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Old 03-31-2020, 01:09 PM
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Steering

I have 28 ford sedan, sbc, upgraded chassis, straight axle. Four bar w/manuel steering. I seem to be correcting the steering more than i think i should. Alingment is good, tires are good. I have adjusted the steering box but i am not sure how tight i should make it or how much play i should have in the steering wheel?

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Old 03-31-2020, 02:56 PM
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How’s the Ackerman?
Assuming leaf sprung are the spring shackles sitting at a 45 degrees angle?
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Old 03-31-2020, 03:01 PM
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Shouldn't be any play in the steering wheel, any movement of the wheel should produce an immediate movement in the output shaft of the box....same is true of all the tie rods, links, and steering arms. Everything should be capable of moving freely with no binding, but not have any noticeable free play anywhere.

Maybe list your alignment specs, so some of the beam axle guys can lo them over and see if there is anything you need to address??.
I know the toe and caster requirements are a good bit different than modern independent front systems use. Often a beam axle needs to be run with toe-out rather than toe-in, and they like a good amount of positive caster
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Old 03-31-2020, 03:17 PM
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Toe is the distance between the front and rear of the tires. Proper toe adjustment prevents excessive tire wear and prevents wandering on straightaways..

Radials require less toe in, 1/16 to a 1/8-inch is typical, bias ply tires require a little more, 1/8 to 3/16-inch is usually required.
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Old 03-31-2020, 08:26 PM
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If it is a Vega steering box the first thing to do is adjust it per the GM Vega shop manual NOT just tightening the lash adjuster screw.
Remove the pitman arm or the tie rod at the pitman arm. Check to see if your steering wheel is centered at the center of the steering box travel. That is important because there is more play off center. GM says first loosen the steering adjuster plug (the big nut) 1/4 turn then loosen the lock nut and back off the lash adjuster screw 1-1/2 turns. Next turn the steering wheel gently one direction to the stop then turn back 1/2 turn and measure bearing drag through 90 deg of steering wheel arc. This number is small (like 5-10 in-lb) and most aren't going to have a very small torque wrench (I made mine) just feeling some drag is close enough. Tighten the adjuster plug and return the gearbox to center and then tighten the lash adjuster screw to take out all the lash (steering wheel play) and tighten the lock nut on the lash adjuster screw. I'd recommend following GM recommendation to minimize steering wheel play.
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Old 04-01-2020, 07:22 AM
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Wheel offset

what tires and rims are you running. the center line of the tires and center line of the King pin intersection point as well as castor is important. I had a 56 Cameo pickup that had wide tires and wide rims and it wandered all over the road until I found stock rims and tires
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Old 04-01-2020, 07:31 AM
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On my straight axle cars I discovered the caster (measured at the top of the kingpin) needed to be back about 7 degrees to stop "wondering".
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Old 04-01-2020, 08:33 PM
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In my Model A with a TCI dropped axle, I run 7 degrees of caster, the car runs down the road straight as an arrow.

Keith
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Old 04-02-2020, 07:05 AM
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toe in

my Tbucket I built with a 4" drop axle needed a toe in to keep from drifting around. don't recall exactly that number but was like 1/4" or 1/8"... don't remember been yrs ago. but it was something many in the Tbucket world needed to do.
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