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I need information on how to improve the steering of a 1964 Avanti R1. It has the factory power steering. Anyway, the car is undergoing a complete rebuild. The body, frame and engine work have been completed. I am I in the process of breaking in the engine and new ring and pinion gears. She is doing very well. I am tracking down and fixing all of the minor problems that are present. She has a tremendous amount of power and cruises the freeway effortlessly. The one major problem from a safety and driveability standpoint is the steering. There is a good amount of slop in the steering. When a hit a bump on the freeway, the bump steer is scary. One of these days it is going to throw the car sideways. There are also plenty of leaks in the power steering system. I am sure that one has to do with the other. The most serious leak is from the "ram." So, I intend on replacing the seals in the ram. Any other ideas?

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There's a bushing at the bottom of the steering column that likely needs replacing. If the one you have is broken (quite probable), you'll have a lot of play in the steering.

Go ahead and rebuild the ram and the power steering control valve. If you don't have the experience, it's better to send them to someone like Jon Myers who has the experience to do so properly.

You may well ned a new set of hoses. They're not inexpensive but are money well spent.

Essentially, you need to rebuild the entire system...to not do so will cost you more time and grief ultimately. Do it all while you have the system apart...the whole hydraulic system, king pins, bushings, etc. You might also consider a pair of quick steering arms, but that's not truly necessary. What it does it reduces your steering from 3.5 turns lock to lock down to maybe 3 turns. Again...your call.

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What you are describing could range from worn wheel bearings to tierods, to a

controld valve, etc. Its very hard to narrow down, unless you get under the car

and actually force parts back and forth to find slop. One of the main places to

check is the bellcrank (or center pivot). This has a tendency to move up & down

rather than just rotate, which can cause quite a lot of play. I am currently doing

a complete rebuild on my power steering and documenting the process in a few

threads on the SDC site. I might check with AOAI and see if they have a tech

section that can utilize "Stickys". Anyway .. here is what I have done so far :

Pump:

http://www.studebakerdriversclub.com/sdc_f...p?TOPIC_ID=8527

Control Valve :

http://www.studebakerdriversclub.com/sdc_f...?TOPIC_ID=10694

Steering Ram :

http://www.studebakerdriversclub.com/sdc_f...p?TOPIC_ID=9935

Hoses:

http://www.studebakerdriversclub.com/sdc_f...p?TOPIC_ID=9936

Bob Johnstone has a great amount of resources on his page of what to look at

for wear and repair. Rather then retyping here ..

http://www.studebaker-info.org/tech/loosesteer.txt

Section :

http://www.studebaker-info.org/rjtechx3.html#PowerSteering

Tom

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I need information on how to improve the steering of a 1964 Avanti R1. It has the factory power steering. Anyway, the car is undergoing a complete rebuild. The body, frame and engine work have been completed. I am I in the process of breaking in the engine and new ring and pinion gears. She is doing very well. I am tracking down and fixing all of the minor problems that are present. She has a tremendous amount of power and cruises the freeway effortlessly. The one major problem from a safety and driveability standpoint is the steering. There is a good amount of slop in the steering. When a hit a bump on the freeway, the bump steer is scary. One of these days it is going to throw the car sideways. There are also plenty of leaks in the power steering system. I am sure that one has to do with the other. The most serious leak is from the "ram." So, I intend on replacing the seals in the ram. Any other ideas?

Greetings,

Once you have replaced ALL the many wear parts in the Avanti suspension, you need a good alignment. Ignore the factory specs and have the tech crank in all the positive caster the adjustment will allow. Most times, it is difficult to get to the positive side at all, but use all the positive caster adjustment available. This will make the car track straight and eliminate wander.

thnx, jv.

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  • 11 months later...

Well after many hours of hard work, replacing the steering ram with a rebuild from Myers Studebaker, and rebuilding the Bendix-Eaton power steering pump myself, I am happy to report that the 1964 Avanti now has the steering that I would expect her to have. She's a dream on windy roads now. I had the alignment professionally done. I wasn't going to attempt that one. Now all that is left to fix is an oil leak which I believe is coming from that damn felt "seal" in the timing cover where the crank exits.

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