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    1. #1
      Join Date
      Feb 2020
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      Flaming River Rack and Pinon

      Hello, I started a thread over at nastyz28 and everyone lost their minds about rack and pinion on a 2nd gen camaro.

      First of all, I am well aware with a stock subframe in the past rack and pinion has been absolute garbage and a good ratio box is the way to go. But recently I stumbled across flaming river rack and pinion specially for a 2nd gen camaro that "bolts" right into the stock subframe.

      http://www.flamingriver.com/index.ph.../FR316KTPWNCNP

      It looks as though it should have pretty good geometry and it uses stock tie rods. Has anyone used this? So far I haven't found anyone with experience with this product, I want to know if it's good and changes the feel of the car, or if it's pure snake oil and has the same issues as the past methods of getting rack and pinion in this car.

      I want to be clear, this isn't a thread about value, I just want to know if this is a good product and if it has any tangible benefits over a good ratio steering box.

    2. #2
      Join Date
      Oct 2004
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      Since value is not your thing then buy it
      https://www.pro-touringf-body.com "doing what they say can't be done"

    3. #3
      Join Date
      Feb 2020
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      58
      Quote Originally Posted by 79T/Aman View Post
      Since value is not your thing then buy it
      That doesn't answer my question though, you're being as unhelpful here as you were over at nastyz28

    4. #4
      Join Date
      Nov 2006
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      Mountain Springs, Texas
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      I’m not an expert but tying the two ends of the rack together like that seems like a bad idea. The bearing supports are also a tad Mickey Mouse imho.

      Don
      1969 Camaro - LSA 6L90E AME sub/IRS
      1957 Buick Estate Wagon
      1959 El Camino - Ironworks frame
      1956 Cameo - full C5 suspension/drivetrain

    5. #5
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      Quote Originally Posted by 79T/Aman View Post
      Since value is not your thing then buy it
      SPG is not asking about value or any biases towards these types of kits. He would like to know who has used it and their first hand experience...I'm curious as well.
      1970 Camaro/DSE build


      Are you driver enough? Maybe....come on blue!
      https://www.pro-touring.com/threads/...71#post1147371

    6. #6
      Join Date
      Oct 2013
      Posts
      105
      Country Flag: Norway
      I don't get the fascination of rack & pinion in 2nd gens. A good box with all links in order with a good subframe is slop free. If someone runs a rack & pinion in a 2nd gen and thinks it's way better I'd give huge credit to something called the placebo effect.

      Rack & pinions are great for rear side of the spindle mounted steering arms and production cost. Mainly production cost.

      I might sound grumpy and very subjective but so far I'm very happy with a tweaked steering box system. Feels just as quick and steady on the steering as my 2011 Subaru Legacy and thats good enough for me.

    7. #7
      Join Date
      Oct 2018
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      Phoenix, AZ
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      That's an interesting approach to the solution. I personally like the simplicity and feel of a rack.

      While the way they relocated the pivot points doesn't excite me, I've always felt that any Flaming River product I have bought was great quality. There is a solid chance that nobody really knows about it so finding someone with one installed might be tough.

      If it was me and I really wanted a rack, yeah, I'd most likely buy it. They have always honored their products and they have a great reputation that I can't imagine them risking with bad engineering. The fact that it uses stock tie-rods is a very good sign to me.
      '95 F-150 track ready street beast
      Want more projects/photos? Check my Instagram

    8. #8
      Join Date
      Feb 2020
      Posts
      58
      Quote Originally Posted by kimosabi View Post
      I don't get the fascination of rack & pinion in 2nd gens. A good box with all links in order with a good subframe is slop free. If someone runs a rack & pinion in a 2nd gen and thinks it's way better I'd give huge credit to something called the placebo effect.

      Rack & pinions are great for rear side of the spindle mounted steering arms and production cost. Mainly production cost.

      I might sound grumpy and very subjective but so far I'm very happy with a tweaked steering box system. Feels just as quick and steady on the steering as my 2011 Subaru Legacy and thats good enough for me.
      People like it because there is (typically) less points of failure and can give you a better ratio in some instances.

      Feel on the other hand is subjective and I don't care about that one way or another. I'm just trying to figure out if this is a good product, I don't really care about using a gear box as this is a thread just to figure it out, not asking for purchasing advice.

      Plus I probably can't use this anyways as I think the input will interfere with the motor/accessory drive I will be putting in my car

    9. #9
      Join Date
      Oct 2013
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      105
      Country Flag: Norway
      Quote Originally Posted by SPG View Post
      People like it because there is (typically) less points of failure and can give you a better ratio in some instances.

      Feel on the other hand is subjective and I don't care about that one way or another. I'm just trying to figure out if this is a good product, I don't really care about using a gear box as this is a thread just to figure it out, not asking for purchasing advice.

      Plus I probably can't use this anyways as I think the input will interfere with the motor/accessory drive I will be putting in my car
      There are some people on nastyz28 that have indeed installed rack & pinion in a 2nd gen so I struggle to believe you that "everone lost their mind" over it. Maybe not this type but the Unisteer R&P I know a few there have done it. If you want bolt on resale value this could be a hit or miss.

      As for quality products they usually need some tweaks out of the box. That goes for every aftermarket part on the friggin planet. lol

    10. #10
      Join Date
      Feb 2020
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      58
      Quote Originally Posted by kimosabi View Post
      There are some people on nastyz28 that have indeed installed rack & pinion in a 2nd gen so I struggle to believe you that "everone lost their mind" over it. Maybe not this type but the Unisteer R&P I know a few there have done it. If you want bolt on resale value this could be a hit or miss.

      As for quality products they usually need some tweaks out of the box. That goes for every aftermarket part on the friggin planet. lol

      people who did it, retro fitted it with parts from other cars, or use an after market subframe.
      I'm not saying no one has done it, I just want to find someone who has used this one

    11. #11
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      Quote Originally Posted by kimosabi View Post
      I don't get the fascination of rack & pinion in 2nd gens. A good box with all links in order with a good subframe is slop free. If someone runs a rack & pinion in a 2nd gen and thinks it's way better I'd give huge credit to something called the placebo effect.

      Rack & pinions are great for rear side of the spindle mounted steering arms and production cost. Mainly production cost.

      I might sound grumpy and very subjective but so far I'm very happy with a tweaked steering box system. Feels just as quick and steady on the steering as my 2011 Subaru Legacy and thats good enough for me.

      So whatís the fascination in general? Seeing how itís the automotive standard these days?
      1970 Camaro/DSE build


      Are you driver enough? Maybe....come on blue!
      https://www.pro-touring.com/threads/...71#post1147371

    12. #12
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      Oct 2013
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      Country Flag: Norway
      Quote Originally Posted by badazz81z28 View Post
      So whatís the fascination in general? Seeing how itís the automotive standard these days?
      Come on dude, you know why it's the automotive standard. Production cost. Less parts. Simpler design. Better option for placement in FWD cars. In many cases weight savings, although I don't think that applies to this Flaming River unit, with that big bracket and all.

      Fascination? I'd say bling. R&P cars was made way earlier than they stopped using steering boxes. If a R&P steering was so much better don't you think the engineers at the automakers would have tossed the steering box design as soon as the R&P design showd up?

    13. #13
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      Moving from Burbs of Detroit to my native homeland, the woods of Cascadia
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      Quote Originally Posted by kimosabi View Post
      .....

      Fascination? I'd say bling. R&P cars was made way earlier than they stopped using steering boxes. If a R&P steering was so much better don't you think the engineers at the automakers would have tossed the steering box design as soon as the R&P design showd up?
      If they needed to redesign the front of the frame/ structural stampings to fit an R & P, No

      If they needed to pay off capital costs of dedicated usually automated tooling and assembly equipment, No

      Having worked in automotive design, my opinion is eating the costs to redesign and re-qualify a significant change (particularly regarding a safety related feature) leads to design inertia to keep a known proven design. The fact is that as significant structural redesigns occur (usually due to marketing considerations), engineers are usually more willing to consider significant design changes from previously released.

      It amazes me. Prior to retirement, I worked in automotive HVAC design. I redesigned a component from specific RHD and LHD components to (separate injection mold tools) to a common design, 37% material savings and weight reduction, payoff in 1.3 years. The customer rejected the design change because the savings wasn't enough. Don't assume that decisions made in the industry are always rational.

      Sorry for straying so far off topic, but the rational argument presented by kimosabi does not always work i real life
      Greg Fast
      (yes, the last name is spelled correctly)

      1970 Camaro RS Clone
      1984 el Camino
      1973 MGB vintage E/Prod race car
      (Soon to be an SCCA H/Prod limited prep)

    14. #14
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      Quote Originally Posted by kimosabi View Post
      Come on dude, you know why it's the automotive standard. Production cost. Less parts. Simpler design. Better option for placement in FWD cars. In many cases weight savings, although I don't think that applies to this Flaming River unit, with that big bracket and all.

      Fascination? I'd say bling. R&P cars was made way earlier than they stopped using steering boxes. If a R&P steering was so much better don't you think the engineers at the automakers would have tossed the steering box design as soon as the R&P design showd up?

      "Better" is usually a reason too even though the old products still get the job done. Honestly that's really the basis of a lot of argument on these forum over parts(aftermarket frames, 4-links, coil overs etc..etc..). Especially if you are someone in the industry selling the ole school parts (PTFB). You can't argue fuel injection offers many benefits over a carb and we all know if you break down the parts, its a more expensive system too. Yet even though ALL modern cars over the last 30 years are fuel injected, they still sell carbs. Also when cars became fuel injection, Carbs didn't come to an immediate halt. It takes time to become the standard...Does that mean FI isnt that great? No...There are better products out there that offer benefits. Just don't be so quick to discount them because the old parts work. "Less parts" "Simpler design" alone is something I like to have...Less areas of potential failure. I can say however my R&P on my DSE frame is a significant difference over the gear box on the stock frame. On a box, there are alot of moving ball joints, friction and of course that affects how smooth the system operates. JMO.
      1970 Camaro/DSE build


      Are you driver enough? Maybe....come on blue!
      https://www.pro-touring.com/threads/...71#post1147371

    15. #15
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      I believe that is the same basic idea that they have used on quite a few different cars and , still comes back with the general "dont bother " . As to the quality ... ??? All I know is that you could get all top of the line replacement parts and still have money left over by just replacing factory box and linkage. Also knowing in the back of your mind if you need a replacement part , its at the nearest parts store . Not calling F.R and waiting
      Spinnin'my tires in life's fast lane

      Ryan Austin
      On twitter @raustinss
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    16. #16
      Join Date
      Oct 2013
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      105
      Country Flag: Norway
      Quote Originally Posted by Twentyover View Post
      If they needed to redesign the front of the frame/ structural stampings to fit an R & P, No

      If they needed to pay off capital costs of dedicated usually automated tooling and assembly equipment, No

      Having worked in automotive design, my opinion is eating the costs to redesign and re-qualify a significant change (particularly regarding a safety related feature) leads to design inertia to keep a known proven design. The fact is that as significant structural redesigns occur (usually due to marketing considerations), engineers are usually more willing to consider significant design changes from previously released.

      It amazes me. Prior to retirement, I worked in automotive HVAC design. I redesigned a component from specific RHD and LHD components to (separate injection mold tools) to a common design, 37% material savings and weight reduction, payoff in 1.3 years. The customer rejected the design change because the savings wasn't enough. Don't assume that decisions made in the industry are always rational.

      Sorry for straying so far off topic, but the rational argument presented by kimosabi does not always work i real life
      That was my point. If the rack & pinion was much better, in addition to weight, cost and simplicity, then it would be very hard for a customer to say no. You share some great points about the industry but take 3rd Gen F body as an example. Total redesign of the whole model, but still recirculating ball steering box. I don't work in the industry but I would still assume any automaker about to launch a new performance oriented model, would incorporate a different, cheaper, lighter and simpler in a heartbeat, if it was that much better.

      Quote Originally Posted by badazz81z28 View Post
      "Better" is usually a reason too even though the old products still get the job done. Honestly that's really the basis of a lot of argument on these forum over parts(aftermarket frames, 4-links, coil overs etc..etc..). Especially if you are someone in the industry selling the ole school parts (PTFB). You can't argue fuel injection offers many benefits over a carb and we all know if you break down the parts, its a more expensive system too. Yet even though ALL modern cars over the last 30 years are fuel injected, they still sell carbs. Also when cars became fuel injection, Carbs didn't come to an immediate halt. It takes time to become the standard...Does that mean FI isnt that great? No...There are better products out there that offer benefits. Just don't be so quick to discount them because the old parts work. "Less parts" "Simpler design" alone is something I like to have...Less areas of potential failure. I can say however my R&P on my DSE frame is a significant difference over the gear box on the stock frame. On a box, there are alot of moving ball joints, friction and of course that affects how smooth the system operates. JMO.
      Point is, a rack & pinion installed on an steering box old horse won't make it a grand prix winner. If people want to buy it thats their business but turning 41 and probably spent hundred thousand in performance parts and custom stuff over the years, I would just conclude all upgrades like that are not really upgrades. More like sidegrades with small changes. Most would experience much bigger benefits with getting a set of soft tires.

    17. #17
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      Feb 2020
      Posts
      58
      just going to bump this thread
      I guess what I really want to know, is if anyone has used this and preferred the feel over the stock steering box (because yes, I know it's about twice as much, thats not what I want to know)

    18. #18
      Join Date
      Nov 2020
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      4
      SPG, I love this rack and pinion. I ordered for 70 F body. I would get the pump and brackets too. Car handles awesome now. Saved about 7 pounds(?).

    19. #19
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      this thread is almost 2 years old, a 670 box is a 6# savings over the stock box at 1/2 the price and zero custom fitment.
      How many miles do you have on you install?
      Have you tested it against a good recirculating ball system?
      https://www.pro-touringf-body.com "doing what they say can't be done"

    20. #20
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      Pittsburgh, Pa
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      The 70 up came from the factory with a decent suspension and its front steer. I think you're crazy to rip all that out of there for a rack. I would go with a Lee 12 to 1, adjustable upper control arms. I've driven over 12 different cars that were converted to the rack and not one of them handled worth a damn. My 69 el Camino with up dated SC&C front, Lee 14:1 @ 30 pounds and Spohn delsphere rears would walk all over every one of them.. The Lee 800 series steering box is lightyears better than any one of those racks. I don't get it?? I'm thinking you guys sell them and are trying to hook suckers on here..

      Dude dont fall for this nonsense, after market racks are 100% crap..



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