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Discussion Starter #1
well,fellows I finally got the 69 together and on the road. I will get some pics on here later I promise. I am having a couple of problems the main one is the car wanders going down the road.I have had the front end aligned and the front is all new as far as ball joints and etc.I have adjusted the ps box 1/2 of a turn with the allen screw. that seem to help alittle I think.It reminds me of a pick-up you might be hauling something heavy in and the front end is light do you know what I mean.The other problem I am having is when I hit the brakes the front end seems to pull,I have new brake hoses and wheel cylinders,but did not replace the metal brake lines.The adjustment on the brakes seem to be the same.But the wandering is what really has me tore up, I am thinking I might need a new steering sector, any advice would really.Do you think the pulling in the brakes might be part of the wandering problem.While I am here let me ask one more thing, the car was a bb car with fac a/c, I am going to put vintage air on later, so it has no a/c now, plus I went back with a small block could the bb -a/c springs have any thing to do with my problem, the car does seem to sit alittle higher in the front than I want it to. THANKS
 

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Have someone turn the wheel left and right while you watch the linkage for play or looseness.
The nut on the top of the PS box should be turned down until resistance is felt. The steering must be aligned straight ahead on-center when this is done. There is a "tight spot" in the center of travel play should be zero on that spot, or actually a tiny amount of pre-load.

The BB springs are soft, the same rate as SB springs but taller. Not a good choice for a street car unless you are just poking along.

I"d put some stiffer springs on the car and lower it some.
David
 

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Discussion Starter #3
David, I have already checked all of the tie- rod ends and ball joints and etc.No looseness anywhere.I adjusted the ps sector again making it a complete turn on the allen screw.But the car still feels as if it is heavy in the rear and light in the front end, making it seem to walk all over the road.Any help would really be appericated. THANKS
 

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What are your alignment specs?

Is it possible that they are out of what was initially set?

I think its either the steering box or the alignment based on what you have stated in your 'check list'.
 

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What are your tires like?
I had a 79 Z/28, put two new tires on the rear, half-worn tires stayed on the front.
The car was almost undriveable due to the extra tire squirm on the rear tires. You had to do a lot of steering just to go straight.
We swapped front for rear and it was fine after that.
David
 

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Discussion Starter #6
tires are new, everything in the front and rear is new.has many of you had to replace the steering stector?
 

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What are the alignment specs you used?
First thing I'd check would be toe-in, it can get out of whack if the ride height changes even a little.
David
 

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"The other problem I am having is when I hit the brakes the front end seems to pull,I have new brake hoses and wheel cylinders,but did not replace the metal brake lines.The adjustment on the brakes seem to be the same."

On this issue, since the adjustment is apparently not an issue, have you tried re-bleeding the side that you pull away from? i.e. Car pulls left, re-bleed right.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
yes I have rebled and rebled no help there. I did drive the car some sunday and I did notice that when you turn in like to a road that the steering wheel dosen,t even try to follow up by that I mean it dosen,t return any at all.could something be binding in the steering system .I have tried regreasing all fitting and noticed that the idle arm isn,t taking grease,could that maybe be a big part of the steering tighteness .I,am going to tear into it tonite, any other suggestions.
 

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Hidaway, it sounds like you adjusted the steering box too tightly..If you don't have over the center or neutral play in the gear box, the car will always want to turn left or right which gives you that wandering effect. With the engine off and wheels straight adead, gently move the steering wheel back and forth but not enough to move the wheels. You MUST have play there. Some people, (like myself) have tried to eliminate that play and the car was downright frightening to drive! Many times people will replace all the steering componants and it will actually be worse because a worn tie rod, pitman arm or idler, adding play to the steering linkage will make it drive better..
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I have found that the idler is very I mean very tight, I will drive it tomorrow. And see what it does, will let you guys know o. k.
 

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Loosen the idler to frame bolts and re-tighten. If the center link was installed after the idler arm was torqued to the frame, it may cause a bind.

I have experienced a couple of 4WD trucks that drove like that after a complete rebuild of the links. It took a couple of thousand miles to loosen up enough for the steering to freely follow the steering. It felt "sticky", you would be zig zagging down the road...
David
 

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Discussion Starter #13
after I found the idler tight and got it loose, I readjusted my steering box.I drove it today and things have not changed it still is tight steering. if you turn into a drive or a store it just does even try to steer back any on its on. Tomorrow I,am going to loosen the steering column from the steering sector and check the mast jacket bearing in the coulmn.it is like david says it zig zags down the road.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
after I found the idler tight and got it loose, I readjusted my steering box.I drove it today and things have not changed it still is tight steering. if you turn into a drive or a store it just does even try to steer back any on its on. Tomorrow I,am going to loosen the steering column from the steering sector and check the mast jacket bearing in the coulmn.it is like david says it zig zags down the road.
 

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On the pullng when you break issue..if it is NOT related to the wandering issue. Does it always pull to the same side? My 67 RS did this too (Always pulled to the right when breaks were applied). I noticed some of the gears on the adjuster bolt had worn off over time on the driver's side (yes, I have drums all around). Thus, only the passenger side would self adjust and car would grab the right side fist. Upon rebulding the breaks I replaced the adjuster bolt. Problem solved. Another problem has risen, but I wil list in a separate post. If you have front discs I'm stumped too.
 

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Check steering column alignment to the box. If you changed subframe to body bushings, there could be a bind there.
Loosen the steering box to frame bolts and try to re-align the box to the column.
 

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In regards to the wandering, and lack of steering recentering (steering wheel dosen't even try to follow up by that I mean it dosen't return any at all.), if the suspension is tight, I'd recheck the alignment. Sounds like it may be suffering from toe out and low caster angle. Higher caster settings should offer better high speed stability and improved center tracking.

As I am new to 1st gens, do these offer very much caster adjustment?? These are the details I need to learn (and I think I am in the right place!!)
 

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You can usually get 3 to 3.5 deg positive caster on a first gen. If you dial in more neg camber you can achieve a little more positive than that using stock A arms.

If the front suspension is too high, I believe your tires can camber out when you hit a bump, this tends to pull the tires into toe out which would be very unstable.

I'd get the ride height and spring rates fixed, then look for any binding of the suspension, then a new alignment using the specs on my page below. Stock specs don't work well with wide radial tires.

I'd work on the straight line stability issues first, then work on the braking problem. Your braking problems may go away if you get the suspension right.

Is the steering a power unit or manual? They both have two adjustments not just the screw.
David
 

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Tell me what you intend to do with the car, how sensitive are you to stiff springs?
I have recomended a Moog #6308 to many here, you can search the archives for reports using the search link on this page. This spring is 380 lbs/in, compared to stock at 327 lbs/in. It's a Z/28 spring and shorter than the Moog replacement spring.
David
 
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