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post #1 of 32 Old 09-12-2005, 07:31 PM Thread Starter
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Manual Steering impressions

Honest input from you racer types. Is it OK or do you have to have shoulders like Arnie? Soo much cleaner without it.


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post #2 of 32 Old 09-13-2005, 07:17 AM
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Having owned a Mustang with manual steering, I would only recommend it for a dedicated drag car. Even with my drag skinnies it was hard steering at low speed.

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post #3 of 32 Old 09-13-2005, 07:54 AM
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Is that just because it was a Mustang? My family used to have a Toyota Cressida wagon overseas that was manual, and turning it was a ***** really only when it wasn't moving. The trick was to begin your turns before you had come to a stop. Of course, that car was probably 3/4 the weight of a Mustang, mebbe less.
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post #4 of 32 Old 09-13-2005, 12:37 PM
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I have the flaming rivers rack on my car and im happy with the steering feel. It takes some getting used to. With a better front end setup than what a stock mustang has it would be nice like a MM kmember. Most people dont like it at all though, almost everyone who drives my car, but i hated the one finger stock steering. Its all a matter of tastes. Have you ever driven anything with manual steering most people havent and the first time the turn try to turn it they want the power steering back. But you dont have to be buff to drive it i weigh in at 130lb and 6.0' so if i can handle it around an autox anyone should be able to.

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post #5 of 32 Old 09-13-2005, 01:17 PM
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For autocross you want quicker steering. A manual steering gives up quickness in favor of less steering effort by way of a lower ratio. Being able to "handle it" is far different from it being an effective steering setup for autocross. Once you add camber and caster to your front end, steering becomes a bit more heavy, throw in some 10.5" wheels with sticky tires and the steering effort goes up once again. MY 88 coupe was driveable with manual steering, partly because I ran very skinny tires. Even so a 3000# drag car with manual steering is going to steer much harder than a 2300# Toyota Corolla or Honda Civic. A 2600# 4 cylinder Fox coupe will steer a bit easier but will still have slower, heavier steering than a 3300# GT with power steering.
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post #6 of 32 Old 09-13-2005, 01:28 PM
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What about flaming rivers quick ratio? Cause manual steering is very clean and save weight and drag on the engine..
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post #7 of 32 Old 09-13-2005, 01:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by green94_gt
What about flaming rivers quick ratio? Cause manual steering is very clean and save weight and drag on the engine..
I can think of better ways to save 8 or 10 pounds. I'll just keep my power steering, thank you.
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post #8 of 32 Old 09-13-2005, 02:05 PM
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But what about the quick ratio? I mean how many years did they have manual steering? I think I could handle it..
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post #9 of 32 Old 09-13-2005, 05:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by green94_gt
But what about the quick ratio? I mean how many years did they have manual steering? I think I could handle it..
The quick ratio makes it HARDER to steer. All of those years were they had manual steering was with skinny tires that didnt grip.
I have a manual rack that is equivalent to FRs quick steer rack and I absolutely hate it. I rarely drive my car because of it. I know I would not be able to autocross or to any OT events because of the heavy and slow steering below 30/40 mph. And thats why I have not done any events like I planned.

At cruising speed the manual rack is not really noticable, you get use to it.
Just dont do it.

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post #10 of 32 Old 09-13-2005, 05:26 PM
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So how could I still run power steering with only and alternator and crank (I will have an electric water pump and no a/c)..

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post #11 of 32 Old 09-13-2005, 07:27 PM
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I have manual steering in my 89 S10 riverside. With me a friend, and 1/4 tank of gas i weighed in at exactly 3000lbs. Manual steering isnt bad. But i will keep power steering ony my mustang. Just loose everything else.

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post #12 of 32 Old 09-13-2005, 07:29 PM
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I run manual steering on my notch (flaming river standard ratio kit), and I auto-x is pretty regularly and its not that bad at all!

one of my buddies runs my car also, and so does his girlfriend. They are both 1/2 my size (I'm 6'5" 200lbs, they are like 5'2" 120lbs) and neither of them had ANY problems driving my car around the track. My buddy was 2 seconds faster than me, and she was 3 seconds slower than me per lap. Our times were the best in our class (street tire) and we beat several cars in STS and CSP classes

I prefer the feel of the manual to that of power, only time it is annoying is parallel parking, and doing u-turns and the cell phone starts ringing

the car has FMS 'b' springs, bilstein shocks/struts, and MM c/c plates. 245/50R16 tires on pony rims

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post #13 of 32 Old 09-14-2005, 10:57 AM
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So I should get a standard ratio rack not the quick ratio? I really want the manual rack. I called flaming river and talked to several shops and they all said the manual rack has a better road feel, less slope..and what about alumium rack bushing?
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post #14 of 32 Old 09-14-2005, 12:32 PM Thread Starter
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Manual Steering "Feel"

Well I was mainly asking to find out for street and track day Road Racing. When my car ends up at the track it will be at thunder hill, sears and buttonwillow. I will be running 255's at all 4 corners and want to know if it is a better "Feel." The muscle isn't an issue I am 6'3" 240lbs I don't think power will be an issue ,it is the feedback that I am curious about. What are the numbers on standard vs. Quick?

For you Auto-x boys what constitutes a lot of steering wheel travel?
1/2 turn 2/3?......1/4......................

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post #15 of 32 Old 09-14-2005, 12:40 PM
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O and I have 275/35/18's all around?
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post #16 of 32 Old 09-14-2005, 02:48 PM
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I don't need to turn the wheel very much at all to get around most turns on the track, maybe 1/4 of a rotation of the wheel at most, any more than that and it just starts to scrub the tires - which you can feel start to happen with the manual rack, its hard to describe.

on the street it is a very nice tight feel to the car, there's enough slop built in so that you arent constantly fighting the wheel over a really rough road, but there's no so much that you are driving the car like a cartoon character holding the car straight

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post #17 of 32 Old 09-14-2005, 03:09 PM
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I still wanna know about the alumium rack bushings?
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post #18 of 32 Old 09-14-2005, 10:10 PM
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You can drive a car with manual steering, but you can drive it better with power steering. The reason is you can steer faster with power assist. In auto-x you need to steer fast in slaloms, and when you get oversteer. Road racing doesn't have slaloms, but you can still get loose and if you drop 2 wheels off in a slow turn being able to steer quicker can be a big help.

I ran a friends 66 Mustang with manual steering and 12" wide slicks at the Northeast Divisional autocross. It was impossible to brake & turn at the same time- use much of the braking capability and you physically can't turn the wheel. And I lost more time than you'd believe due to the slow steering. The owner still isn't convinced power steering is a good investment. Maybe after he runs my car he will be...

Aluminum rack bushings are a good idea.
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post #19 of 32 Old 09-15-2005, 12:39 AM Thread Starter
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Power Assist

So let me ask you steering afficianoto's what is the difference technically between power assist and full power. What is in the the fox.
It may be an obvious question but I have never had any issues with steering in any of my cars/trucks so I never had to read or learn anything about it. And, that's in 20 years of driving...Go Figure!

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post #20 of 32 Old 09-17-2005, 08:26 PM
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Quote:
For you Auto-x boys what constitutes a lot of steering wheel travel?
1/2 turn 2/3?......1/4......................
My car has exceptionally fast steering and I can't remember turning the wheel more than 1/4 turn on course, but a bit more than 1/2 turn is lock to lock.

I can't express how much easier the car is to autocross with the faster ratio.

A friend of mine has a EM Corvette which only weighs ~2050lbs and has only 42% front weight bias. He tried manual steering and didn't even make it through one two day event becuase it was so hard to steer on course.

HTH,

DaveW
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post #21 of 32 Old 09-17-2005, 10:03 PM
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Not trying to argue here but i have no problem autocrossing my mustang with manual steering. I have the Flaming Rivers quick ratio rack kit. The only problem i have had is one hand turning is hard and if on of the front brakes ever lock the wheel will try to jerk out of your hand so keep you thumbs on the outside of the wheel.

A 2050lb vette with manual steering too difficult? My dad has a 69 weighing in at 2700lbs with manual steering and 265s up front and the steering on it is much easier than that of my Stang. It has been autocrossed many times without a problem. Ive been driving this car for years so this may be why i like the manual steering. I do understand why people who have never driven a manual steering car dont like them but it is more of a personal preference and i have seen people be very competitive in cars with manual steering. But i would recomend driving one with it before you buy it for an autox car or daily around town driver.

91 lx, 4 cylinder conversion,

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post #22 of 32 Old 09-17-2005, 10:15 PM
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HotRodLX,

I'm not trying to argue either. My experience is with nationally competitive autocross cars on slicks/sticky tires.

If cars such as the tube frame Corvette I spoke of before, with very little weight on the front wheels, essentially perfect suspension geometry (low scrub, etc) are undriveable with manual steering, a stockish Mustang with struts, 6 inches of scrub, a huge amount of caster and jacking certainly wouldn't be better.

So, I stand by my opinion that for an optimal autocross setup, a fast ratio is much more important than the minimal weight of power steering.

If you are not trying to be nationally competitive, or are dual/tri use, etc. then I guess you could live through it, but in my opinion you are leaving a lot on the table for little benefit.

IMO,

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post #23 of 32 Old 09-18-2005, 02:59 AM
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The main reason i went to manual steering is because the power steering was too much in the mustang and I didnt like the one finger driving. My steering was worn out and needed to be replaced at the time also. My corvette has power assist and it is a much better feel in my opininon than the mustang power steering. Maybe the MM kit would cure the overpowering steering but that wasnt availible at the time i put the rack on my car. If i had the money to put into it i would go to the power kit from MM.

91 lx, 4 cylinder conversion,

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post #24 of 32 Old 09-18-2005, 07:52 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hotrdlx
Maybe the MM kit would cure the overpowering steering but that wasnt availible at the time i put the rack on my car. If i had the money to put into it i would go to the power kit from MM.
I've been wondering the same thing. MM has a power steering kit that is adjustable with the restrictor kit (different size valves adjusts the amount of power assist). Does anyone have any experience with this kit?
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post #25 of 32 Old 09-18-2005, 09:24 AM
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HotRodLX,

I see you have a 4cyl conversion car. Which power rack do/did you have? The non V-8 Sport racks are pretty bad for overboost...

The Sport rack certainly isn't "one finger" steering.

I don't have the MM kit, but do use a KRC pump and you can adjust the boost rate. It is very nice and well worth it.

DaveW
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post #26 of 32 Old 09-18-2005, 09:49 AM
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I have excellent feedback and sense of overboost with my stock 95 GT power steering. I really like the ratio too. I have driven a 2000 C5 Corvette and a 2000 Z-28 in autocross and the steering on those GM's had good feel but was just a tick slower than my Mustang. I like being able to negotiate most obstacles without having to do hand over hand or shuffling.
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post #27 of 32 Old 09-18-2005, 04:49 PM
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I had the 4 cylinder rack with the v8 pump. I drove a 92 gt with the agr setup and it was way too over boosted for my tastes worse than what i had.

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post #28 of 32 Old 09-18-2005, 06:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hotrdlx
I had the 4 cylinder rack with the v8 pump. I drove a 92 gt with the agr setup and it was way too over boosted for my tastes worse than what i had.
That '92 GT with the AGR setup must be my car. The AGR setup seemed like it wasn't overboosted as much as stock, but still overboosted. I am still looking at other options to retain some boost. Last I looked, MM doesnt sell a P/S kit for a car with A/C.

As for hotrdlx's manual steering, I have only driven it once during an autocross. I myself have been babied with power steering so that is what I am used to. Even though mine is overboosted, I am used to it an know what to expect. His manual steering definitely isnt bad, it is just not what I am used to. The heavier steering slowed my reactions, but I just wasnt used to it nor had the time to really get used to it. He has said that some front suspension mods have easied up the effort a little. So I guess it all comes down to preference.

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post #29 of 32 Old 09-18-2005, 06:45 PM
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I suspect that I'm arguing to argue, not really to prove a point...so take this with a grain of salt.

I still stand by my opinion that a quicker ratio is much more important for quicker autocross times than lack of boost, or overboost or whatever.

Obviously, my opinion is autocross only, as that's where I have extensive experience in preparing a national level car.

DaveW
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DaveW
I suspect that I'm arguing to argue, not really to prove a point...so take this with a grain of salt.

I still stand by my opinion that a quicker ratio is much more important for quicker autocross times than lack of boost, or overboost or whatever.

Obviously, my opinion is autocross only, as that's where I have extensive experience in preparing a national level car.

DaveW
Arguing to argue is good. It explores possibilities and options. I agree that boost is good for autocrosses, especially tight courses. The site we used to have (looking for a new one) was an old, unused airfield. Our speeds were high for autocross and the coarses werent as tight as most autocross courses. This made boost not as needed.

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post #31 of 32 Old 09-20-2005, 02:29 PM
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Does anyone carry a flaming river 19:1 manual rack with a bump steer kit instead of tie rod ends..And one more time is it a good idea to run a manual 19:1 rack on a street/road race car (more street though).
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post #32 of 32 Old 09-20-2005, 03:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by green94_gt
Does anyone carry a flaming river 19:1 manual rack with a bump steer kit instead of tie rod ends
Just buy the parts individually. The rack is FR1503, the shaft kit is FR1504M and you can pick ANY bumpsteer kit you want, Griggs, MM, Baer, Steeda, UPR, FRPP. I personally run the Griggs.

Quote:
Originally Posted by green94_gt
..And one more time is it a good idea to run a manual 19:1 rack on a street/road race car (more street though).
Again, no, it will be very slow for road racing.

Rick

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