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Justinc

Steering slop, calling out Duke

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My 520h has got some serious play in the steering, all associated with the fan gear/steering support block. The steering wheel has over 5 inches of play before engaging so I ripped it apart last night in hopes of making it more snug, then after going in the house and searching the topic I came across dukes videos. At this point I'm basically going to remove the two shims on the bottom support block portion and also belt sand some material off the bottom of the steering support block (after i get that sucker removed), but with duke going a little further and adding shim stock all over the place and replacing a few bushings, he still ended up with about 1.5" of play, which is much better than what he started with but I think it can be improved just a tad, seeing how I checked out a 90 520 not long go and it had absolutely zero play in the steering, not sure how he accomplished that one. I don't have a belt sander in my shop so I'm running to a buddies house to do the work, however, while still having the two lower shims to play with to dial it in, what would you suggest (Duke) to be the max amount of material that I can remove from the top steering support block that wont cause me any issues, or, meshing to tightly? I think if I shaved a little more off than you did I can get it to mesh tighter, hopefully giving me less than an inch of play at the wheel. One day when I buy another 520 or something to mow with, I'll rip this one down to bare frame to completely restore it and do everything the correct way, but for now I need my horse back on its feet rather quickly so sanding the block down seems to be the best and quickest way to go at the moment. Another thing I noticed was the end gear that meshes with the fan gear on the steering block, instead of shimming this gear, could I not just place two nice healthy tac welds on each side of it to prevent it from every having play again? I'm not worried about ever having to remove it, but if that day ever does come, I'll just grind away the welds.

Edited by Justinc

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If you checked out a 1990 520, it did not have reduction steering unless someone did a update to it . 1991 first year for steering reduction.

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Well the guy said it was a 90, but the steering set up was identical to my 95 so maybe he was off by a year. Either way, it was very snug.

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That's great that it was snug. They were not all that snug from the factory. I agree yours is a bit much. There are so many mechanical moving parts in that system that to get it down to say a 1 inch play would be very good. Through adjustments and shims stock they can be tighten up, but they will never be tight. That's just not the nature to which they were designed. Again yours is a bit much and I think it could be tighten up.

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Well I visited my buddy last night and used the old belt sander and took the block down from .545 to .491, I know its not a whole heck of a lot but I don't want to go too far right off the batt. I'm also going to remove the two shims on the bottom side to give me that much more, but then again its not THAT much we're talking here. I put a little tac on the spur gear that rides the fan gear and now I have absolutely zero play in that setup. Gonna bolt it all in tonight and see what I've got.

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Well I got her all buttoned back up, it was kind of a pain in the rear but it's done and I was left with about an inch worth of play, maybe 1.25". It's actually just a little too tight but I'm not ripping it back apart under no circumstance, it'll wear in over time. I'm just glad I didn't go any further sanding down the top block. Excellent repair, if you have the time and means I highly suggest doing it.

Edited by Justinc

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I found a lot of my play came from that spur gear. They were sloppy from the factory. Also if you get down in the block underneath where your forward steering shaft goes through. It does not take much wear there to become sloppy. There were a lot of those blocks with grease Zerk's in them but they never drilled the hole all the way through. They should have been rejects but somehow they got through. The next time you grease it check to see if grease comes through. If it does not, it might need drilled.

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I found a lot of my play came from that spur gear. They were sloppy from the factory. Also if you get down in the block underneath where your forward steering shaft goes through. It does not take much wear there to become sloppy. There were a lot of those blocks with grease Zerk's in them but they never drilled the hole all the way through. They should have been rejects but somehow they got through. The next time you grease it check to see if grease comes through. If it does not, it might need drilled.

Excellent tip - thanks!!!!!!!

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I found a lot of my play came from that spur gear. They were sloppy from the factory. Also if you get down in the block underneath where your forward steering shaft goes through. It does not take much wear there to become sloppy. There were a lot of those blocks with grease Zerk's in them but they never drilled the hole all the way through. They should have been rejects but somehow they got through. The next time you grease it check to see if grease comes through. If it does not, it might need drilled.

 

Funny you mention that, as I just went to pump grease into it last evening and the zerk was completely stripped and fell out... GREAT. However, it was definitely greaseable because there was grease all over the damn thing.

 

Also adjusted my attachment lift and drive levers, and removed the seat from its slider tracks and bolted it directly to the U-shaped "springs", feels like a brand new unit.

Edited by Justinc

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The seat adj. slider on mine was loose and sloppy from the factory. On that bottom steering support not being drilled, it was a friend of mine that found his not drilled and told me. I had two 520's one was bad the other was just fine.

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