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  #1  
Old 08-05-2013, 01:05 AM
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Question 190D - Replaced center link and now steering is cork eyed.

Changed the tires and did alignment a week ago and was told the car needs new center link. I declined as the price was 2hr labor plus parts for a total of $380. The steering was straight after the alignment and I changed the center link myself today after I read that changing center link should not affect alignment, True?

Anyway, I changed the center link today and the steering is cork eyed. Very disappointed so what next? What can I do easily to fix it or I have to take it back for another alignment?

Any info is appreciated.

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Not MBZ nor A/C trained professional but a die-hard DIY and green engineer. Use the info at your own peril. Picked up 2 Infractions because of disagreements. NOW reversed.

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  #2  
Old 08-05-2013, 02:57 AM
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Are you sure the part you got was for a W201 chassis not a W124 or other chassis? Do you have a part number? Some replacement drag links are adjustable.
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  #3  
Old 08-05-2013, 03:21 AM
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It is for a W201 alright.

2014601505 Drag Link/Center Link; Center Tie Rod

It is not adjustable. I may take it back to the shop and ask them to fix it. I still come out ahead as the part is not that expensive. My labor is cheap, so to speak.
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Not MBZ nor A/C trained professional but a die-hard DIY and green engineer. Use the info at your own peril. Picked up 2 Infractions because of disagreements. NOW reversed.

W124 Keyless remote, PM for details. http://www.peachparts.com/shopforum/mercedes-used-parts-sale-wanted/334620-fs-w124-chasis-keyless-remote-%2450-shipped.html

1 X 2006 CDI
1 x 87 300SDL
1 x 87 300D
1 x 87 300TDT wagon
1 x 83 300D
1 x 84 190D ( 5 sp ) - All R134 converted + keyless entry.
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  #4  
Old 08-05-2013, 03:32 AM
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If it was uro brand I can see why....

It sort off makes since that the steering wheel may have been adjusted to cope for the play of the center link....it is also possible you need new tie rods and idler arm too...
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  #5  
Old 08-05-2013, 04:50 AM
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If they adjusted your alignment for a bent or bad ball joint drag link and you install a new one, you're going to need to get another alignment.
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  #6  
Old 08-05-2013, 09:48 AM
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Sounds like the new center link was not adjusted to match the length of the old center link.

I replaced the whole steering assembly without a new allignment about 10K back. Took the whole unit off as a unit including the pitman arm and sat it on the work bench. Carefully measured and adjusted each new part to match the length of the old part then reassembled the unit steering assembly. Tracks straight and the tires aren't wearing uneven so I must have measured well.

Now that its on the car, I would think a new allignment will be needed if its not steering / tracking correctly.
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  #7  
Old 08-05-2013, 10:50 AM
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No, you didn't...

As said above, the center link is NOT adjustable:
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190D - Replaced center link and now steering is cork eyed.-2014601505-m69.jpg  
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  #8  
Old 08-05-2013, 11:29 AM
t walgamuth's Avatar
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The attachment of the device to the tube must be off. You should be able to center the steering by turning your tie rod links the same amount in opposite directions. Figure out which side needs to be shortened to straighten you steering then shorten one side and lengthen the other amounts equally and see how that works...IE turn the tubes a quarter of a turn 90 degrees and see if that does the trick. With luck you might get it the first try but it make two or three to get it perfect.
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  #9  
Old 08-05-2013, 12:52 PM
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There are slight manufacturing differences in parts and tiny differences will throw off your alignment. I wouldn't have had it aligned until after all the parts were in.

On my BMW e46 there is zero adjustability to the control arms, but a pair of new OEM arms threw the alignment off.
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  #10  
Old 08-05-2013, 02:09 PM
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sounds like the shop forced the wheels apart and set the toe with the sloppy ball joints on the drag link.

It needs its toe set again. You can do it yourself or get the shop to redo it.
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  #11  
Old 08-05-2013, 02:18 PM
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I read from the web that the drag link does NOT affect alignment per se, TRUE/FALSE?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ah-kay View Post
It is for a W201 alright.

2014601505 Drag Link/Center Link; Center Tie Rod

It is not adjustable. I may take it back to the shop and ask them to fix it. I still come out ahead as the part is not that expensive. My labor is cheap, so to speak.
The drag link is NOT adjustable. Please refrain from posting if you overlook the small prints or do not know the answer. Thanks those guys who know their stuff. The old center/drag was not bent. It was just worn out at the swivel joints at both ends. The ball joints were changed 9 months ago so they are relatively new. The cock-eye-ness probably is caused by manufacturing length tolerance by different vendors.

Drag link does NOT affect alignment per se, can it be confirmed? I may try to play with tie rods by shortening and lengthening the same amount on both sides. The worst is to take it back to the shop, I have had good results with them on a number of cars.
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Not MBZ nor A/C trained professional but a die-hard DIY and green engineer. Use the info at your own peril. Picked up 2 Infractions because of disagreements. NOW reversed.

W124 Keyless remote, PM for details. http://www.peachparts.com/shopforum/mercedes-used-parts-sale-wanted/334620-fs-w124-chasis-keyless-remote-%2450-shipped.html

1 X 2006 CDI
1 x 87 300SDL
1 x 87 300D
1 x 87 300TDT wagon
1 x 83 300D
1 x 84 190D ( 5 sp ) - All R134 converted + keyless entry.
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  #12  
Old 08-05-2013, 06:07 PM
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Its lack of adjustability has nothing to do with its ability to affect your alignment.
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  #13  
Old 08-09-2013, 03:13 AM
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Fixed the cock-eyed-ness of the steering wheel.

I played around with it and I set the steering straight and redid the alignment myself. This is what I did for your info. Your result may vary.

1) Assuming true position is 3-9 o' clock. If your steering is 2-8 then you need to shorten the tie rod on driver side and lengthen it on the pass side.
2) If your steering is 4-10 then you need to lengthen the tie rod on d/side and shorten it on the p/side.
3) I turned the tie rod 90 degree each time, one side is CW and the other side is CCW. It took me 2 tries to get the steering true.

I used a very simple method to check my alignment is correct. I measured 2 points on the tires in front and then roll the car and measure the same 2 points at the back, making sure the toe-in is correct and within spec-ish ( as close as possible ).
__________________
Not MBZ nor A/C trained professional but a die-hard DIY and green engineer. Use the info at your own peril. Picked up 2 Infractions because of disagreements. NOW reversed.

W124 Keyless remote, PM for details. http://www.peachparts.com/shopforum/mercedes-used-parts-sale-wanted/334620-fs-w124-chasis-keyless-remote-%2450-shipped.html

1 X 2006 CDI
1 x 87 300SDL
1 x 87 300D
1 x 87 300TDT wagon
1 x 83 300D
1 x 84 190D ( 5 sp ) - All R134 converted + keyless entry.
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 08-09-2013, 08:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ah-kay View Post
Please refrain from posting if you overlook the small prints or do not know the answer.
Must of recently graduated from a Dale Carnagie course!
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  #15  
Old 08-09-2013, 11:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ah-kay View Post
I played around with it and I set the steering straight and redid the alignment myself. This is what I did for your info. Your result may vary.

1) Assuming true position is 3-9 o' clock. If your steering is 2-8 then you need to shorten the tie rod on driver side and lengthen it on the pass side.
2) If your steering is 4-10 then you need to lengthen the tie rod on d/side and shorten it on the p/side.
3) I turned the tie rod 90 degree each time, one side is CW and the other side is CCW. It took me 2 tries to get the steering true.

I used a very simple method to check my alignment is correct. I measured 2 points on the tires in front and then roll the car and measure the same 2 points at the back, making sure the toe-in is correct and within spec-ish ( as close as possible ).
ah,
What you have done is probably what a shop would have done & charged you for.
Check your tread in a few k miles to insure the alignment is perfect.
You common sense approach is very refreshing!!

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