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Loose streering
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IanClements
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1988 Toyota MR2 Mk1b

PostPosted: Sun Apr 16, 2017 3:45 pm    Post subject: Loose streering Reply with quote Reply with quote including images

Haven't been on the forums in a while so hello again to those that remember me.

I'm having a problem with loose steering at the moment that's got me baffled, basically at motorway speeds I can feel the car constantly pulling to one side then the other as if there's play in something; it's quite scary if I really boot it and it's difficult to stay in lane because I feel like I'm fighting with the steering wheel at times.

So far this weekend I've changed the following on the front end:-

Lower ball joints
Track rod ends
Control arm bushes
Strut rod bushes (slight play in the old ones these but made no difference)

It passed an MOT on Thursday after I asked them to try hard to find something wrong and it's had eight wheel alignments in four different garages in the past month although some of those were crap (long story).

I've also checked the steering rack for the tie rods unscrewing themselves (happened once before) and the wheels themselves don't seem to have any play in them so I'm not doubting the wheel bearings or the steering rack itself.

I've run out of ideas now so if anyone can suggest anything else to try I'm all ears.

Sorry if you see this thread on other forums but I'm supposed to driving to Scotland on Wednesday so I'm really desperate now.
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SuperRedMR2




Joined: 16 May 2005
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1990 Toyota MR2 Mk1b

PostPosted: Sun Apr 16, 2017 5:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Reply with quote including images

How are the front shocks?
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IanClements
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1988 Toyota MR2 Mk1b

PostPosted: Sun Apr 16, 2017 5:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Reply with quote including images

I did think about those but they're BC coilovers and I only put them in a year ago. I guess I could lift the gaitors and check for oil on the shaft maybe?
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IanClements
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1988 Toyota MR2 Mk1b

PostPosted: Sun Apr 16, 2017 7:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Reply with quote including images

I just checked them and they're dry as a bone. It seems to corner and brake OK so I wouldn't have thought it was the shocks.
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jon_st205




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PostPosted: Sun Apr 16, 2017 8:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Reply with quote including images

Had a look at the UJ at the bottom of the column to rack?
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IanClements
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1988 Toyota MR2 Mk1b

PostPosted: Sun Apr 16, 2017 8:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Reply with quote including images

I hadn't thought of that no, I'll take a look tomorrow. What's the best way to test it?

I know there's a bush in the steering column that can wear away too so I could take a look at that.
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jon_st205




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PostPosted: Mon Apr 17, 2017 3:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Reply with quote including images

IanClements wrote:
I hadn't thought of that no, I'll take a look tomorrow. What's the best way to test it?

I know there's a bush in the steering column that can wear away too so I could take a look at that.


I think that may be the same thing? As for testing, I think a two-man job, one to turn the wheel, and the other to offer some resistance underneath, and see if there is any slop. I have seen these worn and giving vague steering on other Toyota's though, to be fair, most often with power steering.

Best of luck in any case, not easy with an impending road trip.
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IanClements
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1988 Toyota MR2 Mk1b

PostPosted: Mon Apr 17, 2017 3:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Reply with quote including images

I've taken the steering column out and generally it seems fine as does the UJ but there's a slight amount of play at the bottom of the shaft where the spline goes into the column, there seems to be a join of sorts and I can wiggle the spline left and right a small amount.

Not sure if this could be the problem and not sure I can do much about it.

I've had to cancel my trip now, whatever it is it's not going to get fixed in the next 24 hours.

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Lauren
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 17, 2017 9:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Reply with quote including images

I know it's a stupid question, but how is the alignment?

If you don't have enough toe in at the rear or toe out at the front it will feel lively. I remember running mine with parallel toe at the front and not much in the way of toe in at the rear and the car felt like it wanted to swap ends in a straight line.

I got used to it and liked it like that, but it was only after driving an MX5 at the time how pointy it was when I got back in it. Others who drove it called it a 'pointy oversteery monster'.

Might be worth considering as these cars always feel a bit loose at higher speeds. I think the lack of weight over the front doesn't help.
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IanClements
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1988 Toyota MR2 Mk1b

PostPosted: Mon Apr 17, 2017 9:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Reply with quote including images

Currently, the alignment is all over the place because I've taken everything apart over the last few days. Before that it's had eight alignments in the last month although some of those were by guys who don't have a clue how to track a MK1. Can't say I'm doing any better myself, lol.

I know my car Lauren and there's definitely something wrong, I just haven't found it yet. I'm gonna get some new control arm bolts and maybe strut rod collars tomorrow if Mr T isn't silly money.
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kaiowas




Joined: 07 Jun 2005
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Location: Norfolk
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1985 Toyota MR2 Mk1a

PostPosted: Tue Apr 18, 2017 8:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Reply with quote including images

Where the top of the splined part is inside the rest of the column is the rubber bush that's known to wear out and cause sloppy steering. A common repair is simply to weld the two parts together effectively eliminating the bush. Fixing it in this way will theoretically mean that there'll be a bit more harshness and vibration transmitted into the steering wheel from the road although I've no direct experience of how much. It's something I've been meaning to do to my track car at some point.
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IanClements
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1988 Toyota MR2 Mk1b

PostPosted: Tue Apr 18, 2017 8:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Reply with quote including images

I think the bush you mean is further up and it seems fine, the bit I mean is directly above the splined part where it goes into a slightly wider section, i.e. before the joint that looks like a second UJ.
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kaiowas




Joined: 07 Jun 2005
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Location: Norfolk
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1985 Toyota MR2 Mk1a

PostPosted: Tue Apr 18, 2017 9:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Reply with quote including images

Yes directly above the splined part is where I'm talking about. My understanding is that where the splined part is inserted into the wider part there is a rubber insulator between the two pieces of metal that degrades over time.

Bit more info, and a picture of a welded repair here:

http://www.mr2.com/forums/threads/95206-STEERING-COLUMN-PLAY-at-Shaft
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IanClements
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1988 Toyota MR2 Mk1b

PostPosted: Tue Apr 18, 2017 9:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Reply with quote including images

Thanks dude, great thread. That's exactly what I'm talking about then so hopefully fault found.

I'll see if my local garage is up for a bit of welding but I wonder if I could pour some liquid poly down it like for engine mounts? Would messy though, lol.
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IanClements
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1988 Toyota MR2 Mk1b

PostPosted: Wed Apr 19, 2017 7:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Reply with quote including images

I got the steering column welded, test drove it and it's not much different, maybe slightly sharper steering but not sure.

I think I'm going to look at the strut rod bushes again, my old one's had play so I swapped them for some prothane bushes I had from ages ago which were OK but I noticed that the metal collar seemed to be a little loose on the rod which may be a problem. I put some duct tape over the threads and jammed the collar on before re-installing the bushes to reduce any play but it made no difference and I can't feel any play once everything's tightened up.
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IanClements
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1988 Toyota MR2 Mk1b

PostPosted: Wed Apr 26, 2017 5:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Reply with quote including images

I ordered some new bushes from Superflex and there's no play whatsoever so I guess the old metal sleeves had worn over the years making for slightly dodgy handling. Haven't fitted them yet but I'm guessing this will sort it. Thanks for your help guys.
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Danbob




Joined: 14 Nov 2011
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1993 Toyota MR2 Mk2 Turbo Rev2

PostPosted: Tue May 02, 2017 5:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Reply with quote including images

Any news? Did the bushes fix the problem?
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IanClements
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1988 Toyota MR2 Mk1b

PostPosted: Tue May 02, 2017 7:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Reply with quote including images

Have to be honest, I haven't had time to fit them yet. Will have to wait until next weekend now, I'll let you know.
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IanClements
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1988 Toyota MR2 Mk1b

PostPosted: Sun May 07, 2017 12:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Reply with quote including images

Fitted them this morning and they haven't made the slightest difference. I've got to the point where I haven't got time to work on it anymore so just going to leave it for a while now.
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SuperRedMR2




Joined: 16 May 2005
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1990 Toyota MR2 Mk1b

PostPosted: Thu May 11, 2017 8:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Reply with quote including images

Hi Ian,

My steering in a straight line is very loose at the moment.

I'm still running standard bushes and I haven't changed the front ball joints for 7 years. I'm going to be ordering my BCs soon but am interested in what you find for your solution.

Even though my tyres have plenty of tread, they are a bit old now, so thinking that is not helping the situation...
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