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Re: [T3] Breaking the quiet: Jiggly steering when braking...why?

On 11 Jul 2005 at 20:51, Toby Erkson wrote:

> Ok, this has been going on and I can't figure it out.  '72 Squareback, 
> recent 4-wheel alignment per Bentley, 5.5" after-market rims w/20psi up 
> front (205 series), rotors adjusted and free-play feels correct (I 
> thought this would fix it...nope), torsion arms adjusted (they were 
> loose), and upper steering adjustment made to take slack out of 
> roller/worm gear.  There is no wheel wobble at any speed (tires *seem* 
> properly balanced).  But if I get on the brakes the front end will 
> wobble much like a wheel out of balance when you're cruising down the 
> freeway.  This evening I was stopping from 40mph down hill and got the 
> wobble.  No clunking.  Car still tracks fairly straight for getting 
> wobbly.  A VERY GENTLE braking will not cause the wobble feeling.
> What to check?

A couple of thoughts:

20 psi is the right pressure for 165s. For 205s you should be using lower 
pressure. Try 15 psi. ISTR that someone out there once posted his suggestions 
for such tires.

Grab the top of a front tire and shake it HARD from side to side. Any 

I don't tend to see warped rotors on our cars, but I suppose it's possible. Or 
have you changed to some non-stock rotors?

Check for looseness in the tie rod ends. Read the section in the Bentley about 
checking the ball joints. You won't have the special tool, and I don't either, 
but you can figure out a way to make the measurements and compare them to the 
limits that VW sets out.

Unbolt one end of the steering damper and make sure that it has damping action 
in small displacements, especially in its central range.

If your steering axis (the line thru the center of the 2 ball joints) doesn't 
pass thru the center of the tire contact patch, you can get funny handling 
problems. I don't know if this would ever give you symptoms like yours.

Jim Adney
Madison, WI 53711-3054

List info at http://www.vwtype3.org/list | mailto:gregm@vwtype3.org

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