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2/9/15 4:51pm - Original Message: 'Steering/Wandering while driving'
wetvet
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Lake Oswego, OR - USA

Vette(s):
1972 Steel Cities Gray T Top. Original Owner, Original Paint and Interior. The running gear has been rebuilt after 240,000 miles.

Joined: 10/17/2003
Posts: 540
I was with a friend of mine who have a 1971 with PS and PB. When we went for a drive the car seems to wander on the freeway. He's has had the front end rebuilt with all new ball joints , tie rod ends, HD pitman arm. along with new a arm bushings. Then he just had installed a new steering Box along with a new steering control valve and slave piston. Took it to the alignment shop, along with the balance of all 4 wheels and tires.
When he is driving on the freeway the steering wheel needs to be corrected by turning back and forth about 1-2 inches - back and forth.
So any Ideas as to why it still wanders?
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2/9/15 5:37pm - Reply: 'Re: Steering/Wandering while driving'
Sarge81 Lifetime Member
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WEST SENECA, NY - USA

Vette(s):
1981 Blue Ice Met. w/pearl ghost flames TKO500 5speed. LS1 Swap 3.45 Dana 44.

Joined: 12/3/2001
Posts: 2376
Did he replace the steering shaft coupler? Often referred to as a "rag" joint.




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GEN III 5.7L "LS6" Engine swap
TKO500 5 spd.
3.54 Dana 44
'69 "N11" Sidepipes
Borgeson Steering Box
Born 8/1981
Sequence #3975




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2/9/15 5:48pm - Reply: 'Re: Steering/Wandering while driving'
wetvet
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Lake Oswego, OR - USA

Vette(s):
1972 Steel Cities Gray T Top. Original Owner, Original Paint and Interior. The running gear has been rebuilt after 240,000 miles.

Joined: 10/17/2003
Posts: 540
Yes that was replaced when the steering box was replaced.

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"It Takes A Little Longer To Do It Right"
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2/9/15 6:08pm - Reply: 'Re: Steering/Wandering while driving'
F4Gary Gold Member
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Grapevine, TX - USA

Vette(s):
1972 LT-1 convertible with factory air.

Joined: 8/26/2006
Posts: 862
Maybe he got a badly rebuilt steering box.

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2/9/15 6:20pm - Reply: 'Re: Steering/Wandering while driving'
rlu1968
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Gordonvillle, TX - USA

Vette(s):
1968 Roadster 427

Joined: 11/28/2003
Posts: 222
This was all done on my 68 back in the 90's but I didn't replace the steering box. 
Now I have about three inches of play and can't adjust it thought the steering box. 
Been doing research on the Borgeson; Sweet Mfg; and steroids. Haven't decided which would be the best. What steering box did he go with. I have heard some mfg. have problems right out of the box. 


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2/9/15 8:18pm - Reply: 'Re: Steering/Wandering while driving'
johnu
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Eagan, MN - USA

Vette(s):
1981 Corvette Two-Tone Claret color, 4 spd, C7 Vert

Joined: 5/23/2007
Posts: 504

Gary is the guy I'd have do mine when I get it off some day.   A lot of his business is rebuilding rebuilt boxes from some big name vendors in the vette world.  I never read a comment from a customer of his boxes that were less then amazed at the result.

gary.ramadei@radiall.com 



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2/9/15 8:29pm - Reply: 'Re: Steering/Wandering while driving'
F4Gary Gold Member
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Grapevine, TX - USA

Vette(s):
1972 LT-1 convertible with factory air.

Joined: 8/26/2006
Posts: 862
johnu said:

Gary is the guy I'd have do mine when I get it off some day.   A lot of his business is rebuilding rebuilt boxes from some big name vendors in the vette world.  I never read a comment from a customer of his boxes that were less then amazed at the result.

gary.ramadei@radiall.com 



He doesn't just rebuild them, he blueprints them.  Better than new.


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2/9/15 11:19pm - Reply: 'Re: Steering/Wandering while driving'
Adams' Apple Lifetime Member
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Duncanville, TX - USA

Vette(s):
#1-1974 L-48 4spd Cp Med Red Metallic/Black deluxe int w/AC/tilt/tele./p/w-p/b/ Am-Fm/map light National/Regional/Chapter NCRS "Top Flight" #2-1985 Bright Red/Carmine Cp.L-98/auto Member: NCRS, NCRS Texas, Corvette Legends of Texas

Joined: 11/8/2003
Posts: 19449
Has he had anything done on the rear of the car? Toe, and camber settings on the rear must also be done to keep the car tracking properly. I've spoken with a few Corvette techs that absolutely HATE doing rear alignments on these cars. Even at the dealer, they don't spend much time making sure it's right..."close enough" is close enough for some of them. Angry

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Joel Adams
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2/10/15 9:06am - Reply: 'Re: Steering/Wandering while driving'
manchestershark Lifetime Member
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Equinunk, PA - USA

Vette(s):
1972 conv, 4-speed, 350, 200hp, numbers match, rally wheels, war bonnett yellow w/white top. good condition, nice driver.

Joined: 10/31/2007
Posts: 1895
 I did my front-end, and only after doing the back did it behave correctly on the road.

|UPDATED|2/10/2015 6:06:35 AM (AZT)|/UPDATED|


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2/10/15 1:05pm - Reply: 'Re: Steering/Wandering while driving'
wetvet
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Lake Oswego, OR - USA

Vette(s):
1972 Steel Cities Gray T Top. Original Owner, Original Paint and Interior. The running gear has been rebuilt after 240,000 miles.

Joined: 10/17/2003
Posts: 540
Yes, it was a 4 wheel alignment. The Steering box was a Redhead from WA State.

|UPDATED|2/10/2015 10:05:58 AM (AZT)|/UPDATED|


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"It Takes A Little Longer To Do It Right"
"It Takes A Lot Longer To Do It Again"
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2/10/15 2:41pm - Reply: 'Re: Steering/Wandering while driving'
Adams' Apple Lifetime Member
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Duncanville, TX - USA

Vette(s):
#1-1974 L-48 4spd Cp Med Red Metallic/Black deluxe int w/AC/tilt/tele./p/w-p/b/ Am-Fm/map light National/Regional/Chapter NCRS "Top Flight" #2-1985 Bright Red/Carmine Cp.L-98/auto Member: NCRS, NCRS Texas, Corvette Legends of Texas

Joined: 11/8/2003
Posts: 19449
Well, hopefully, they actually did the rear alignment, and dint just say they did. Ouch
Another idea....do we know if the new steering control valve is adjusted properly? Doesn't take much to make one wander if it's off. Raise the front end/tires off the ground, get the wheels pointed straight forward, and start the engine(do NOT reach thru the steering wheel to hit the key!). If the valve is adjusted right, the wheels/steering will not move AT ALL, in either direction. If the steering even looks like it's trying to move, the valve adjustment is off.

Does it wander regardless of what side of the road(left lane/right lane) he's on? The crown on the road can do that, too, depending on how much crown there is. Just another thought. Ermm


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Joel Adams
C3VR Lifetime Member #56    
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"Money can't buy happiness -- but somehow it's more comforting to cry in a CORVETTE than in a Kia"
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2/10/15 4:45pm - Reply: 'Re: Steering/Wandering while driving'
Sarge81 Lifetime Member
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WEST SENECA, NY - USA

Vette(s):
1981 Blue Ice Met. w/pearl ghost flames TKO500 5speed. LS1 Swap 3.45 Dana 44.

Joined: 12/3/2001
Posts: 2376
 Like Joel mentioned, did they actually spent the time to correctly set up the rear suspension? After I rebuilt my front and rear suspension I had 2 auto shops do the alignment over a course of a few years apart. The car always seemed "darty" to me. 

 But then I was turned onto a local guy that does a proper alignment on C3's. It took him a full 8 hrs to set up the car and it was $350 for the alignment. Sounds like a long time and a lot of money, but I'll tell you what...my car was a dream to drive after he was done. C3's are not easy to set up the rear suspensions properly.


____________________________________

GEN III 5.7L "LS6" Engine swap
TKO500 5 spd.
3.54 Dana 44
'69 "N11" Sidepipes
Borgeson Steering Box
Born 8/1981
Sequence #3975




Click here to see more pics of my Vette on CarDomain.


Lifetime Member #26
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2/11/15 6:10pm - Reply: 'Re: Steering/Wandering while driving'
wetvet
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Lake Oswego, OR - USA

Vette(s):
1972 Steel Cities Gray T Top. Original Owner, Original Paint and Interior. The running gear has been rebuilt after 240,000 miles.

Joined: 10/17/2003
Posts: 540
Sarge81 said:  Like Joel mentioned, did they actually spent the time to correctly set up the rear suspension? After I rebuilt my front and rear suspension I had 2 auto shops do the alignment over a course of a few years apart. The car always seemed "darty" to me. 

 But then I was turned onto a local guy that does a proper alignment on C3's. It took him a full 8 hrs to set up the car and it was $350 for the alignment. Sounds like a long time and a lot of money, but I'll tell you what...my car was a dream to drive after he was done. C3's are not easy to set up the rear suspensions properly.

I will bring this information to my buddy. Hopefully a re-check of the PS control Valve with me and then off to a new alignment shop.
Thanks for all you input.



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"It Takes A Little Longer To Do It Right"
"It Takes A Lot Longer To Do It Again"
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2/12/15 3:43am - Reply: 'Re: Steering/Wandering while driving'
daveo76
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Vancouver, WA - USA

Vette(s):
1976 Silver/Firethorn. L48, 4spd. Original 2 bolt, vortec heads, 9.4:1 CR, Speed Pro Cam: 224/224@0.050, 112 LSA, Eagle Steel Crank.

Joined: 8/25/2005
Posts: 830
Steve, if your buddy wanted to trek up here to the 'couv he could take it to Carl's Alignment and Brake on St John's Road.  He did mine and it handles great.  I know he did the back because when I picked it up he showed me how they had to shim the t-arms (and told me what a PITA it was Tongue).  I take all my cars there for alignments now.  

I've heard of alignment shops that don't know about the eccentric bolts on the strut rods and will actually bend the rods to get the camber correct.  Probably want to stay away from those places.


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1976 Silver/Firethorn.  L48, 4spd.  Original 2 bolt, vortec heads, 9.4:1 CR, Speed Pro Cam: 224/224@0.050, 112 LSA, Eagle Steel Crank.
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2/12/15 1:54pm - Reply: 'Re: Steering/Wandering while driving'
wetvet
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Lake Oswego, OR - USA

Vette(s):
1972 Steel Cities Gray T Top. Original Owner, Original Paint and Interior. The running gear has been rebuilt after 240,000 miles.

Joined: 10/17/2003
Posts: 540
daveo76 said: Steve, if your buddy wanted to trek up here to the 'couv he could take it to Carl's Alignment and Brake on St John's Road.  He did mine and it handles great.  I know he did the back because when I picked it up he showed me how they had to shim the t-arms (and told me what a PITA it was Tongue).  I take all my cars there for alignments now.  

I've heard of alignment shops that don't know about the eccentric bolts on the strut rods and will actually bend the rods to get the camber correct.  Probably want to stay away from those places.

Thanks for the info. I'll pass it along.



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"It Takes A Little Longer To Do It Right"
"It Takes A Lot Longer To Do It Again"
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1/5/17 7:54pm - Reply: 'Re: Steering/Wandering while driving'
VETTEWITHLEGS
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KINGSPORT, TN - USA

Vette(s):
1981 COUPE, 350/350 DAILY DRIVER. 1972 COUPE, 468, M21, 4.11 REAR. ,4 mpg.

Joined: 1/14/2015
Posts: 1
DID HE REPLACE THE RAG JOINT? HAS HE TRIED TO ADJUST THE STEERING BOX? HAS HE CHECKED OUT THE COLUMN FOR ANY PLAY? MAYBE IN THE JOINT WHERE IT TILTS? I HAD THE SAME PROBLEM IN MY 72. REPLACED ALL THAT HE DID, PLUS RAG JOINT. WENT FROM 1-2 INCHES IN BOTH DIRECTIONS TO 1/2 TO 3/4 INCH TOTAL.72, 468, M21, MANUAL BRAKES, PS, NO AIR, 1983 LACQUER PAINT.
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1/5/17 8:39pm - Reply: 'Re: Steering/Wandering while driving'
johnu
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Eagan, MN - USA

Vette(s):
1981 Corvette Two-Tone Claret color, 4 spd, C7 Vert

Joined: 5/23/2007
Posts: 504
Another consideration is the highway he is on.  Older asphalt highways with worn tire "grooves" are not flat.  These will toss me around as the wide 255/60's are dancing in and out of the  grooves.


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1/6/17 12:32pm - Reply: 'Re: Steering/Wandering while driving'
Steevo
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San Diego, CA - USA

Vette(s):
'73 Coupe, 350, Auto, A/C, Electric Windows. White exterior w/ Dk Blue interior.OEM Aluminum Wheels

Joined: 11/10/2013
Posts: 10
Steve,
 
I would start the problem solving attempt by raising the front end so both tires clear the ground. Then I'd grab each tire, first at the 3 and 9 o'clock position and rock back & forth, looking for play. It checks for loose bearings and worn Tie-rod components. Then rock the wheels at the 6 & 12 o'clock position, checking for Knuckle Ball Joint wear as well. He might find something worn.
 
 
My two cents.
Steve
 


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1/6/17 12:55pm - Reply: 'Re: Steering/Wandering while driving'
DaveM Lifetime Member
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Flanders, NJ - USA

Vette(s):
1982 Black, ZZ4, Hooker Side Pipes, 3.55 Rear, Rebuilt & upgraded 700R4, All new suspension, brakes, & new Charcoal interior.

Joined: 1/27/2004
Posts: 2530
johnu said: Another consideration is the highway he is on.  Older asphalt highways with worn tire "grooves" are not flat.  These will toss me around as the wide 255/60's are dancing in and out of the  grooves.

Only you would have a Vette that dances!
Dave



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1/6/17 1:54pm - Reply: 'Re: Steering/Wandering while driving'
snake97
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Metairie, LA - USA

Vette(s):
1979 Black, Oyster interior purchased in March 1980

Joined: 7/7/2013
Posts: 24
I had the same problem. The car was drifting a bit. I didn't realize how bad it was until I replaced the steering box. I was getting used to it  and adjusting my driving without realizing it. I bought a rebuilt box from a small co. out of Texas, and it has been fine. Old tires will make your car drift also. I had some that looked great but were a few years old and caused a drift. When I put on new tires it was like a different car.
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