bolts?

Note:front axles had ARB locker fitted some weeks ago,they had to take shafts out

before the diff...does it make any hint?


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Yes it does,

On a Land rover the first place to check for this problem is the preload as mentioned above. It's quite possible that things were not replaced quite as needed when the ARB was installed.

To check the preload you need only remove the wheels and disconnect the trackrod. To reset with the most accuracy pop off the seal.


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Sounds easier now...

Would you explain me what to do?

I'm sure someone already did it in the past but I can't remember!



Uhm...although the 90 never did that before the spacer was fitted...


...too much of a lift?



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Check also for

1. Play in weheel bearing (lift up 90 so tyre off road - grab wheel at quarter to 3 and then six a clock (positions not the actual time you understand :lol: ) then try to "Twist" the wheel off the 90, ie pull one side and push the other then other way around, if there is slack or you hear a click wheel bearing are loose.

2. Steering stabilizer ?....can do this

3. Check wheel rim hasn't had a big smack on something

4. Check Propshaft isn't part seized on a U/J or slpine worn out

5..........as others have said swivels !


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Did anybody mention tracking?.... :huh:

If you've bent the track rod or even given it a good clout, you may have knocked it out. Thinking aloud, they would have had to remove it to take the hubs apart so possibly found a worn out end and replaced it without checking the tracking after? :unsure:

Its the easiest to check as you don't need to start hauling lumps off.

... and if it ain't that, I'd go for the swivel preload as everyone else suggests then the damper. ;)

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Thanks all.

Re Nige:

1)ok,will do,easy.

2)you mean steering damper?It's almost as new,OME...

3)rims,ok,will check them out,better to clean the mud off before :)

4)Propshafts are both new but I had to grease them... :huh:

Re Fatboy:I'm almost sure the trackrod is straight,alignment I'll have it checked out asap.

Yup they did remove it but I was glad to find out they fitted new pins after


What to do to check preload instead???


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Sounds like bushes to me - hope so, Michele, as relatively cheap fix. Surely you'd feel any major tracking error on all surfaces.......there'd be tugging one way or t'other.

Can recommend fitment of the Disco silencer plates for all Defenders - made out of a dense polyurethane - very cheap from LR dealer and remove significant amounts of NVH [why put up with it]. Transformed the on-road ride for my truck.

Also give a useful 1/2" lift.


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Some literature...

from the P44 BB

and more

As soon as back home I'll try to swap front/rear tires and test drive on the nasty spots.

Just for a quick job.

For those about the swivel preload,how does it relate with the shims?

Edited by Michele
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Some literature...

from the P44 BB

and more

For those about the swivel preload,how does it relate with the shims?

To increase the preload shims need to be removed. There are several different thicknesses so they can be shuffled to produce the correct preload.

Once the initial inertia has been overcome the resistance to turning should be 3.6 to 4.5 kg (8 to 10 pounds) measured at the trackrod end eye.


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Greased the U-joints,aired up tires which were probably a tad down,mud off,

moved front>rear and vice-versa,leads in place,steering linkages ok,wheel bearings play = 0.

Out for a test drive,the shakes went back and seemed worse than ever,I tried to fight the steering wheel but

I had to stop aside and gave another look under as I feared I was about to loose the axle.

The oncoming weekend I had planned to get back to the countryside (250Kms)

and I cannot trust my Rover!!!!


I don't know where to bang my head and can't think of anything but to remove the springs

and get back to the original setup (which drives me crazy),money apart.

Some buys ridiculous tall lifts and nothing happens,

me I'm the only idiot not able to keep 4 bloody Rover springs without risk of mass murdering!!!


There's a sticker o'mine on the Landy which says

"Patience My Ass,I'm Going To Kill Someone"

I think it explains well now...


1 MILLION TIMES F**K!!!!!!!!!!!


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if it helps I finally got the rear ARB fitted along with Co2 and a nice pair of strengthened shafts, not the cheapest upgrade I've done on the 90 and the very first event (Slindon) I pop the diff on the second punch of the morning. Didn't get angry but was pretty seriously pi55ed 0ff:( All that money and I'd have done better with an open diff :angry:

Now got to refit a series diff (thanks ltwt1981) and start saving for some strengthed gears.

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Hello Trev,thanks for the moral support...

I was...am...boh...about to follow you the same way;HD axles from the US (and I'm trying to become dealer for the main Europe,oi,group buy for some discount maybe) and a CO2 tank in the next future...air leak fixed around Sept. the 3rd.

It's just this bloody handling I can't stand,time,money (I even changed the propshafts,may God curse me!)

and I really liked the height/softness of the springs.

I think of getting rid of the isolators only but the bad vibes would soon come back.

It seems I'm screwe*.


I'm getting more depressed than usual,I'd love to catch a plane and come over for a forum winch challenge

and see you guys again.

And to drink to oblivion.

Edited by Michele
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Sorry to hear you're having problems again Michele :o

I haven't got round to putting those isolators on yet, although I was only planning to put them on the back to level it out a bit. Can't say I've noticed any problems like yours on mine. The steering is lighter now, but with no PAS (yet!) that's an improvement and it still self centers okay except for occasionally when hurtling around roundabouts when it's a little more reluctant to go back to straight ahead :blink: My steering box is pretty tired and has a huge amount of play and a little vibration is noticable through it occasionally, but that was there before the lift and is probably just a tyre being slightly out of balance or something. It's not a huge problem, just an annoyance sometimes.

Only thing I have noticed recently is a vibration (I think through the front prop) when you come off the throttle at 50 - 60mph. I only really drive it on country roads and rarely get above 50 so hadn't noticed it before, just noticed it on the way to work a few weeks ago. Probably needs a DC front shaft to cure it I guess, but it isn't a huge vibration and it can be cured just by touching the throttle to load it up again, so it can stay as it is! :D

From your first description it sounds like the 'death wobble' some people get when the panhard rod bushes are knackered. I'd check those and then have a play with swivel preloads and so on....

Good luck!


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Michele, everyone here has pretty much covered it with the swivel pre-load, panhard rod bushes, steering damper, etc.

The panhard rod bushes tend to give a lot of people this problem.

I think it really comes down to a dynamic balance issue with your tyres. I've had a similar occurrence with a Ford F100 under braking. It took the tyre blokes about four goes at getting the 604V Desert Duellers balanced properly, then never had the problem again.

Another thing that exacerbates the shimmy is the stock track rod. As it is as thin as a piece of spaghetti, once a wheel starts to shimmy, the thin tie rod flex's and allows both wheels to dance.

Maxi Drive, or equivalent steering arms will help. (but it isn't the cure, more a band aid)

Dad had this happen when I was a kid in a full size Jeep. He ended up driving down a road with me standing on the edge as observer to watch what happened when it hit a large bump in the road at 60km/h. IIRC, we had 11.5" tyres on that thing, and always had a problem with balance.

The flex in the front mounted tie rod had to be seen to be believed ! It appeared to bending up and down a good 50-60mm either side of centre, with both front wheels flicking side to side. !

Some 1.25" x 1.25 " x 3/16" angle iron welded to the tie rod fixed it, as did sticking some caster wedges under the spring pads (leaf springs) to give it some more caster. ;)

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G'day Rick


happy to "see" you around.

This evening I'll give the Pan rod a proper look.

I decided,anyway,to remove the isolators as first step,as troubles rose as soon as I fitted them.

If the wobble will disappear,well,I'll live with the vibes from the springs for a bit more.

If not,I'll re-fit the original springs and eventually find a part-time job as killer for hire

to pay for OME or what.


Assuming I can reach home this weekend without killing myself or others,that's it...


Oi Richard,same experience...

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Michele, do you think you could humour me and measure the clearance between the bumpstops (I'm assuming they're stock ?) and the pads on top of the axle housing with the beast sitting on a (relatively) flat bit of concrete ?


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Yup,I can do that.

the bumpstops (I'm assuming they're stock ?)

Erm,Disco bumpstops.

Ask Nige!


I'll be back in 5 mins with some datas I was comparing yesterday...


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I was mumbling...

I switched from this

NRC9447 D90 Front passenger side i.e. 14.80"

to this

NRC4304 RR HD Rear 17.71" red/white





Almost a 3" lift instead of 2"!

I fear I went past the safety point???


I just noticed,I always thought they were barely +2",

nothing close to 3"!


OME 764 here cost 80Euros each one!!!

NRC9448 D90 Rear 15.31"






Now add isolators...!



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check your panhard rod bushes first..

I ahd similar issues of the whole car shock beyond belief when I ventured over 30 MPh - any bump will send it wobbling as well.

Pandhard bushes first. it just stops the axle from moving side ways to much. If they need replacing use the geniun ones because the others just don't last long at all.

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