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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Common achillies heel for these cars is the rack & pinion leaks. I discovered last night my rack is leaking (bummer). SO I need to make a choice.

I decided to do this thread outside my build thread just in case I am successful and someone would like to use the instruction. They dont need to syphon through all my build crap to get good info...

A). A rebuilt rack is a about $125-$175 in my neck of the woods, and it appears we are only paying for labour fees.

B). A Rack rebuild kit is $23 and a bit of enginuity is what it appears is needed to get the job done...

I went for the latter! :whacky044:

Lets begin:
First is to confirm the rack is leaking. For me that was easy. Sway Bar arch full of grease, torn inner ball joint boots that are oil soaked, and clear evidence of more fluid at the c clip where the rack connects to the inner ball joint.

Manual

First order of business is to print the manual:

They have it over at Saab Central stickied at the top of the workshop forum in the "Service Manuals" Thread.

I down loaded the manual to my I phone and will head over to Kinkos to blow up the pertinent information to tear down and reassemble the rack. Printing them on 11X18 or whatever that larger size is

Seal Kit:

Secondly purchase a rebuild kit from here: Saab power steering

The kit appears more intimidating than it actually is. Considering they include the clamps for the outter boots, Of the parts provided, it appears 80% of them will go on the pinion and a few inner seals for the rack. All in all should be very straight forward..

My kit is on its way... purchase plus shipping is a whoping $31.50.... The rest is sweat equity... email to my iphone confirms kit order is in processing so looks like that are stocked by the supplier and hopfully will ship within the next couple business days.

Special Tools

The manual indicates special tools are required but I dont think they are necessary. I plan to get through this job with basic shade tree mechanic tools...


Disclaimer:

I have never attempted this process before, nor do I claim to be a specialist of any kind. Follow the instructions in this thread at your own risk.. Remember, ITS YOUR CAR, DO AS YOU PLEASE!!!!!

Tear Down begins this evening...

Stay tuned
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 · (Edited)
Step #1 Get the rack on the bench.

My rack is already out of the car: refer to your bentley for removal



updated email to the Iphone says seal kit has been shipped so looks like I will, get this Monday maybe Tuesday. We need to be sure the rack is torn down, cleaned, painted (of course), and ready to recieve new seals come early next week..
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
Research indicates early rack with aluminum pinion housings wore out internally from the seals, making reseal kits a waste of time.

I researched and confirmed later model racks are cast aluminum pinion housing, so usually a leaky rack is due to worn seals but the pinion housing should not be worn, making the resealing a higher success rate than building an older rack.

The caveat to this thread is your probably wasting good time trying to rebuild an older rack. I think 90 plus has cast aluminum pinion housing but do your own research.

My car is MY91 so I am taking a stab...
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Removing inner Ball Joints

The ball joints are crimped at the end of the threads to bosses on the rack.



The crimps are only sheete metal. Grap a large pipe wrench and put the rack housing in a vice. Loosen the ball joints by grabbing the bosses shown above and the crimped section will loosen itself and free the joint from the rack.

 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Rack less inner ball joints

 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Next you wanna remove the lock nut , adjusting screw and damper. If the damper proves a bit snug, use a dental pick and pull out the

 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Below the adjusting screw is a cap. i used a small pry bar and a plastic mechanics mallet to pop it off. You will expose a lock nut. Use vice grips on the pinion shaft ( careful not to hurt the splines) and remove the lock nut (15mm spanner).



This is what you should look like by now

 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Once the lock nut is removed you can press out the pinion shaft along with bearings and hydraulic seal. The manual says use a M8 bolt.

That's where I am for now. Going to wash up and take my daughter bowling..


Cheers for now...
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 · (Edited)
Last thing to do before I can remove the rack is pull a c clip. This gets tricky.

There is a c clip at the far end from the pinion housing that needs to be removed



This is gunna be my morning project. sAAB says there is a special tool/tube that goes over the rack. You put the ball joint back on and screw down, which compresses a seal at the end and frees up the ability to remove the c clip.

Here we go...
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
You can poke a dental clip through this hole once the seal is compressed to poke the c clip out of its ridge. Manual says to use guitar string to pull out c clip. I will use another dental pick tool.

 

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Discussion Starter · #12 · (Edited)


I pressed out the pinion and valve together with the needle bearing, bearing race, hydraulic seal and dust cap with my BIG G Clamp! No need for press or special tool.

Cleaned up the valve and shaft and wrapped it in plastic as pictures, thats not a new part :) .. i lined up the parts as they were removed and cleaned the pinion housing..

Bottom row are the parts moved from the damper yoke housing
Middle row is the lower pinion bearing, lock nut, and c clip.
Top row are the bearings and seals off the pinion shaft.
Pictured at top is the pinion and valve.

 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Pinion housing. Some grease off the rack I need to spray out with brake cleaner and scotch pad inside the pinion housing.



Damper yoke housing cleaned



Lower pinion bearing was popped out with a 13 mm long socket on a 2ft extension and a rubber mallet; housing cleaned

Pardon the poor picture.

 

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Discussion Starter · #14 · (Edited)
The pinion side is all ready for new seals.

Now let's remove the rack so it's seals can be replaced.

If you notice I saved removing the rack for last. It's trickiest due to the need to compress the hydraulic seal and remove the c clip at the same time.

Gaining confidence was sorting the pinion side first. The rack has the fewest seals but is the hardest to remove.

Still beard stroking trying to figure out how I can do this; I have no press..

Cheers for now..
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
PS,

Located one potential leak point. All aluminum lines have o rings on both ends. One small line was missing an o ring at the rear of the rack.

Might be a mute point, just noted.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
A good mate gave me the shade tree option to compress the hydraulic seal. I need to go to Home Depot for a bit of pipe.

Here is the rack now. Coated in truck bed armor. Hopefully the seals will be in tomorrow and I can wrap this thread up.

Cheers for now

 

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The PS system is ripe with places for leaks to occur. The rubber pipe that clamps on the underside of the PS pump will leak unless its new, regardless of what type of clamp you use, and how hard to tighten it. The o-rings on the lines crap out, the pinion seal leaks, and a new one to me.....the line that goes from the reservoir to the rack came uncorked where it crimps from rubber to steel.

You said you were missing an o-ring....fish around in where the line was threaded in to make sure it didn't stick inside the hole. If you didn't have one in there at ALL, you'd be PUKING oil out bigtime.

Nice work you've done there. For me, and my money, I'd almost assume just fork over the 2-bones for a rebuilt unit and save the time, hassle, nastiness and potential F-up of doing it myself.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
The PS system is ripe with places for leaks to occur. The rubber pipe that clamps on the underside of the PS pump will leak unless its new, regardless of what type of clamp you use, and how hard to tighten it. The o-rings on the lines crap out, the pinion seal leaks, and a new one to me.....the line that goes from the reservoir to the rack came uncorked where it crimps from rubber to steel.

You said you were missing an o-ring....fish around in where the line was threaded in to make sure it didn't stick inside the hole. If you didn't have one in there at ALL, you'd be PUKING oil out bigtime.

Nice work you've done there. For me, and my money, I'd almost assume just fork over the 2-bones for a rebuilt unit and save the time, hassle, nastiness and potential F-up of doing it myself.
Lol...:whacky028:

I MIGHT, have 2 hours invested. This job was an after thought of, "why the hell not"...

On a mechanics scale of difficulty 1-10, this was a 4...

Working through the grease being 3 of the levels...
The seal kit is my worst obstacle, since I gotta wait for the mail. Lol..

Easy peasy; thanks for the sentiment.

Cheers,
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
The PS system is ripe with places for leaks to occur. The rubber pipe that clamps on the underside of the PS pump will leak unless its new, regardless of what type of clamp you use, and how hard to tighten it. The o-rings on the lines crap out, the pinion seal leaks, and a new one to me.....the line that goes from the reservoir to the rack came uncorked where it crimps from rubber to steel

just fork over the 2-bones for a rebuilt unit and save the time, hassle, nastiness and potential F-up of doing it myself.
Precisely why rebuilding is a good option. The $140 I saved goes to the hose builder for new rubber.

That takes your 200 rebuild investment upwards $350 $400, after you get the hoses. Most likely the average joe runs to eeruo parts and buys the hoses there retail. I have a wholesale hose distributor in town. The build any hose any size. The cost to build is a fraction of what eeruo charges retail. Or OEM FROM saab.
I will come out rebuilt rack, and both res hoses for just at $100.

About a third of the cost of standard practice. The road least traveled has the best scenery :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Seal kit is in

 
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