Help - Memory Steer AFTER Steering Rack Bushing Upgrade
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This is a discussion on Help - Memory Steer AFTER Steering Rack Bushing Upgrade within the General Maintenance, Troubleshooting & Accidents. forums, part of the Tech & Modifying & General Repairs category; Hello everyone. I've been lurking about for some time here, and I've always found wonderfully useful answers to a great ...

  1. #1
    Registered User gimpyrider's Avatar
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    Help - Memory Steer AFTER Steering Rack Bushing Upgrade

    Hello everyone. I've been lurking about for some time here, and I've always found wonderfully useful answers to a great many questions, so thank you all! In fact, I've never had a WRX question that I couldn't answer with a simple search here... Until now.

    With 110k miles on my 2002 WRX Wagon, that memory-steer issue that many of us are familiar with began to get worse, so I threw on a set of Whiteline Steering Rack Bushings. Before the bushings, the memory steer was pretty much as everyone else here describes. The install went great - frustrating like everyone says, but without complication, and the steering response is much crisper.

    But now... Lets say I take a freeway on-ramp somewhat spiritedly, involving a RIGHT turn. When I get onto the straight, if I hold the wheel dead center, it tracks true, but if I loosen my grip, the wheel pulls itself LEFT and the car tracks left accordingly.

    Once this condition exists, if I perform a similar maneuver at a similar speed in the opposite direction, it'll even out and everything will look/feel/drive true until the next spirited turn. It's completely tolerable when I'm driving track days and auto-cross, but this is also my daily-driver, and holding firm on the wheel for long highway stretches gets old quick.

    The fact that the car now tracks precisely with the steering wheel makes me think the steering rack bushing install was fine. But the car pulling in the direction opposite to the most recent aggressive turn... I'm at a loss as to what to upgrade/replace next to address this, and I could really use some help here.

    For background information, here's the current list of the suspension/steering systems upgrades - but the only recent change has been the Steering Rack Bushings.

    KYB AGX Struts with Swift Wagon-specific Springs.
    Perrin 22mm Front/Rear Sways with end links.
    Perrin P.S.R.S.
    Perrin front and Whiteline rear strut tower bars.
    Perrin Subframe Bushings & Differential Lockdown bolts
    Whiteline Steering Rack Bushings
    SPC Eccentric Camber Bolts
    Alignment set to -2.1deg Front Camber, -1.7deg Rear Camber. 0.00 Toe all around and +3.5deg Front Caster. All numbers are dead even from side to side.
    Rota Tarmac II 17" wheels wrapped in Michelin PS2's sized 225/45ZR17.

    Thanks so much to anyone who can share some insight!!!

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  3. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by gimpyrider View Post
    Hello everyone. I've been lurking about for some time here, and I've always found wonderfully useful answers to a great many questions, so thank you all! In fact, I've never had a WRX question that I couldn't answer with a simple search here... Until now.

    With 110k miles on my 2002 WRX Wagon, that memory-steer issue that many of us are familiar with began to get worse, so I threw on a set of Whiteline Steering Rack Bushings. Before the bushings, the memory steer was pretty much as everyone else here describes. The install went great - frustrating like everyone says, but without complication, and the steering response is much crisper.

    But now... Lets say I take a freeway on-ramp somewhat spiritedly, involving a RIGHT turn. When I get onto the straight, if I hold the wheel dead center, it tracks true, but if I loosen my grip, the wheel pulls itself LEFT and the car tracks left accordingly.

    Once this condition exists, if I perform a similar maneuver at a similar speed in the opposite direction, it'll even out and everything will look/feel/drive true until the next spirited turn. It's completely tolerable when I'm driving track days and auto-cross, but this is also my daily-driver, and holding firm on the wheel for long highway stretches gets old quick.

    The fact that the car now tracks precisely with the steering wheel makes me think the steering rack bushing install was fine. But the car pulling in the direction opposite to the most recent aggressive turn... I'm at a loss as to what to upgrade/replace next to address this, and I could really use some help here.

    For background information, here's the current list of the suspension/steering systems upgrades - but the only recent change has been the Steering Rack Bushings.

    KYB AGX Struts with Swift Wagon-specific Springs.
    Perrin 22mm Front/Rear Sways with end links.
    Perrin P.S.R.S.
    Perrin front and Whiteline rear strut tower bars.
    Perrin Subframe Bushings & Differential Lockdown bolts
    Whiteline Steering Rack Bushings
    SPC Eccentric Camber Bolts
    Alignment set to -2.1deg Front Camber, -1.7deg Rear Camber. 0.00 Toe all around and +3.5deg Front Caster. All numbers are dead even from side to side.
    Rota Tarmac II 17" wheels wrapped in Michelin PS2's sized 225/45ZR17.

    Thanks so much to anyone who can share some insight!!!
    I can't help you this time but I will ask somebody who knows about it and I will make research on it. Keep in touch.
    Last edited by eldercaddy; 12-21-2010 at 02:02 PM.

  4. #3
    Registered User gimpyrider's Avatar
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    Jul 2008
    Location
    West Puget Sound, WA
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    Thanks

    Thanks, please let me know what your research turns up.

    It has been suggested that perhaps the strut top mounts are wearing out. They are among the few factory soft rubber bits left in the suspension (8 years old). I don't know why I didn't upgrade the top mounts when doing the struts/springs, but I didn't. It has also been suggested that the steering rack itself could be moving around. I can't move it at all by hand from under the car, and all of the bolts I have loosened even once have been re-torqued to factory specs. Does anyone have any thoughts?

    New symptom. On very slow turns which require turning very sharply, (like pulling into a parking space), it feels like the tyres are jerking and slipping on the pavement. On dry smooth tarmac it feels like I'm performing the maneuver in shallow gravel, and maybe 5% of the time, I get a pretty heavy clunk that I can't seem to replicate at will or even locate more precisely than the front of the car. I don't know that it's related to the symptoms that led me to post in the first place, but it's an interesting coincidence if it's not. I have lifted the car and inspected things while a mate turns the wheels, but at least when unloaded, I see nothing out of the ordinary.

    I know I need to re-grease my FSB bushings, they're squeaking. But I can't imagine that's related.

    I've read everything I could on the subject here. Big Sky, I've always been really impressed with your posts. By any chance do you have any thoughts?

    Cheers all!

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