Team Camaro Tech banner

1 - 10 of 10 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
95 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Looking for some input regarding the p/s setp in our 69SS 350 car...it is overly sensitive!!..car feels "light" and the steering seems to over react....would like to have a firmer and more "in control" feeling....what part numbers or component info do I need to get from the car to help identify what we have..and how can we make it better..

thanks....wilma
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,000 Posts
I would like to know the caster setting (alignment) Asumption is it is correctly aligned to factory specs. and the front end parts are good.
I drive my rs car daily..70k miles in the last 6 yrs.
I have as much + caster as I could get, something like 3.5 degrees. I think factory setting is 3/4?
I like the feel, much more firm, and in control.
Try it, just slap in some shims on the most rearward bolt, say 1/4 " of shim. Drive a couple of miles, if you like it, get it aligned with more caster.
Note..... this will change other alignment angles, only do it as a test.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
21,341 Posts
Usually this come's up b/c the steering gearbox has been switched to a newer fast ratio one and the long pitman arm and short bolt-on spindle arms are still used..

You might consider installing a shorter pitman arm and/or the longer spindle arms??

pdq67

PS., and I ordered my car w/ the optional fast ratio, non-power steering on it and it has the long pitman arm and the short spindle arms.. It will turn a 90 degree corner at speed in one turn of my steering wheel!!! And the faster I go, the better it steers!! But screw parallel parking AND that's why it's P/S now!!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,796 Posts
I mean no disrespect but, how old are you ? Most of the cars built prior to approx. 1980, had very light type PS. The "pinky" steering. Most people are switching Their PS Boxes to an AGR box or a 3rd gen. box. Please do a search on this site and find TONs of information.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,864 Posts
You might consider installing a shorter pitman arm and/or the longer spindle arms??

pdq67
I think you mean the other way around.:)
A long Pitman (the 5.8"), and the shorter steering arms will decrease leverage and give a "heavier" feel at the wheel as well as reduce sensitivity.
Maybe this was a non-PS car fitted with a PS box and no other changes to the steering components.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
21,341 Posts
No, not on a P/S ASSISTED car! They will make it FASTER turning is all!!

Twitchy to me!!

Non-P/S car, HARD to turn at slow speed like I said trying to parallel park!!

Been there and fought that CRAP for years!!

pdq67
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,864 Posts
:confused: The steering ratio for manual steering has a numerically higher gear ratio to aid the driver, right?
Add a power box and you'll end up with VERY light and over sensitive steering.

To my way of thinking, you need to reduce the leverage of the power box by shortening the steering arms. This in effect will also speed up the steering and reduce the amount of turns lock to lock.

..and according to David Pozzi's site, no 1st gen used the longest spindle-mounted steering arms in any PS application.
http://www.pozziracing.com/camaro_steering.htm#Steering_linkage

Also, only long 5.8" pitman arms were used on 69s.

Maybe Wilma has the longest steering arms.. That's what I'm thinking..
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
22,122 Posts
Wilma, there were a few stock combo's of PS boxes and steering arms / pitman arm length.

Mine came with the "standard" setup. It was slow enough not to be twitchy, but still a "pinky steer" assist with little feel.

I drove a friends car which came with the "fast ratio PS" His car was virtually undreiveable from the combination of ultra fast ratio and pinky steer power assist.

A longer pitman arm will move the tie rods further with the same amount of steering wheel movement (faster ratio) while a shorter steering arm at the tire will turn the tire further with less tie rod movement (faster ratio.)

The link Steve posted is our suspension "bible" and some darned good reading.

Many of us who were looking for steering with a firmer feel have upgraded to a "thirdgen box" from an IROZ Z or WS6 Trans Am of the late 80's. This link (thanks Brian!) is our bible on the subject. http://69camaro.nextmill.net/steering.html
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,000 Posts
My driver has the pinky steering when bought, the car had been converted from drum to disc. The steering was not quick, and because of the long, (I do not know how long), steering arms had a very large turing radius.
I firdt found the shortest arms I had, and installed them.
This corrected the turning radius, and obviously made the steering quicker.
I then replaced the pitman with a good used one off a 67 camaro. This pitman arm was longer than the one that was on the car. Now the steering was much quicker.
I then replaced the steering box with a f41 box. Now it became so quick, it was dangerous.
I had also replaced the steering column about the same time. I found I shoved the column down to far, and the rag joint was binding up, which made matters worse.
Once I found the bound up steering, and took care of it, i found the steering is just to fast for the street... approx1.75 turns lock to lock.
I then went back to the origional steering arms and have had them on for prob.55 k miles. I is now approx2.25 turns lock to lock.
I then aligned my car with heavy +caster,
I now have normal new car power steering assist, not the super easy pinky steering, steering also has much better feedback. I would say better than most new cars.
I do feel as I made my steering faster the steering got harder to turn.
You can certainly replace the box, there are different torsion bars, and ratios, in boxes, I replaced with a hodge podg group of used parts and they work, all were stock camaro applications.
Also keep in mind that our cars came out origionally with bias ply tires, and low air pressure in them.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
95 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
Thanks for all the feedback...i looked at the site with all the steering info and my eyes glazed over..!!! I will measure the pitman arm and other steering components to determine what I have...that caster adjustment sounds interesting...tom
 
1 - 10 of 10 Posts
Top