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Old 02-02-2009, 03:40 PM   #1
Marty Bee
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Default Steering problems

hey guys,

Well, after parking the car in october due to early snow fall, is about time I get moving on the work I need to get done to have the car ready for spring. I'd say 2 months and I'll be ready to go.

I have a long list of projects to do this winter. Not as long as last year's interior overhaul but they'll still be labour intensive none the less.

I just noticed I haven't posted in a few months. I'm changing all 4 hubs, all my u-joints, working a little bit with the headlight switch and changing a light. I also have to investigate a vibrating tale light, put in some fancy chrome mesh in my shark gills, and I have to remount my body kit. I'm hoping the drivetrain work will give me a little better, and smoother, accell seeing as there's a lot of play in everything. My mistake for not taking care of that first before feeding the car more HP.

Anyways... Reason why I'm writting is to get a little insight on a problem I don't have much experience with. I've never had to work on a steering column.

When I first got the car 3 years ago I had to change the whole front rack and power steering pump. This proved to be an adventure and a half. Once it was replaced and working well, I loved it! Near the end of the season, on start up, for the first few minutes of driving, it almost seems like the steering column is loose. Not like all the posts on here where it moves from side to side, or up and down. I'll turn the wheel, it'll click twice, almost like the gears are not catching inside the column, and then finally he wheels start turning.

Of course you can see why this is cause for concern.

Now, is there anything I should check before I self diagnose this problem and take the column apart only to replace a few parts inside? Is that what my problem is? Is it complicated? Do I need an special tools?

I'd almost prefer a blown engine to this column issue to tell you the truth.

Again, all your help and comments are greatly appreaciated.

Cheers, Marty Bee
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Old 02-05-2009, 11:48 AM   #2
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Seems like everyone is mum on the topic. Am I going at this one alone with a blind eye friends?
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Old 02-05-2009, 12:45 PM   #3
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Marty,

Since no one else has chimed in yet, I'll take a stab at it (I've never been into a C-4 steering column so, bear in mind that my effort is only a stab). Based on my logic - which isn't necessarily sane, I'd say this:

You may have two conincidental things going on at the same time. If you can hear a clicking in the steering wheel/column when driving, it is probably in the area of the stalk (Turn signal/wiper stalk) as you would not be able to hear a clicking sound if it was occurring under the hood while driving. That doesn't necessarily equate to the apparent slow response of the front wheels. For that, you may have a little excess play in one of the joints in the column or in the rack and pinion itself. I would check for play in the column first. You can do that by having a friend help you. Have a friend move the steering wheel from side-to-side and watch the steering column in the enging bay. It should move exactly with the steering wheel. If there is any delay, then you problem is in the column and is probably one of the joints. If the column moves exactly with the steering wheel, then you problem is downstreem at the joint at the rack and pinion or in the rack an pinion itself.

As I said, this is how I see it based on my skewed logic

I hope this helps.

Norm
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Old 02-05-2009, 01:11 PM   #4
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If this were me, and the car did not do this before tearing in to it... I would go over any trouble points I had, when reassembling it, or my other guess from what you describe as dead spots maybe or something is in the rack you just put in.(not if it is clicking though) If you are sure it is in the column then some thing else happened or you should check the steering arm and stuff. It is the best I can do, more will chime in
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Old 02-05-2009, 03:50 PM   #5
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Default Thanks guys...

I have to admit that I had a brain burp. That is awsome advice to actually get a buddy to help and check if the issue is in the rack (brand spanking new and still covered under warranty) or in the column (original and never been opened up).

The first step will be just that, I'll check that the play is in the column or the rack. If its the column, I'm going to take it out and rebuild it. I just took a look online and all the parts are pretty cheap.

I'll even make a step by step picture procedure of this and try to post it for everyone else that might want to do it.

First things first though, I gotta change my hubs and u-joints. Then I'll tackle that steering column and my little leak problem.

Thanks for setting me straight guys!
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Old 02-05-2009, 04:19 PM   #6
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I'm having a very similar problem in my car; there is up/down play in the steering wheel, as well as clicking. I just got a diagnosis from Tony's Corvette Shop, and apparently the clicking is caused by the bearings in the intermediate shaft going bad, while the up/down play is a worn out lower steering column support, caused by using the wheel to help yourself in/out of the car.

Both of these are not made anymore, but I did find a source for intermediate shafts. Check ebay, there is a guy in Charlotte, NC, selling gently used ones for $115 shipped. Not bad for a $600 new piece!

For the lower support, Tony said that it isn't made anymore, but he has a few, so I'm having him fix that. Maybe some forum searching could find an alternative solution?
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Old 02-06-2009, 04:50 PM   #7
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I think the lower support is avail at Corvette Central. Not sure about the other part.

I don't have any play in my steering "up and down", mine was more just with the turning.

I sure hope its not $$$. I had other plans for my $$$ like some more go fast stuff!
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Old 02-10-2009, 03:53 PM   #8
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Default Morning sickness

I have the same problem, the clicking when the engine is off and the dead spot for the first mile. i shall check the column as suggested and will change the power steering fluid, maybe its just low...lol...obrian

I
Quote:
Originally Posted by Marty Bee View Post
hey guys,

Well, after parking the car in october due to early snow fall, is about time I get moving on the work I need to get done to have the car ready for spring. I'd say 2 months and I'll be ready to go.

I have a long list of projects to do this winter. Not as long as last year's interior overhaul but they'll still be labour intensive none the less.

I just noticed I haven't posted in a few months. I'm changing all 4 hubs, all my u-joints, working a little bit with the headlight switch and changing a light. I also have to investigate a vibrating tale light, put in some fancy chrome mesh in my shark gills, and I have to remount my body kit. I'm hoping the drivetrain work will give me a little better, and smoother, accell seeing as there's a lot of play in everything. My mistake for not taking care of that first before feeding the car more HP.

Anyways... Reason why I'm writting is to get a little insight on a problem I don't have much experience with. I've never had to work on a steering column.

When I first got the car 3 years ago I had to change the whole front rack and power steering pump. This proved to be an adventure and a half. Once it was replaced and working well, I loved it! Near the end of the season, on start up, for the first few minutes of driving, it almost seems like the steering column is loose. Not like all the posts on here where it moves from side to side, or up and down. I'll turn the wheel, it'll click twice, almost like the gears are not catching inside the column, and then finally he wheels start turning.

Of course you can see why this is cause for concern.

Now, is there anything I should check before I self diagnose this problem and take the column apart only to replace a few parts inside? Is that what my problem is? Is it complicated? Do I need an special tools?

I'd almost prefer a blown engine to this column issue to tell you the truth.

Again, all your help and comments are greatly appreaciated.

Cheers, Marty Bee
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Old 09-30-2011, 11:16 AM   #9
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i have no clicking at any time. just the up/down and side/side movement. does corvette central just sell corvette parts or do they work on them as well? any ideas on who does work on them arounf the south west michigan area?
thanks. chris.
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Old 10-05-2011, 04:33 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mbirdman64 View Post
i have no clicking at any time. just the up/down and side/side movement. does corvette central just sell corvette parts or do they work on them as well? any ideas on who does work on them arounf the south west michigan area?
thanks. chris.
Chris -

We do not perform repairs like you are describing at our facility. Sorry.
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