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Thread: Lubricant for steering? (Potential solutions for Mirage's lack of self-centering)

  1. #21
    Administrator MetroMPG's Avatar
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    Not sure if you're implying that EPS in general is a problem, or just in the Mirage's case.

    Because the 2015 Canadian spec Nissan Micra has EPS, the same tight turning radius as the Mirage, and it steers quite "normally". Pleasantly, actually. So, EPS can be done right.

    EDIT: also, I'd imagine you should just be able to take the motor drive out of the EPA unit and essentially make it "manual" steering, which would dis/prove the "EPS is the culprit" theory. I guess that's what you're investigating?

    I don't think it is the culprit.


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        click to view fuel log View my fuel log 2014 Mirage base ES 1.2 manual: 54.0 mpg (US) ... 23.0 km/L ... 4.4 L/100 km ... 64.9 mpg (Imp)


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    "EDIT: also, I'd imagine you should just be able to take the motor drive out of the EPA unit and essentially make it "manual" steering, which would dis/prove the "EPS is the culprit" theory. I guess that's what you're investigating?"

    I believe your claim that EPS can be done right.
    I don't believe the chances are good of making OUR EPS right.
    I believe it would involve factory support that we will never have.

    As a way to vent my frustration / disappointment ....
    If I can make the Mirages EPS unit entirely pass-through with no drag, by removing the motor, or whatever else I need to remove, I will be able to establish a base line on the handling...better , same or worse.

    I've driven lots of light, rack and pinion cars that felt fine on the road.
    I never had that "video game" type of dis-connected feel while holding the wheel, like the Mirage does at times, and like my EPS equipped Toyota did and still does to an extent.
    I guess I'm really just curious to see how the Mirage would feel, un-assisted. . .

  3. #23
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    Like I had said earlier, my Toyota changed with miles.
    The difference between 2k and 10K was astounding.
    It went from horrific, to O.K.
    Ball joints, rod ends, bearing plates, steering rack, column bushings and U-joints, EPS parts (?) what have I missed...
    All that stuff loosening up with miles...allowing the steering to freely float when centered ???
    Sure feels different now thats for sure, hopefully the Mirage's will do the same.

  4. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by ThreePot View Post
    IMHO,
    If you could chuck the EPS unit and replace it with a shaft, the car would steer like it should.
    As long as that EPS unit is there, you are stuck with the piss poor centering, lack of feedback, lack of road feel,etc.
    You can lube, adjust, tweak, change wheel sizes, complain to the dealer or corporate all you want. It is what it is.
    I have a boneyard quoting me on an EPS unit out of a wreck. Depending on how the internals are set up, I may be able to gut it and prove / dis-prove my claim.
    Keep in mind electronics are heavily integrated now. The EPS unit may tie into other things, like traction control, cruise control, etc.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ahintofpepperjack View Post
    Keep in mind electronics are heavily integrated now. The EPS unit may tie into other things, like traction control, cruise control, etc.
    Very good point. It's not hard to imagine how the EPS could be involved with the stability/traction control system at least...
    I suppose one could just pull the plug on the EPS to see what happens. It may disable the car, who knows...

    I wonder if there are any alternative flashes for the ECU that runs the EPS?
    Could be that different markets get different steering characteristics?

  6. #26
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    As the thread starter, I would like to point out a few findings:

    I had both front wheels lifted off the ground, the car resting on stands. Then removed the front tyres and took off both ball joints. Then I took hold of the left bearing plate and turned it. It was easily possible, with practically no force required. Same for the other side. Just like on other comparable size small cars with any decent steering.

    Then I examined the opposite part. I turned the key so the steeringwheel could be turned without it locking. Then I grabbed a balljoint and pushed it inwards towards the steering gear, then I pulled it outwards. I found out you need to push really very hard indeed to make it move even the slightest. The force needed by the Mirage is very much higher than on any other similar size car. This points to the problem.

    That told me the stickiness (stickiness in the sense it resists moving, not in the sense it sticks like chewing gum on your soles) obviously comes from the steering gear or perhaps maybe from the motion sensor of the assisting electric. However, these motion sensors are usually electronic on modern cars, and thus require zero force.

    Next step. I got under the car and loosened the nut that pushes on the back of the toothed bar within the steering gear, which pushes the bar onto the little gear that is turned by the steering wheel. You can see this nut by looking onto the steering gear from under the car and from behind, looking forward. It is partly covered by the front sway bar, and has a 40mm locking nut around it.

    Much of the "stickiness" was now now gone, and there was, for the first time a little bit of self-centering noticable in curves. No self-centering on the highway yet, and a far cry from the much better steering of my tiny little Fiat, or from my old Metro, but it was definitly better.
    Now I have retightened that nut again exactly as it was before, and will do some more examination of this matter when the terribly cold weather gets a bit warmer. Its just too cold in an unheated garage right now.

    I know that some manufactures use this adjustment as a steering-damper. Too much torqe causes too much damping and the steering sticks in place. Probably thats exactly what's wrong in our cars, too much dampening because it was adjusted to an impractical and too high torque...

    When the weather gets warmer so I can crawl under the car without freezing my extremities and the family jewels off, I will look into this matter further and let others know.
    Last edited by foama; 12-01-2014 at 05:55 PM.

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    Good diagnosing!

        __________________________________________

        click to view fuel log View my fuel log 2014 Mirage SE 1.2 automatic: 46.4 mpg (US) ... 19.7 km/L ... 5.1 L/100 km ... 55.8 mpg (Imp)


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  11. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by ThreePot View Post
    Good finding!

    I'm still curious what ppl are complaining about ... I just learn to drive with it, change the disadvantage to my advantage and just enjoy driving .... I'm at 38.000 km now and has wider tires, have to say that even on highway it does self center, no complain about it whatsoever. The parts does loosen up I think and the wider tires wants to drive just forward.

        __________________________________________

        click to view fuel log View my fuel log 2013 Mirage 1.0 manual: 47.5 mpg (US) ... 20.2 km/L ... 5.0 L/100 km ... 57.0 mpg (Imp)


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  13. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by m4v3r1ck View Post
    Good finding!

    I'm still curious what ppl are complaining about ... I just learn to drive with it, change the disadvantage to my advantage and just enjoy driving .... I'm at 38.000 km now and has wider tires, have to say that even on highway it does self center, no complain about it whatsoever. The parts does loosen up I think and the wider tires wants to drive just forward.

    The video said there was a different calibration for the American car, and the European car.
    I wonder if the same is true with our cars, and yours has a different calibration in the steering computer than mine?



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