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Discussion Starter #1
My '89 seems to be wandering a bit. I've had it since new so it could just be my imagination. Where would I start to diagnose? Tie Rod ends? Idler arm? Steering box?
 

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you mean as if you hit a bump and the car seems to fishtail necessitating compensation with steering? Or Is the steering loose and the car wanders necessitating frequent imput from you to keep it in line?

start from the easy stuff: as suggested by another member (Russ?), set front pressure at 33 and rear at 30, instead of the factory suggested. the play in the steering can be adjusted somewhat by the nut/screw set up on the steering box. this will fix the wandering problem. as far as the hitting-a-bump-and-the-car-changes-direction, you probably have something wrong with the suspension, I'm not sure what though, but I would like to find out myself.
 

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If the car seems to wander as you get on and off the gas, so it kind of pulls on acceleration, and then pulls the other way under engine braking, it is probably the rear trailing arm bushings that are shot. If you have never done them you can pretty much know they need replacing.
 

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Wandering can be caused by a number of things, including old tires that no longer run true. How many miles are on your car? Jack the front end up and check for excessive play in the front wheel bearings. Does it tend to drift around when just cruising, or under braking? When was the last time you had the toe-in set? Has it ever had crash damage?

Answers to these questions might help pinpoint the cause.
 

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I just got rid of my s4's wandering, by replacing the tyres. it had 195/50/15 now got 195/60/15. It tramlined really badly.
 

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to check for loosness in the steering, have someone rock the steering wheel back and forth while feeling things like tierods, idler arm, steering bx and such. if the car is level and down on the wheels when you do, this should indicate what is loose.
cliff
 

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Discussion Starter #9
you mean as if you hit a bump and the car seems to fishtail necessitating compensation with steering? Or Is the steering loose and the car wanders necessitating frequent imput from you to keep it in line?

start from the easy stuff: as suggested by another member (Russ?), set front pressure at 33 and rear at 30, instead of the factory suggested. the play in the steering can be adjusted somewhat by the nut/screw set up on the steering box. this will fix the wandering problem. as far as the hitting-a-bump-and-the-car-changes-direction, you probably have something wrong with the suspension, I'm not sure what though, but I would like to find out myself.
It requires constant input to stay in line. Tires are good and relatively new.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
If the car seems to wander as you get on and off the gas, so it kind of pulls on acceleration, and then pulls the other way under engine braking, it is probably the rear trailing arm bushings that are shot. If you have never done them you can pretty much know they need replacing.
Cool thanks
 

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I would start with the steering box adjustment and work my way up to more complicated causes from there.
I agree. It's the easiest thing to do before attempting suspension work.
 

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i have polly bushings in the rear of my car, and polly castor bushing in front.. it works well for me(84 spider)the rear doe's not wander at all , the polly castor even better..
 

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... Have you recently checked tire pressure, front and back ? Meaning factory recomended tire pressure ,
The recommended tire pressures, as in the ones found on the inside glove box door, are out-of-date for modern tires. The tires we use today are supposed to be run at higher pressures, and there are several advantages to this, which have been highlighted in many threads on the BB...

Best regards,
 

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Please keep the factory rire pressure ! It is safer and much more comfortable.
You do not need higher tire pressure for the snail speed we drive in the USA. 65 miles an hour is barely 3rd gear speed !
In France with speed limit of nearly 90 OK, in Spain where speed limit is about 70 MPH but nobody bothers you much on (expensive) freeways until 100 or so MPH, in Germany where most freeways have no speed limits.
But here it is a joke !
When I see people on the freeway accelerating to 80 and thinking they are going flat out it's funny.
Believe me keep the original tire pressure until you are on the race track.
Claude
406 automobiles, from Isetta to GTO Ferrari and 427 Cobra and 26 Alfas.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Checked the steering box adjustment. Seems OK. Have not looked into it further. Just living with it. Someone recommended the trailing arm bushings since they are 18 years old. That's probably first.
 

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Please keep the factory rire pressure ! It is safer and much more comfortable.
You do not need higher tire pressure for the snail speed we drive in the USA. 65 miles an hour is barely 3rd gear speed !
In France with speed limit of nearly 90 OK, in Spain where speed limit is about 70 MPH but nobody bothers you much on (expensive) freeways until 100 or so MPH, in Germany where most freeways have no speed limits.
But here it is a joke !
When I see people on the freeway accelerating to 80 and thinking they are going flat out it's funny.
Believe me keep the original tire pressure until you are on the race track.
Claude
406 automobiles, from Isetta to GTO Ferrari and 427 Cobra and 26 Alfas.
Claude,
I'm going to state as politely and respectfully as possible that your advice regarding tire pressures and modern tires sold in the U.S. is truly outdated... (And I'm not referring to driving speeds in different countries. I actually enjoy reading about such differences.) Anyway, I'm not going to hijack this thread or engage in a debate here (there are plenty of on-topic threads on the BB), but I do think it is important to state so, for the sake of Spider owners who may be reading this thread...

Best regards,
 
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