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Another "steering rack" question

1330 Views 6 Replies 3 Participants Last post by  codingparadox
I seem to be finding all of the standard Elige weaknesses with this car I bought. First the rear toe links, now a rapidly-worsening front end clunk.

When I first got the car (~1000 miles ago, 34k on the clock), I noticed just the slightest bit of clunking through the steering wheel. Rocking the car by the wheels hard didn't cause any clunking, but driving along I could feel clicking/tiny clunking through the steering wheel that slowly got worse.

Fast forward to a week ago, when I bought a bunch of new parts -- coilovers, rear toe links, V2Arms, new tie rod ends, and swaybar. I put them all on, and the clunk didn't change. By this point the clunk was bad enough that I could grab hard on the wheel and rock side to side and get a clunk with every change in direction. Pulling either front wheel off and checking it revealed a sound coming from the center of the car, not in either wheel well.

Fast forward to yesterday, when I had a track day, and the clunk was a fair bit worse by the end of the day. I can now, with the car stationary, just turn the steering wheel side to side and get a clunk. Same symptoms as before -- either wheel off, nothing is loose or clunks (and I went through every bolt in the front corners while I was doing the work last week).

My money was on steering rack from day 1, but after reading a ton of threads about how it seems to be a weak point, that seems to confirm my suspicions.

Anything else that it could really possibly be?

I was planning on upgrading to one of the quicker ratio racks (that give the bump steer advantage too) as I built the car, but it seems like that might be moving up in the schedule. :)
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Wheel bearings, a-arm bushings, ball joints, inner and outer tie rod ends, and the rack itself are all sources of the clunking. I've found it really hard to pinpoint the source on my own car. It has clunks and it has less than 6000 miles on it!
Definitely not wheel bearings. I've rocked the hell out of up/down and left/right and the clunk is definitely from further inboard. Outer tie rod ends were just replaced and possibly took a tiny bit of clunk out but the biggest source of the clunk is elsewhere. Inner tie rod ball joint could definitely be a culprit, but I consider that part of the steering rack. :D

A-arm bushings was the only other thing I was thinking about, but I tried beating the hell out of the control arms when I had it separate when I was installing the V2arms and couldn't find any nastiness in there.

Oh well. Been researching racks this afternoon, and it looks like the titanQR is what I'll probably end up with. I have an email out to S111 asking about whether I need to do the rack drop plates too, or whether, between the V2arms and the titanQR, I have enough drop geometry for my somewhat mild drop (110mm ride height).
I'm waiting for my clunking to get worse before I put in my TitanQR.

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have you already checked the torque on all the fasteners in the front end suspension/steering?
Yep. Everything other than bolts on the rack itself. Having just changed V2arms/swaybar/coilovers/tie rod ends, that covered almost everything, and while I was in there I checked bolts on control arms/the ball joints.
I'm waiting for my clunking to get worse before I put in my TitanQR.
Mine's pretty bad. :)

Wanna sell me your rack? ;-)
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