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good old shimmy at the steering wheel

This is a discussion on good old shimmy at the steering wheel within the Suspension and Handling forums, part of the General Help category; Over the last year I've been getting a "shimmy" at my stering wheel as I apply the brakes. This only ...

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    good old shimmy at the steering wheel

    Over the last year I've been getting a "shimmy" at my stering wheel as I apply the brakes. This only happens when braking from high speeds, usually 50mph or more. The tires I have on this car are newer (only 15k on them) and I've recently had a front end allignment (due to replacing my rack and pinion steering). The shaking at the steering wheel hasn't gotten worse (seems to come and go) over the last year, but it still exists. I've taken it to several shops and they both say the u-joints and ball joints are fine. Strangely they can't seem to tell me if replacing the brakes and/or rotors will solve the problem. They keep telling me to ride it until it gets worse....it's not really getting worse, but definately not better. Any ideas?

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    The Bandit Wesman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by knoll5150 View Post
    Over the last year I've been getting a "shimmy" at my stering wheel as I apply the brakes. This only happens when braking from high speeds, usually 50mph or more. The tires I have on this car are newer (only 15k on them) and I've recently had a front end allignment (due to replacing my rack and pinion steering). The shaking at the steering wheel hasn't gotten worse (seems to come and go) over the last year, but it still exists. I've taken it to several shops and they both say the u-joints and ball joints are fine. Strangely they can't seem to tell me if replacing the brakes and/or rotors will solve the problem. They keep telling me to ride it until it gets worse....it's not really getting worse, but definately not better. Any ideas?
    If its only when you apply the brakes, chances are its caused by warped rotors. When rotors get heated and cooled over time they become warped.

    You can either have them replaced (reccommended) or have them machined or "cut". Machining the rotors will make them true again, but you end up losing a few thousands worth of metal from the rotor surface on each side, resulting in a thinner overall rotor. This means that the caliper pistons need to extend further out to make the pads contact the rotor, resulting in a lower brake pedal. Rotors are cheap enough now thats they aren't even worth getting cut usually, you can even get some high performance ones from just about any of the sponsors for a reasonable price, and they will be less resistant to warpage. Plus you can get them drilled or slotted, which is even better for heat dissipation under performance driving.

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    400rwhp::370rwtq Lucky 13's Avatar
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    Yes, it is almost 95% of the time the rotors. VERY easy job to do yourself! If you havent done it before, PM me and I can go over details with you.

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    War Machine BIG GUNS's Avatar
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    Concur. My brakes were hosed when I bought it but, they've gotten worse and I plan on changing them and rotors out soon.

    Check around for cheap combo sets as they are way cheaper than the high end brand name etc and still perform the same. I did read that on another thread on here somewhere.

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