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B110 steering swap


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So im thinking about upgrading the steering on my pickup and since i cant find much on it i was wondering 

 

Has anyone ever used a center pivot steering? And what effects may it have on driving feedback?

 

Something like this:

JPEG_20190822_091824__10954_1_10954.jpg

 

 

Ive read that ideally it would be better to use one steering with the same pivot width as the stock steering rod so it doesnt change cornering characteristics.

But i have a couple like this laying around and i was wondering if anyone has ever done it and what results it had before i try to do anything.

 

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Long as there is clearance under the oil pan it should work. Ball joints compatible? It would get rid of several ball joints and the idler arm, sources of play in the system.

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I have to ask what are you hoping to gain? Steering feel? Quicker ratio?

 

I've been racing my 1200 for 33 years and I've never found the need for quicker steering. 

As for feel the feedback on the stock box is really good (note I also drive a single seat formula car as well as various Porsches). Many cars have better feedback. Miata is most notable as well as Porsche Cayman but you couldn't live on the difference given the amount of work involved. 

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I like to mod if there is a clear advantage or upgrade. Course I have done one or two that I learned after were basically a waste of time. There are some, like swapping IRS to replace leaf spring but it's more a technical exercise than a clear advantage. At the least trading one set of disadvantages for another. Then there is the not being able to find a replacement part and making something else work. Don't imagine there are too many 1200 steering boxes out there just like the 510, many of the internal parts, specially the bearings are NLA to rebuild.

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This is the part where my experience may not help. My car has the original 50 year old steering box in it. It's never been apart and it still functions fine.

 

With that said it became a race car in 1989, since that time it's likely only done 20,000 miles. The car only had about 103,000 miles on the odometer when we took it off the road. 

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On 5/10/2022 at 11:27 PM, Duncan said:

Thanks Duncan but ive already been there and a couple other places and still cant find the answer to what im looking for.

 

steering.jpg

This is the closest they get. They talk about changing bump steer and that the same width as original tie rod (which is the best to keep the suspension geometry the same) and how to narrow wider steerings but dont say anything about what im looking for.

 

On 5/11/2022 at 9:27 PM, Tom1200 said:

I have to ask what are you hoping to gain? Steering feel? Quicker ratio?

 

The only thing im trying is to regain THE steering of my pickup cause it has easily 100° of useless turn on the steering wheel and its almost a miracle to find someone that rebuilds these steering boxes nowadays.

 

And since i have a couple of these laying around i thought i could try and use them

 

On 5/11/2022 at 10:49 PM, datzenmike said:

I like to mod if there is a clear advantage or upgrade. Course I have done one or two that I learned after were basically a waste of time. There are some, like swapping IRS to replace leaf spring but it's more a technical exercise than a clear advantage. At the least trading one set of disadvantages for another. Then there is the not being able to find a replacement part and making something else work. Don't imagine there are too many 1200 steering boxes out there just like the 510, many of the internal parts, specially the bearings are NLA to rebuild.

Thats exactly the reason of most of the mods i have on my Pickup are done.

Its from '78 its been a workhorse most of its life in two countries(south africa on the early years and Portugal until today) ive done almost 200k kilometers with it since i bought it (i have no idea how many km on total it had when i bought it but by the looks of things i would say a lot) and its normal that stuff wears out.

A lot of parts are either unavailable nowadays or make 0 sense on keeping them on today standards(4wheel drum brakes was one of them). So before repairing anything i usually check if there is something i can gain from either modifying the part or upgrading the whole system.

 

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Usually steering racks have less travel then the box pitman arm setup.  Don't forget to calculate that in.  I wouldn't worry about the tie rods length being perfect.  Just shim out the bump when you are done installing the rack.  Pretty much anything feels better then a steering box.  

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11 hours ago, Icehouse said:

Usually steering racks have less travel then the box pitman arm setup.  Don't forget to calculate that in.  I wouldn't worry about the tie rods length being perfect.  Just shim out the bump when you are done installing the rack.  Pretty much anything feels better then a steering box.  

 

Yeah i can live with less travel. What im afraid is that i mess with something that i shouldnt and the handling gets worse.

 

But the way what do you mean by "shim out the bump"?

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Out of all the custom rack setups I did it never drove worse then the box.  Just the mile of slop being gone alone makes it feel so much better.  

 

Guys get heim joint outer tie rods, spacing them up or down changes the amount of bump steer.  

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7 hours ago, Icehouse said:

Out of all the custom rack setups I did it never drove worse then the box.  Just the mile of slop being gone alone makes it feel so much better.  

 

Guys get heim joint outer tie rods, spacing them up or down changes the amount of bump steer.  

 

Yeah thats what im trying to improve. Cause the adjustment bolt on the box is all the way in and um almost at the point of getting half a turn off nothing at the wheel.

 

But dont bump steer get affected more by the angle and lenght of the tie rods than by their position? Or did i misunderstood the whole concept?

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31 minutes ago, ESPANTA said:

 

Yeah thats what im trying to improve. Cause the adjustment bolt on the box is all the way in and um almost at the point of getting half a turn off nothing at the wheel.

 

But dont bump steer get affected more by the angle and lenght of the tie rods than by their position? Or did i misunderstood the whole concept?

 

 

After 3D modeling the 510 suspension for the rack conversion we made I don't think it's possible to "visualize" the rack location and guess what it might affect.  The biggest aw ha moment for me was realizing through our model that as the suspension compresses the tie rod tips back and thus a different curve is made with the tie rod.  Think caster angle increasing as the suspension compresses.  Our brain is only capable of seeing a 2D model suspension is 3D, way more then our brain can comprehend.   We played many rounds of the guess what this change will make, always being wrong.  

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3 hours ago, Icehouse said:

 

 

After 3D modeling the 510 suspension for the rack conversion we made I don't think it's possible to "visualize" the rack location and guess what it might affect.  The biggest aw ha moment for me was realizing through our model that as the suspension compresses the tie rod tips back and thus a different curve is made with the tie rod.  Think caster angle increasing as the suspension compresses.  Our brain is only capable of seeing a 2D model suspension is 3D, way more then our brain can comprehend.   We played many rounds of the guess what this change will make, always being wrong.  

 

I see. In the end it always comes down to the trial and error method anyway.

And thats why i was trying to find someone that used a steering like mine on a b110. Cause ive seen a lot of feedback but always from "conventional" type steering racks where the pivots are at the end of each rack.  Havent yet found a center pivot type used so i didnt have to find for myself that after all the work done it sucks and i need to redo everything and use a conventional steering rack

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The center-type will be just as good/bad as an improper-width conventional rack conversion. Doing all you can to get the tie rods parallel-ish with the suspension arms will help to minimize bump steer.  Yes, both angle and different lengths will affect bump steer. The more travel, the greater the bump steer.

 

As mentioned, measure the total travel of the new rack and compare to the old box. It's possible that the rack has a slower ratio. but needs to be paired with shorter steering arms in order to preserve a quicker feel. Shortening your current steering arms may be too much of a hassle. It might be easier to adapt a box from another vehicle, like some other solid-axle truck.

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