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Topic: Short or tall Pinion Rack? (Read 136 times) previous topic - next topic

Short or tall Pinion Rack?

Looking to swap my dying steering rack over to a manual soon (I hate PS, do not convince me to do so lmao)

I noticed that 2 brands, Unisteer and Flaming River, have racks with a standard length pinion shaft and a "shortened" pinion shaft.

It looks like mine is closer resemblance to the "short" style? (1986 base model)

Anyone have experience/recommendations?

NOTE: I have a 427 dart big bore block in it, and I had to make my own steering shaft to clear headers.
1986 Ford Thunderbird
!!COMPLETED!! 427 ci ROUSH engine swap<<!NEW! Fed by a Holley Terminator EFI setup/ custom COP setup ignition
 8.8 rear. with 4:10 gears, Eaton Trutrac diff, 31 spline axles and external breather system. Had it cleaned, sandblasted, and powder coated.
Holley Terminator EFI with custom made CNP ignition system

"Its kind of like driving the red headed step child of the mustangs" :hick:

 

Re: Short or tall Pinion Rack?

Reply #1
Check and see what the Mustang guys are using as there are way more of them running manual racks.

83 351W TKO'd T-Bird on the bottle


93 331 Mustang coupe that beat your mom's LTD

Re: Short or tall Pinion Rack?

Reply #2
Check and see what the Mustang guys are using as there are way more of them running manual racks.

So that response tells me that indeed they are interchangeable  :headbang:

I have heard problems with people buying aftermarket racks (power or manual) and the bushings not being the correct size. Replacement racks no problems but ones from flaming river, unisteer, etc use different size?
1986 Ford Thunderbird
!!COMPLETED!! 427 ci ROUSH engine swap<<!NEW! Fed by a Holley Terminator EFI setup/ custom COP setup ignition
 8.8 rear. with 4:10 gears, Eaton Trutrac diff, 31 spline axles and external breather system. Had it cleaned, sandblasted, and powder coated.
Holley Terminator EFI with custom made CNP ignition system

"Its kind of like driving the red headed step child of the mustangs" :hick:

Re: Short or tall Pinion Rack?

Reply #3
Both of the racks in my cars are off SN95 Mustangs so dimensionally they are identical however the spline on the input shaft of the SN95 units are way different so do not go that route unless you want to buy a hybrid shaft from Maximum Motorsports or make your own.  The other issue is that the SN95 inner tie rods are the same thread as the Fox inner tie rods however the threads that the outer tie rods screw onto are metric on an SN95 inner tie rod and SAE on a Fox inner tie rod.  I used Fox inners and outers but some have used the SN95 inners and outers but shortened the inners.  The Fox Mustang rack will bolt into our cars with zero issues.  Some say that you have to match the pump to the rack ratio but I find that to be a bunch of BS.

83 351W TKO'd T-Bird on the bottle


93 331 Mustang coupe that beat your mom's LTD

Re: Short or tall Pinion Rack?

Reply #4
1979-84.5 Mustangs had the rack mounted to the k-member with 16mm bolts. These steering racks came with bushings for 16mm bolts.

1984.5 to 2004 Mustangs all used 12mm bolts for this. So the racks had bushings with a smaller ID. You can swap the bushings between the racks.

All 1979-2004 manual racks use the same spline and diameter on the input shaft as a 1979-93 Mustang (and Fox Thunderbird) with PS. If you use an aftermarket manual rack with the long input shaft, this will put it in the same location as the stock PS rack does.