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Discussion Starter #1
I was out riding today and after returning to the bottom of a hill climb my steering bound up. I got to a flat area to investigate and noticed the shaft that holds the worm gear in the rack and pinion was no longer seated. I did manage to limp it back to the trailer without incident and get it into my garage. After tear down and inspection it appears that the bearing that holds the worm gear separated and allowed the shaft to become dislodged. I got the bearing out and found some numbers on it. My questions would be can I just replace this bearing and everything should be good again? Has anyone done this before? Does anyone sell the bearings or should I go to the local bearing shop and ask them?
Thanks for the help in advance!
 

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Discussion Starter #2
so am I the only one that has ever torn their steering rack apart?
 

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I was out riding today and after returning to the bottom of a hill climb my steering bound up. I got to a flat area to investigate and noticed the shaft that holds the worm gear in the rack and pinion was no longer seated. I did manage to limp it back to the trailer without incident and get it into my garage. After tear down and inspection it appears that the bearing that holds the worm gear separated and allowed the shaft to become dislodged. I got the bearing out and found some numbers on it. My questions would be can I just replace this bearing and everything should be good again? Has anyone done this before? Does anyone sell the bearings or should I go to the local bearing shop and ask them?
Thanks for the help in advance!
When you say the steering bound up, is that meaning it would not turn one way or the other? If so then I have had similar issues but have not taken anything apart yet. All I did is grab the front tire and turned right and left and it seems to re-engage, or whatever??? Can't figure it out yet. I have been searching for an exploded illustration of the steering internals but can't find one. Looks like you are the only one that has taken the steering rack apart so far.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
yes the steering was very tough left or right and would bind up, when I looked underneath at the steering box the shaft with the worm gear pulled out of the box slightly and I could see (what I later found out) was the top half of the bearing. I can't believe I'm the first one to tear a steering rack apart is was very easy to do once it was out of the machine.
My guess is that the bearing holds the shaft into the steering box. The bearing is held in with a snap ring. when the bearing came apart it allowed the worm gear to pull up out. Because it wasn't completely seated and held firm it wasn't meshing well with the toothed bar and the teeth weren't lining up exactly. This (along with the balls from the ball bear falling into the rack) caused the binding when I tried to turn the wheel. I've been unsuccessful at finding a blown up schematic of the steering rack. Additionally I've been unsuccessful at finding the correct bearing to replace the one that is broken. The numbers on it don't seem to match anything I've googled. There is a bearing shop where I live I'm going to try to stop at this week if I can't find any answers here
 

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If you find a source for the bearing, let me know...I wouldn't mind fixing my old rack for a spare...
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Ok while I was thinking about this earlier something wasn't making sense, now I think I have a better handle on it once I got home from work and checked everything over again. The piece that was left on the shaft was a seal, not part of the bearing. That is why the numbers on it didn't turn up in a bearing search. The inner race is still stuck on the worm gear shaft, some moderate tapping won't take it off so maybe I'll try some heat or try to cut it. From the measurements I get I think I found a replacement for the bearing that broke McMaster-Carr has the same dimensions. I'll try to start taking some pictures in case this ends up working maybe it will help some other people save some $$
 

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Discussion Starter #7
So no one else out there has ever torn the steering rack apart and rebuilt it?
 

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My top bearing went on pinion gear more then a year ago. The bottom needle bearing was also bad as well. The cage for the needle bearing could be ground out with a bit of time, but my inner race on the pinion gear was not removable.

There was a shoulder on the shaft. It seemed like the gear was put on the shaft after the bearing and then welded.

I replaced my rack with the rackzilla rack. It wasn't much different in price from the stock one, has much better tie rods and has a lifetime warranty.

I think that I got the first one from unisteer. It took a while to get at the time but it has worked well.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I was trying to figure out if that shoulder was part of the bearing or forced on after wards to aid in aligning the top seal. I'm thinking a little heat would help get them off the shaft. Is that a needle bearing in the bottom? Mine is completely destroyed and I couldn't tell if it was a bearing or not.
 

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Yes it is a needle bearing in the bottom. You will need to gently grind that out. Mine was shot as well.
 

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Mine exploded last weekend while riding fast through a corner, steering wheel was spinning in my hands and the rzr was going straight into the trees, luckily not off a cliff.



it is at the dealership now, waiting to see if the warranty will cover it.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
UPDATE...
The top ball bearing is an easy find and replace, found it at a local bearing shop. The bottom needle bearing not so much! Two local bearing shops and numerous google searches can't find the correct bottom bearing. If anyone has a source for a 10mmX16mmX10mm bearing then rebuilding the internals of the rack and pinion wouldn't be a problem, hell I may go into business doing it lol.

Here is what I did because I needed to get back up and running by Tomorrow and couldn't get a new rack in this short period of time...
To take the top bearing out you must carefully grind the retaining ring as it sits in a groove in the shaft and can't be pressed out.
New bearing slides right on after cleaning the shaft. I installed 2 c clips in the bearing groove to hold it in (figured there was enough room for 2 why not use them both!)
Still didn't know what to do for the bottom bearing so off to the hardware store I went...
Digging through the drawers I found 2 high density nylon bushings, the first was the correct OD for the width of the bearing (16mm) with an ID the same as the OD of the second bushing. The second had the OD = ID of the first and its ID fit snug on the shaft of the worm gear (10mm).
I ended up having to turning the smaller, inner bushing down a little bit because they fit too tight when installed and I wanted the rotation point to be between the bushings not the pocket and the bushing or the shaft and the bushing.
I lightly greased between the bushings and put the steering box back together liberally greasing the steering box, boots, etc.
Short test drive last night seemed to go really well and felt good and tight. I think this should work for my ride tomorrow and I've already purchased a new (used) steering rack from a forum member so its probably not going to be my long term fix although I'm not sure why it couldn't be?
I'm sorry I didn't take pictures if I have another rack to do I'd take pictures along the way to show exactly what I did.
All this did get me thinking for the mudding guys though...
Steering boxes seem to be one of the components that wear out a lot, what if I rebuilt the steering boxes with Delrin in place of the bearings? Works for a-arm bushings that take a lot more pivoting abuse then the steering bearings do. Maybe even add a grease fitting like hbchad said in a different post.... Just some food for thought
 
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UPDATE...
The top ball bearing is an easy find and replace, found it at a local bearing shop. The bottom needle bearing not so much! Two local bearing shops and numerous google searches can't find the correct bottom bearing. If anyone has a source for a 10mmX16mmX10mm bearing then rebuilding the internals of the rack and pinion wouldn't be a problem, hell I may go into business doing it lol.

Here is what I did because I needed to get back up and running by Tomorrow and couldn't get a new rack in this short period of time...
To take the top bearing out you must carefully grind the retaining ring as it sits in a groove in the shaft and can't be pressed out.
New bearing slides right on after cleaning the shaft. I installed 2 c clips in the bearing groove to hold it in (figured there was enough room for 2 why not use them both!)
Still didn't know what to do for the bottom bearing so off to the hardware store I went...
Digging through the drawers I found 2 high density nylon bushings, the first was the correct OD for the width of the bearing (16mm) with an ID the same as the OD of the second bushing. The second had the OD = ID of the first and its ID fit snug on the shaft of the worm gear (10mm).
I ended up having to turning the smaller, inner bushing down a little bit because they fit too tight when installed and I wanted the rotation point to be between the bushings not the pocket and the bushing or the shaft and the bushing.
I lightly greased between the bushings and put the steering box back together liberally greasing the steering box, boots, etc.
Short test drive last night seemed to go really well and felt good and tight. I think this should work for my ride tomorrow and I've already purchased a new (used) steering rack from a forum member so its probably not going to be my long term fix although I'm not sure why it couldn't be?
I'm sorry I didn't take pictures if I have another rack to do I'd take pictures along the way to show exactly what I did.
All this did get me thinking for the mudding guys though...
Steering boxes seem to be one of the components that wear out a lot, what if I rebuilt the steering boxes with Delrin in place of the bearings? Works for a-arm bushings that take a lot more pivoting abuse then the steering bearings do. Maybe even add a grease fitting like hbchad said in a different post.... Just some food for thought
A-arm pivots are supposed to deflect some. Pinion shafts do not tolerate deflection ,hence the expensive needle bearing solution. A much better alternative to Delrin would be a bronze bushing.

Scotty
 

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mine did pretty much the same as you but my bearing was readable i cant figure out the size of it to go to the local bearing shop and get one so if you could tell me the size of it that would be awesome...and the sad thing is i wasnt even driving it when it broke gotta love friends hah!!
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I was at 3 different bearing shops with the ## and measurements. They could not find one. I ended up rebuilding it with bushings.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
I don't remember what the measurements were exactly. I think it was 10mm inside, 16mm outside and 11mm or 12mm tall. I used 2 nylon bushings on the bottom in place of the needle bearing. The top bearing is a common bearing, not sure what the # is on it. Then I used 2 c clips in the top race.
 

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I have been thru 3 racks now 2 of which were under warranty. 1rst blew out 2nd week we had it. The rzr is sitting in the shed with the third one not being able to turn to the right, soon as I get the money I am getting a rackzilla.
 

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I still don't understand how to disassemble the steering rack. Got the old one out. But don't know how you guys took apart. I did a warranty replacement but still don't know what was wrong with the other one.
Ken
 
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