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Index > Suspension > Thread: Sloppy steering
Thread: Sloppy steering [' This thread is 4 pages long: (1) 2 3 4 ']
Jeff20B


Moderator
Posts: 661
posted December 22, 2002 10:01 AM

Sloppy steering

Who here has sloppy steering? Well, I certainly do!

My REPU is hurting in the steering department. I nearly sideswiped a guardrail after installing a set of wide tires. I had to go back to the skinnies because they have less grip (man this sucks!).

Thanks to Mazda's recirculating ball steering and lots of miles, my REPU has what quite a few RX-7 drivers have come to call "wonder steering".

This thread will be about how to remove excessive play in the steering wheel. Since I'm not sure how to fiddle with the steering box inards, I'm hoping to generate some interest from others and get some info on how to do it.

I've already adjusted the little bolt/nut on top of the steering box which only seemed to get rid of some of the play for only a short time. It came right back soon after.

I've read "Steering Gear Restoration By Bobrx-7" http://www.mazspeed.com/steeringgear.htm but am a little scared to treat my box like an RX-7 box. There seem to be too many risks.

My friend's REPU has tight steering that's always been tight for as long as I can remember (since early '96). I know tighter steering on an REPU is possible, but I don't know how to do it. Has anyone succesfully tightened their steering box before? Any info is highly appreciated!
____________
'74 REPU
'76 Cosmo
'77 MG Midget 13B
'81 RX-7

       
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DPassmore


Hauling
Posts: 104
posted December 22, 2002 06:42 PM

Yep, my steering box sucks as well.Been that way for the 10 years I've had it.
____________
If someone with a split personality threatens suicide,is it a hostage situation?

       
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rotormunky


Redlining
Orlando, Florida
Posts: 424
posted December 22, 2002 08:01 PM

I don't know what to tell you with regard to your steering box. It sounds like you don't want to mess with it anyway. I assume you've checked all your bushings and tie-rod ends?


____________
-Martin
Orlando, Florida

http://www.themonkeyhouse.org/REPU

'77 REPU (Some assembly required :)
'91 Cabrio (Battered and bruised, but she's still my baby.)

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Jeff20B


Moderator
Posts: 661
posted December 22, 2002 10:49 PM

DPassmore, I hope this thread can shed some light on our situation.

20wannaB, yeah, I've checked them all and they're not great, but decent. I've replaced the bushings in the idler arm which helped a little, and the centerlink and tie rods seem to be pretty tight. The main problem seems to be the box itself. When the truck is on a level surface and I'm standing outside and looking at the driver's tire for movement, I can rotate the steering wheel several inches each direction before it'll move the tires. I'm nearly 100% convinced that the problem lies in the box itself.

I could do a little exploratory searching (surgery) inside the box when the weather gets better. It looks like four bolts and the large nut need to be removed in order to gain access inside the box. I wonder if the repuguru has a pic of the steering gear anywhere? I'm gonna go check...
____________
'74 REPU
'76 Cosmo
'77 MG Midget 13B
'81 RX-7

       
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Jeff20B


Moderator
Posts: 661
posted December 22, 2002 10:58 PM

No luck. He doesn't have any pics; just specs. I've got a Cosmo manual which has a box similar to a 1st gen (probably the same box from the parts bin), but it's different from the REPU's box. Hmm.
____________
'74 REPU
'76 Cosmo
'77 MG Midget 13B
'81 RX-7

       
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nwaco


Redlining
Posts: 407
posted December 23, 2002 09:53 AM

steering gear...

Jeff,

I have the 1975 Mazda workshop manual, and on page 10:3, it is stated that if the "ball nut does not travel freely on the worm shaft" then both should be "replaced'.

There are some "bearing preload" shims that may be used for some adjustment, and some "sector shaft adjusting screw shims" as well.

So it looks like there are a few adjustments, but I think the most likely culprit is the gear and worm shaft just get worn over the years from the manual torque of turning while going slow or stationary. My guess is the gear and worm are peened to the point that there is too much play. Wide tires only add to the problem.

This topic tells me to remove and keep the steering gears to all the extra trucks I have...just in case.


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Draggin_2600i


Redlining
Posts: 235
posted December 23, 2002 10:25 AM

shouldn't the steering box be similar to the one on the newer Mazda trucks like up to 1984 or 85? Then maybe you can get parts from those or even get a whole new unit from the dealer..

       
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jfaplanet


Redlining
Posts: 356
posted December 23, 2002 12:37 PM

Steering Differences

The 78 and newer to 84 gear box will bolt in place of the 74-77 REPU, but the Pitman arm is different. If you use the complete 84 front end, idler, pitman, gearbox, tie rods, center link, etc. It will all bolt in place. That is what I have on mine. You have to modify the area where the locking colar bolt that holds the steering shaft to the gear box fits, but a grinder or dremel will do the trick. The 86-up used rack type steering. Unless you want a major ordeal I'd not try that one. Good luck.
____________
74 REPU "Red"
74 REPU "Jethro" "TII"
74 RE-Courier vert
79 SA-SE(aka deathtrap)
79 SA-SE-FC (project
turbo)
http://home.bellsouth.net
/p/PWP-crgj
TN Forum:
http://tnrotary.10.forume
r.com/

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brad


Rotorhead
Posts: 1671
posted January 06, 2003 04:23 PM

quote:
When the truck is on a level surface and I'm standing outside and looking at the driver's tire for movement, I can rotate the steering wheel several inches each direction before it'll move the tires. I'm nearly 100% convinced that the problem lies in the box itself.




Now THAT is a worn steering box. Had the same prob with my'81 Rx7, got to the point I simply could not drive it for safety reasons. Turn steering wheel 3 inches and the front wheels don't move!!!

I do know of a shop who *might* put together a rack and pinion steering kit for the REPU when they get the time. Shop owner owns 2 REPU's and doesn't like the vague steering and has lots of HP under the hood. . . .
____________
-brad-
74 REPU Lawn Green
81 Rx-7 racecar. 12a J-
Bridge

       
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Jeff20B


Moderator
Posts: 661
posted January 07, 2003 10:56 AM

How much would it cost?
____________
'74 REPU
'76 Cosmo
'77 MG Midget 13B
'81 RX-7

       
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brad


Rotorhead
Posts: 1671
posted January 07, 2003 11:17 AM

rack and pinion

it's not built yet so no pricing. it should be a simple install with little welding. we'll see!
____________
-brad-
74 REPU Lawn Green
81 Rx-7 racecar. 12a J-
Bridge

       
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gantech


1st Gear
Posts: 11
posted April 14, 2003 04:27 PM

Anyone have the part number for the 74 steering box. Who knows ? Maybe there is one somewhere.

Mark

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rotormunky


Redlining
Orlando, Florida
Posts: 424
posted April 15, 2003 03:22 AM

We don't need no stinking steering!

quote:
Anyone have the part number for the 74 steering box. Who knows ? Maybe there is one somewhere.

Mark


If you're looking for a part number its best to call Mazda.

You can look here

http://themonkeyhouse.org/rotaria/dox/MazdaInterchange_70s.pdf

I don't know if those numbers listed are actual Mazda part numbers though. Unfortunately 90% of the stuff listed in that intercahnge book are unique to the REPU (surprise surprise). Because the 78-84 b-series isn't a DIRECT bolt in that's probably why its not mentioned. It would be worth the small "alteration" to get a box in there that you can still get steering gears for though.

Maybe if jfaplanet can post a couple pics of his steering setup that would be really helpful. I'll put them up on my page as a reference.

I haven't even gotten to the steering box on mine yet, it would be nice to know that I've got options though.


____________
-Martin
Orlando, Florida

http://www.themonkeyhouse.org/REPU

'77 REPU (Some assembly required :)
'91 Cabrio (Battered and bruised, but she's still my baby.)

        Click here to visit rotormunky's homepage. 
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Jeff20B


Moderator
Posts: 661
posted April 15, 2003 11:11 AM

My steering is still as sloppy as ever.
____________
'74 REPU
'76 Cosmo
'77 MG Midget 13B
'81 RX-7

       
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Klaus43


Rotorhead
Posts: 1259
posted April 15, 2003 03:05 PM

To borrow a phrase from fans...

...of the old Kawasaki two-stroke triples, "Power without control is...Interesting!" Worm and ball-nut 389432130. Gear assembly 185432110. "Housing sold with assembly only."

       
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repujeff


Revvin Up
Posts: 71
posted April 15, 2003 03:27 PM

steering box number

My interchange book lists the mazda part number as 1854-32-110 This number is for all 74-77 repu's. It did not cross with any of the other Mazda vehicles thru 1984, but thats not to say something couldnot be adapted.

       
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rotormunky


Redlining
Orlando, Florida
Posts: 424
posted April 16, 2003 06:09 AM

Adaptations . . .

Can anyone confirm or deny the option of putting the wormgear and ball but from a later b-series assembly into the REPU assembly?


____________
-Martin
Orlando, Florida

http://www.themonkeyhouse.org/REPU

'77 REPU (Some assembly required :)
'91 Cabrio (Battered and bruised, but she's still my baby.)

        Click here to visit rotormunky's homepage. 
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jfaplanet


Redlining
Posts: 356
posted April 16, 2003 06:41 AM

confirm

Yes a 84 gearbox will fit, the differences are that the center link, tie rod ends, pitman arm, and idler arm from that same 84 has to be used. I used the 84 box, complete steering, brake rotors, steering knuckles, upper and lower control arms, on a 74 frame. Just find you a 78 to 84 parts truck, thier a dime a dozen, and use the whole front end. The only problem was where the steering box bolts to the steering shaft. I had to modify it slightly, took about 5 minutes with a dremel tool. Good luck and if you need pics email me and I will try to get them out to you.

Charles


____________
74 REPU "Red"
74 REPU "Jethro" "TII"
74 RE-Courier vert
79 SA-SE(aka deathtrap)
79 SA-SE-FC (project
turbo)
http://home.bellsouth.net
/p/PWP-crgj
TN Forum:
http://tnrotary.10.forume
r.com/

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rotormunky


Redlining
Orlando, Florida
Posts: 424
posted April 16, 2003 08:26 AM

quote:
Yes a 84 gearbox will fit, the differences are that the center link, tie rod ends, pitman arm, and idler arm from that same 84 has to be used. I used the 84 box, complete steering, brake rotors, steering knuckles, upper and lower control arms, on a 74 frame. Just find you a 78 to 84 parts truck, thier a dime a dozen, and use the whole front end. The only problem was where the steering box bolts to the steering shaft. I had to modify it slightly, took about 5 minutes with a dremel tool. Good luck and if you need pics email me and I will try to get them out to you.

Charles





THanks Charles. I would love to get some pics if you don't mind. Additionally, would you mind if I put them up on my page for reference by others? If so that's no problem whatsoever, I'd still like to see them for my own reference if you don't mind.

You can email to twenty_wanna_be@yahoo.com

Thanks.
____________
-Martin
Orlando, Florida

http://www.themonkeyhouse.org/REPU

'77 REPU (Some assembly required :)
'91 Cabrio (Battered and bruised, but she's still my baby.)

        Click here to visit rotormunky's homepage. 
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brad


Rotorhead
Posts: 1671
posted April 16, 2003 02:06 PM

84 B2000 steering and front brakes

I'd like to see pictures of that too! Sounds worthwhile.

Are the B2000 front brakes any better than REPU? Vented rotors? Bigger calipers? Bigger pads? Do they use the same odd wedge style calipers like REPU?

Same wheel bolt pattern?

Thanks!!!!!!!
____________
-brad-
74 REPU Lawn Green
81 Rx-7 racecar. 12a J-
Bridge

       
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