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Old 07-24-2009, 12:55 PM   #1
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rack and pinion?

has anyone ever had to replace their own rack and pinion unit themselves before?? im at that point where mines is so screwed when i hit a bump the car swerves on its own and im afraid i might side swipe another driver if i let this issue continue. Any ideas .org gurus? if not atleast some ideas as to maybe i have something loose somewhere that needs to be tightened and DIY's? thanks
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Old 07-24-2009, 01:32 PM   #2
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of COURSE there are people, here, who have replaced the unit themselves. i presume you mean buying a new/reman, and swapping it out. took me about three hours, iirc, to pull the old one, and install the new one. before you go and replace the rack, double check your control arm bushings (both front and back), ball joints, end links, etc. make sure they are in good condition. they are a little cheaper to replace, and easier to replace, too.

rack removal is a pita. gotta rotate, position, push, pull, twist, push, pull, swear, go find a tree to punch, drink a beer while fuming (you did just break your hand, punching a tree, after all), push, pull, rotate, and it's free!(...maybe).
reinstalling it is easier, as you just figured out the easiest way to get it out, it goes in the same way.
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Old 07-24-2009, 01:36 PM   #3
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personally i don't think your symptoms are necessarily the rack.... it could a problem with the suspension (bushings, strut mounts, struts, ball joints, tierods, etc). for example if your camber is positive will cause the car to be pretty unstable. and if your struts are bad it'll cause the car to have like... aftershocks, which can make it tricky to hold the car tidy around a bend in the road if there's a pothole or something. go to an alignment shop first and have them check all the specs.. and ask for a spec sheet.

if it's the struts (and strut mounts... i KNOW yours are phucked) then obviously you know what you gotta replace. how soft is the suspension when you push on the bumper? i don't remember if yours were OK or not.

i'm staying busy these days so i don't think i'll be able to do anything with your car in person but my car is just as darty/scary but i've mostly narrowed down what the problems are.... but i can't have the car down for service anymore with my job.
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1986 Nissan 300zx: VG30E | NA2T + FMIC | 5spd swap w/
30A | R200 CLSD | Bilstein | MSA 26mm sways | 88/89T susp/brakes + Poly | 17x9 Cobra-R's w/ 255(f)/275(r)-40-17
1987 Oldsmobile Cutlass Supreme Sedan: V6 3.8 2bbl | 3spd Auto | 85-87 IROC-Z 16x8 | LT1 + T56 and suspension mods coming soon...
1990 Nissan Maxima GXE: VG30E | VLSD 5spd Swap | A33b F BBK | Z31 R BBK | Eibach | Tokico | Addco RSB | ASP | Warpspeed | G35 Sedan 17x7
1997 Audi A4: V6 2.8 | 5spd | Quattro AWD | Santorin Blue Pearl
1998 Nissan Pathfinder SE: VG33E | 5spd | 4WD | Towing Package
2001 BMW 530i: M54B30 I6 | 5spd | Sport package

(I think I need more cars)

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I find it to be thick and delightful

Last edited by CapedCadaver; 07-24-2009 at 01:39 PM..
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Old 07-24-2009, 05:28 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MaximaFan4140 View Post
has anyone ever had to replace their own rack and pinion unit themselves before?? im at that point where mines is so screwed when i hit a bump the car swerves on its own and im afraid i might side swipe another driver if i let this issue continue. Any ideas .org gurus? if not atleast some ideas as to maybe i have something loose somewhere that needs to be tightened and DIY's? thanks
check ur control arm bushings...they r most likely to go bad and causes wat u have explained...plus easy fix....
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Old 07-24-2009, 05:33 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by burhan92SE View Post
check ur control arm bushings...they r most likely to go bad and causes wat u have explained...plus easy fix....
HAHAHAHA.... tell that to the >9000 curse words i muttered while doing mine... i've worked on this dude's car before (did his engine swap earlier this year) and there were a decent amount of stuck bolts and stuff on it. so it's not gonna be fun for him. but honestly he really needs to do struts+mounts too, cuz his strut mounts were cracked beyond the point which i'd actually be driving the darn thing...
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1986 Nissan 300zx: VG30E | NA2T + FMIC | 5spd swap w/
30A | R200 CLSD | Bilstein | MSA 26mm sways | 88/89T susp/brakes + Poly | 17x9 Cobra-R's w/ 255(f)/275(r)-40-17
1987 Oldsmobile Cutlass Supreme Sedan: V6 3.8 2bbl | 3spd Auto | 85-87 IROC-Z 16x8 | LT1 + T56 and suspension mods coming soon...
1990 Nissan Maxima GXE: VG30E | VLSD 5spd Swap | A33b F BBK | Z31 R BBK | Eibach | Tokico | Addco RSB | ASP | Warpspeed | G35 Sedan 17x7
1997 Audi A4: V6 2.8 | 5spd | Quattro AWD | Santorin Blue Pearl
1998 Nissan Pathfinder SE: VG33E | 5spd | 4WD | Towing Package
2001 BMW 530i: M54B30 I6 | 5spd | Sport package

(I think I need more cars)

Quote:
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I have the strangest boner right now.....
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Originally Posted by litch View Post
I find it to be thick and delightful
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Old 07-26-2009, 10:16 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MaximaFan4140 View Post
has anyone ever had to replace their own rack and pinion unit themselves before?? im at that point where mines is so screwed when i hit a bump the car swerves on its own and im afraid i might side swipe another driver if i let this issue continue. Any ideas .org gurus? if not atleast some ideas as to maybe i have something loose somewhere that needs to be tightened and DIY's? thanks
sounds like your control arm bushings. a bit of a pain to change but not that bad. but like everyone has told you on here it does seem like its your control arms. but if you say its the rack check the boots, are they torn, are you leaking fluid from the rack? changing the rack is also a pain but if you are mechanically inclined it shouldn't be a problem. once its loose just pull it from the driver side while twisting it around and it will slide out. the new unit will go in the same way. took me a the whole day to do since it was my first time, then get it aligned and your done. enjoy
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Old 07-29-2009, 11:36 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GRNMAXDMON View Post
sounds like your control arm bushings. a bit of a pain to change but not that bad. but like everyone has told you on here it does seem like its your control arms. but if you say its the rack check the boots, are they torn, are you leaking fluid from the rack? changing the rack is also a pain but if you are mechanically inclined it shouldn't be a problem. once its loose just pull it from the driver side while twisting it around and it will slide out. the new unit will go in the same way. took me a the whole day to do since it was my first time, then get it aligned and your done. enjoy

seeing as when i took it to a muffler shop to get my 2.25 custom catback installed they said that it was my rack that was leaking and said it would run me almost 1500 to replace my rack...so i had to laugh at him while driving away...unfortunately 1500 aint something im going to pay to replace that cuz for one it sounds like a rip off and two ill replace parts on it piece by piece be4 i come out of the pocket 1500 for one damn fix lol
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VG30E...2.5" Custom Catback to 3" Muffler...20" S-Tech Black on Chrome..
VQ30DE...3" Nismo full exhaust...18" Radd Chrome Rims...R-33 Skyline Full Body Kit with Custom SLR Fenders...Fully Debadged.
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Old 07-29-2009, 06:11 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MaximaFan4140 View Post
seeing as when i took it to a muffler shop to get my 2.25 custom catback installed they said that it was my rack that was leaking and said it would run me almost 1500 to replace my rack...so i had to laugh at him while driving away...unfortunately 1500 aint something im going to pay to replace that cuz for one it sounds like a rip off and two ill replace parts on it piece by piece be4 i come out of the pocket 1500 for one damn fix lol
DAMN! that is a rip off. and here i thought Pep Boys $700+ quote was too expensive for me??? looks like that shop is starving. i only spent $125 with core exchange. did the work myself and hasn't given me any problems... yet.
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Old 07-29-2009, 06:47 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MaximaFan4140 View Post
seeing as when i took it to a muffler shop to get my 2.25 custom catback installed they said that it was my rack that was leaking and said it would run me almost 1500 to replace my rack...so i had to laugh at him while driving away...unfortunately 1500 aint something im going to pay to replace that cuz for one it sounds like a rip off and two ill replace parts on it piece by piece be4 i come out of the pocket 1500 for one damn fix lol
well how much slack is in the steering when the car is off, and is the rack leaking any fluid? sometimes mechanics say stuff just to say stuff, assuming you don't know any better. and it's not uncommon for a mechanic to be wrong (hence the issue RMDL51 had with his JDM swap). If you have slack and clunking when the car is turned off and sitting still, then it's more likely the rack than if you had slack and clunking ONLY when the car was moving.
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1986 Nissan 300zx: VG30E | NA2T + FMIC | 5spd swap w/
30A | R200 CLSD | Bilstein | MSA 26mm sways | 88/89T susp/brakes + Poly | 17x9 Cobra-R's w/ 255(f)/275(r)-40-17
1987 Oldsmobile Cutlass Supreme Sedan: V6 3.8 2bbl | 3spd Auto | 85-87 IROC-Z 16x8 | LT1 + T56 and suspension mods coming soon...
1990 Nissan Maxima GXE: VG30E | VLSD 5spd Swap | A33b F BBK | Z31 R BBK | Eibach | Tokico | Addco RSB | ASP | Warpspeed | G35 Sedan 17x7
1997 Audi A4: V6 2.8 | 5spd | Quattro AWD | Santorin Blue Pearl
1998 Nissan Pathfinder SE: VG33E | 5spd | 4WD | Towing Package
2001 BMW 530i: M54B30 I6 | 5spd | Sport package

(I think I need more cars)

Quote:
Originally Posted by MinervaMaxxxima View Post
I have the strangest boner right now.....
Quote:
Originally Posted by litch View Post
I find it to be thick and delightful
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Old 07-29-2009, 06:47 PM
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