R 10-Meca Parts 2.5 turns steering issues.
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  1. #1
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    Default R 10-Meca Parts 2.5 turns steering issues.

    I am now starting to get back into the restoration of my R 10 after completing the big lap. On Friday I took delivery of a Meca Parts 2.5 turns steering rack kit. My intensions are to try and remachine a standard RHD rack housing to suit the LHD kit using a different bearings and seal. In preparation I set up to measure the angles of a standard pinion and the Meca Parts pinion on a new standard(?) rack I have. Some odd results emerged. The standard pinion is almost exactly 2 degrees tilted to one side for RHD cars but the Meca Parts pinion is not 2 degrees tilted in the opposite direction for LHD cars, it is only about 2/3rds of a degree (40 minutes) offset. This would imply that either: 1/ LHD cars have the steering wheel at a different offset relative to the centre line of the car or 2/ the rag joint is being used as a flexible coupling (unlikely) or 3/ Meca Parts have got their calculations wrong for the pinion design. Does anyone have a LHD steering rack assembly that could be measured to see what the situation is and is the new rack I am using the correct part? The rack part number is 7700509259. This anomaly suits the conversion to RHD as the angle that has to be ''adjusted' for is only 2 2/3 degrees rather than 4 degrees. Any other comments welcome.
    Phillip.

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  2. #2
    1000+ Posts Frans's Avatar
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    Because of the rarity of LH drive R&P that we don't have, who says that a LH drive rack is not at a different angle than the RH drive one. That might just give you the 2 degrees you're looking for.

    I suggest just do the conversion like many of us has done successfully.

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    1000+ Posts geckoeng's Avatar
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    Mr "R10"

    Rack conversion from BrettR

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    Thread #117

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    The rack conversion is a well-trodden path by now but another option (using the original R10 rack unmodified) is a 1.5 : 1 steering quickener (basically an in-steering-column reduction gear).

    I used Coleman ones on my 4CVG & R8 but another reputable manufacturer is as below.

    https://www.ebay.com.au/itm/1-5-to1-...e/361425322897

    cheers! Peter

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    The rack conversion is a well-trodden path by now but another option (using the original R10 rack unmodified) is a 1.5 : 1 steering quickener (basically an in-steering-column reduction gear).

    I used Coleman ones on my 4CVG & R8 but another reputable manufacturer is as below.

    https://www.ebay.com.au/itm/1-5-to1-...e/361425322897

    cheers! Peter

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    COL
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    Quote Originally Posted by 4cvg View Post
    The rack conversion is a well-trodden path by now but another option (using the original R10 rack unmodified) is a 1.5 : 1 steering quickener (basically an in-steering-column reduction gear).

    I used Coleman ones on my 4CVG & R8 but another reputable manufacturer is as below.

    https://www.ebay.com.au/itm/1-5-to1-...e/361425322897

    cheers! Peter
    The only negative side to the steering quickner is that you will need an engineering certificate for the modification.
    Regards Col

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    Quote Originally Posted by COL View Post
    The only negative side to the steering quickner is that you will need an engineering certificate for the modification.
    I assume that the point is that the rack modification is more easily done covertly. Strictly it ought to also be certified.

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    Frans and Ray,
    I have previously looked at the posting Ray referenced and the with the parts I am measuring and going to use I think there is a problem. The angle difference I measured between my standard pinion and the Meca Parts pinion is approximately 2.5 degrees and the distance from the centre of the fixed bottom bearing and the centre of the ball bearing is approximately 43mm. Using trig the bearing has to have just under 2mm removed from one side to move it to the correct position. This is a lot more than the .274mm mentioned in the posting. If you look at the first two pictures in the original posting (sorry about the sideways one) you can see that the gap between the square and the bearings is considerable for the standard pinion, as well these pinions are being held against the rack, if they were positioned so that they were in the bottom bearing the gap would be greater. The posting Ray referenced stated that the LHD and RHD are the same part number, the rack I have still had the part number under the protective rapping so I thought it might be worth checking.
    Peter, I have the bits now and would like to try and use them, also I do not want to draw attention to some other modifications.
    regards, Phillip.

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    I wouldn't trust measurements on that setup.

    I would measure the housing angles. There is less room for error in the setup there.

    Stick a rod through the housing instead of the rack and another one through the bearings and measure the angle between them. I would be surprised if there was any difference between LH and RH cars (my hunch is the pinion needs the same angle to the rack - mirror image, that is).
    Last edited by schlitzaugen; 28th November 2018 at 10:49 PM.
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    Schlitzaugen, yes I agree my marking out table is not a surface plate (unfortunately) but it is flat enough to highlight that there is a possible problem. The square is only being used for comparing the parts, it does not have to be accurate only consistent. I could make up a dummy pinion shaft with no gear teeth to insert into a rack assembly to measure the angle of the standard RHD pinion relative to the rack but I still need a LHD rack housing to measure for comparison and that is what I was asking about in the OP. Like you I would expect it to be the same angle but mirror image but that is not what the Meca Parts pinion is appearing to indicate.
    Regards, Phillip.

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    I will make up some collars and a dummy pinion shaft over the next few days to try and show what I am going on about.
    Regards, Phillip.

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    1000+ Posts schlitzaugen's Avatar
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    That is okay, Phil. I had a quick read of Brett's thread and I understand what the problem is.

    How hard would to make the rack housing from scratch? After all there's just two tubes crossing at some angle. I would look into making it in two parts with a mating face and bolt them together with some adjustment to allow for getting the angle correctly. Yes, you need some precision for the bearing surfaces, but a good engineering shop shouldn't have a problem. If my lathe were a bit bigger I would give it a shot myself.
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    Das computermachine is nicht fur gefingerpoken und mittengrabben. Ist easy schnappen der springenwerk, blowenfusen und poppencorken mit spitssparken. Ist nicht fur gewerken bei das dummkopfen. Das rubbernecken sightseeren keepen hands in das pockets-relaxen und watch das blinkenlights.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 4cvg View Post
    I assume that the point is that the rack modification is more easily done covertly. Strictly it ought to also be certified.
    Yes it probably should be.

    I was just pointing out that the steering quickner is not just a bolt on affair.
    Regards Col

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    [Hi Phillip,
    I have a LHD steering rack that you are welcome to use. I'm in Wahroonga, so a nice little drive for you one weekend. Chris Hartwell.

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    Hello Chris,
    That is good news, it means the answer to the problem will be able to be determined one way or the other, that is whether the LHD rack has a different pinon angle to the RHD rack or whether the Meca Parts pinion is made incorrectly. It could also be that I have measured something incorrectly so I will continue checking by making up some dummy parts to measure both the LHD and RHD racks. When I am sure of my measurements I will PM you to organize something.
    Regards, Phillip.

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    I guess that you're already aware that the fast rack & pinion has the rack offset in the housing using offset machined brass bushes.
    Did the MecaParts kit include the offset bushings?
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    Schlitzaugen, an interesting idea, the use of existing parts and measurements would make the designing easy. As well the leaving out the spring and positioning the horizontal tube so that the offset Meca Parts bushes are not required would help. The cover and retaining bolts could be left out as well. The problem areas might be the rack mounting lugs and the rag joint would still be required to flex.

    Alpinesau, yes the kit consists of four parts, the pinion, the two offset bushes and a new pinion bottom bearing. The for parts were together loose in a zip lock bag which was in a largish box full of styro foam packing. A smaller box with the parts packed individually would have been better. There were no instructions or specifications included.

    Regards, Phillip.

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    [Hi Phillip ,
    good luck with the measuring, I'll wait to hear from you. Chris.

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    Are these brass bushes difficult to get in place? I have a steering rack with this kit installed. And the rack housing has cracked on one side. I believe this happened when the brass bush was installed. Is it possible to buy these bushes new without buying a complete kit?

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    Hello R8RX
    The bushes supplied in the kit I have can be pushed into the rack housing by hand so they would not crack the housing. They are fixed into their final position by Loctiting and by drilling and tapping a hole through the side of the housing into the thickest part of the bush, a screw is then fitted to stop the bush rotating or coming out. If you look at the link in post number 3 of this thread this may help. If you need a new bush it might be easier and cheaper to have one made, I don't know if Meca Parts will supply single parts. The sizes of my bushes are as follows; outside diameter, 31.995mm (for comparison the standard press fit Renault bush is 32.06mm), Inside diameter: 20.02mm, offset: 3.28mm and length 26.0mm - chamfer all edges. Does the bush near your cracked housing have any retaining system?

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    Quote Originally Posted by 1OwneR 10 View Post
    Schlitzaugen, an interesting idea, the use of existing parts and measurements would make the designing easy. As well the leaving out the spring and positioning the horizontal tube so that the offset Meca Parts bushes are not required would help. The cover and retaining bolts could be left out as well. The problem areas might be the rack mounting lugs and the rag joint would still be required to flex.

    Alpinesau, yes the kit consists of four parts, the pinion, the two offset bushes and a new pinion bottom bearing. The for parts were together loose in a zip lock bag which was in a largish box full of styro foam packing. A smaller box with the parts packed individually would have been better. There were no instructions or specifications included.

    Regards, Phillip.

    I would totally go for it rather than screw around with all sorts of afterthought bits and pieces. All you need is a place where they can bore relatively cleanly a long aluminium tube and weld some lugs you can drill later after a mock up. That is not absolutely necessary. You can replace the lugs with machined split blocks that would pinch the rack tube and bolt to the chassis.

    The pinion would live in a second housing (again, some decent quality boring needed for bearings, seals and whatnot) that can attach with bolts or can be welded in again, after a mock up. The rest of the steering can stay as is.

    I guess the result would be a million times more reliable than the kit.
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    Das computermachine is nicht fur gefingerpoken und mittengrabben. Ist easy schnappen der springenwerk, blowenfusen und poppencorken mit spitssparken. Ist nicht fur gewerken bei das dummkopfen. Das rubbernecken sightseeren keepen hands in das pockets-relaxen und watch das blinkenlights.

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    Too many posts! JohnW's Avatar
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    Well, I'd just observe that our good friend Geckoeng has built several racks for us RER folk with the higher ratio pinion kit. Mine was the protoype and it is just fine. The kit was built for LHD racks and requires a minor adjustment to angles I know for the RHD racks. I think I'm safe in saying we owners are pretty happy with the outcomes.

    That's not to knock the gearbox approach at all. There are three ways of raising the ration, the third being probably illegal, cutting, shortening and rewelding the suspension arm that attaches to the tie-rod.....

    I'm not quite sure what the issue is that has been brought up in this thread. Perhaps some direct comms with Geckoeng might sort out the confusion?

    Cheers
    JohnW

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    Quote Originally Posted by 1OwneR 10 View Post
    Hello R8RX
    The bushes supplied in the kit I have can be pushed into the rack housing by hand so they would not crack the housing. They are fixed into their final position by Loctiting and by drilling and tapping a hole through the side of the housing into the thickest part of the bush, a screw is then fitted to stop the bush rotating or coming out. If you look at the link in post number 3 of this thread this may help. If you need a new bush it might be easier and cheaper to have one made, I don't know if Meca Parts will supply single parts. The sizes of my bushes are as follows; outside diameter, 31.995mm (for comparison the standard press fit Renault bush is 32.06mm), Inside diameter: 20.02mm, offset: 3.28mm and length 26.0mm - chamfer all edges. Does the bush near your cracked housing have any retaining system?
    Many thanks for your answer. There is a hole in the rack housing. But not any screw. But it seems that the bush on the cracked side has been a little bit to big. It is marks from a hammer or something used to tap it in.

    I have a couple of spare racks so i am thinking of rebuilding one of those with parts from the current one, but with new bushes.

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    As I said in an earlier post I have made up a collar and a dummy pinion to check the angles required to use the Meca Parts pinion from the kit I purchased. Picture 1 shows an overview of the set up, Picture 2 shows the collar mounted on the MP pinion. The collar is the same diameter as the ball bearing (35mm) which means the angle of the pinion can be accurately measure across the bearing face and the collar rim. Picture 3, measuring the angle of the MP pinion held engaged on the new rack, the angle measured was between 40 to 50 minutes from vertical leaning to the left in this picture. Picture 4 and 5, measuring the angle of the standard pinion, the angle measured was 2 degrees from vertical leaning to the right in this picture. Picture 6 shows the MP pinion again with the protractor still set at 2 degrees, the gap between the bearing and the protractor is the distance the bearing would have to be moved to align my MP pinion correctly with the rack. The distance is just under 2mm. Picture 7 shows the dummy pinion which is inserted into the rack housing to check the angle of the housing, the flat on the shaft is to engage the rack and keep the dummy pinion square. Pictures 8 and 9, measuring the angle of the housing which came out as 2 degrees as is what would be expected.
    Picture 10 and 11 show an overview of a scrap aluminium block which has had a channel milled in the back to fit the rack accurately. The channel is angled slightly to make the end face of the block the same angle as the pinion with a bearing which has had 0.3 mm ground off one side. Modifying the bearing makes an angle change of approximately 24 minutes. Picture 12 shows a standard pinion engaged in the rack and touching the block at the top bearing but with a small gap at the collar of 0.3 mm. Picture 13 shows the MP pinion engaged in the rack and touching the block at the collar but with a large gap at the top ball bearing. Picture 14 shows the MP pinion clamped against the block which forces it to disengage from the rack by at least 0.8mm possibly more as it is difficult to measure accurately. It also causes point contact between the rack and pinion.

    On Saturday I checked, with Chris Hartwells assistance, the pinion angle of a LHD rack he had left over from converting his very nice Caravelle to RHD. The results where that the LHD rack is 2 degrees offset from centre in the opposite direction to the RHD rack, that is it is a mirror image. This means that my MP pinion at 40 minutes offset from centre would not work well with the LHD rack either.
    Summary: I believe there are two problems 1/ The Meca Parts pinion I have been sold is incorrectly made and 2/ If the pinion I have is mounted in a RHD rack housing with the bearing modified in the accepted way the pinion will not engage the rack fully.

    This has been a bit long but hopefully thorough to show that if you have a MP 9 tooth pinion the same as mine and it is not mounted at the correct angle you might have a problem which could be serious.

    Open for discussion and constructive criticism, this has been posted to try and help, please keep that in mind.

    Regards, Phillip.
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    Too many posts! JohnW's Avatar
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    Impressive amount of testing and measuring and really interesting. Did you actually assemble the LHD rack to see how it felt etc?

    I don't follow quite all the details but what, in your view, is the actual risk please?

    MP must have sold plenty of these in France I guess, as you'd expect they are made in batches - 50-100 maybe?? I wonder if there has been a problem there?

    Thanks for posting all this.

    Cheers
    JohnW

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