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rack on a straight axle

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by meteorgasser, Oct 27, 2008.

  1. meteorgasser
    Joined: Oct 29, 2006
    Posts: 189

    meteorgasser
    Member
    from Lodi, Ohio

    Has any of you ever used a rack and pinion on a striaght axle with the rack fastened to the axle if so what type of slip joint did you use ?
     
  2. lowsquire
    Joined: Feb 21, 2002
    Posts: 2,564

    lowsquire
    Member
    from Austin, TX

    No i haven't.
    I may be wrong, but the thought of a slip joint going to a rack affixed to a straight axle gives me the chills....is this actually common practice,(nothing you Amercians do suprises me any more!) or a "what if?" idea you had?
     
  3. I really have to ask why you would even bother? It would be super ugly for a start, untraditional and the slip joint sounds dangerous.
    Doc.
     
  4. Phil1934
    Joined: Jun 24, 2001
    Posts: 2,717

    Phil1934
    Member

    R&C did this years ago with a collapsible GM column with the plastic rivets drilled out, but there's not a lot of metal in sleeve to wear.
     

  5. kinda like driving a Yugo, something you just don't wanna do.
     
  6. str8axleford
    Joined: Oct 14, 2007
    Posts: 92

    str8axleford
    Member

    I saw one done on a yellow 56 chev about 6 years ago, it didnt look right... I had my friend take a pic (I didnt have a camera with me) and he never gave me the pic... It was in the nw burbs of chicago.. I forget what show it was.
     
  7. skwurl
    Joined: Aug 25, 2008
    Posts: 1,620

    skwurl
    Member

    I'm Gonna go with NO!. That would be way too dangerous.
     
  8. leon renaud
    Joined: Nov 12, 2005
    Posts: 1,936

    leon renaud
    Member
    from N.E. Ct.

    Rack needs to be mounted to a solid piece of the chassis level with the axle center line NOT to the beam!when this first started people were using the flex shaft out of pinto steering columns the cable ones as soon as they started showing up Every chassis guru in the country was in some mag getting quoted on all the reasons that a beam mounted set up was wrong and deadly
     
  9. Graham08
    Joined: Oct 2, 2007
    Posts: 138

    Graham08
    Member

    We do this on supermodifeds all the time. Have zero problems with it in a racing environment. But, this is a tube axle, built with this in mind, not an add on to an I-beam axle setup. I don't see why it wouldn't work on the street. The reason for this is while we pay a little penalty in unsprung weight, bump steer is minimized.

    You have a couple options for slip joints. Borgeson makes a "double-D" setup, which I have used. They're about $70, and work OK. Woodward makes a splined setup that has about 3" of travel, and they're about $150. Given the choice I would use the Woodward piece. The double-D setup starts out really tight (doesn't slide well) and develops slop over time.

    Here is a photo of the Borgeson joint installed...it may be a little hard to see through all of the diagonals in the frame. The rack & pinion is a Ford T-Bird sport rack (quick ratio) used in the T-Bird super coupes.
     

    Attached Files:

  10. I wouldn't say it was dangerous in operation. Supermodifieds have been using axle mounted racks at speeds up to 160 mph for years now.

    [​IMG]

    Good idea for a hot rod? Hard to say. I guess it would depend on clearance for the intermediate shaft, tie rods, etc. Also, how well is the rack mounted to the axle beam. Traditioal hot rod tech? Definetely not.
     
  11. RichFox
    Joined: Dec 3, 2006
    Posts: 10,020

    RichFox
    Member Emeritus

    I put a Pinto R&P on the axle of my 32 coup and ran it for years at El Mirage, Bonneville and the drags with no grief. Used the Pinto flex thing. Inspectors for SCTA hated that thing. I always said that millions of them were running around in Pintos hitting pot holes and curbs and what not with out comming apart. When I retired the 32 SCTA put in a "No Pinto wire rope steering" rule.
     
  12. bobw
    Joined: Mar 24, 2006
    Posts: 2,368

    bobw
    Member

    [​IMG]
    It worked out so nice I have installed R & P on 3 of my rods.
     
  13. okiedokie
    Joined: Jul 5, 2005
    Posts: 4,332

    okiedokie
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    from Ok

    There are several around our area that have been well tested with no problems. Not traditional but functional. First one I was aware of was for a physically limited person who needed power steering on a 32.
     
  14. skwurl
    Joined: Aug 25, 2008
    Posts: 1,620

    skwurl
    Member

    I stand corrected. Now all you have to worry about is the ugly factor, Unless the axle is hidden.
     
  15. Graham08
    Joined: Oct 2, 2007
    Posts: 138

    Graham08
    Member

    You could probably do a lot better, appearance-wise than the T-Bird racks. I think Ashley Webb's roadster has a Strange dragster rack, but I cant remember if it's mounted to the chassis or the axle. It is either painted or anodized black, and blends in well with the rest of the car. Most racks actually built for racing are a lot smaller and easier to hide (a lot more expensive, too! :D)
     
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2008
  16. davedeltadog
    Joined: Aug 8, 2008
    Posts: 172

    davedeltadog
    Member

    Unisteer makes a small unit that has only one link rod going to the passenger side, and would be almost invisible behind a straight axel. Checkout the site.
     
  17. zman
    Joined: Apr 2, 2001
    Posts: 16,594

    zman
    Member
    from Garner, NC

    Ugly ugly ugly....
     
  18. Was just talking about that setup with the class. I don't care for the mount for anything but skinny front tires. Not a lot of side support, and still not traditional...
     
  19. leon renaud
    Joined: Nov 12, 2005
    Posts: 1,936

    leon renaud
    Member
    from N.E. Ct.

    The Pinto flex shaft was not for the up and down movement you get from an axle mounted rack it was used as a flex drive because of the angle the Pinto column is at in a stock body.the passenger side of the wheel is father forward than the drivers side.The cable worked in the same fassion that a flexable carb screwdriver works.or the cable type socket flex joint.Looks like I was way off base with because just about the time I was thinking of trying it is when there were several articles on how dangerous this was lots of street rod shops saying it wasn't safe mabye I miss understood and it was the use of the Pinto flex cable that was n't safe one had a pic of a severely frayed cable that was caused by being used for this
     
  20. Phil1934
    Joined: Jun 24, 2001
    Posts: 2,717

    Phil1934
    Member

    Problem with pinto flex shaft was internal rusting.
     

  21. You might get some constructive help on a street rod board.
     
  22. meteorgasser
    Joined: Oct 29, 2006
    Posts: 189

    meteorgasser
    Member
    from Lodi, Ohio

    this is going on mercury meteor with a tube axle ugly does not matter the thing is a freak and will be driven alot and want it to last
     
  23. krooser
    Joined: Jul 25, 2004
    Posts: 4,583

    krooser
    Member

    Mack used to mount the steering box on the I-beam axle of one model of their trucks back in the 70's. It was never widely accepted and they dropped it but those trucks had zero bumpsteer and drove a lot better than their contemporaries...
     
  24. Since you brought it up, Krooser, any ideas on a source for more info on that Mack setup?
     
  25. No shit, is this still a traditional hot rod board?
     
  26. fuel pump
    Joined: Nov 4, 2001
    Posts: 3,620

    fuel pump
    Member Emeritus
    from Caro,MI

    Here is a rack and pinion bolted to a solid axle on a 32 roadster. The car turned and steered as good as any 32 I've ever driven.


    [​IMG]
     
  27. gas pumper
    Joined: Aug 13, 2007
    Posts: 2,956

    gas pumper
    Member

    GM buses also had the steering box on the axle. And a bevel gear drive at the bottom of the steering post. The connection to the bevel gear to the axle mounted box was a drive shaft with slip joint. NO bumpsteer.

    Never seen the Mack version.

    Later GM's (after 74) used a Sheppard box on the axle, the same box Mack used on their frame mounted steering.
     
  28. 32 Barn Car
    Joined: Jul 2, 2008
    Posts: 664

    32 Barn Car
    Member
    from Oregon

    It was common to mount a rack on your Axle in the mid 70's.I had a Morris Minor rack mounted on a Super Bell tube axle in a '32 Phaeton . Worked fine, it was the 4 bar mounts that were welded to the axle that were a problem. Weld broke and I lost steering , rear ended a car at about 25 mph , the Super Bell tube axle broke from the impact and I wrecked my nice car . It had won Rod Sweepstakes , Best Paint and Best Stock Bodied Rod ( the Doug Doyle Memorial Award) at the 1977 Portland Roadster Show . The car was in Street Rodder , Feb 1978 after I fixed it .Take a look at that issue and see a nice car that could be built for under $20,000 in 1975-'76 .........
     
  29. 32 Barn Car
    Joined: Jul 2, 2008
    Posts: 664

    32 Barn Car
    Member
    from Oregon

    Images didn't transfer the first time.......
     

    Attached Files:

  30. dgc15
    Joined: Aug 23, 2007
    Posts: 140

    dgc15
    Member

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