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Author Topic: Do You Really "Feel" the Road Better With Manual?  (Read 5695 times)
lakeholme
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« on: July 25, 2006, 03:33:06 AM »

I realize this is a fairly subjective question...  Wink

I've been watching a thread (and a poll) on Team Camaro about manual vs power steering with great interest.  My 68 has power steering and I'm not about to switch to manual... Haven't owned a car with maual steering since the 60s.  (Let's face it, at slow speeds or in a tight situation, it's like driving a bus.) But several of my classic car friends (and I noticed in this poll several folks who have maual steering) claim they can "feel" the road better.

Do you think you get a better feel with manual?  If so, how and why?  Huh Huh Huh

(Thanks in advance!)  Grin
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Phillip
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rich69rs
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« Reply #1 on: July 25, 2006, 11:37:25 AM »

Feel it better only because of having to muscle the car around. 

Only advantage I can imagine is freeing up a few Hp by not driving a power steering pump.  If the car is balanced properly, the "feel" of the road should be just as good with power steering.  As an example, NASCAR takes full advantage of power steering - and for good reason.

Except for originality issues, I can't envision why you wouldn't want power steering - or power brakes.
« Last Edit: July 25, 2006, 11:43:37 AM by rich69rs » Logged

Richard Thomas
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« Reply #2 on: July 25, 2006, 10:50:09 PM »

I guess there could be more "feel".  The original PS setup in these old cars is very numb and overboosted.

A while back, I drove a 70 Vette with manual steering and absolutely loved it.  But thats a pretty light car.  Every other manual steering car Ive driven you pretty much had to manhandle them around.

Throw manual brakes into the mix, and youre getting quite a workout.


dave
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mr396
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« Reply #3 on: July 25, 2006, 11:59:47 PM »

Light?I owned a 70 vette with a 350,I put it on the scale and it was closed to 4000 lbs. Shocked
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« Reply #4 on: July 26, 2006, 12:09:08 AM »

Light?I owned a 70 vette with a 350,I put it on the scale and it was closed to 4000 lbs. Shocked

Wow, wouldnt figure it would weigh that much.  I'm by no means a vette guy or an expert on them.  I wouldve thought they would be in the lower 3K lbs.

I guess I should say that it "felt" like a much lighter car, even with manual steering.

dave
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mr396
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« Reply #5 on: July 26, 2006, 12:15:47 AM »

I was surprised to. My camaro weighs 4000 lbs. But its a loaded 396 vert.
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lakeholme
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« Reply #6 on: July 26, 2006, 04:11:03 AM »

OK, so when someone says "feel" they mean "more work and sweat"?  Undecided

Was the manual steering on a 70 vette the same system as a 1st gen Camaro?  Huh

...Where are all these people who keep singing the praises of manual?  Roll Eyes Roll Eyes Roll Eyes
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Phillip
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JohnZ
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« Reply #7 on: July 26, 2006, 07:22:44 PM »

Was the manual steering on a 70 vette the same system as a 1st gen Camaro? Huh

Nope - '63-'82 Corvettes used the "linkage-boosted" system with a power cylinder - same system the early Chevy II used.

Any '70 Corvette that weighs 4000# is carrying 700# of lead ballast - they weighed 3300# with a full tank of fuel - about the same as a '69 Camaro.
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lakeholme
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« Reply #8 on: July 27, 2006, 05:10:14 AM »

Thanks John!  I didn't think it was the same steering system.  I'm actually surprised it was the same as the early Chevy II.

I'd love to know whay you think about manual vs poer steering in 1st gen Camaros?  Huh
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JohnZ
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« Reply #9 on: July 27, 2006, 09:44:33 AM »

I have power steering on my '69Z, and it works fine; it's over-boosted like all GM systems were in the 60's-70's, but that's the way it was back then. Mine was manual when I got it, but I tired of the low-speed steering effort and converted it to power using all factory parts.
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mr396
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« Reply #10 on: July 27, 2006, 01:32:44 PM »

Any '70 Corvette that weighs 4000# is carrying 700# of lead ballast - they weighed 3300# with a full tank of fuel - about the same as a '69 Camaro. Now that I think about it.(geez its been 30 yrs) It could have been another car. Embarrassed I'm fairly sure my camaro was #4000 lbs
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JohnZ
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« Reply #11 on: July 28, 2006, 09:19:40 AM »

Any '70 Corvette that weighs 4000# is carrying 700# of lead ballast - they weighed 3300# with a full tank of fuel - about the same as a '69 Camaro. Now that I think about it.(geez its been 30 yrs) It could have been another car. Embarrassed I'm fairly sure my camaro was #4000 lbs

Well, if your Camaro weighed 4000#, it was carrying ballast too. A '69 Camaro V-8 coupe weighed 3135#, and a V-8 convertible weighed 3385# (add 249# for a BB).
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« Reply #12 on: July 28, 2006, 02:11:43 PM »

i have power in my 67 and my friend has no power. The thing I "feel" is the extra energy you exert to turn the car!!!!!!!  Cheesy
I had want we called "quick ratio" steering on my '69 AMX. No power but it sure felt different than a normal no power steering system.

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mr396
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« Reply #13 on: July 29, 2006, 11:57:56 AM »

Well, if your Camaro weighed 4000#, it was carrying ballast too. A '69 Camaro V-8 coupe weighed 3135#, and a V-8 convertible weighed 3385# (add 249# for a BB).
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                                                                                                                      The camaro has a lot of heavy options. convertible,BB,a/c,fold down rear seat,delux int,console gauges,p/steering,p/disc brakes,RS,TH400,posi,am/fm,8-track stereo,p/top,f/r bumper guards,tilt wheel.

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lakeholme
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« Reply #14 on: July 31, 2006, 05:57:17 AM »

I guess all these over weight cars are also hard to steer?

I'd still love opinions about steering --manual or power...

(Thanks John and Dave!)
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Phillip
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red69
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« Reply #15 on: July 31, 2006, 09:03:02 AM »

My son has a 67 standard Camaro with power. I have a 69Z with manual. To me the 67 power is too effortless, I prefer the manual on my 69. But I only put about 200 miles a year on my 69. When I was 20 and it was my daily driver the steering effort didn't bother me at all, now that I'm 51 it may, if I drove it more.  My 73Z has what I believe Chevrolet refered to as variable ratio power and to me it has a better feel of the road.        Hope this helps Pat
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aaronz28
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« Reply #16 on: August 03, 2006, 09:39:18 AM »

i've had 3 Zs (2 were manual and 1 was power steerint)

the 1st z seemed to have a pretty effortess manual steering,  much like my 64 Corvettes manual steering..

the Z i hav now came with manual, and I coudln't take it anymore... either it wasn't rebuilt properly, or those E70x15s really grab the road..

i put power steering on the car just as John Z did (in fact our cars are almost sister companions as the only difference is I have an endura front bumper and delux seat belts with Standard interior, and his has delux interior with standard seatbelts. Aside from a few other differnces, I too couldn't take the manual steering in this car and coverted it over with all factory parts as well....

can you feel the road better?  I don't see how, the power steering is much more responsive to me and turns on a dime.

Aaronl
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JKZ27
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« Reply #17 on: August 07, 2006, 10:51:46 PM »

I have manual steering in both my 68 and 69 Camaros. I guess I can feel the road better but it might just be me anticipating (paying more attention to) upcoming turns because of the effort. Its no wonder the steering wheels crack. The 68's manual drum brakes don't bother me much. I would rather have power steering in both but the 69 is sort of unique without it, having a/c... and a cracked steering wheel. Smiley

John.
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lakeholme
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« Reply #18 on: August 11, 2006, 08:29:32 AM »

So, this really is a subjective issue...

I've commented before on this site about driving a 69 Camaro a few years ago that had been modified and a new Vette steering system, etc. now graced the front end.  I thought I would like it... But I HATED it.  It was way too jerky!

I've got my own "theory" about the steering feel of all the so-called coke bottle style bodies of the 60s --manual or power steering.  I think the feel has a "floating" sensation to it.  It seems more pronounced in the Mustang than in the Camaro.

Would still love to hear from some more of you...

BTW, JKZ27, I love your comment about the cracked steering wheel.  My theory about cracked steering wheels is most of them came from holding on tight when you pushed the gas peddle down to the floor.  Grin
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Phillip
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"Charlotte AutoFair -- presented by the Hornets Nest Region, AACA -- is the largest and greatest Collector Vehicle Event in the Southeast."
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