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  #1  
Old March 19th, 2012, 02:22 PM
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speed related vibration

I have a speed related vibration that I am trying to troubleshoot. I've been commuting in my '84 90 and I have a mix of country roads and a short piece of highway. What happens is right around 50 mph I feel the vibration everywhere. It's not terribly bad, just annoying. it clears up at about 55 and returns at 62mph. It smooths out right at 70 which is where I cruise on the highway for 5 mins.
My observations:
Not temp related.
Steering is not affected.
Has occurred before and after new tires/balancing/alignment/drop arm.
Still happens with clutch in and also in neutral.
Any ideas where to look next would be appreciated!!!
Thanks!
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  #2  
Old March 19th, 2012, 02:26 PM
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Panhard rod bushings, swivel ball preload, bad U-joint in prop shaft.
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  #3  
Old March 19th, 2012, 03:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by evilfij View Post
Panhard rod bushings, swivel ball preload, bad U-joint in prop shaft.
Sounds exactly like when my rear u-joint of my rear propshaft was bad.
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  #4  
Old March 19th, 2012, 03:36 PM
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We will assume that you have not recently replaced any suspension components up front. Check all the things mentioned. Betcha a buck the swivel pins/railco bushes are effed. With a wheel off the ground and the hub bearings adjusted, there should be no play in all directions.
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  #5  
Old March 19th, 2012, 04:40 PM
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True, no new suspension components.
Will check all the above.
Besides the symptoms I described, what would I look for to identify a bad u-joint?
Thanks!
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  #6  
Old March 19th, 2012, 05:00 PM
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Rust around the bearings, no grease, any play in the joint when moved.
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  #7  
Old March 19th, 2012, 08:09 PM
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It could also be a harmonic unbalance in the tires. Generally if you feel the vibration more in the seat of you pants it is at the rear. If the steering wheel shakes then it is at the front. I would rotate tires front to rear same side and take for a drive. If the Vibration changes, it is in the tires/wheels. Now rotate one side and take for another drive. If the vibration changes you found the tire. If not, now rotate back the other side. If when you first rotate the tires and nothing changes, you know it is not the tire but some of the other things described above.
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  #8  
Old March 19th, 2012, 08:33 PM
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I agree with Mike and would check the tires first based on you saying you don't feel it in the steering wheel.

It doesn't sound like a u-joint to me or you'd feel a difference when letting off the accelerator (or accelerating). But best check them. The best way to do this is park the car on a level surface or raise the axles as needed and put it in neutral. The main point is to not have the hand brake on and have no resistance. When the driveshaft is like this yoiu can tug on it and twist it and watch the joint as it turns. You'll see and feel any play if there is any. If you try with the handbrake on and the wheels on the ground it will always feel tight.
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  #9  
Old March 19th, 2012, 09:11 PM
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Imbalance or unusual wear on the tires is a symptom, not a cause. I think you need to get it up on a lift and have a good look around.
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1994 RRC LeWiB "ruining the air behind me"
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  #10  
Old March 20th, 2012, 05:49 AM
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Add to list. Check lug nut torque. Check that all bolts securing propshaft to t box and axles are still there.
I still don't know why mine fell out but they did. Wasn't obvious either.
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  #11  
Old March 20th, 2012, 07:01 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by o2batsea View Post
Imbalance or unusual wear on the tires is a symptom, not a cause. I think you need to get it up on a lift and have a good look around.
I do not agree. If you throw a weight then you can get an unbalance. As some of the heaver lugged tires start to wear you may get some wear patterns that help with getting a vibration. If you re-balance and or rotate you can often get smooth ride again. Yes most of the irregular wear is from the suspension alignment but not always and is not always something that can be adjusted, with in reason that is. You can also have a belt separation in the tire creating a not so round tire. You could get a bent rim from going off road or on the highway with a pot hole. Our suspensions are very forgiving if they are stock. However once you start lifting and going with larger tires you can start to feel more from the suspension and the tires.
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  #12  
Old March 20th, 2012, 08:21 AM
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I stand by my statement, and if you reread what you just wrote, it will support it.
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1966 109 5 door wagon 300Tdi "spermaceti fueled"
1994 RRC LeWiB "ruining the air behind me"
1968 2A 88

All my troubles are Rover
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  #13  
Old March 20th, 2012, 11:23 AM
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I may have inadvertently led some astray with one of my observations...I had looked in back posts for the same vibration problem but kept coming up with the Death Wobble. I had that on the brain when I said the the steering was unaffected...I meant directionally, not like the DW. The vibration IS present in the steering wheel. Perhaps this is something up front. Also, I have greased the u-joints on the driveshaft recently so I know that at least that was done. I'll take a closer look at them though. And the vibration was present before and after new tires, no change. No unusual wear.
I haven't had a chance to get under it, my time can quickly evaporate with a 3 month old baby at home!
Thanks for the help!
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  #14  
Old March 20th, 2012, 11:45 AM
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You basically need to check over the front end. The first two things I mentioned are most likely, but it could be some other stuff. A new steering damper is a patch but often helps if it is just generalized wear.
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  #15  
Old March 20th, 2012, 02:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sandt View Post
I haven't had a chance to get under it, my time can quickly evaporate with a 3 month old baby at home!
When Junior falls asleep, that would be the time to park him next to the truck and get on with the ren-ching.
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1966 109 5 door wagon 300Tdi "spermaceti fueled"
1994 RRC LeWiB "ruining the air behind me"
1968 2A 88

All my troubles are Rover
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  #16  
Old April 5th, 2012, 11:55 AM
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Thought I'd update this in case anyone else has this issue...
I checked all the aforementioned stuff and it all checked out okay. Some of the bushes are starting to perish but are still tight.
What I did find was that the clamps that hold the gaiter on the front drive shaft had their adjustment screws on the same side. I recalled that earlier I read in the manual that they should be mounted at 180 degrees from each other for balance. At the time I read that I thought that that was a bit silly because I didn't think that would really matter that much. So I turned one round and the vibration has been significantly reduced. I was pleasantly surprised. I think I will take it off and get it properly balanced because one of the previous PO's waxoyled it. It could use some refreshing.
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