Noticed I had very, very heavy steering this past weekend, attributed it to being out of shape. Post-race, I noticed my left (as on the kart from a driver’s perspective) “floats” on the heim joints whereas you can move the rod forward/backwards and the joints allow for the movement. The right rod, however, seems to bind up on the joints amd does not allow for “float”. It is possible I pushed off of the rod with my heel while dismounting from the kart, but can’t say for sure.
Not too sure where I should begin other than having a straight edge against the rod to see if its bent.
Any help is greatly appreciated.
Make sure that both heims are tilted in the same direction
Tom, interestingly enough, I can’t tilt the joint. They are bound/locked in this position:
Is the arm on the spindle possibly bent.
Going to show my n00bness, arm referring to where the tie rod attaches?
Correct. I’m not sure what it’s called either
Was it recently put back together? Are you missing hardware? Bearings could be bad. Definitely should be same direction and should have some movement
Well, troubleshooting leads me to believe its the joint at the steering shaft.
Disconnected tie rod @ spindle end, amd noticed tie rod barely moved… Reconnected at spindle end, disconnected at steering shaft and toe rod moves freely. I took a 5mm hex wrench and noticed the ball/joint is very, very stiff. Are these greaseable/maintainable or just a “discard and buy a new one”?
Fairly cheap I would replace
Spindle ends are cheap…rod can be reused. Wouldn’t hurt to get an extra one for the toolbox. At about $10 each, won’t add much to the shipping if ordered online. Your local track may have them as well as they’re typically M8 thread but watch out because one is rh thread and the other lh to allow you to spin the rod and have it extend or retract the overall length.
$22 a pop, I’ll order 2 1 RH, 1 LH. Wasn’t taken apart or put back together, just seemed to have bound up. Only thing I can think of is rain or grit, but its in a “protected” area. Spun the ball around, no pitting or corrosion that I can see. Same hardware in place on each side.
I can see this being “consumable”, but would expect to see wear/tear.
Good idea, buy the $12 to $20 branded ones (e.g. IPK, OTK etc). Overpriced, but quality parts. Stay away from $5 generic ones. Wear and tear usually make them loose, not bind…pretty unusual, but I guess it can happen. You shouldn’t expect this to happen frequently
Thanks all, just needed a sanity check on my thought process and agreed about the binding being odd, rod ends develop play in them, not binding up.
I appreciate everyone taking the time to read through this and offer suggestions/support.
That little threaded hole on the end of the heim joint is made to attach a grease fitting. You can grease them and should on a regular basis and especially after a rain race. You could have debris in the hole that is causing the bind. Have you tried spraying some penetrating oil or brake cleaner in the hole to clean it out. Also use compressed air to blow out any crud that may be in there. I usually bend them before they bind or get loose.
Interestingly enough, the little hole is filled with what looks like excess gasket material. Now tie rod end swapped and all is right in the world.
I use compressed air, lubricant, grease and an awl, and found zero debris.