strange steering - TCCoA Forums
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #1 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-26-2015, 07:20 PM Thread Starter
2nd Gear Poster
 
Join Date: Dec 2014
Location: usa
Posts: 94
strange steering

The car has always needed a alignmrnt. It would pull very slighty tocthe right. Also i believing i hsve a bad rear wheel bearing cuz i hear a roaring but its tone changing and up and down(maybe thats a causr of my issue?)

Suddenly after all this snow i drive to work this morning and its pulling to the left hard and when i make left hand turns and let off the steering wheel it acts like it has bump steer it jumps and twitches back straight.

Im hearing a clunk from the front right over bumps aswell(lower balljoint)??

My Mods:
Spectre Custom Air Filter, greasable sway bar brackets - front/rear, custom shifter, plastic dip wheels/center caps original, port/polished throttle body(by me).

Future Mods:
3.73 Gears, 4.6 to 5.0 stroker kit. Supercharger, 100HP NOS shot, Built 4r70w (jmod 450+HP) Trac lok with HD clutches. Fold/split rear seat.

*recover all the leather, freshen it up and clean it.
*paint the whole interior black - 20%
94thunderbird46 is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-26-2015, 09:03 PM
4th Gear Poster
 
96beaterbird's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Kingston, Ontario
Posts: 241
Quote:
Originally Posted by 94thunderbird46 View Post
The car has always needed a alignmrnt. It would pull very slighty tocthe right. Also i believing i hsve a bad rear wheel bearing cuz i hear a roaring but its tone changing and up and down(maybe thats a causr of my issue?)

Suddenly after all this snow i drive to work this morning and its pulling to the left hard and when i make left hand turns and let off the steering wheel it acts like it has bump steer it jumps and twitches back straight.

Im hearing a clunk from the front right over bumps aswell(lower balljoint)??
Could be numerous things. First I would check the front end for play at 3 and 9 o'clock and 6 and 12, checking for play in the upper and lower control arms and tie rods.

Check the rear wheels for play too. If you have a bad bearing it will probably have play as well. Does the bearing noise go away during turns? If so the bad side is usually the side that goes quiet when you turn.

Also don't discount what a bad alignment can do. You really do need an alignment if you think you need one. My alignment was so bad after changing my lower control arm that the car was actually undriveable, darting left and right and nearly zero response in steering. Cured by an alignment.
96beaterbird is offline  
post #3 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-26-2015, 09:42 PM Thread Starter
2nd Gear Poster
 
Join Date: Dec 2014
Location: usa
Posts: 94
I understand. I know i need one. The rear inner control arm upper bushings are toast. When the wheels off the ground i can move it alot. Front is all new as far as conttol srms go. I got them from ford so im not sure. But ill check for play there.im not gna get the alignment done o. The rear till i get those bushing but as far as front i hope the alignment will cure that. Did u have stiff steering and/or a jerkig steering wheel?

Also, when a balljoint starts to fail, does it give the jerky feelig or stiffness. I knoe it clunks and im thinking thats my prob over bumps.

My Mods:
Spectre Custom Air Filter, greasable sway bar brackets - front/rear, custom shifter, plastic dip wheels/center caps original, port/polished throttle body(by me).

Future Mods:
3.73 Gears, 4.6 to 5.0 stroker kit. Supercharger, 100HP NOS shot, Built 4r70w (jmod 450+HP) Trac lok with HD clutches. Fold/split rear seat.

*recover all the leather, freshen it up and clean it.
*paint the whole interior black - 20%
94thunderbird46 is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #4 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-27-2015, 06:46 AM
4th Gear Poster
 
96beaterbird's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Kingston, Ontario
Posts: 241
Quote:
Originally Posted by 94thunderbird46 View Post
I understand. I know i need one. The rear inner control arm upper bushings are toast. When the wheels off the ground i can move it alot. Front is all new as far as conttol srms go. I got them from ford so im not sure. But ill check for play there.im not gna get the alignment done o. The rear till i get those bushing but as far as front i hope the alignment will cure that. Did u have stiff steering and/or a jerkig steering wheel?

Also, when a balljoint starts to fail, does it give the jerky feelig or stiffness. I knoe it clunks and im thinking thats my prob over bumps.
A bad balljoint can certainly cause pulling and stiffness as well as clunks, but a seriously bad alignment can cause pulling and steering stiffness if it's way out of spec.

You mentioned you had new control arms installed, did you get an alignment after that? I can't stress how important an alignment is. Even if the eccentrics were marked, you'll never get it right by measuring it yourself. It needs to go to an alignment shop.
96beaterbird is offline  
post #5 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-27-2015, 07:08 PM Thread Starter
2nd Gear Poster
 
Join Date: Dec 2014
Location: usa
Posts: 94
Yes when thr lower balljoint(right) gave out i got new upper and lower control arms/balljoints and bushings as one unit per corner. With a alignment i spent 200$ labor 163$ give or tske 20$ for parts and a 50$ alignment.. So sbt 400$ for that. There rear sits in st the top which is unaligned because the upper inner bushings are shot.


Also can a flst spot from locking up brakes(when it was snowing) cause a hard pull it seems to me like its been occuring ever since then. Plus at 20mph=/< i can feel its lumps on the tire.

My Mods:
Spectre Custom Air Filter, greasable sway bar brackets - front/rear, custom shifter, plastic dip wheels/center caps original, port/polished throttle body(by me).

Future Mods:
3.73 Gears, 4.6 to 5.0 stroker kit. Supercharger, 100HP NOS shot, Built 4r70w (jmod 450+HP) Trac lok with HD clutches. Fold/split rear seat.

*recover all the leather, freshen it up and clean it.
*paint the whole interior black - 20%
94thunderbird46 is offline  
post #6 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-27-2015, 10:39 PM
4th Gear Poster
 
96beaterbird's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Kingston, Ontario
Posts: 241
Balljoints are probably bad on the other side as well if they haven't been replaced.

You flatspotted your tires from locking your brakes in the snow? I've never seen that in all my years of driving in snow.

I doubt a flatspotted tire would cause a brake pull, usually it will just cause vibrations.

You should definitely check out your brakes as well. Make sure the calipers can be retracted easily and there isn't any abnormal brake wear, especially on one wheel more than the others.

Also make sure all of the slider pins for the caliper are greased and moving freely.

If you have rear drums then check the drums, shoes, return spring, wheel cylinder, etc. for the above noted conditions.

It's pretty well impossible to diagnose this type of problem without thoroughly checking out the car first.

Final Note: the inner uca bushing as you described should be fixed as well. If you find anything wrong with the car, fix it. It might be your problem, it might not be. You're going to have to start putting some parts into the car to fix this problem.

Last edited by 96beaterbird; 02-27-2015 at 10:40 PM. Reason: grammar
96beaterbird is offline  
post #7 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-28-2015, 08:15 AM
5th Gear Poster
 
steamer471's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Charlotte N.C.
Age: 54
Posts: 404
Back when I first started working on my bird I bought a lifetime alignment from Firestone. I'm not a fan of them but I knew I would do my front end in stages (or screw up) and I could take it back any time needed. This also came in handy when it was nasty out, they would do an inspection and give me an idea if something was wrong. That was eight years ago.

One thing though, the car always had a left pull and they never could get it out. I have a good front end shop I took it to and without saying a word, one alignment and it was gone! Now that I have everything set I don't go to Firestone though I can still use them if I need.

Unless I mess with the strut rods, tie rods or lower control arms I generally don't worry about the alignment.

Have you checked the strut rod bushings? These can cause these issues also. Rear upper control arm bushings are easy if you can find someone with a press. I bought two from pullapart and took them to the front end shop and they pressed them in and didn't charge me. Helps to have friends.

1997 Mark 8 LSC

Former owner:
1996 Thunderbird lx 4.6
1994 Thunderbird lx 4.6
steamer471 is offline  
post #8 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-28-2015, 11:43 AM Thread Starter
2nd Gear Poster
 
Join Date: Dec 2014
Location: usa
Posts: 94
no I haven't checked the strut rod bushings how would you diagnose that those were bad if they were cracked or missibg chunks. So u nees a press for the rear bushings someone told me u needed a good hammer n block u could get them in.

My Mods:
Spectre Custom Air Filter, greasable sway bar brackets - front/rear, custom shifter, plastic dip wheels/center caps original, port/polished throttle body(by me).

Future Mods:
3.73 Gears, 4.6 to 5.0 stroker kit. Supercharger, 100HP NOS shot, Built 4r70w (jmod 450+HP) Trac lok with HD clutches. Fold/split rear seat.

*recover all the leather, freshen it up and clean it.
*paint the whole interior black - 20%
94thunderbird46 is offline  
post #9 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-05-2015, 10:38 AM
4th Gear Poster
 
msp252's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: hpt, va
Age: 30
Posts: 345
I have had this issue in Roadhawgs bird since I got it and tried to figure out what it was since then. The issue has gotten worse as the returnabilty is now no longer existent. In the beginning there was a clunking noise from the passenger side while making a left in to my driveway. Now there is poor/no returnibilty and if i turn the wheel at all while reversing it may make a loud popping sound like something broke!! I have been trying to figure it out, thought it was worn sway bar end links, because i have 18" 2011 bullet rim with the stock tires and they are a little to big and kind rub those sway bars (not upper control arms) while reversing and turning sharply only. I replaced them it does the same thing, a little better but not good, so now i think it is the upper control arms. My wheels feel like they're going to fall off, while reversing especially when turning and reversing. Its not the wheel bearing the wheel doesn’t shake with the hub when in the air. If I jack it up and shake and pry everything it doesn't show any play. When its on the ground is when I think the problem shows best but its really hard to check with the 1.6” drop, as i can’t really shake everything as much. I do have 5mm spacers going up to 10mm hub-centric moving the 5mm to the back. I’ve tried checking the lower balljoints while on the ground and in the air they feel solid or, I’m not doing it right, or too weak. I also tried shaking the upper control arms on the ground and in the air, no play, or I’m not doing it right, or too weak. My wheel doesn’t shake like a bad wheel bearing or joint when in the air, What could this be??
msp252 is offline  
post #10 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-05-2015, 12:54 PM
PostWhore
 
T6Rocket's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Raleigh, NC
Posts: 1,761
^You know for a fact your big wheel/tire combo rubs suspension parts and you're asking what's wrong with the car? Maybe ditch those wheels and put something on that fits?

A clunking noise could be sway bar end links. I would ask the previous owner what he replaced, and replace what he did not. May have to do upper and lower control arms. It is hard to tell if they're bad just pulling on them - you have to have clunks or pulling to one side.

Al

97 T-Bird LX 4.6 - 80k miles
94 Supra TT Auto - street/strip car
04 CVPI- Brenda's car - 76k miles
Previous Fords:
95 T-Bird LX 4.6 - fully optioned, owned 15 years, 220k miles
96 Cougar XR-7 4.6- Brenda's car, owned 11 years, 187k miles
88 T-Bird 3.8 - first T-Bird, owned 5 years, 206k miles
T6Rocket is offline  
post #11 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-08-2015, 10:24 AM
4th Gear Poster
 
96beaterbird's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Kingston, Ontario
Posts: 241
Quote:
Originally Posted by T6Rocket View Post
^You know for a fact your big wheel/tire combo rubs suspension parts and you're asking what's wrong with the car? Maybe ditch those wheels and put something on that fits?

A clunking noise could be sway bar end links. I would ask the previous owner what he replaced, and replace what he did not. May have to do upper and lower control arms. It is hard to tell if they're bad just pulling on them - you have to have clunks or pulling to one side.

Al
Off topic, but I have a mild clunk even after rebuilding the whole front end, minus sway bar endlinks. They don't have any play, but the joints look dry as a bone. How can you tell if they're bad?
96beaterbird is offline  
post #12 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-08-2015, 03:36 PM
MA Chapter Director

Administrator
 
Rodeo Joe's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Franklin, MA
Age: 62
Posts: 7,962
Garage
Quote:
Originally Posted by 96beaterbird View Post
Off topic, but I have a mild clunk even after rebuilding the whole front end, minus sway bar endlinks. They don't have any play, but the joints look dry as a bone. How can you tell if they're bad?
I think you answered your own question!

Joe

It's not a 97 Sport, it just looks like one!

Mass. TCCoAers, Send me your info!

I buy all my Ford parts from 93 lx.

Member of the TCCoA Damage Control Team.

R.I.P. Johnny Langton 1975 - 2011
Rodeo Joe is offline  
post #13 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-08-2015, 04:46 PM
5th Gear Poster
 
Urambo Tauro's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: SE Michigan
Posts: 448
I had the same clunk, and it was those sway bar links. Each one has two joints, making them a little more expensive than links usually are. I went with the Raybestos Professional grade, about $100 for the pair.

1996 Thunderbird LX (4.6), previous daily driver

1995 Mustang GT (5.0), daily driver
1995 GMC C2500 (5.7), alternate daily driver
Urambo Tauro is offline  
post #14 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-09-2015, 04:09 PM
PostWhore
 
T6Rocket's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Raleigh, NC
Posts: 1,761
Don't overtighten the sway bar end link bolts. I stripped one, and that was the reason I now have a cut-off wheel!

Al

97 T-Bird LX 4.6 - 80k miles
94 Supra TT Auto - street/strip car
04 CVPI- Brenda's car - 76k miles
Previous Fords:
95 T-Bird LX 4.6 - fully optioned, owned 15 years, 220k miles
96 Cougar XR-7 4.6- Brenda's car, owned 11 years, 187k miles
88 T-Bird 3.8 - first T-Bird, owned 5 years, 206k miles
T6Rocket is offline  
post #15 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-09-2015, 07:21 PM
4th Gear Poster
 
96beaterbird's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Kingston, Ontario
Posts: 241
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rodeo Joe View Post
I think you answered your own question!

Joe
LOL I guess I did didn't I? Should've thought that one through a bit more!

p.s. RockAuto has TRW endlinks for $6.00 on closeout!

Last edited by 96beaterbird; 03-09-2015 at 07:22 PM. Reason: ps
96beaterbird is offline  
post #16 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-22-2015, 09:55 AM
4th Gear Poster
 
msp252's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: hpt, va
Age: 30
Posts: 345
Quote:
Originally Posted by T6Rocket View Post
^You know for a fact your big wheel/tire combo rubs suspension parts and you're asking what's wrong with the car? Maybe ditch those wheels and put something on that fits?

A clunking noise could be sway bar end links. I would ask the previous owner what he replaced, and replace what he did not. May have to do upper and lower control arms. It is hard to tell if they're bad just pulling on them - you have to have clunks or pulling to one side.

Al
And then what. Ive already changed the tires to the correct size 255 to 245, before you suggested it, and guess what it didn't make my car's rejuvenating features kick in, so the clunks and everything that happened with the big tires, IS STILL A PROBLEM. So after I already did this "Maybe ditch those wheels and put something on that fits?" whats next, the sounds are still there. I already changed the sway bar end links, I'm going to get the upper control arms next. I have clunks, alignment is fine, and there are steering return-ability issues. If the upper CA don't get it then I'll do the lowers. If the issue still exist what can it be then? nothing?

Last edited by msp252; 03-22-2015 at 10:09 AM.
msp252 is offline  
post #17 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-23-2015, 08:28 PM
4th Gear Poster
 
96beaterbird's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Kingston, Ontario
Posts: 241
Quote:
Originally Posted by msp252 View Post
And then what. Ive already changed the tires to the correct size 255 to 245, before you suggested it, and guess what it didn't make my car's rejuvenating features kick in, so the clunks and everything that happened with the big tires, IS STILL A PROBLEM. So after I already did this "Maybe ditch those wheels and put something on that fits?" whats next, the sounds are still there. I already changed the sway bar end links, I'm going to get the upper control arms next. I have clunks, alignment is fine, and there are steering return-ability issues. If the upper CA don't get it then I'll do the lowers. If the issue still exist what can it be then? nothing?
Are you sure the alignment is 'fine'? A lot of shops will only set the toe and don't even know that caster and camber is adjustable in these cars Ask for a printout of the specs and compare to the specs posted on this site.

Bad balljoints will certainly affect steering return to center. I had one bad balljoint and the wheel did not self-center. Now it does.

Balljoints will clunk. Inner tie rod ends can clunk too, as well as shock mounts and the subframe bolts. Check them out and go from there.
96beaterbird is offline  
post #18 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-23-2015, 08:32 PM
4th Gear Poster
 
96beaterbird's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Kingston, Ontario
Posts: 241
Quote:
Originally Posted by T6Rocket View Post
Don't overtighten the sway bar end link bolts. I stripped one, and that was the reason I now have a cut-off wheel!

Al
How on earth did you manage that? Use an impact on the endlinks? A 4' breaker bar perhaps?

I just replaced mine over the weekend and my clunks are all gone

Super easy job. Two bolts removed and used a small balljoint separator on the sway bar side. Probably about 15 to 20 minutes per side. Car handles nicer too. Well maybe I'm imagining that.
96beaterbird is offline  
post #19 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-24-2015, 04:55 PM
No, Mr. Lemmywinks, No!!!

Moderator
 
Grog6's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Harriman, TN
Age: 56
Posts: 10,130
Garage
There's an ACDELCO part that has zerk fittings on both ends; it's worth the extra money.



ACDELCO Part # 45G0102

Red '96 Cougar XR-7 240k mi. '02 4R70W, PST DS : '03 PI engine, 04 maf, 24lb injectors, 2.5" exhaust, '02 4r70w + Jmod, DirtyD0g TC + cooler + 3/8" lines, 255 walbro fp. Alpine system.
Black '96 Cougar XR-7 (Lazarus) 210k mi PI Intake, '02 4R70W, Jmod, PST DS, GrogTune, Konis, Mark LCA+Poly, racecougar Custom Engine Chain, and JL and racecougar Bracing.
Black '97 Tbird Limited Edition, '02 4R70W, 255 walbro, PST DS, PBR Brakes&SS lines, Toicko Blues & Springs, GrogTune.


"War Is Peace. Freedom Is Slavery. Ignorance Is Strength." - George Orwell.
Truth Isn't Truth. - Rudy Giuliani, 2018 Award winner, “Most Outrageous Diversion” by MSNBC for this quote
Grog6 is offline  
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the TCCoA Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in











Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page



Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome