[DML] Flexible Steering Couplings: Theory of Operation
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[DML] Flexible Steering Couplings: Theory of Operation

Theory of operation of steering flex couplings:

As long as there are uninterrupted hard couplings from the front rims to the steering wheel, it is physically impossible to isolate the steering wheel from whatever vibrations the front rims experience. That is why flexible steering couplings were invented in the first place (in the 1920's roads were even worse than they are now), and that is why flexible steering couplings are still in use to this very day. The only way to isolate the steering wheel is to "break the circuit" as it were. Until a vibration resistant link is introduced into the chain, vibrations will continue to be transmitted from one end to the other. It's the same principle as breaking an electrical circuit.

Rubber mounts on the steering rack will not break the chain any more than a wire grommet will break an electrical circuit. Front rim vibrations still travel uninterrupted through the knuckles, tie rods, rack, U joints, and steering column to the steering wheel.

Same with sway bar and control arm bushings: good condition bushings will certainly reduce front rim vibrations, but whatever vibrations remain will still travel uninterrupted from the rims to the steering wheel.

The only way to isolate the steering wheel is to break the chain.

That is the theory of operation.

Most car and truck manufacturers subscribe to it.

Bill Robertson


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