Previous Thread
Next Thread
Print Thread
Rate Thread
Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 136
DSVW Offline OP
Shade Tree Mechanic
OP Offline
Shade Tree Mechanic
Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 136
Hi,

I have a 1956 Bel air 4 door sedan with a 6 cylinder automatic.

I have a question about inner and outer tie rod ends.
Both of the tie rod sleeves measure the same.
Should both inner tie rods measure the same length?
Should both outer tie rods measure the same length?

I just rebuilt my front end and did an alignment in my garage. I can actually drive down the street and the car tracks straight but will drift ever so slightly after a period of time., nothing major though.

I brought the car in to have a professional alignment and they said they can't adjust the passenger side outer tie rod in far enough and that the car has too much toe. Can't you just adjust the inner rod in to compensate for that?

I see that they adjusted the passenger side outer tie rod end in as far as it would go, but they still couldn't make it work.

I am a little confused here because everything I took off the car matched up to the new parts length wise. I put new inner and outer tie rods on and reused the old sleeves.

Any ideas?

Wilwood Engineering1955-1957

Willwood Engineering

Wilwood Engineering designs and manufactures high-performance disc brake systems.
Wilwood Engineering, Inc. - 4700 Calle Bolero - Camarillo, CA 93012 - (805) 388-1188


Joined: Dec 2016
Posts: 614
Likes: 1
Oil Can Mechanic
Online Content
Oil Can Mechanic
Joined: Dec 2016
Posts: 614
Likes: 1
This is general advice for any normal car with normal suspension that is the same on both sides, and a steering box (not a rack). It is not specifically for your 1956, but maybe it will help.

It also assumes nothing is bent. If something is bent, that must be fixed first.

The tie rods must be exactly the same length overall. Any toe adjustment would have to be made on BOTH side equally, assuming the steering wheel is straight ahead.

The length overall of the tie rods is also critical. They are designed so that as the suspension goes up and down, the car does not steer. The phenomenon when it does steer is called "bump steer" and is extremely undesirable. The position and length of the tie rods is critical. The ride height of the car also matters, so if it had been lowered, or the suspension has been modified in some way, all bets are off.

Usually on a car with a steering box, the steering box has a "tight spot" in the center, and the steering wheel may be indexed somehow, possibly with a master spline or a key or a mark This is so the tight spot occurs at straight ahead with the steering wheel right side up.

Assuming everything is assembled correctly, and the steering wheel is straight up at the designed in tight spot, when the toe is adjusted to the correct amount, and the steering wheel is straight going down the road, the length of the tie rods should be exactly the same by default. It should just turn out that way. If that is not happening, I would be looking for something assembled wrong, like the steering wheel off by a half or full turn when straight ahead, or bent suspension parts.

By contrast, on a rack and pinion system, which is much more common today, the tie rods are measured to be the same length at the beginning. Toe is adjusted equally on both sides until correct, keeping the tie rod lengths equal. If the steering wheel is not straight it is pulled off of it's splines and made straight as the last step. This is exactly backwards when compared to a car with a steering box. Hope this helps.

P.S. I would expect on that car that the tie rods on any sleeve have opposite threads, and that adjustment would be made by turning the whole sleeve, and that the inner and outer should run out of thread at the same time. Am I missing something here?


Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 136
DSVW Offline OP
Shade Tree Mechanic
OP Offline
Shade Tree Mechanic
Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 136
Got it.

I know I have been asking a lot of questions lately so thanks for your patience!


Joined: Dec 2007
Posts: 2,922
Likes: 23
ChatMaster - 2,000
Offline
ChatMaster - 2,000
Joined: Dec 2007
Posts: 2,922
Likes: 23
Bloo’s information is right on target for making sure your steering will operate correctly.

Whenever I install new tie rods ends I assemble them into the sleeve equally. The easy way to do that is to fully turn each tie rod end into the sleeve as far as it will go. Then turn each end out the same number of turns to set the assembly to the approximate operating length. Do this for each tie rod assembly and make sure they are both the same length before you install them.

You might be having problems because the parts are not correct for your car. That is why I always keep way too many old parts lying around. Whenever things are not fitting together properly I compare the new “reproduction” or replacement part to the old. It is surprising how many times that answers your question.


Rusty

VCCA #44680

Link Copied to Clipboard
Anniversary Ad


More Info

Support The VCCA!

Enjoy the forum? Become a VCCA member! The World's Best Chevrolet Car Club!


VCCA Raffle Tickets

Support the VCCA Anniversary Meet

Member Photos
4th Annual Gulf Coast Region car show
Rear apron bolts
Rear apron bolts
by nhinchas, March 23
Pictures of the heap
Pictures of the heap
by Leapin, February 1
1950 Styleline Wiring Acc block
1950 Styleline Wiring Acc block
by WI_Jeff, January 22
Who's Online Now
8 members (bloo, 36RAGTOP, Bare_Feet, Tiny, Shorty, j7l2, BearsFan315, 1 invisible), 48 guests, and 33 robots.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Newest Members
HoraceG, R_Kaplan, Smakybiba, Belle51, IcyTwo
17,511 Registered Users
Today's Birthdays
There are no members with birthdays on this day.
Forum Statistics
Forums67
Topics56,375
Posts413,510
Members17,512
Most Online1,133
Jan 22nd, 2020
 

Notice: Any comments posted herein do not necessarily reflect the official position of the VCCA.

Powered by UBB.threads™ PHP Forum Software 7.7.5