: Need steering rack R&R help!



kevm14
08-14-11, 01:06 PM
Yesterday I did my CS mounts and new starter. Today I am attempting to replace the rack (on center play). The manual (PDFs) say it basically comes out the left side of the car. But it almost seems like I need to jack up the engine because one of the fittings on the rack hits the oil pan. Has anyone replaced their own rack? How did you do it? Maybe I am missing something.

CadzillaTN
08-14-11, 01:26 PM
No idea but good luck... Hope it fixes your problem.

Since you are replacing, any chance you can take a stab at tightening the old one before you remove it?

kevm14
08-14-11, 02:06 PM
Damn power steering lines won't come out of the rack. Flare nuts just won't budge. This blows....still trying. All this, up on a lift, even.

kevm14
08-14-11, 02:37 PM
Got what looks like the low pressure side off. Had to lift the engine a bit to pull the rack out far enough. Then had to cut off the clamp and put a box end on it to loosen. Fighting with the other one now...

kevm14
08-14-11, 03:21 PM
The other one came off after removing the variable assist solenoid, then heating up the rack by the fitting, then using an f-ing pipe wrench on the fitting. Rack should come out now...

kevm14
08-14-11, 04:00 PM
Rack is out. New one going in...fun job.

CadzillaTN
08-14-11, 06:22 PM
I'll take that as a no.

kevm14
08-15-11, 06:54 AM
Old rack is sitting on the garage floor...who knew mounts, starter and rack was a 3 day job, on a lift.

kevm14
08-16-11, 09:56 PM
Not up to a big long post at the moment, so in short:
The new rack is, uncannily, exactly as sloppy as the 106k mile rack I pulled out. And it IS the rack, as I could move the steering shaft itself before the tie-rods moved. Thanks GM, for nothing. There goes $433 I didn't need to spend. Bought from Luke @ Lindsay...

I should have known GM was incapable of making a car with no on-center slop, outside of a Corvette.

Houdini
08-17-11, 07:59 AM
I have no on-center slop. Can't believe you got another bad rack.

CadzillaTN
08-17-11, 08:22 PM
I can. These racks are sub-par right out of the box, just like the diffs. I always thought the center slop was due to the ratio or the wheel size- no, it's the wussy rack GM put in this car.. It really is laughable. Maybe the original part was better, who knows.


Hate to see this for you Kev. After getting my own new rack recently I can say there was really no difference in the vague area at top center. It did get more 'accurate' and transmit a somewhat linear position, but it didn't really get "tighter". I think the biggest difference for me was the new shafts.

The only thing I think you have left to try is the shaft piece(s) north of the lower intermediate, especially the column shaft right?..i think theres a plastic connector piece that can shear and cause play.

Are you considering returning it?

Do you have new shocks? I have to think that a new set would help make things crisper, maybe some with adjustability..

All that said, I believe the V's true purpose is carving corners, where this problem quickly goes away.

kevm14
08-18-11, 06:25 AM
Cad,

I did notice what feels like more positive action just off center. But I wasn't really looking to improve that. There is roughly 1 inch of free play at dead center, same as before. I can put my hand on the steering shaft (at the bottom, near the rack) and move it a bit. So even if the upper steering shaft DOES have a problem, the rack still has play.

It does seem like the original part was probably one of the decent ones, if it lasted 106k. I'm a little afraid that perhaps I was right about the new batch of racks after a period of backorder.

If I could snap my fingers and return it, and put the old rack in, I would. But it was such a nuisance. It WOULD be easier now but I don't think my father-in-law is up to it again, so soon.

I have what seem to be healthy FG2s.

And I agree on your last point. I almost lived with the old rack knowing how great things feel once I start to turn the car. Also, my alignment explains why my car feels surprisingly neutral. Decent amount of front negative camber (over stock specs), and the rear is around stock.

GDPossehl
08-18-11, 04:16 PM
Perhaps the rack was designed to have some slop when centered?
Think about when you're cruising on the hwy in a straight line and accidentally bump the wheel. Do you want it to be that tight and responsive then?
I came to the V from a 180k 99 blazer... needless to say the 3" of slop that thing had makes the V seem brand new.

garrettg
02-01-12, 10:27 AM
If you tighten the intermediate shaft lower(est) pinch bolt further it may remove some of the slop you are referring to. This can be accessed by removing the splash guard and getting a 3/8 ratchet with small ext and 15mm socket in there.

CadzillaTN
02-01-12, 10:47 AM
Whoooaaaa Nellie.

Have you done this?

I'm not sure what you're referring to is the key, or maybe I it is but there's the spot on the bottom of the rack, and there's also a bolt on top of the rack that, to me, looks much more like the traditional tightening mechanism for racks, ie, loosen the outer nut, tighten inner nut, tighten outer nut.

I have read extensively on the principle, and usually it's referring to older model car racks.. Regardless, it's only a turn of degrees, very minimal. Some sources also say tighten until seated, then back off 1/4 turn, then retighten outer nut...

Who knows, but I've trashed enough of my parts tinkering around, I need someone else to wreck this one.

garrettg
02-01-12, 11:20 AM
Yes there can be false stops when threading the pinch bolt, over tightening then backing off is probably a good way to ensure you are through all the false stops and have it completely secured. If you have slop at center its worth a look.

http://www.cadillacforums.com/forums/2004-2007-cadillac-cts-v-performance/251009-headers-installed-steering-right-has-slight.html

CadzillaTN
02-01-12, 12:49 PM
So , to get this straight, you tightened the spot when looking up at the rack from the ground, that has a black center? Or the one on top...?


Also, how much play was removed? Is it much tighter now?...

I think I'm going to pee my pants now.

CadzillaTN
02-01-12, 12:53 PM
Perhaps the rack was designed to have some slop when centered?
Think about when you're cruising on the hwy in a straight line and accidentally bump the wheel. Do you want it to be that tight and responsive then?
I came to the V from a 180k 99 blazer... needless to say the 3" of slop that thing had makes the V seem brand new.

This is one if magnasteer's perceived benefits, making the wheel harder to turn at higher speeds (doesn't really firm steering, just adds resistance to the wheel)

I got after my car with a tech 2 a couple weeks ago, and there are no adjustments available in the menu for steering effort. Boo.

CadzillaTN
02-01-12, 03:45 PM
Yes there can be false stops when threading the pinch bolt, over tightening then backing off is probably a good way to ensure you are through all the false stops and have it completely secured. If you have slop at center its worth a look.

http://www.cadillacforums.com/forums/2004-2007-cadillac-cts-v-performance/251009-headers-installed-steering-right-has-slight.html

Wait, nevermind. We're taking about 2 (or 3, rather) different things. I see what you mean now. You're referring to a bolt actually on the intermediate shaft connection. I can see that being loose and causing play, not to mention being dangerous as hell.

I'm referring to what is traditionally a steering rack preload adjustment nut, which on our racks looks to be on top just to the left of where the shaft enters the rack if looking straight down at it from the top. The outer ring nut is loosened, then the inner bolt is tightened, then outer ring retightened...see below

http://i1027.photobucket.com/albums/y332/memphisctsv/nut.jpg

There's also some mysterious deal on the bottom of the rack but I'm not sure what it's for..

garrettg
02-01-12, 04:59 PM
Wait, nevermind. We're taking about 2 (or 3, rather) different things. I see what you mean now. You're referring to a bolt actually on the intermediate shaft connection. I can see that being loose and causing play, not to mention being dangerous as hell.

I'm referring to what is traditionally a steering rack preload adjustment nut, which on our racks looks to be on top just to the left of where the shaft enters the rack if looking straight down at it from the top. The outer ring nut is loosened, then the inner bolt is tightened, then outer ring retightened...see below

http://i1027.photobucket.com/albums/y332/memphisctsv/nut.jpg

There's also some mysterious deal on the bottom of the rack but I'm not sure what it's for..

Yes we are on same page its the bolt that actually holds the shaft to the rack; its a quick thing to check.