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Thread: Steering rack failure and fix ?

  1. #1
    Regular Nige's Avatar
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    Steering rack failure and fix ?

    I had a steering rack failure on the Golf at Ringmeisters last week. Not something I`ve come across before...


    We heard a groaning BEFORE the jump lap. Thought the rack was loose but the steering felt fine so we checked it but everything was tight.

    Even though the nearside has an aluminium saddle instead of the stock rubber & U bolt, that was still sliding. That was causing the groan / knock we heard.


    Because the pinion was still solidly bolted to the subframe, the steering feel wasn`t affected. I had welded some small plates either side of the mounting lugs after the rack moved at the Nurburgring trackday the other year. Even if the bolts are loose, the rack is still fixed.



    Obviously, I have a spare.


    Looking at other Power steering racks, I see a Porsche rack is solidly bolted at each end


    My solution is to weld a 3mm plate to the subframe


    Made a bolt on bracket from 3mm plate


    That bolts onto the rod change mounting bracket which is welded to the steel piston tube from the factory. Whilst the stock mounts will work as usual, this should remove the strain on the central aluminium part that had broken.


    The old rack had lasted years, but I suspect the 17" slicks, Aero and loads I`m putting through it were more than the casing was designed for. Oh, and kerb use too


    Have I missed something really obvious here There are several experts on NL, so thought I`d ask for opinions and be educated

  2. #2
    Regular Neil Mac's Avatar
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    I'm no expert, but all current Nissan racks are solidly bolted to the subframe at both ends.

    I'm glad this detail was already in my signature...
    "Fortunately, I'd taken a spare Gearbox, Turbo, Actuator, Banjo Connector, Steering Rack, Driveshafts, ECU, Wideband sensor, 57-51mm silicone reducing elbow and a Copper Banjo Washer." - Nige

  3. #3
    The heat from the turbo maybe lowering the racks alloy properties? Do you have any heat shielding to cover it in the area of the crack?
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  4. #4
    Regular Nige's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by thesmudge View Post
    The heat from the turbo maybe lowering the racks alloy properties? Do you have any heat shielding to cover it in the area of the crack?
    I do. It's a cut down e36 aluminium heatshield from the tunnel.

    Protects the steering column, uj, rack and bulkhead.

    You can see the column and bulkhead protection on this photo.
    Last edited by Nige; 08-09-2018 at 03:29 PM.

  5. #5
    You need to link the picture of it doing 160+ MPH just for worst case shock value
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  6. #6
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    A bit support in the form of a saddle block ? where it has cracked.
    You seem to have beefed up lateral movement but not vertical.
    I.e the rack is trying to 'banana' up/down between the mounting points.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Weeman View Post
    You need to link the picture of it doing 160+ MPH just for worst case shock value
    Not really. the actually steering was unaffected as the pinion and rack were still solidly mounted. It`s the sleeve that failed.

    Anyway, if we started thinking `what if` whilst on track, nobody would do it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Fitz711 View Post
    A bit support in the form of a saddle block ? where it has cracked.
    You seem to have beefed up lateral movement but not vertical.
    I.e the rack is trying to 'banana' up/down between the mounting points.
    It is bolted to the subframe under the pinion, the other end has a saddle and I agree, it was trying to banana.

    I hope that is addressed with the plate I fitted which is holding the strongest part of the rack in place. The piston tube is steel, the rest is aluminium. It is stopping lateral and vertical movement, but admittedly the short section between the pinion and piston tube is unsupported. That`s under half of the original unsupported length.

    I do see what you are saying, but I`m wondering just how far I need to go
    Last edited by Nige; 10-09-2018 at 09:45 AM.

  8. #8
    Regular Stace's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Weeman View Post
    You need to link the picture of it doing 160+ MPH just for worst case shock value
    I just shivered like someone just had a rave party on my grave
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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nige View Post
    It is bolted to the subframe under the pinion, the other end has a saddle and I agree, it was trying to banana.

    I do see what you are saying, but I`m wondering just how far I need to go
    I think you've answered the question yourself-a saddle over all the unsupported area or as much as possible, possibly made out of Nylon & supported in the vertical plain through the subframe.
    It's then just one less thing to worry about.
    Last edited by Fitz711; 10-09-2018 at 01:42 PM.

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