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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi,

I’ve had my 1994 (M) 9000 CSE EcoPower for a year now, she’s done almost 90k. I’ve reached a cross roads in car ownership – either part company with her and go for something else more agile, or spend a bit of time and money sprucing her up and keeping her for another few years…… guess which option won?!


SYMPTOMS
While everything else is still tight as ever, the steering has become ever-more stodgy and body roll is more pronounced than I’d like, especially at low speeds (town roundabouts etc).

More recently, at high speeds – especially during windy conditions – she’s a real handful to keep on the straight and narrow.

She’s just passed the MOT at a reputable garage, so I’m happy that there isn’t anything obviously worn out on the suspension/steering front (at least in the eyes of the government…..).

REMEDY
From searching past posts, I have decided to definitely renew the rear ARB bushes, and I’m thinking I need to check the steering rack bushes (any advice for doing so??)

From the symptoms I give, are there any other items you’d recommend checking/replacing? I’m wondering if it’s worth replacing the shocks and springs at this stage, although I can’t help feeling that there’s something more fundamental awry which is causing her to behave like a yank-tank

Cheers.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Cheers Mark. Assume you mean just replacing rear ARB bushes?

Do you know if replacing the wishbone bushes to poly will drastically affect the ride quality? Not that I'm hugely bothered - just wondered... anything to get over the terrible wondering at speed.....
 

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I mean replacing front and rear ARB bushes and the front wishbone bushes... i.e these :






I did these on my former 9000 2.3T Griffin .. I also had abbott springs, Koni adjustables and the rear Abbott ARB fitted... liffed the handling into another league. From yank tank to at least something European and sharp.
 

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I will second MarkA's reply Jules. A few months ago, after reading several threads on this forum, I had Abbott poly (less harsh than some), Abbott springs and Koni adjustables fitted to my 145K mile 98 CSE Anniversary 2.3T -


I found it was much cheaper to find a Saab specialist who had done the job before than giving the whole lot to Abbot - they charge a lot for the Konis.

The Saab shocks seem to pass MOT's forever; my last 9000 was passing MOT's on the origionals at 250K miles
. The trouble is the standard suspension is rather soft when new and wallows even more as the miles mount up.

HTH.
Chris
 

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Originally posted by Jules:
[qb]   

More recently, at high speeds – especially during windy conditions – she’s a real handful to keep on the straight and narrow.

[/qb][/b]
Sounds to me like there is something fundamentally amiss here. The car should not get blown around. The one thing that the MOT does not properly test is the dampers. Unfortunately, very few garages have damper test rigs. However, I would not expect Saab dampers (Sachs gas I believe) to be dead at 90,000 miles.

However, if the car is as bad as you describe, I think there is something wrong. I would hate you to spend money on new bushes/springs/dampers/whatever and then find that there is a more fundamental problem.

I'm not trying to scare you (honestly), but it might be worth a second look underneath before you part with the hard earned.
 

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hi jules,have you checked the tracking?.if that was out the steering would be most unpleasant.just an idea.i think mark b is right,as changing bushes etc is an "upgrade"and not a cure,if you have a basic fault.
simon
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Cheers for all your input. Hmmm..... all 4 tyres are new (2000 or so miles), and the tracking was one of the first things I had checked and adjusted when I bought her.

Perhaps my comment about it being "a real handful" was slightly overkill.

What I was trying to describe was essentially "wondering". For example, I find strong winds affect most cars at high speeds, i.e. a gust might require you to adjust the steering very slightly to remain on course. My steering feels too slack around the centre position, so such an adjustment requires "too much" movement of the steering wheel.

It's the slackness of the steering that's the problem: When travelling along in a straight line (high or low speed) I can wiggle the steering wheel a couple of inches either way, without really turning the car. All that happens is a slight rocking of the body. This effect at motorway speeds in windy conditions is rather disconcerting!


Does this sound like anything other than the ARB & wishbone bushes already suggested (and taken on board!) to anyone?

Cheers for now!
 

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It's the slackness of the steering that's the problem: When travelling along in a straight line (high or low speed) I can wiggle the steering wheel a couple of inches either way, without really turning the car. All that happens is a slight rocking of the body. This effect at motorway speeds in windy conditions is rather disconcerting!  [/b]
This is the problem I have at the moment, I have poly ARB both front, droplink bushes and front frame bushes. At first it was great, but now it's 10months down the line handling is not quite what I would like. Certainly at speed on rough roads the car seems unstable, very disconcerting. I'm going for a full spring/shock's kit in the next few weeks and I hope that with a bit of tightening of other nuts and bolts that this should sort the car out.

The next stage after that will be a front strut brace, then I reckon if things are still lacklustre I'll look at having some work done on the steering rack.
 

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Check for wear on the steering rack bushes. Wiggle the steering wheel at rest and watch for the rack moving side to side. My Aero did this. I went the whole hog and fitted poly bushes, but rubber ones would probably have made a great improvement. You might find you just need to tighten the mounting bolts.

Check both front hub nuts for tightness (36mm nut, torque to 320Nm).

Poly front bushes are great, yes, but a lot of their improvement can be realised by fitting new standard rubber ones at a fraction of the cost. Worn bushes can make a real mess of handling and high-speed stability.
 
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