Sunday, August 18, 2013

Power Ram!

This afternoon I tackled the last part of the power steering system to reseal--the power cylinder (commonly called the power ram, or ram.) The power cylinder is a typical hydraulic cylinder: pressurized fluid from the pump flows through the control valve, which decides to either push the rod out of the cylinder by adding fluid to one side, or pull the rod back in by adding fluid to the other side. This, when attached to the steering components, reduces the amount of force required by the driver to steer the car.

This job is fairly straight forward--first I started off with a cleaned up and freshly painted power cylinder:

Then I removed the tie rod end...

 Looking at the diagram it looks simple enough...

First, I need to remove the snap ring. Unfortunately, my snap ring pliers were too big for the hole, so I used that small file to re-size the ends of the pliers to fit. Then out it came.

Normally, if the unit was being repaired while on the car, the mechanic would start the car and turn the steering wheel--this would apply pressure and force the seals out. I tried to use my air compressor to force them out, but this didn't work. Patience and small screwdrivers were called into play.

Assembly involved lightly lubricating the new pieces in power steering fluid, then carefully fitting them in place. A little touch up paint was needed and then job done!

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