1. Welcome to the new SAOCA website. Already a member? Simply click Log In/Sign Up up and to the right and use your same username and password from the old site. If you've forgotten your password, please send an email to membership@sunbeamalpine.org for assistance.

    If you're new here, click Log In/Sign Up and enter your information. We'll approve your account as quickly as possible.


    Dismiss Notice

leaky steering box

Discussion in '"Stock" Alpine' started by ozzie alpine, Feb 10, 2007.

  1. ozzie alpine

    ozzie alpine Bronze Level Sponsor

    G'day all,
    My SII has a leaky steering box. No leaks when sitting or if you turn the wheels with no real force required (ie if the wheels are jacked up off the ground), but if you turn the wheels while it is stationary (ie lots of torque required), then it'll sometimes drop a considerable amount of oil and then stop - note, its not running yet so dunno what its like while driving!

    Is it possible to change the oil seal from below with the box in-situ? ie after removing the lever arm. If so, then I will try this first. Otherwise I might as well pull the box for a rebuild I suppose, although the steering feels smooth enough (all front end joints are new, including kingpins, so its a little stiff still but seems OK).
  2. 64beam

    64beam Donation Time

    Hi Dave,

    I have not personally repaired the steering box, but I don't think it is a hard job. In the previous forum there was a thread regarding the oil in the steering box being changed to grease which is what I did. Have not had any trouble thus far. Have a read of the old thread.

    Regards, Robin.
  3. Wombat

    Wombat Donation Time


    I think is would be much easier to replace the seal with the steering box out of the car. The fact that it leaks when loaded may mean the lever arm bush is worn, letting it move far enough to deform the seal. Probably worth checking this as well.
  4. 61Alpine

    61Alpine Donation Time

    How did you go about removing the oil in the box before putting the grease in, and what grease and how did you put it in?

  5. Nickodell

    Nickodell Donation Time

    Rob: Don't bother removing the oil currently in the box - it will remove itself!

    You can simply pump grease (use the lightest grade of lithium grease) in through the filler hole, but you'll probably find that messy. Years ago I drilled and tapped the top plate and installed a Zerk grease fitting, and now all I do is give it a dozen pumps every week or so. Of course, you can't see the level of the grease so if it starts coming out of the top of the steering column I guess I'm using too much.:D
  6. ozzie alpine

    ozzie alpine Bronze Level Sponsor

    OK, I'll pull the steering box out and do it properly.
    Might even put a grease fitting on top while I'm at it.
  7. Bill Blue

    Bill Blue Platinum Level Sponsor

    Dave, good luck pulling the box!

    Please keep us up to date on the trials and tribulations encountered.

  8. V6 JOSE

    V6 JOSE Donation Time


    Are you planning on changing the seal so you can go back to using oil to lubricate the steering gear? I have found that it won't take long for the new seal to leak again, causing you to have the same problem again. I recommend taking off the top of the box, pack it with lithium grease, put the top back on again and forget it for as long as you own the car. I did this to my first Alpine, that I restored back in 1975, and it is still working without leaking any of the grease out of the box. I suggest fixing it once, then forget it.

  9. 61Alpine

    61Alpine Donation Time

    Is that White Lithium grease?
  10. jumpinjan

    jumpinjan Donation Time

    I agree. Its probably never had any maintenance in over 45 years. All you need is a good seal. The later boxes have an O-ring thats easy to find. Just about every steering box that I have rebuilt, needed it really bad. Its tricky to set the preloads with shims, don't loose them.
  11. V6 JOSE

    V6 JOSE Donation Time

    Yes Rob,

    White lithium grease is what I used. Someone has suggested another color of lithium grease, and I think that would be OK too.

  12. ozzie alpine

    ozzie alpine Bronze Level Sponsor

    I think I'll follow Wombats advice and check the bush while I'm at it. While its out I can properly clean and check the internals before using grease.
    Might as well do it properly.
    Might be a week or two until I get to it though.
    Just the steering box and rear axle seals (and axle bearings maybe) to go, and then I'll try and fire her up! (hasn't moved under her own power since 1989)

Share This Page