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MG Midget and Sprite Technical - Mutant Midget Steering
|OK - so now we're at the install steering stage...|
But my DEC '71 midget GAN5-113690 seems to have an early rack and later column. Not too big a deal I don't suppose except I forgot which side of the rack the packing spacer came from. Bentley says the early cars had it on the right and later ones on the left and my car matches the 'early car' picture for the rack but everything looks very weird with the spacer over there (the car is LHD). My column matches the main picture... I'm talking about Bentley manual p.175 BTW.
Can anyone explain what the packing spacer does (in words of very few syllables) and how to figure out where it goes? Any tips on putting the steering back together would be gratefully received (I have read the archives) particularly in reference to judging how many spacers should go above the column sleeve where it locates under the dash...
A thousand thanks in advance.
|your car should have the early style rack and pinion...in fact the last year,|
I wonder with your car being a dec. 71, if BMC ran out of early columns and modded the newer style columns to your car...that would be intresting, Id think thats a real possiability as all the parts are "OFF the shelve"
remember your rack is an oil lubed (gear oil) and not a grease rack.
Unfortantly I cant offer any thing extra to help but others will be around shortly
|on my uk car. the packing went on the passenger side -- its purpose being to align the rack drive shaft with the column. The educated guess therefore would be to put yours on the pasenger side - ie the right hand side.|
|Mick - trying to sort the wiring|
When I did mine I worked on the belief that it is necessary to align the rack such that the pinion stub points directly at where the centre of your steering wheel will eventually be. I did this by installing everything loose at first, including the steering column and under-dash brackets. Spin the steering wheel from lock to lock a few times and then tighten the clamp bolt that secures it to the pinion. Spin it a bit more and then check to see where gaps appear for the rack mounting packing shims. I agree with Mick - the rack needs to be skewed outwards slightly at the driver's side as the steering column is angled away from the centre line of the car. So the shims should go on the driver's side. ( I cannot work out why early racks should be the opposite - I am not convinced by that advice at all!)
Put the shims in and continue progressively tightening up the brackets and clamps, spinning the wheel regularly to settle and align everything. If you don't do this the rack and column won't align properly and your steering will be stiff or irregular. I should have said - this is best done with the track rods disconnected or the wheels off. I suppose you could do it with the front wheels just jacked up off the ground.
|just using logic, and in the absence of hands-on experience of LHD cars, I agree with Mick.|
|If the pinion on the rack itself was manufactured at a different angle on the early to late racks, then it would follow that the shim would need to be on different sides depending on the rack type; quite possible given that neither rack was designed for spridgets.|
IIRC with the later (triumph?) rack its on drivers side.
|Ian Webb '73 GAN5|
I have just refitted my later rack and collapsable column to my RHD '72 Midget (GAN5 125579) and fitted the spacer (AHA 8718) to the passenger side. I couldn't remember which side it went so fitted it according to the current Moss catalogue, and it appears to align correctly.
Fitted the Rack loose, connected the column to rack, tightened the column bolts and pinch bolt, finally tightened the rack bolts. Everything appears fine with full and free movement.
|Dave Mckay ('72 RWA)|
|According to Moss, the shim is fitted to the nearside/passenger side for both early and late type racks. Whether that also applies to LHD cars or not, I couldn't say.|
|Dave O'Neill 2|
|Thanks everybody - consensus seems to be that the packing goes on the passenger side... BUT looking at the drawing in Dave McKay's Moss link it really appears to be on the column/driver's side. I see the logic of the packing allowing the column to angle slightly from pinion to cabin though...|
Will try again today.
|Just checked my 73.... spacer shim is on the driver's side (engines out so its easy)|
|Ian Webb '73 GAN5|
If you do the assembly as I did, spinning the steering wheel will "jiggle" the rack into its least stressed alignment. At this point a close look at the (loose) brackets will show if the gap on one side is greater than the other and therefore where the shims naturally go. On mine they went on the drivers side, which also seemed logical. I did this on my car a long time ago now - before I had advice via the internet or anywhere else for that matter. It just seemed "right" to do it that way.
|Yep - driver's side it is... all seems to be working smoothly although I used a good few less spacers locating the column than I removed...|
Thanks for the wisdom & advice, I'm sure I'll be back for more.
This thread was discussed between 08/03/2010 and 09/03/2010
This thread is from the archive. The Live MG Midget and Sprite Technical BBS is active now.