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MG MGB GT V8 Factory Originals Technical - power steering

I was playing around online, and found flaming rivers webste and spent some time checking out their steering racks. They sell a steering rack out of a mustang II which has a pivot point, to pivot point measurement of 24.5" and an mgb is 24.9". The overall length of the mustang II rack is 45", where as the mgb is 41". I talked to someone there today, and they said it would be very easy to cut 2" off each side ,and re-thread the ends. So the question is, has anyone ever thought about doing this? If someone wanted to put in a 302 with iron heads, this could help negate some of the low speed steering issues that could be faced when using a heavier engine up front.

Not saying I'm going to do this, but it seemed interesting. Any opinions?


Opinions - OK, here goes. My opinion is that I would not put an iron-headed 302 in my car and add that much weight to the front end. Plus, to add the power steering in this manner would probably cost an amount comparable to buying a set of aluminum heads, especially with machine work, new steering shaft and u-joints.

However, I saw their booth at the NSRA meet at York, PA, in June, and I immediately thought of the possibilities of using their steering rack in a B. They look quite good. And perhaps the ratios can be ordered that are more suitable to the driver's wishes.

Wayne Pearson


I'm very disapointed that Flaming River tech folks would give you an answer like that. While it's true you an do that, there is a LOT more to adapting a steering rack than that. The location of the ball joints with respect to the rest of your suspension system is critical, unless you are willing to have less than optimum handling and massive amounts of bump steer.

Cutting and rethreading the ends would be the LAST thing you'd want to do. If you need to shorten the rack, cut it in the center (away from the hardened steel of the rack gears), and shorten it there, welding it and the outer casing back together after you've finished.

HOWEVER! you wil need to be sure that the ball joints are properly located when you actually install the rack, which may be a bit difficult with a Mustang II rack. Or, it may not be difficult at all, only an evaluation of the Mustang II and the MGB rack would tell you.
Dan Masters

The important point is the inner pivot joint right? According to what I've seen, the difference in the distance on the two racks is only .4 inch. Wouldn't that mean we're pretty darn close to making things work?


My bad, I read your post too quickly. You're right, just cutting and re-threading the links shouldn't be a problem. I don't know enough to know if a 0.4" difference in the ball joint center-to-center distance would be a problem or not, but it is something that needs to be known before making a rack swap. It's possible that the extra 0.4" might even be an improvement.

Moving the rack up, down, forward, or backwards may hurt, or it may help, but I certainly don't recommend making a change without a lot of thought and research going into it.

There are a lot of areas in an engine swap where "close" is good enough, but not in the front suspension/steering. I have seen and read about many swaps where the steering was modified to make clearance, resulting in a horrible driving car. I even read of one person moving the rack 2" to one side for clearance! I'd hate to drive that one.
Dan Masters


MGOC is having a major sell of power steering here for the MGB. I believe they use the Peugeot 306 power steering rack but LHD, turned over, for UK RHD cars.

Could be an all time good deal supplying RHD ex-Peugeot 306 rackd for turning over and using with US LHD MGBs.

I think there is quite a bit in the archives (whether MGB or V8 I don't know) which might help.


P L Hills

My opinion is even an MG B with 205 (or 225 with flares) width tires up front, i would rather not. Maybe it would be ok when i am too old to handle turning, but then i would probably be soft enough to then say an automatic transmission is in order too.

If you add power steering to an MG, please remember that your car is as sporting as a Pontiac Grand am or Dodge Caravan "Sport"- no matter how big of motor you place in it.

Power steering is for heavy vehicles, girls and people who are not capable of handling heavy loads on there shoulders.
Just another opinion,

-Hope my Dad isn't reading this thread ;-)
BMC Brian McCullough

I have 265/50-14's on the front (and rear) and admittedly steering is a bit heavier than stock. But it's only ever an issue when stopped and it's not really a big deal then. Now if I wanted to use a smaller steering wheel things would be different, wonder when somebody will come out with an affordable electric steering rack? That would be pretty trick.

Jim Blackwood

There is an article in the August "Safety Fast" MGB register newsletter about a Brazilian MGB owner who installed ps on his 4 cyl. It uses a modified stock rack with an actuating piston attached. A couple of good photos are included.


The adaptation of the popular Mustang II PS rack is not possible.
1. The distance between the steering rod and the end of the rack is to long.
2. The angle of the steering rod housing is not the same as the MGB angle T
thus making it very difficult to adapt not enough room.
There are other racks that may work such as the K series Chrysler cars, and the J series GM cars.
but it would be difficult to fit properly.
The steering ratio are not even close to the MGB therefore the crisp steering of the B would go away.
ford has 3 different ratios and the sport ratio as they call it does not even come close with 4 1/2 turns lock to lock on the sterring wheel.

I use 205X55X15 tires at front with 1/2 degree neg camber and 0 toe, steering input is good and turning is good while parked, on the road is very stable and predictable.
I really don't see the need for PS on a B even with a V8.
Bill Guzman

This thread was discussed between 06/08/2003 and 16/08/2003

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