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Old 06-18-2005, 14:02   #1 (permalink)
Russ
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142 Stability at high speed

Hello All

I have a 1973 142. Runs great, drives pretty good around town but is
terrible at speeds over 70mph. That is 4th gear, overdrive engaged and
3500 rpms. The car is not really capable of much more without putting
the rpms way up there.

The noise level is pretty bad at that speed and I would not really want
to make any evasive driving maneuvers. I tried to improve the stabilty
with new poly bushings and it did get rid of many squeaks and bumps but
it is still not very stable past 70mph. The shocks are good as they
pass the bounce test no probelm at all and I'm riding on newer good
quality stock tires that are properly inflated.

I just cannot decide what else I can do to stabilize the car. Maybe
IPD sway bars but I don't really know... Any thoughts?

Regards
Russ

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Old 06-18-2005, 17:01   #2 (permalink)
Steve
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Re: 142 Stability at high speed

Ball joints, tie rods, idler arm, wheel bearings--all need to be checked.

Wheels true and not flat spotted? Tires well balanced on a high speed spin
balance machine?

"Russ" <russ.wright@gmail.com> wrote in message
news:1119123895.553856.109210@g44g2000cwa.googlegroups.com...
> Hello All
>
> I have a 1973 142. Runs great, drives pretty good around town but is
> terrible at speeds over 70mph. That is 4th gear, overdrive engaged and
> 3500 rpms. The car is not really capable of much more without putting
> the rpms way up there.
>
> The noise level is pretty bad at that speed and I would not really want
> to make any evasive driving maneuvers. I tried to improve the stabilty
> with new poly bushings and it did get rid of many squeaks and bumps but
> it is still not very stable past 70mph. The shocks are good as they
> pass the bounce test no probelm at all and I'm riding on newer good
> quality stock tires that are properly inflated.
>
> I just cannot decide what else I can do to stabilize the car. Maybe
> IPD sway bars but I don't really know... Any thoughts?
>
> Regards
> Russ
>



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Old 06-19-2005, 02:01   #3 (permalink)
Michael Cerkowski
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Re: 142 Stability at high speed

Some of these cars have tires that are too narrow and flexible.
You might want to check that aspect...
--







http://freevision.org/michael/index.html
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Old 06-21-2005, 06:02   #4 (permalink)
Russ
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Re: 142 Stability at high speed

>Ball joints, tie rods, idler arm, wheel bearings--all need to be checked.
I did the test where you jack up the car and wiggle the wheel and it
was tight.
I pulled on the tie rods they are tight.
I'm not sure how to test the idler arm or the wheel bearings.

>Wheels true and not flat spotted?

No Flat spots nice and smooth
>Tires well balanced on a high speed spin balance machine?

Yes I watched the guy balance the tires when I had them put on.

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Old 06-21-2005, 06:02   #5 (permalink)
Russ
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Re: 142 Stability at high speed

I have the stock tires. 165SR-15. You may be on to something here.
They are pretty tall tires and have a large sidewall. Perhaps the car
is wobbling on the sidewalls... hmmm... I'll talk with my mechanic
and let you know the results

Regards
Russ

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Old 06-21-2005, 22:01   #6 (permalink)
Michael Cerkowski
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Re: 142 Stability at high speed

Russ wrote:
>
> I have the stock tires. 165SR-15. You may be on to something here.
> They are pretty tall tires and have a large sidewall. Perhaps the car
> is wobbling on the sidewalls... hmmm... I'll talk with my mechanic
> and let you know the results
>
> Regards
> Russ


Those are basically VW tires. I'd go with something wider and
stiffer.

Anyone remember if the 140 and 240 wheels are interchangable?
He could go with 195/75 14, if they are.
--







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Old 06-22-2005, 07:01   #7 (permalink)
Jim Carriere
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Re: 142 Stability at high speed

Michael Cerkowski wrote:
> Russ wrote:
>
>>I have the stock tires. 165SR-15. You may be on to something here.
>>They are pretty tall tires and have a large sidewall. Perhaps the car
>>is wobbling on the sidewalls... hmmm... I'll talk with my mechanic
>>and let you know the results
>>
>>Regards
>>Russ

>
>
> Those are basically VW tires. I'd go with something wider and
> stiffer.
>
> Anyone remember if the 140 and 240 wheels are interchangable?
> He could go with 195/75 14, if they are.


Yes- I used to run the wheels from my '82 240 (the 14" steel kind
with the two-piece center hubcaps) in place of the skinny banana peel
wheels on my 140. I think I had 195/70R14 on those. The ride
quality improved too, because there was more tire sidewall and less
rim to soak up bumps.
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Old 06-22-2005, 11:03   #8 (permalink)
tom callaway
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Re: 142 Stability at high speed

I used that tire size on two Volvo 164's, an MGA, and an Austin Healey
3000 and all 4 cars would cruise at 85-90 mph (had the healey up to 130
once). I don't think that's your problem.

I had a '74 144 that was definitely squirrelly at highway speeds when I
got it, and the problem was the rubber flex joint in the steering
column. After fixing that it would go straight down the road at highway
speeds as long as you could stand the noise from a very busy little motor.

Russ wrote:
> I have the stock tires. 165SR-15. You may be on to something here.
> They are pretty tall tires and have a large sidewall. Perhaps the car
> is wobbling on the sidewalls... hmmm... I'll talk with my mechanic
> and let you know the results
>
> Regards
> Russ
>


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Old 06-22-2005, 12:02   #9 (permalink)
Randy G.
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Re: 142 Stability at high speed

"Russ" <russ.wright@gmail.com> wrote:

>>Ball joints, tie rods, idler arm, wheel bearings--all need to be checked.

>I did the test where you jack up the car and wiggle the wheel and it
>was tight.
>I pulled on the tie rods they are tight.
>I'm not sure how to test the idler arm or the wheel bearings.
>
>>Wheels true and not flat spotted?

>No Flat spots nice and smooth
>>Tires well balanced on a high speed spin balance machine?

>Yes I watched the guy balance the tires when I had them put on.


With the car on the ground, lie under the front end with a strong
light and have someone repeatedly turn the steering wheel, somewhat
rapidly, back and forth just to the point of resistance. Have them
slowly increase the amount of force and violence with which they are
turning the wheel. You can then watch, listen, and feel for problems
like loose ball joints and play in the steering box and such.

After that, put the car on stands and have safety blocks under the
frame. With the wheels in the air have someone place a long lever
under the front tire and repeatedly lift and release to raise and
lower the wheel. This should help isolate loose bushings, ball joints,
etc.

Rotate the tires front to rear and see if that helps.

It doesn't take much to induce a wobble or instability at speed. What
feels tight to your hands whicle the dcar is sitting on the ground can
be an entirely different matter at high speed. Additionally, the
problem can be cumulative- that is, a tiny play in a ball joint, and a
tiny looseness in wheel bearings, and a little slop in the steering
box can all add up to the problem.

__ __
Randy & \ \/ /alerie's
\__/olvo
'93 960 Estate
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