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65VerdeGS

Steering wheel to hub alignment

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Quick question - are there index marks on the steering shaft and steering wheel to ensure these are lined up properly when the steering wheel is re-installed?

 

Yesterday I replaced the chrome cover at the top of the steering column.  I'll post details on how that job went soon.

 

Before I pulled the steering wheel I ensured the car's front tires were in the straight-ahead position.  This so I could replace the steering wheel with the proper orientation to the hub.  After getting everything back together I took the car out for a drive and noticed the steering wheel cocked slightly to the left when the front wheels are running straight.  This is where the steering wheel is positioned now when going straight ahead:

 

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So, I'll have to remove the steering wheel and shift it over to the right.  There are quite a few splines on the steering shaft.  I'd rather avoid doing this job by trial and error, so can you tell me if there are register marks on the hub and the steering wheel to help locate it correctly?  

 

Yes, I should have marked the wheel position against the hub with a marker or scribe.  Didn't do that, so here we are...

 

Any tips much appreciated!

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Just move one spline to the right. OR get the toe adjusted at an alignment shop.

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On 1/8/2019 at 9:00 PM, telriv said:

OR get the toe adjusted at an alignment shop.

 

OR shorten the left (driver's side) tie rod and lengthen the right tie rod equal amounts (one or 2 turns at a time) until the wheel is centered.  (Assuming that the toe alignment is OK now.) Otherwise, this would be a good excuse to have the front end re-aligned.

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There is a line scribed into the wheel hub and another line scribed into the end of the shaft. The wheel should be installed with these two

lines lined up with each other. I agree it looks like you are one tooth off on the steering shaft. If you find that you are already on the correct

spline on the steering shaft, you can jack up the front end and loosen the adjusting sleeves for the tie rods and turn each sleeve the proper

direction for each wheel to go to the left. It looks like you would need to go about a half turn on each sleeve. Once you get the wheel straight,

you can double check the toe with a tape measure measuring across the tread  on the front of the tire and the back of the tire. The back side measurement

needs to be 1/8 inch more than the front side measurement. Each time you make a measurement , you need to first drive the car at least 100 feet.

 This is necessary for the tires to seat them selves to the pavement at their normal angle.

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Hi guys,

 

Well, here's an update.  As Winston remarked, there are scribe marks on the wheel hub and steering shaft.  I just didn't see them before (Duh!).  So, I removed the wheel and repositioned it.  However, even when the marks are lined up the wheel is still hanging a bit left when the car is going straight ahead.  That bugged me so I took the steering wheel off again and moved it another notch.  Now the wheel spokes are balanced left-right when the car is going straight.

 

Does this indicate I need a wheel alignment?    It's been quite some time since I last had the front end aligned.  I don't recall having curbed the front wheels or anything to throw the alignment out.  Would the alignment change over time on it own.

 

Would it make sense to reposition the steering wheel as per the scribe marks and then take the car in for an alignment?  That would let the alignment guys know that something wasn't right.  Correct?

 

Thanks for your tips on this.

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I would line-up the witness marks on the column and wheel, then have an alignment done.  That puts everything back where it belongs.  I'm not opposed to 'cheating' the wheel position a tooth in either direction, but since you are contemplating the alignment anyway why not zero everything out as it is intended to be?  ;)

 

Oh, and if you do take it for an alignment, be sure to mention that the steering wheel needs to be re-centered -- they usually check (or ask) but I wouldn't assume anything...

Edited by EmTee
Updated (see edit history)

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In my experience, most shops are not real good about getting the steering wheel perfectly straight. Be sure

to tell them that the wheel has to be straight when you take it in if you decide not to adjust it yourself. If you want

to just leave it one tooth over on the steering shaft, that won't hurt anything, but you might want to check the toe with

a tape measure as I outlined in the previous post.

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If you're going to get an alignment anyway, reposition the wheel so that the scribe marks line up before you take it in and tell them to make sure to align the wheel.  If not, index the wheel so that it's straight (even if that means the scribe marks don't line up) and call it a day.  There's no reason that the alignment would change just because you pulled the wheel.

 

In general, it sounds like someone installed the wheel off the mark earlier and the alignment was done relative to that.  You might as well fix that the next time you get an alignment, but there's no reason to take it in just because of that.

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6 hours ago, KongaMan said:

If you're going to get an alignment anyway, reposition the wheel so that the scribe marks line up before you take it in and tell them to make sure to align the wheel.  If not, index the wheel so that it's straight (even if that means the scribe marks don't line up) and call it a day.  There's no reason that the alignment would change just because you pulled the wheel.

 

In general, it sounds like someone installed the wheel off the mark earlier and the alignment was done relative to that.  You might as well fix that the next time you get an alignment, but there's no reason to take it in just because of that.

 

Thanks guys for your advice,

 

The car drives fine at the moment (no pull to one side) but its been some time since I had it aligned.  I don't drive it that much, so am not too concerned at this point.  Before I take her in, I'll re-index the steering wheel to the hub so things are lined up properly once the alignment is done.

 

 

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