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  1. #1
    Member
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    Corvette(s)
    '73 4spd coupe, '04 6 speed coupe

    Default Anybody here got manual steering?

    I have stock power steering and really hate the controlability, or lack of it. I've rebuilt everything so I'm done with trying to find a cause. I'm convinced the cause is a design that's 36 years old.

    I just wondered if you folks with manual steering experience much squirrliness when you switch lanes or drive on slightly rutted roads? Mine darts left/right so bad that on one section of the local interstate, other cars will move away from me as I fight to keep it in my own lane.

    I'm thinking about switching to manual since it would be a DIRECT connection to the tires and not use a power valve that is lazy to respond.

    thanks
    .
    .
    .

    lone73
    '73 4 spd
    '04 6 spd

  2. #2
    Member 2VettesMike's Avatar
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    Corvette(s)
    1972 Bryar Blue Coupe 1993 40th Coupe

    Default

    I have a 72 with the same steering setup and it seems to work very well. A little slop in the steering but otherwise no darting.
    Have you checked the alignment? Kinda sounds like it may be off a little bit.

    Good Luck

  3. #3
    Member GTR1999's Avatar
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    Corvette(s)
    1969,1972,1975

    Default

    The manual and PS setup use the same box. The centerlink & pitman arm are different and of course the pump,cyl, & CV are added. This is more of an assist setup then PS of the day.

    I have both in my vettes and like them both. The manual is great once the box is correctly done, along with suspension and alignment repair.

    I use 225x70-15 tires and like the manual feel to the car.

    Once setup correctly, the car should track very well. In fact I was considering swapping the manual over PS but liked it so much I left it alone.
    Gary
    GTR1999

  4. #4
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    Member Vettehead Mikey's Avatar
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    1973 Coupe

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    I've driven quite a few PS and non PS versions of C2s and C3s. None of them have had the squirrliness you describe. The PS version gives a very low level of boost as compared to today's cars.

    You might have the wrong size restrictor in the control valve.

  5. #5
    Member gmjunkie's Avatar
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    Corvette(s)
    03 Z-51,78 L82 Coupe

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by lone73 View Post

    I just wondered if you folks with manual steering experience much squirrliness when you switch lanes or drive on slightly rutted roads? Mine darts left/right so bad that on one section of the local interstate, other cars will move away from me as I fight to keep it in my own lane.
    I'd try having it aligned by some old-timer,these young technicians now days don't know nothing about adding and subtracting shim's!!
    I think your problem is you don't have enough positive caster on the front and the rear may be toed out to much if its following the groves of the road!!

    junk!!
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  6. #6
    Mac
    Administrator Mac's Avatar
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    Corvette(s)
    yellow 1973 coupe L82 4 spd with no power options

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by gmjunkie View Post
    I think your problem is you don't have enough positive caster on the front and the rear may be toed out to much if its following the groves of the road!!
    I second this... Take a look at your suspension overall, not just the steering. There's a couple of different problems which can cause your Vette to chase the cracks in the road...

    -Mac

  7. #7
    Member TimAT's Avatar
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    Corvette(s)
    1969 LS-7 BB

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    If the PS pump has been changed there's a good possibility that the output fitting/ regulator is the wrong one for a Vette. The passenger car pumps use a higher pressure than the Vettes. That high pressure, coupled with a front toe setting that's incorrect can and will make a Vette twitchy.

  8. #8
    Member
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    Corvette(s)
    '73 4spd coupe, '04 6 speed coupe

    Default

    Thanks for all the responses folks!
    I have been fighting this prob since I bought the car and I've had it aligned at several different shops over the years so I'm a little hesitant to think that's the prob although I do agree that an old timer could probably make some improvements to it.

    TimAT: I know that I did change out the PS pump right after I bought the car back in '97 while I was working on the motor so I suppose that's a possibility.

    Vettehead Mickey: I swapped out the valve and cylinder with rebuilt parts from Vette Brakes a few years ago in an attempt to fix this prob and saw no change in the steering behavior. I am interested in experimenting with the control valve restrictor though. I suppose you have to remove it and tear it apart to change it out? what's the correct size and do you know what it does? what's it's function?

    Thanks

  9. #9
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    Member Vettehead Mikey's Avatar
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    I think that TimAT has it right, the restrictor is in the pump, not the control valve.

  10. #10
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    '73 4spd coupe, '04 6 speed coupe

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    Ok, thanks. I will do a search and see if I can figure out how to adjust it.

  11. #11
    Member TimAT's Avatar
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    Jim Shea is a retired engineer from GM's Saginaw steering division. Here is a link to his technical papers. Might save you some effort in searching.

    Jim Shea’s Steering Papers

    The pressure fitting is in the pump- it's the big nut that the pressure line screws into.

  12. #12
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    Corvette(s)
    1970 Stingray coupe

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    My car did the same thing and I have manual steering, so that leads me to believe it is not due to your power steering. Upon front end teardown I found the lower ball joints to be severly worn, the upper ones were fine. If u see rivets holding on the ball joints, that probably means they have never been changed. Make sure those are okay and check other stuff in the steering system. You may want to replace the steering box with a rebuilt unit. Also check the tie rod ends and rag joint.

  13. #13

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    Corvette(s)
    '67 Marina Blue Convertible

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    It's not the power steering - it's worn front suspension components, alignment, and tires.

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