March 22, 2010 at 10:18 pm #57514Mark and Nancy PetriParticipant
I was getting the Tiger ready for the driving season – changing engine oil and filter – when I noticed a puddle of "oil" near the front of the car (‘way in front of the engine). A little more looking led to seeing drips at the end of the "boot" on the tie rod/steering rack. I had turned the front wheels for better access to the oil filter.
Am I in trouble here?
Any input would be appreciated.
March 23, 2010 at 4:31 pm #63438theoMember
Well, at least you’ve still got some oil in the rack and that’s good…
Order some new rack boots from Sunbeam Specialties, get some 75W-90 gear oil from your local auto parts place, and get ready to get a little dirty… you may also need to get a tie rod end (ball joint) separator. If you get the kind with the screw that pushes on the tie rod stud while gripping the steering arm, then you’ll likely be able to reuse the tie rod boot etc. Otherwise, using a picklefork type separator will usually damage the boot.
The alternative to removing the tie rod from the steering arm is to remove the steering arm from the suspension upright. Either way you need to remove the tie rod end from the rack arm. Mark the location of the adjusting nut on the rack arm, so you can get the alignment back where it started.
The general procedure for rack boot replacement should be covered in the Tiger shop manual, online at tigersunited.com, IIRC.
March 26, 2010 at 5:58 pm #63443Jeff NicholsParticipant
To put new rack boots on you will have to remove the radiator and shroud. On the right hand side of the rack is a bolt on plate. The plate covers the opening where the steering column inserts for British cars. You can remove the plate and slowly poor oil in to fill the rack after you replace the boots.
March 26, 2010 at 6:02 pm #63444John & Gwen Logan Sr.Member
There will always be fluid in the rack boots so it is necessary that the convolute covers or boots be free of puncures or tears and the large and small bands on each end be tight.
If you have lost a lot of fluid then you will have to refill the rack. It holds 1/2 pint. According to the manual, the rack must be removed from the car to fill it. I have been able to fill it through the damper pad cover. You can add oil but you will not know how much oil is in the unit.
March 29, 2010 at 6:15 pm #63447theoMember
You can remove the rack without removing the rad… but you CAN, if you want to, replace the boots and refill the rack with it still in the car. Jack the car up on one side, and then pull the small diameter of the low side rack boot away from the steering rod, so that the fluid drains out. The oil will run along the steering rod, so you may need a large catch pan. While you’re letting the fluid run out that side, undo the high side steering arm and replace the rack boot. Snug up the boot clamps on that side.
After the fluid finishes draining from the low side, put the car back on level ground and then jack up the other side, and replace that boot. If you first snug up the large diameter (inside) clamp on the rack boot, you can use a tapered nozzle on your gear oil jug to pull the outside end of the rack boot away from the steering rod, and get the oil in that way.
I had to fix a hole in the center of the rack tube on my Tiger. The PO had used a too-deep crank pulley, and it rubbed through the rack tube, causing the oil to leak out. A second issue was that they’d run the remote filter oil hoses past the left hand rack boot, which caused it to wear out prematurely.
So I ended up doing the boot replacement with the rack out of the car, but I did fill it by squeezing the oil filler past the small end of the rack boot. IIRC I just used the "calibrated" level lines on the fill bottle to judge the amount of oil I put in.
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