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Steering column bearings replacement - anyone done it?

Discussion in 'Defender 90 / 110 / 130' started by instantsquid, Feb 20, 2010.

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  1. instantsquid

    instantsquid New Member

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    Hi,

    Looks like the steering column bearings have had it on my 1988 90 :(

    I've had a look in the Haynes manual - doesn't look like a very fun job. Just wondered if anyone else had done it?

    Ian.
     
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2010
  2. instantsquid

    instantsquid New Member

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    As far as I can determine, the bearings aren't available seperately, so it's got to be a new steering column. Bet they're not cheap. Arse. :(
     
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2010
  3. instantsquid

    instantsquid New Member

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    Just a random thought....

    Could the steering lock be interferring with the column in some way?

    Still an awkward little job as the steering lock has a couple of shear-bolts to get out.

    Ian.
     
  4. hughesy

    hughesy Well-Known Member

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    If the steering feels notchy try lubricating the u/j's on the column.
     
  5. tombardier

    tombardier Well-Known Member

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    first things first, what are the symptoms?
     
  6. instantsquid

    instantsquid New Member

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    Symptoms? Stiff and noisy steering - sounds like something is scraping against something when I turn the wheel, up behind the the dash.

    Doubtful that it's the UJ's - I disconnected the collapsible shaft yesterday and the symptoms persisted.

    Ian.
     
  7. The Mad Hat Man

    The Mad Hat Man Well-Known Member LZIR Despatch Agent

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    sounds like that is what it is......
    tried it on my series and gave up...... it is next to impossible to remove the old bearing with the shaft still in, and to remove the shaft, its a complete removal and dismantle jobby. mite be easier on a defender than a series tho, cos the box isnt attached.
     
  8. instantsquid

    instantsquid New Member

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    Took the wheel and switch cluster off this morning - the top bearing is then visible. I figured I couldn't make things a lot worse than they were, so squirted a bit of WD40 down into it. The difference was amazing. Went backwards and forwards on the drive a few times, going lock to lock (the neighbours must think I'm really bad at parking!) and all the roughness and grinding noise had disappeared.
    I'm guessing this is only a short term fix - if the bearing is on it's way out, I'll probably have to replace the column at some point in the not too distant future.

    Ian.
     
  9. tombardier

    tombardier Well-Known Member

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    WD40 isn't a lubricant, and I think it'll dissolve your grease, so you might want to get the bearing re-greased!
     
  10. instantsquid

    instantsquid New Member

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    Yeah, I appreciate that. Let's go back to post #1 shall we? Anyone had the steering column bearings out?
     
  11. instantsquid

    instantsquid New Member

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    Had a thought while driving to work today (with my very smooth steering!) - would motorcycle chain lube be worth using? This is basically a grease for motorcyle chains (lots of little roller bearings) dispensed from a spray can. It penetrates really well, and then "sets" once the solvent evaporates to leave a much thicker grease behind.

    The alternative is to get the whole column out - I'm prepared to give that a go in a month or so, but I need the car every day at the moment, so any jobs that can't be completed in a day have to be put on hold.
     
  12. The Mad Hat Man

    The Mad Hat Man Well-Known Member LZIR Despatch Agent

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  13. instantsquid

    instantsquid New Member

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    Cheers for that. So it's not a totally stupid idea then? I realise that WD40 isn't a lubricant, but it has freed up the steering completely so there was clearly a lack of lubrication in there, and/or something interferring with the top bearing. If an occasional application of spray grease will put off the column replacement for a while, I'm happy to go with that.

    Ian.
     
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