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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi,

Has does anyone have any idea how straight forward/difficult it is to replace:

The front control arm butterfly bushes?
The Steering bushes?

Is there a documented procedure anywhere, or is the Haynes documentation is adequate?

I’m hoping to cure my high speed shudder, wondering and the single “clunk” I get when turning the wheel from lock to lock.


Many thanks,
Jules
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks for suggestion Trollbooster. Sorry about late response, have been busy!

The symptoms I have are exactly as you describe - a heavy “clunk” sound at the beginning of the turn from one lock to the other.

I guess it could be, although it has recently passed an MOT (at a reputable garage). Do you think the track-rod ends would pass and MOT if they were worn enough to produce this "clonk" sound?

Other symptoms I have are:

- She is becoming increasingly tricky to hold in a straight line at 80+ MPH (especially in windy conditions)

- There is quite a severe shudder from the front end at 85+ MPH

- There is a noticeable oscillation of the steering wheel at low speeds when steering just off centre, and very low speeds. The steering oscillation is only about ½ cm, if that, but it is noticeable.

Do these sound track-rod end related?

Many thanks.
 

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Hi Jules,

Sounds to me like Track-rod Ends need replacing. As you start to move from one lock you shift the load on the ends to the oppositre side & the wear allows for movement in the ball-joints & the "clonk" you hear.

What do you mean by shudder at speed? Have you confirmed the wheels are balanced correctly?

80MPH?... 85MPH? The speed limit is 70MPH. Stick to this & your worries are over!

Cheers,
Mally.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
OK - It sounds like they need doing. Nice little task for the weekend!

Re: the shuddering front end, the wheels balance has been checked and double checked. This is a problem I've had ever since I've had the car. People have suggested replacing the front control arm butterfly bushes.

I think i'll try replacing the track-rod ends first and see if that makes a difference.

Just to clarify, will worn track-rod ends cause wondering and sloppy steering around the centre?

Thanks
 

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- There is a noticeable oscillation of the steering wheel at low speeds when steering just off centre, and very low speeds. The steering oscillation is only about ½ cm, if that, but it is noticeable.[/b]
Before doing anything else I suggest that you spin the wheels and look carefully for any slight buckle, or tyre run out: I mean a tyre not seated / sitting 'square. I suggest this only for the above; not relevant to the 'clonk'.

Harvey
 

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Hi Jules,

Just to clarify, will worn track-rod ends cause wondering and sloppy steering around the centre?[/b]
As an analagy and a poor one for sure.. Imagine if there were play in your ankles. When you walk, you'd need to constantly take action to keep going in the direction you want to go. If the Track-rod ends are badly worn then the car will tend to wonder depending on the camber of the road the wheels are travelling on. In England, this would be highly noticeable!!

I would hope that if the balancing has been checked by a reputable company that any warpage in the road wheels would be spotted. As they're probably alloys I don't think they'd actually warp. Or would they? Harvey's comments about the tyres could influence steering and as it's something very easy to do you may well want to take this extra precaution.

I hope this clarifies things for you.

Cheers,
Mally.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Now I think about it, the term “oscillation” might have been misleading. I this symptom may be rod-end related.

What happens is that at low speed the steering feels very dead around centre. When you begin to turn either way the steering loads up weirdly, and sometimes kicks back ever-so-slightly, possibly to do with the road camber.

I thinking that around centre, the worn rod-ends are allowing a certain amount of play in the steering. When I apply a little lock, some of the slack is taken up in the rod-ends. At this point road wheels are trying to return to centre, but due to the worn rod-ends the wheels effectively bounce between the applied lock and almost-centre causing the steering wheel to kick back.

As I increase the amount of lock the steering wheel kick-back disappears. I think this is because the force from the steering holds the track rod tight against the rod-ends, hence I don’t feel any movement through the steering wheel.

This is my conclusion for the time being, I’ll change the rod ends and report back!
 

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Hi Jules and everyone else!
My c900 is displaying the exact same symptoms. I will be taking the front wheels off tomorow to inspect but I was just wondering, is there a way of telling if the tie rod ends need replacing just by looking at them or if I removed it and held it in my and wiggling the 2 ends?

By the way, I was also suspecting the front control arm butterfly bushes... Or even a combination of both!
 

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I had a strange shuddering sensation at 70mph+ in a car I owned some time ago (not a SAAB) I suspected all sorts of very expensive bits would need replacing. An honest (
) mechanic diagnosed the problem as being a damaged tyre, the damage was visible on the inside of the tyre only and was the result of the tyre having hit a kerb/pothole at speed. The rim was not damaged.
 

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All,

I've been thinking about this a little & remember something I've done previously with this kind of problem.

Now I've already mentiojned that it's worthwhile following another members recomendation & checking the tyres &... If you can't take Mohammed to the mountains, take the mountain to Mohammed.

At the front wheels, in turn, apply force to the front wheels (you'll need to use a little muscle here cos cars are actually quite heavy. Ladies, ask your man to do this for you!!). Look to see how much you can move the wheels before the steering wheel starts moving. Sure, it will only be a little though it SHOULD be quite easy to apply force to the road wheel & the steering wheel should move easily, IF the steering mechanism is entirely unworn.

Do the same at the steering wheel. Engine off. Just move the steering wheel in each direction in a "rocking" effect. As you move the wheel, the front wheels should also move. You don't need to drag the tyres across the road surface. It should be VERY obvious to you if there's play in this circuit.

HTH.
Mally.
 
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