Manual Rack?

Discussion in 'Classic Mustang Specific Tech' started by 65Rob, Aug 9, 2013.

  1. I'm looking at getting a manual R&P setup but I have no idea what the driveability is like and the car is for my wife. Could any of you that have that set up offer some feedback. I would like to think it's a far cry from the early manual sterring setups of the 60's and more along the lines of a newer mustang. We had a 2000 with the 4.6 and the steering was nowhere near the ease of the old power steering units but very responsive and not a struggle at all. Is the manual rack along those lines? It's a 65 vert with the 289.
  2. a manual rack is long the same lines, just requires more effort than modern power steering. modern power steering tends to be underboosted to allow for more road feel than the older systems did.

  3. how much more effort, say on a scale of 1 - 10, 1 being the easiest like old school power steering, 10 being the hardest like the old manual steering and a modern stang being 5 right in the middle. I don't want to shell out $1500 or so and then find it's a pain to drive. As long as it's within reason of the newer steering
  4. I don't want to hijack your thread, Rob, but I am thinking of doing the same thing and was wondering what is the preferred unit? I've heard good things about TCP.
  5. 65Rob,
    Using your scale I would put a manual, non-power rack & pinion at about a 7 or 8. Turning radius is also increased making certain parking maneuvers more tricky, along with header clearance issues and the high co$t. I suggest that before you plunk down the $$$$ for a rack, you at least check into the Borgeson integral power steering box. It eliminates the old OEM style ram system and gives you modern feel power steering in a bolt on format. all you need to add is a power steering pump and bolt the box in place of the current unit and change out the shaft in your steering column. I don't know if you currently have the old style power steering or manual, as it makes a difference as to the kit you need. If you are mechanically adept you can setup your own pump arrangement and save a few bucks. I have this setup on my 68 and it is fantastic! Here is a link:

  6. i was going to say a 6 or 7, so we are not far off. and i agree with gene and his suggestion that you try the borgeson power steering conversion, i think you will be happier with that over the manual rack and pinion, i know the wife will be happier.
  7. I have the TCP manual rack in the 66. I love the road feedback it gives and is maybe a 6 on your scale I typically drive with one hand even when cornering hard. My wife drives mine and loves it at speed but has to use two hands to park, but she gets it done (she is a girly girl too). I have 235/45/17s on the front.
  8. It's currently power steering but the valve body needs to be replaced and the old type power steering has no road feel with the 5 or so turns lock to lock. I'm not familiar with the borgenson unit so I'll have to do some research on that. I assume the pump I have would work with it, not sure what's involved with replacing the column shaft or if an aftermarket tilt column would be a worthy upgrade if that would work.
  9. the borgeson unit is a virtual bolt in deal, and yes your current power steering pump will work fine. as for the steering column, the mod is easy, you cut the shaft to the proper length, and have a machine shop cut a double D on the end of the shaft. after that it is like installing a later steering box.

    here is the website for borgeson;
  10. Thanks, that's probably the best option and if it's cheaper, all the better. The main thing is in the end the steering is improved in feel but not an overwhelming struggle to steer.
  11. Read some more on the Borg replacement, looks about the same price as the rack by the time I replace the broken control valve so cost isn't a factor. By your descriptions it sounds more user friendly though.
  12. You don't need to replace the control valve, you eliminate it. You can simply use Borgeson's "adapter" to your current center/drag link or get/use a manual steering center link. There is a possibility that if your engine has a fairly slow idle (below 750-rpm or so) you may lose some of the steering assistance at idle speed, with the stock style, OEM pump, but if you do, there are several ways to address this without breaking the bank. This would be the kit for you, although I've read mixed report about the quality/fit of their hoses:

  13. Thanks Gene, that looks good. Can always get new hoses made up if need be. Is it worth getting the kit with the pump to address the possible idle issue?
  14. your local parts store can usually make a new hose as needed. if not there is always the option of a shop that specializes in hydraulic units.
  15. Its my personal opinion that $295 for a pump, pulley and bracket is way overpriced. There are other ways to skin the same cat. On my car, with the cam I have, it doesn't idle much below 750-rpm and is aided by using the larger diameter crank pulley groove intended for A/C and I have zero issues. I believe also that a later model Fox body pump will bolt on to your OEM bracket and give the added pressure required at a lower rpm. There are other ways to go also, smaller diameter pulley on the pump or larger diameter pulley on the crank. I would suggest not worrying about this until you are done with the conversion and see if it is even an issue for you and only address it if necessary as the final step of the process. Some folks find no problem and others do. Swapping a pump after the fact is fairly quick, easy, cheap and painless. Do you currently have A/C or plan to add it in the future? If so, it should be a consideration in your choice of pump, brackets and pulleys.
    #15 horseballz, Aug 13, 2013
    Last edited: Aug 13, 2013
  16. That sounds like a smart way to do it since it may not be a problem in the first place. Not planning on adding AC, don't really need it where I live especially with it being a vert