Rack and Pinion problem on the trail - Yamaha Viking Forum
 3Likes
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old 03-23-2019, 11:15 AM Thread Starter
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2019
Location: Northwest Arkansas
Posts: 6
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
(Thread Starter)
Rack and Pinion problem on the trail

I am not sure this is the proper forum, but steering seems closest to suspension...

I ride the trails in the Buckhorn Trail system in the Ozark National Forest in NW Arkansas in my 2015 three seater with EPS, but stay off the real aggressive trails (I ride for scenery, not pushing my buggy). Yesterday I hit a hole on the backside of a water control birm when going down hill and felt something snap - resulting quickly in no steering control.

It appears I have snapped off teeth in the rack and pinion, but have not taken it apart yet to see if its one or the two or both.

Anyone have any comments on whether to replace it with OEM parts or an aftermarket toughened part? So far I have found Wicked Bilt Rackzilla as one option at about 3x OEM price.

Thanks!
BuckhornRider is offline  
post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old 03-23-2019, 01:22 PM
Senior Member
 
bd_skrillz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Posts: 3,564
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1349 Post(s)
Wow. I haven't encountered or recall seeing anyone who snapped teeth off the R and P. I don't have the knowledge to confidently recommend aftermarker over oem.

I'm armchair pontificating:

If it were me, I'd go oem. I say that with no confidence in my answer. ...just what I'd do. Gut tells me that part is unlikely to break again.
cactus likes this.
bd_skrillz is offline  
post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old 03-24-2019, 06:07 PM Thread Starter
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2019
Location: Northwest Arkansas
Posts: 6
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
(Thread Starter)
Thanks for the pontificating! As a fairly green trail rider then I appreciate all opinions from experienced folks.

With the help of my nephew we took out the steering system today. The pinion seems to be in fair shape, but there are sheared off teeth on the rack.

Here is some added info on my situation. I have added 2" Highlifter lift kits front and rear. My stock 25" tires were about smooth, so I replaced them in December with 27" Tusk Terrabite tires (they seem to have a lot more rock grab than the stock tires). The Terrabite tires have about 50% more mass than new stock tires, and of course most of that is out on the tread.

I was going downhill, and had just started rolling after stopping to a fellow going the other way on the trail (not much speed, but I may have been accelerating). I was in four wheel drive, but not differential lock. I went over a shallow water diversion berm that had a shallow(ish) hidden hole on its back side that I dropped into. That is when I felt the teeth snap off through the steering wheel and I started losing steering control.

Fortunately I was with three other buggies and just happened to be only about 400 yards from where the trail crosses a gravel road. I got pulled out to the road and taken to get my Jeep and trailer to get me home, so no big drama in getting the buggy home.

The trails in this forest are all steep with lots of plate sized rocks as the driving surface, as the surrounding dirt has been packed in over the years of OHV travel on them. My own property just east of the National Forest has many old steep logging roads that I use that are about as bad. So I will probably go with a beefed up replacement rack and pinion.

But as they say up here in the hills, I'm still ponderin' on it.
BuckhornRider is offline  
 
post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old 03-24-2019, 07:56 PM
Senior Member
 
buckg2's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: Howard, PA
Posts: 697
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 219 Post(s)
Agreed with skrillz, that's the first I've heard of this issue. I also like factory components for most fixes.

2014 Red Viking
2" Super ATV lift
buckg2 is offline  
post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old 03-24-2019, 11:31 PM
Senior Member
 
wildbill55's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2016
Location: NorthCarolina
Posts: 331
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 80 Post(s)
I'd go with a beefier rack but stick to stock tie rods as a give point ,you have to have a weak point somewhere,like heavy axles,that usually results in a broken diff.

2014 Red Viking
Venom 3500 winch
814 Susp.shocks
STI HD4 wheels,Tusk Trilobite tires 14x9x27
Yamaha OEM Floor Mats,Bed Mat,Roof, Windshield.Sound Proofing Kit.
Wolverine seats.Boafeng 2way
Works stereo,custom gauges
Heat sheild,Engine Stabilizer, Skid Plates
Herculined Bed,JBS sheave,weights,slugged clutch
18 inch front light bar,12 inch rear.4"cubes
Front and Rear Richocet A Arm guards
Bad Dawg side mirrors,OEM rearview mirror
Fan Override switch.Fender flares,Assault Steering
wildbill55 is offline  
post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old 03-25-2019, 12:29 AM Thread Starter
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2019
Location: Northwest Arkansas
Posts: 6
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
(Thread Starter)
buckg2, thanks for adding your voice and experience to the discussion.

wildbill55, interesting perspective about leaving a weaker point in the steering linkage if adding a beefier rack and pinion. I'll call the Wicked Bilt folks in the morning to understand if their Rackzilla tie rod length is the same as the OEM tie rods. Thanks for chiming in.

BTW, I still have not found any other supplier of non-OEM rack and pinion for a 2015 Viking. Plenty of folks sell the OEM parts though. Anyone know of another aftermarket manufacturer that I should consider?
BuckhornRider is offline  
post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old 03-25-2019, 04:20 AM
Super Moderator
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: NSW, Australia
Posts: 3,793
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1250 Post(s)
Did you buy your Viking new? As above, a broken rack is pretty rare, I'd say a previous owner (if any) hit a stump or similar very hard. I'd go with OEM, you can be pretty much guaranteed it will never happen again.

Sent from the bottom of ANOTHER empty whiskey bottle.

Current Ride;
Chookbanger Mark II,
Street legal Blue Viking, 2017 model, bought 3/4/2017.

Previous Ride;
Chookbanger;
Street legal Blue Viking, 2014 model bought 3/4/2014, sold 3/4/2017 with 2850 km and 189 Hrs.
Yamaha Saggy Bottom Club member.

Other Yamaha Bikes Currently Owned
2019 WR250
2016 WR450
2016 YZ85 (sold)
2017 Grizzly 350 4x2 Auto Quad
2017 AG200
2005 PW50

Honda 2012 CB250
Honda 1999 CT200
Honda 1985 CT200 Trike
cactus is online now  
post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old 03-27-2019, 01:25 PM
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2018
Location: arkansas
Posts: 3
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Garage
I had a similar experience. I was crossing a ditch at my farm and lost all steering? I had parked in the ditch and took my son into a tree stand. I was never going fast and I hit no rocks or stumps. I waited until later in the morning and checked out the steering arm. It was loose. I did not remove the arm I only tightened it. I ordered a new OEM arm to replace the old one. I have been carrying the new one around for about 4 or 5 months now. I have been **** tough on the old arm and I have checked it for tightness every so often and all has been good. I did not see any metal shavings so I guess it is not stripped since it has worked great ever since.

I was pretty lucky that I was not in the boonies or flying down a logging road when this happened!. I suggest that everyone check the steering arm to make sure the teeth are aligned right and the bolt is tight. I would even take out the bolt and put some locktite on it.

2014 Viking
2inch lift
27x10x12 GBC Dirt Commanders
enally is offline  
post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old 03-29-2019, 08:39 AM Thread Starter
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2019
Location: Northwest Arkansas
Posts: 6
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
(Thread Starter)
Just a quick update, and thanks to all for your comments and suggestions.

Cactus, to answer you specific question - yes, I did buy it new. I also bought a four year extended warranty. That warranty expired almost one month to the day PRIOR to my rack and pinion giving out. Figures.

Since some of the rack teeth were sheered off and I ride a lot of rough trails pretty far from road access (scenery touring, not pushing - but stuff happens), I decided to go with the heftier Wicked Bilt Rackzilla instead of OEM. I was told that its tie rod lengths are same as the OEM parts, so I will have some spare parts hanging around from the OEM steering system I removed.

It is supposed to arrive this afternoon, so I will post how it looks and installs sometime this weekend.
BuckhornRider is offline  
post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old 03-29-2019, 05:04 PM
Super Moderator
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: NSW, Australia
Posts: 3,793
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1250 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by BuckhornRider View Post
Just a quick update, and thanks to all for your comments and suggestions.

Cactus, to answer you specific question - yes, I did buy it new. I also bought a four year extended warranty. That warranty expired almost one month to the day PRIOR to my rack and pinion giving out. Figures.

Since some of the rack teeth were sheered off and I ride a lot of rough trails pretty far from road access (scenery touring, not pushing - but stuff happens), I decided to go with the heftier Wicked Bilt Rackzilla instead of OEM. I was told that its tie rod lengths are same as the OEM parts, so I will have some spare parts hanging around from the OEM steering system I removed.

It is supposed to arrive this afternoon, so I will post how it looks and installs sometime this weekend.

Good logic and good choice. Shame about the warranty, I had an expensive television do the exact same thing! We get a 3 year warranty as standard here on our Vikings.

Sent from the bottom of ANOTHER empty whiskey bottle.

Current Ride;
Chookbanger Mark II,
Street legal Blue Viking, 2017 model, bought 3/4/2017.

Previous Ride;
Chookbanger;
Street legal Blue Viking, 2014 model bought 3/4/2014, sold 3/4/2017 with 2850 km and 189 Hrs.
Yamaha Saggy Bottom Club member.

Other Yamaha Bikes Currently Owned
2019 WR250
2016 WR450
2016 YZ85 (sold)
2017 Grizzly 350 4x2 Auto Quad
2017 AG200
2005 PW50

Honda 2012 CB250
Honda 1999 CT200
Honda 1985 CT200 Trike
cactus is online now  
Reply

User Tag List

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page



Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome