[Healeys] Steering question

warthodson at aol.com warthodson at aol.com
Mon Dec 28 13:02:18 MST 2015

You might try a small amount of additional toe-in. How confident are you that the shimming of the steering column end play is "spot on"?  This, as you probably know, is a fiddly adjustment & difficult to check, especially with the column in the car. 
Gary Hodson
-----Original Message-----
From: Michael Oritt <michael.oritt at gmail.com>
To: Austin Healey <healeys at autox.team.net>
Sent: Mon, Dec 28, 2015 1:31 pm
Subject: [Healeys] Steering question

I have a December, 1954 100.  

My wife and I went out for an extended ride yesterday. She drove first and though she does not have much experience with the car she is a quick study and good thinker. After she had driven for perhaps 20 miles she commented that the steering seemed go be "wandering" and required constant small adjustments to keep the car going straight. She felt that the condition did not start until after we had been driving for a while. I did not say anything and thought to myself that she simply was not used to the car. 

After about 50 miles we switched and--whether or not it was because of her comment--I noticed that the car did in fact want to wander and I had to stay on top of keeping the car from veering ever so slightly from left or right of center. The situation remained the same for the balance of the trip--about 150 or so miles in all till we came home.

Whether or not this is relevant--once the wheel is turned to set up for a turn everything seems fine and the car holds a steady track through the turn. It was only when the wheels were straight ahead that the issue presented.

I decided to address this today and with the car in the garage I find that there is virtually no play whatsoever in the steering--perhaps 1/2" or less--whether the front wheels are on or off the ground. 

​The "adjustment" procedure described in the manual for "later" 100's simply tells me to loosen the lock nut, remove the cover plate and tighten down the adjusting screw to remove play.  I am not finding a lot of play--again 1/2" or less-whether the car is on the ground or in the air--except when we are rolling.

I have, btw, checked for loose front wheel bearings by trying to wiggle the front wheels both from side to side and back and forth and everything feels just right.  Also I have observed the steering linkage from underneath and when I push the wheels from lock to lock I see no looseness, etc. in the end ball joints or the steering tie rods.

​Suggestions will be appreciated....

Best--Michael Oritt​


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