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Steering & Suspension Systems

Dec 18, 2015

The steering and suspension systems of a car are not only important for safety reasons but also to enhance the comfort of your car's ride. The two systems are directly related to each other, which is why they are often referred to together.
 
Improvements in steering and suspension systems, increased strength and durability of components, and advances in tire design and construction have made large contributions to riding comfort and to safe driving in recent years.
 
Today, there are two basic types of steering systems: 1) standard mechanical (reciprocating ball) steering and 2) rack and pinion steering. The standard mechanical steering can be either power-assisted or non-power. Rack and pinion is almost always power-assisted, although there are rare cases where it is not.
 
Basically this is how it works: Standard mechanical (reciprocating ball) steering:Standard mechanical steering uses a series of links and arms to ensure both wheels turn in the same direction at the same time. It hasn't changed much over the years and its principles are really quite simple. Rack and pinion steering: Rack and pinion steering, on the other hand, basically combines the steering box and center link into one unit. The steering wheel, through the steering column, is directly connected to the rack except in some of the modern vehicles they are drive by wire an electrical motor is located on the rack and is sent signals from a sensor located in the steering column. Inside the steering rack is a pinion assembly that moves a toothed piston, which in turn moves the steering gear.

 
Suspension Systems
 
Suspension is the term given to the system of struts / shock absorbers and linkages that connect a car to its wheels. The suspension system has two basic functions: 1) to keep the car's wheels in firm contact with the road to provide traction and 2) to provide a comfortable ride for the passengers and isolate them from road noise, bumps and vibrations.
 
These goals are generally at odds, so the tuning of modern suspensions is often finding the right compromise. A lot of the system's work is done by the springs. Under normal conditions, the springs support the body of the car evenly by compressing and rebounding with every up-and-down movement. This up-and-down movement, however, causes bouncing and swaying after each bump and is very uncomfortable to the passenger. These undesirable effects are reduced by the struts / shock absorbers.

Source: http://www.oktire.com/en/auto-service/steering--suspension-systems

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