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Old 04-28-2012, 05:30 PM   #1
Spaghettiohead
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1999 SC2
Default Rack and Pinion Replacement

Thinking about it while I have the engine out and the work would be easy...but does the system have to be bled afterwards? When I get the engine back in, I want the car to be ready to go so I can break it in properly without fiddling with anything (I'll be holding off on the rear wheel bearings so I don't have to bleed those for the same reason). Can't find much in the Haynes manual...Thanks!

Andrew

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Old 04-28-2012, 06:02 PM   #2
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Default Re: Rack and Pinion Replacement

It will help to put your car stats into your profile so it comes up under your name.

Replacing the rack and pinion, if necessary, won't be the nightmare some feel when addressing brake bleeding, provided a full understanding of simple hydraulics doesn't confuse a person. The power assisted steering only uses two hoses to the pump and makes bleeding pretty simple compared to brake bleeding. Once pwr steering fluid is drained as much as possible and the r&p is replaced with all hoses connected, refilling with fresh pwr steering fluid is next before bleeding air from the system. Once the reservoir container is filled the engine is started and allowed to idle. All you have to do is simply turn the steering wheel right or left, slowly, until the wheel stops then turn in the opposite direction slowly until the wheel stops. That's it!? Slowly turn the steering wheel from full right to full left, pausing a moment before turning in the opposite direction. The engine turning the pwr steering pump is already forcing fresh fluid into each side of the r&p unit and any air is automatically forced out into the return line. Several cycles, slowly turning in each direction will allow the pump to move fluid into each side while forcing air out. Monitor the reservoir container and top off as necessary, preferably at the end of each full right/left cycle. After several steering cycles you can drive, slowly, to check steering until it feels normal. No rocket science compared to brake bleeding/flushing procedures.

...
*The CPS is the heart of the entire EFI system. No cps = dead EFI system*
*There's more to a/c than just a few cans of refrigerant*
*There's more to brakes than just replacing parts*

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Old 04-29-2012, 05:39 PM   #3
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Default Re: Rack and Pinion Replacement

Hmmm...only thing I'm worried about is having to deal with any type of bleeding issue when I really have to get the engine on the road for a proper break-in. Really don't want anything to get in the way of that :-/ maybe I'll wait...a shame being my engine compartment is empty right now!

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Old 04-29-2012, 10:58 PM   #4
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Default Re: Rack and Pinion Replacement

FWIW, I have a pending rack replacement as well. I'm just waiting for a dry week to do it so my Son can also do a proper alignment afterwards.

From what I've read, the biggest hassle is with the column attachment and it would obviously be much easier with an empty engine bay.

I sympathize on the "not throwing another wrench in the works" thought. Hopefully we will be doing it next weekend and can let you know what it's like?

...
1997 - SL2, barebones, 161k, Auto - Rebuild complete and.. burnt a valve 20k later Arrgh!
Purchased 114k 10/07
Added OEM CC

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Old 04-30-2012, 06:52 PM   #5
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Default Re: Rack and Pinion Replacement

Off-track...that would be great, please do - and good luck!

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Old 04-30-2012, 09:50 PM   #6
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Default Re: Rack and Pinion Replacement

Just a heads-up, the Haynes manual says to bleed the system, THEN start the engine and allow it to run for a couple of minutes. I just assumed to bleed it you'd need the power steering pump operating? If this is the case, I may just go ahead and replace it all and be ridiculously careful not to screw anything up so she's ready for the break-in when I do end up starting her up.

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Old 04-30-2012, 10:18 PM   #7
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Default Re: Rack and Pinion Replacement

I do not think that is correct, Haynes is full of errors.

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Old 04-30-2012, 10:26 PM   #8
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Default Re: Rack and Pinion Replacement

From the FSM.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Selection_023.jpg (154.9 KB, 17 views)

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Old 04-30-2012, 10:40 PM   #9
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Default Re: Rack and Pinion Replacement

Quote:
Originally Posted by OldNuc View Post
I do not think that is correct, Haynes is full of errors.
Apparently the FSM is full of errors as well. In the first sentence they forgot to add the spec that the fluid must meet.

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Old 04-30-2012, 10:40 PM   #10
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Default Re: Rack and Pinion Replacement

Thanks OldNuc...they look similar enough in this case...looks like bleed the system by moving the wheel side-to-side several times with the engine off, then turning it on and allowing it to run for a couple minutes. Guess that would give me time to check the entire engine for leaks while it's warming up before I roll it out of the shop and break-in those piston rings?

And while I've got you, my power-steering pump dropped on the engine-pull, hitting the sub-frame fairly hard...damaged the pulley slightly (figure it's okay, missing small sections of the raised groove and I'll double-check for sharp edges). If I do change out the pulley, however, how do I make sure the new one goes on the same distance? From what I understand I can over-tighten it, or is it obvious enough that I can measure the pulley-to-pump distance before-hand?

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Old 04-30-2012, 10:56 PM   #11
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Default Re: Rack and Pinion Replacement

FWIW, the replacement rack came with the same (engine off) bleed followed with after engine start level check instructions.

I just noticed the tie rod end to knuckle spec of (19 lbs ft) +134 though! That doesn't sound like much fun?

...
1997 - SL2, barebones, 161k, Auto - Rebuild complete and.. burnt a valve 20k later Arrgh!
Purchased 114k 10/07
Added OEM CC

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Old 04-30-2012, 11:03 PM   #12
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1998 SC2
Default Re: Rack and Pinion Replacement

Quote:
Originally Posted by Spaghettiohead View Post
Thanks OldNuc...they look similar enough in this case...looks like bleed the system by moving the wheel side-to-side several times with the engine off, then turning it on and allowing it to run for a couple minutes. Guess that would give me time to check the entire engine for leaks while it's warming up before I roll it out of the shop and break-in those piston rings?

Allow new engine to idle and fan to cycle twice, then back off ramps or remove jack stands and shut off and allow to cool. Change oil and filter and refill with at least a name brand synthetic blend and a pure one PL20195 filter. Be sure that the oil level is at or very slightly above full when car is on a level surface. Run car gently until the oil consumption stabilizes at zero, may take no time at all to several hundred miles. once stabilized change oil and filter and go with whatever you want, full synthetic recommended and the above Pure One filter as a minimum.


And while I've got you, my power-steering pump dropped on the engine-pull, hitting the sub-frame fairly hard...damaged the pulley slightly (figure it's okay, missing small sections of the raised groove and I'll double-check for sharp edges). If I do change out the pulley, however, how do I make sure the new one goes on the same distance? From what I understand I can over-tighten it, or is it obvious enough that I can measure the pulley-to-pump distance before-hand?
You lay the belt over the alternator and the A/C compressor and pull tight by hand and while holding belt see that it has the same tension on the inside and outside of the PS pump pulley. I would replace the pulley on the pump as they are cheap. If the P/S pulley is not lined up then it will be slightly twisted where it crosses the P/S pulley. If wrong it is obvious. Measuring is allowed as well.
Have fun...

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Old 04-30-2012, 11:18 PM   #13
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Default Re: Rack and Pinion Replacement

You're a riot, OldNuc. Rebuilding this engine, I almost feel as though I ought to hand my freshly-renewed man-card right back to you, as you're doing everything but the wrenching haha...

I'm assuming you have a particular method to break-in the engine? All conventional wisdom I've heard (and how I've broken-in a Corolla and several motorcycles with no issues) has you load up the pistons on both sides over the first several miles to seat them properly...then drive somewhat normally over the next thousand, though avoiding prolonged time at any given RPM. What are your thoughts?

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Old 05-01-2012, 12:41 AM   #14
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Default Re: Rack and Pinion Replacement

If you used good rings and honed the cylinders correctly the rings will seat before the fan comes on. Only wide cast iron rings in cast iron pistons require loading. The idea is to allow the auto to shift at part throttle or with a manual shift at 3k or so, part throttle as well, and avoid steady RPM cursing for a couple hundred miles. Closed throttle coast and no down-shift braking. Allow auto to down-shift on its own. Rings are seated when oil level is stable after a 6-8 hour drain down time with car on level surface. This can be confirmed by pulling plugs and checking center electrodes for even color.

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Old 05-01-2012, 07:27 PM   #15
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Default Re: Rack and Pinion Replacement

Hmmm...so I shouldn't downshift and engine brake (manual transmission) to pressure the rings from the other side?

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Old 05-01-2012, 08:08 PM   #16
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Default Re: Rack and Pinion Replacement

Nope, not necessary. The closed throttle coast does the same thing without the possibility of ring damage. It is also useful to drop speed using part throttle which will have the speed decrease and stabilize at a new lower speed.

As I said, rings should seat before the fan comes on the 2nd time on the first startup. Remember the first start is a start and allow to idle without any throttle manipulation until the fan cycles twice and the shut off to be allowed to cool and then oil and filter changed.

The quality of the finish on a set of rings is vastly improved over what was available in the mid 70s so do not use mid 70s procedures. For break-in. Not to mention the huge advances in oil and cylinder finish.

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Old 05-01-2012, 09:08 PM   #17
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Default Re: Rack and Pinion Replacement

The whole idling thing for break-in scares the crap out of me...I won't lie! But I trust you...Let the fan come on twice, oil-change, and then I'll take her out for some only moderate accel/decel. Yikes!

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Old 05-01-2012, 09:18 PM   #18
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Default Re: Rack and Pinion Replacement

It works. The sit and idle gives you a chance to actually look for and fix the leaks before you dump 4 quarts of oil or all the coolant on the ground behind the car while going down the road. Initial oil fill is 4 1/2 quart + full filter and prime system before start, do not start dry.

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Old 05-01-2012, 10:01 PM   #19
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Default Re: Rack and Pinion Replacement

Will do, OldNuc...hopefully I get that far!

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Old 05-05-2012, 09:23 PM   #20
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Default Re: Rack and Pinion Replacement

Just for reference.. We replaced the rack today. Kicking myself for not snapping a few pictures though.

It wasn't too difficult at all compared to others I've seen. There is a fair amount of room to work. It is a little tight getting a flare wrench on the hose fittings and those would be a snap with the engine out. The steering shaft pinch bolt was facing the drivers wheel well so that was no big deal with the splash guard removed. If the engine is out you might not have to take off the shield though?

When you remove the pressure hose it will drain the PS reservoir and takes ~15-20 minutes to do so.

The end to end dimensions of the two racks were identical. We marked the tie rod ends and cinch bolts with paint and then counted the turns off the old and on the new rack.

The replacement rack came with the pinion already charged with fluid. We refilled the reservoir with one bottle of PS fluid (1/2 at a time) and it bubbled in. 20 turns side to side with engine off and it didn't drop at all. Started the engine and the level immediately dropped. Another ~1/2 bottle brought it up, re-did several stop to stops with the wheel and, it didn't change at all.

After a test drive it seems just like before the R&R. Next up, my son will do an alignment just to be sure it's in spec.

...
1997 - SL2, barebones, 161k, Auto - Rebuild complete and.. burnt a valve 20k later Arrgh!
Purchased 114k 10/07
Added OEM CC

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