Heavy Steering

My 4 seater had heavier steering than I liked. I installed a 2 to 1 reducer. Steers lot easier now.](http://s108.photobucket.com/user/user973783/media/HPIM2066_zpsc9dbb11f.jpg.html)[/IMG]




I assume it means you turn the wheel twice as much to obtain the same amount of steering change. Sounds like a reasonable mod; a mechanical “power steering”. My wife can’t wheel our 2001 GEM around very easily for that reason, especially with wider tires and when “at rest”. When it’s moving, it’s barely do-able for her.

Where did you find the parts for your mod/build? Looks like there’s some cutting and welding involved.


Bought the package consisting of the unit ,a coupling and the universal on Ebay. Fabricated the brackets my self. If you do decide to do this email me. I will give you a few hints, so you can avoid a few items that came up during build.

OK. What did you search for in eBay? I looked for inline reducers but nothing looks anything remotely like your item. Also it looks like you final installation dropped the steering column down an inch or so. Am I right?

It came out about an inch lower.

Look for steering quickener.

New 2 1 Aluminum Quick Steer Steering Quickner Kit IMCA | eBay



Thanks! I may have to give this some serious thought. With the 2001 steering geometry, it is a handful to horse around especially at low speeds or stopped. This might be a good answer to that problem.

There are a few other possibilities. We use Carlisle USA Trail in the 5.3X12" size. These tires are narrower than the factory size and will reduce the steering effort. They also have a higher load rating. Another idea is to use internal parts from a 2005 and newer rack and pinion assembly. The steering ratio is easier. The complete racks will not interchange, however the rack gear and pinion gear are made to the same dimensions and should be able to work in the older pre-2005 housing. None of these parts are sold separately by GEM. The difference is noticeable.
Another simple improvement is to remove the white plastic spacers underneath each rack boot. Pre 2005 GEM’s used these spacers, which limit your turning radius. My VW has a better radius than the GEM. The 2005 and newer do not have the spacers. All of ours have now been removed. This makes turning around and parking much easier and indirectly reduces your steering effort.



Par #s and source?

Is anybody interested in a bolt up kit? Wouldn’t be cheap.

I will get in the parts manuals on Monday. It would be much less expensive to find a used 2005 and newer steering rack and then swap over the components.

Not sure about the cost comparison. The steering quickner is around $150 new and IF you have the fabrication and welding skills, it’s probably cheaper than finding a 2005 or older GEM and pulling out the steering parts. If you had to pay a welding/fab shop to make it, that would of course drive up the project costs (probably another $300-$500). Going the other route, you’d end up with a “scrapped” 2005 (w/ no steering) plus the initial cost of buying the newer GEM just to get the parts.