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Old 08-05-2009, 09:46 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Steering Rack

I'm thinking I've got a bit of a steering rack issue coming to light on my 05 Elise. Past few weeks the play in the steering wheel has become quite a bit more noticable (unless I'm going crazy) and I do hear some clunks/jiggles when going over small bumps at low speeds. After researching on here sounds like it's probably a rack issue.

My questions are:

1-Was this a factory recall or am I ish out of luck since warranty has expired?
2-Any DIY's out there?
3-Anyone use the S111 rack instead of buying a new stocky?
4-Typical price quotes from dealers for rack/install/alignment?

Thanks!
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Old 08-05-2009, 10:57 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Lots of threads about this. I think I can say you're on your own if the warranty expired. Your main choices for replacement are from Sector 111 and Eliseparts. Lots of people who got factory replacements had them wear out too, although the problem may finally be fixed. You can do it yourself if you feel comfortable working on the steering.
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Old 08-05-2009, 11:06 AM   #3 (permalink)
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I ordered the titanQR from Sector111 a couple weeks ago. Backordered. I plan on installing myself when it arrives.

I have seen some posts asking for comments on users who have installed this rack and nobody seems to respond. I sure hope it is not because they are embarrassed on how bad it is.
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Old 08-05-2009, 11:13 AM   #4 (permalink)
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dbisbee,
I guess you'll be letting us know how bad/good it is then, huh?
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Old 08-05-2009, 07:17 PM   #5 (permalink)
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As far as I know, there are 3 sites selling the rack:
1. Sector 111 only for LHD USD625.00
2. Eliseparts.com has EP Tuning normal and quick ratio for both LHD and RHD, Elise Parts - from USD557.00 to USD599.00.
3. elise-shop.com has Hurricane normal and quick ratio for both LHD and RHD, Steering parts : Elise Shop, Performance parts for your Lotus Elise from USD571.00 to USD590.00.

But I guess they all come from the same after market factory.
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Old 08-05-2009, 10:28 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Wow, this is EXACTLY what I've been researching lately. I'm in the same boat my warranty JUST expired and the rack is starting to go. I was contacted by Shinoo from Sector111 about their TitanQR. Seems like a good alternative, didn't know about the one from eliseparts.com so I guess I'll check that out too. Thanks for the info hopefully people here will update how their install or new aftermarket rack worked out.
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Old 08-06-2009, 03:56 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HKFEVER View Post
As far as I know, there are 3 sites selling the rack:
1. Sector 111 only for LHD USD625.00
2. Eliseparts.com has EP Tuning normal and quick ratio for both LHD and RHD, Elise Parts - from USD557.00 to USD599.00.
3. elise-shop.com has Hurricane normal and quick ratio for both LHD and RHD, Steering parts : Elise Shop, Performance parts for your Lotus Elise from USD571.00 to USD590.00.

But I guess they all come from the same after market factory.
That's my understanding as well, some outside company made them for the Elise originally, then apparently they started charging to much because they upgraded the parts, I guess Lotus didn't want to pay that so they went elsewhere and here we are with the weird racks (that is mostly speculation). I like the S111 guys and their customer service so I'm going to go that route.

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Originally Posted by cd4age View Post
Wow, this is EXACTLY what I've been researching lately. I'm in the same boat my warranty JUST expired and the rack is starting to go. I was contacted by Shinoo from Sector111 about their TitanQR. Seems like a good alternative, didn't know about the one from eliseparts.com so I guess I'll check that out too. Thanks for the info hopefully people here will update how their install or new aftermarket rack worked out.
Yep, I've got my name on the list for a Titan, currently they are sitting in US Customs and awaiting arrival to the S111 offices.
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Old 08-06-2009, 07:37 AM   #8 (permalink)
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I'll be doing this at some point too. Mine has been clunky for a while and of course while in warranty the dealer could never "find anything" on it.
As of yesterday my blower motor started a high pitch rattlely sound too so I know I have a few projects on the eventual horizon. Oh well, I drive the heck out of my car. After 50K miles some little things are bound to come up. I still like it as much as the day I got it 4 years ago though.
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Old 08-06-2009, 10:20 AM   #9 (permalink)
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I'll be doing this at some point too. Mine has been clunky for a while and of course while in warranty the dealer could never "find anything" on it.
As of yesterday my blower motor started a high pitch rattlely sound too so I know I have a few projects on the eventual horizon. Oh well, I drive the heck out of my car. After 50K miles some little things are bound to come up. I still like it as much as the day I got it 4 years ago though.
You're lucky it lasted that long, I'm at 10k and it's shotty. Looks like the Titans are in earlier than expected. I ordered mine up today with an HNT Pad!

I'm going to shoot to install the rack in the next few weeks...after the dealer quoted me an absurd amount I decided to tackle it on my own and hopefully provide a reference for all you guys when it comes to the install.
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Old 08-06-2009, 11:49 AM   #10 (permalink)
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I checked the service manual (I hope you have one) and it doesn't look like a difficult job.

Remove wheels, break ball joints, remove 4 bolts in footwell, remove rack.

I'd say making sure the steering wheel is on straight when putting it back together is the hardest part.
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Old 08-06-2009, 12:47 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by buzzy View Post
I checked the service manual (I hope you have one) and it doesn't look like a difficult job.

Remove wheels, break ball joints, remove 4 bolts in footwell, remove rack.

I'd say making sure the steering wheel is on straight when putting it back together is the hardest part.
I think it would be a good idea to get alignment done after too. I guess we'll all be doing our rack installs soon.

Does anyone have one of those other aftermarket racks from the above post installed? I see those r 2.2 racks vs Sector111's 2.5.
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Old 08-06-2009, 01:03 PM   #12 (permalink)
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I must be spending too much time at work....I was sure this thread would have something to do with silicone implants
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Old 08-06-2009, 01:18 PM   #13 (permalink)
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I must be spending too much time at work....I was sure this thread would have something to do with silicone implants


I heard through the LT grapevine that plastique999 is an expert at DIY rack upgrades
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Old 08-06-2009, 03:41 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by buzzy View Post
I checked the service manual (I hope you have one) and it doesn't look like a difficult job.

Remove wheels, break ball joints, remove 4 bolts in footwell, remove rack.

I'd say making sure the steering wheel is on straight when putting it back together is the hardest part.
Yep, that can always be fixed during the alignment as well.

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Originally Posted by cd4age View Post
I think it would be a good idea to get alignment done after too. I guess we'll all be doing our rack installs soon.

Does anyone have one of those other aftermarket racks from the above post installed? I see those r 2.2 racks vs Sector111's 2.5.
I'm going to soon and an alignment is an absolute definite. My car came to me w/ the wheel a bit off so I suspect something has been up w/ that for awhile anyways.
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Old 08-06-2009, 04:09 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Yep, that can always be fixed during the alignment as well.
While the steering wheel can be straightened by changing the tie rod lenghts during an alignment so they are not equal, this is not the correct way to set the steering wheel for straight ahead if the steering wheel is more than 5 degrees off from the centered rack. You need to align the steering column lower clamp to the centered pinion splines on the rack to within 5 degrees of straight ahead for the steering wheel. Anything more than this will screw up the Ackerman effect (the difference in rate at which each wheel is turned when the steering wheel is turned) of the front wheels so that one is steered at a faster rate than the other with steering input. This will adversely affect the handling characteristics of the car while cornering and should be avoided as much as possible.
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Old 08-06-2009, 04:53 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by buzzy View Post
I checked the service manual (I hope you have one) and it doesn't look like a difficult job.

Remove wheels, break ball joints, remove 4 bolts in footwell, remove rack.

I'd say making sure the steering wheel is on straight when putting it back together is the hardest part.
Can you scan those pages in and post?
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Old 08-06-2009, 06:41 PM   #17 (permalink)
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Beware, one of the LT member in HK did installed a new rack, but the new one has louder cluck than the original one. So he need to remove it and ship it back for replacement. And he did the installation in 2 times at his cost.

Check the condition before install.
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Old 08-06-2009, 07:08 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Can you scan those pages in and post?
I don't have a scanner, however here are some photos of the pages describing installing the rack, adjusting the preload, and centering the steering wheel.

Attachment 129835

Attachment 129836

Attachment 129837

Attachment 129838
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Rack 004.JPG (722.8 KB, 210 views)
File Type: jpg Rack 005.JPG (713.3 KB, 209 views)
File Type: jpg Rack 002.JPG (747.5 KB, 210 views)
File Type: jpg Rack 003.JPG (727.1 KB, 210 views)
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Old 08-06-2009, 08:22 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by tesprit View Post
I don't have a scanner, however here are some photos of the pages describing installing the rack, adjusting the preload, and centering the steering wheel.

Attachment 129835

Attachment 129836

Attachment 129837

Attachment 129838
wow awesome thank you!
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Old 08-12-2009, 02:01 PM   #20 (permalink)
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I think I'm having the same issue. Took the car to the dealer today. I knew there was a screw in the front right tire but didn't think it could have been causing the clunking. Bad news is the warranty expired about 2 weeks ago!!!

They're still diagnosing the problem...
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