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Old 10-30-2005, 08:39 AM   #1
speedracer33
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Default So why does my car keeping breaking tie rod ends?

I'm just looking for some brainstorming here. Those on the east coast have probably heard me bitching about handling problems with my car over the last couple of seasons. It took me a LONG time to realize it, but the car keeps breaking tie rod ends... which is why it won't hold an alignment, will pull violently in braking zones, and is just all around unstable at speed. Not to mention cording tires, but I digress.

Obviously I have to find the source of the problem, since so far I've only been fixing symptoms, and thinking that I had solved it. My question is, what could be wrong with my car/suspension, that the front right tie rod end can't go a single session without breaking?

Matt
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Old 10-30-2005, 09:31 AM   #2
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Default Re: So why does my car keeping breaking tie rod ends? (speedracer33)

Curbs!!! And dropping tires off the track edge.

We go through 6-10 a season due to the above.

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Old 10-30-2005, 10:33 AM   #3
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Default Re: So why does my car keeping breaking tie rod ends? (turfer)

Are you using aftermarket tie rod ends?
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Old 10-30-2005, 10:48 AM   #4
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Default Re: So why does my car keeping breaking tie rod ends? (speedracer33)

Binding? Check the full range of motion.

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Old 10-30-2005, 10:53 AM   #5
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Default Re: So why does my car keeping breaking tie rod ends? (speedracer33)

Ride height/bump-steer issue? Is your upright/steering/ride height set-up different than other cars of the same year/model?

(Off topic, but I love telling this story... In the early eighties I got a tour of GM's Milford Proving Grounds. One of the test areas has a medium speed sweeper with a pair of off-set speed bumps in the middle of the turn. The bumps was precisely placed to torture and break tie-rods. My guide told me that after they had been using this test section for a while they noticed that every time someone broke a tie-rod, the car would go off into the weeds in exactly the same path. Every time! Nobody liked having to tow the cars out of the weeds, especially in the winter, so finally they just paved a road there...)
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Old 10-30-2005, 11:03 AM   #6
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Default Re: So why does my car keeping breaking tie rod ends? (thawley)

Quote:
Originally Posted by thawley
Ride height/bump-steer issue? Is your upright/steering/ride height set-up different than other cars of the same year/model?
FWIW, I couldnt imagine hide height changing the longevity of a tie rod. Its a ball and socket design so regardless of what height you are set at, it will have the same range of motion, now unless, he hits a bump or going off track like another member said.
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Old 10-30-2005, 11:38 AM   #7
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Default Re: So why does my car keeping breaking tie rod ends? (migs)

Quote:
Originally Posted by migs
FWIW, I couldnt imagine hide height changing the longevity of a tie rod.
You may well be right. But accepting reasonable suggestions like yours at the expense of testing reasonable theories like mine are what keep people from solving problems like this:
Quote:
Originally Posted by speedracer33
Those on the east coast have probably heard me bitching about handling problems with my car over the last couple of seasons. It took me a LONG time to realize it, but the car keeps breaking tie rod ends...

Obviously I have to find the source of the problem, since so far I've only been fixing symptoms, and thinking that I had solved it. My question is, what could be wrong with my car/suspension, that the front right tie rod end can't go a single session without breaking?
Also, this thread started with:
Quote:
Originally Posted by speedracer33
I'm just looking for some brainstorming here...
Anyone who understands the process and theory behind brainstorming, knows that suppressing ideas is a greater danger than examining screwy ones. In trying to be helpful, you might actually be perpetuating the kind of thinking that has kept him from finding his problem.
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Old 10-30-2005, 12:17 PM   #8
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Default Re: So why does my car keeping breaking tie rod ends? (thawley)

hmmm, here ya go....not all applicable, but at least you're not alone.

http://fsae.com/groupee/forums...53521
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Old 10-30-2005, 01:22 PM   #9
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Default Re: So why does my car keeping breaking tie rod ends? (chjkingme)

What kind of angle is there on the tie rod end with the suspension at full compression? It may actually be at the end of it's available motion. A tie rod end may be a ball and socket joint, but it still has a maximum range of movement before it hits the stud end against the socket. Most race setup Honda's are way outside the range of standard suspension movement envisioned by the Honda engineers. I'd pull the spring out and jack the suspension against the bumpstop then run the steering to the full range while watching the tie rod end.
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Old 10-30-2005, 03:52 PM   #10
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Default Re: So why does my car keeping breaking tie rod ends? (Mohudsolo)

what does the inner tie rod end look like? are the threads good? i'm assuming the failure isn't catastrophic like the ball and socket seperating. is that assumption correct?

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Old 10-30-2005, 04:32 PM   #11
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Default Re: So why does my car keeping breaking tie rod ends? (solo-x)

I dont want to his limit his explorations of finding this problem but at fool droop, its parallel, at least on my car which most people would consider too low.
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Old 10-30-2005, 06:48 PM   #12
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Default Re: So why does my car keeping breaking tie rod ends? (solo-x)

Quote:
Originally Posted by solo-x
what does the inner tie rod end look like? are the threads good? i'm assuming the failure isn't catastrophic like the ball and socket seperating. is that assumption correct?
After Shannendoah it was pretty damn close to being out of the socket. It was absolutely flopping around with no tension at all.

Could a single bad suspension component cause that? What about bushings? Steering rack?
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Old 10-30-2005, 06:52 PM   #13
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Heat? But the rubber boot would melt long before the joint went bad.
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Old 10-30-2005, 07:54 PM   #14
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Default Re: So why does my car keeping breaking tie rod ends? (speedracer33)

You talking about the outer right front, correct?

Only had this problem once, and it was mainly due to old parts. Like you the tie rod end didn't come apart, but was extremely loose causing about 1/2" of toe change. The tie rod in question was had a plastic insert to reduce noise, and that's what popped out and caused the excessive play. I'll double check some part numbers after we get back from the 13 hour race and see if we used something different to avoid the problem (I'd check it tomorrow, but all my spares are with the transporter at VIR).

Are you using brand-new replacements? Some aftermarket parts aren't very good, and using junkyard parts is like playing Russian Roulette.

It could be excessive torque on putting the tie rod ends onto the spindle. Putting it on too tight would stretch the stud/ball joint and possibly cause it to fail (using standard torque & safety wire/a cotter pin works better).

If you're using good parts & they're installed properly (and I'm assuming you are, but you did ask for brainstorming), then I'd say it's either curb-hopping or off-roading.

The only other thing I can think of is that maybe the steering upright is bent and the resulting geometry is changed in such a way that it puts the tie rod end in a slight bind and thus causes a failure.

Bad bushings or steering rack (or bad ball joints) should be pretty obvious as they will have obvious play in them, although once again smething may just be bent enough to cause binding and failure.

The only other thing I can think of might be some sort of mechanical interference from another component, but I can't think of anything that would be near enough to bind a tie-rod end.
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Old 10-31-2005, 04:36 AM   #15
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Default Re: So why does my car keeping breaking tie rod ends? (Raceworks)

I have a feeling your steering shaft threads are really worn down, resulting in stripping the tie rod ends..

I don't think Matt is breaking them, he just has lots of play..
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Old 10-31-2005, 05:21 AM   #16
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Default Re: So why does my car keeping breaking tie rod ends? (Honda318dx)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Honda318dx
I have a feeling your steering shaft threads are really worn down, resulting in stripping the tie rod ends..

I don't think Matt is breaking them, he just has lots of play..
No, these are definately breaking. The steering shaft/upright/rack changing the geometery is definately possible... I guess I'll start there. Thanks for the suggestions.
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Old 10-31-2005, 05:23 AM   #17
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Default Re: So why does my car keeping breaking tie rod ends? (Raceworks)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Raceworks
Only had this problem once, and it was mainly due to old parts. Like you the tie rod end didn't come apart, but was extremely loose causing about 1/2" of toe change.
Sam, in this case the entire cup rotated. Which limited movement in one direction, and obviously screwed everything up. The tie rod end is definately the symptom though, not the problem. I replaced them with two brand new ones, that were bad within one session. It has to be something else that is bent/broken/worn that is causing me to eat up the tie rod ends.
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Old 10-31-2005, 05:57 AM   #18
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Default Re: So why does my car keeping breaking tie rod ends? (speedracer33)

Quote:
Originally Posted by speedracer33

No, these are definately breaking. The steering shaft/upright/rack changing the geometery is definately possible... I guess I'll start there. Thanks for the suggestions.
As in your are actually sheering them? Not just wearing them out to the point of huge amounts of play?
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Old 10-31-2005, 06:20 AM   #19
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Default Re: So why does my car keeping breaking tie rod ends? (Honda318dx)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Honda318dx

As in your are actually sheering them? Not just wearing them out to the point of huge amounts of play?
Not sheering them, but beyond the normal concept of wear. They are pretty well fucked after one session. I'm talking the wheel fully wobbles.
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Old 10-31-2005, 06:51 AM   #20
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Default Re: So why does my car keeping breaking tie rod ends? (speedracer33)

...and the bearings are fine?
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Old 10-31-2005, 07:00 AM   #21
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what brand are you using?
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Old 10-31-2005, 07:01 AM   #22
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Default Re: (smokin rubber)

Heh, are your axles tight? Click the image to open in full size.
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Old 10-31-2005, 07:30 AM   #23
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Default Re: (Honda318dx)

Ok, this thread needs a diagram visuals are good for brainstorming...

link is here

http://www.acuraparts247.com/s...ch=no

Are you using the right kind of grease in the boot?
Is the rod end threaded too much or too little on the rack end? (alignment)
Is the rack end bent causing a bind?

I'll keep thinking...
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Old 10-31-2005, 07:47 AM   #24
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Default Re: So why does my car keeping breaking tie rod ends? (El Pollo Diablo)

Quote:
Originally Posted by El Pollo Diablo
...and the bearings are fine?
they seem to be...
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Old 10-31-2005, 07:48 AM   #25
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Default Re: (Honda318dx)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Honda318dx
Heh, are your axles tight? Click the image to open in full size.
If they weren't, wouldn't there be other symptoms?
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