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Old 03-21-2013, 12:04 PM
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Heavy steering plus camber/caster. 2002 GC Limited WG.

Now here's a weird one.

Very, very occasionally, after slowing for a right hand turn (bear in mind that urban turns tend to be a lot tighter this side of the pond than they are Stateside) I have found that, on making the turn, the steering has become exceedingly heavy. So much so that it takes a considerable amount of effort to avoid running out on to the pavement (walkway). This only lasts for a very short while, just while the vehicle is on lock. I thought that changing the power steering fluid was called for and, having done that, using the approved Mopar fluid, I have had it happen twice since. Funnily enough it never happens on the tighter left hand turns and only when I have nearly completed my 2.5 mile round trip to the paper shop and back, and always on the same corner but only perhaps once a month. I have advised my wife to be wary of this but, up to now, it has never happened to her. I'm dreading the first time it does because I'm sure she wouldn't have the strength to maintain the turn, although she would probably have the presence of mind to apply the brakes if she thought she was going to leave the road.

Has anybody any idea what may be causing this? Naturally I have checked the fluid level since changing it and all is O.K. I did the change by running the engine, turning the steering side to side (front axle jacked up a little to make this easier) and letting the fluid pump out to a container whilst topping up the reservoir with new fluid.

Now to the second problem. I have experienced, ever since I acquired the vehicle, excessive tyre (tire) wear on the outer edge of the nearside (LH) front tyre (tire), and think that this as a result of the combination of camber and caster on the tighter left hand urban turns in UK.

I realise that with a live/solid axle a little positive camber (top of wheel leaning outwards) may be necessary to align the bottom of the wheel with the line through the pivot points around which the wheel turns when cornering. I do not believe that with a front/all wheel drive vehicle much caster angle, designed to encourage straight line running, should be necessary, but there is obviously some.

This combination of camber and caster results in a very large angle of wheel incline (positive camber) when on full lock.

I can find neither the correct figures for camber or caster, nor any info on how, if at all, these can be adjusted. Any ideas?

Tony N
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Old 03-22-2013, 07:04 AM
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Re: Heavy steering plus camber/caster. 2002 GC Limited WG.

Regarding the now and then heavy steering, did you check the accessory belt tension. Just an idea.
Attached the camber and caster specifications. Eventhough the manual states that both are preset and not adjustable, i know that there are ofset upper ball joints available which allow for some camber/caster adjustment. Rockauto has some when needed.
Attached Files
File Type: pdf Camber-caster1.pdf (88.9 KB, 4 views)
File Type: pdf Camber-caster.pdf (82.1 KB, 4 views)
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