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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I tried searching the forum but didn't really find anything. I picked up our Ace (my son's Christmas present) yesterday. When I got it home, I noticed that the steering wheel was not centered when the front wheels were straight. How do I adjust this? I appreciate any guidance. Thanks.
 

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You'll have to pull the steering wheel and reposition it on the splines it goes on.
If you do that, you will likely end up in a scenario where you can't turn the wheel as far one direction as you can the other.
What is most likely happening is that the toe adjustment is wrong, so the front wheels are not pulling in the same direction evenly.
This results in the steering wheel not being straight because it compensates for the uneven pull by turning slightly in one direction.
This has been reported by many new ACE owners. Seems they didn't pay much attention to that at the factory, or the dealers were supposed to do it during prep.

This thread will help you out if you want to do it yourself - or you can take it to the dealer and have them fix it under warranty.
http://www.aceforums.net/forum/13-ace-how-s-guides/509-how-measure-set-toe-out-adjustment.html
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks guys. Why would taking the steering wheel off and putting it back on the splines have an effect on how far the wheels will turn from side to side? It seems like nothing mechanical would change there.

The vehicle only has .7 miles on it, so it hasn't been driven at all really.
 

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The steering wheel can only turn x number of turns left and right before it hits the end of its travel.
At the factory, the steering wheel is installed so that it is straight when the shaft is centered on the steering rack.
If you pull off the wheel, rotate it, and put it back down in a different position on the shaft, you've just shortened the travel on one side and lengthened it on the other.

It won't shorten it much, and depending on what kind of trails you ride, you might not even notice - but it's not the right solution.
It does not solve the problem of one or both front tires being misaligned, so handling is not as good.

The ACE will not steer as well, will wear one or both of the front tires out faster, and may feel sluggish.
Multiple people reported that it felt like a completely different machine after they fixed the incorrect-from-factory toe adjustment.

But don't take my word for it, go talk to your dealer or any wheel alignment shop about it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks Scoundrel. I'm not doubting you about the alignment as I've read many good posts on this forum about that. I still can't wrap my head around the steering wheel thought. I've done this on old Jeeps that I've rebuilt and it did not affect how far the wheels turn from side to side. The mechanical steering "parts" don't move at all, just the way the steering wheel sits on the shaft/splines. Maybe its totally different than the old Jeeps. Thanks again.
 

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Perhaps I'm not explaining it very well. Try this on for size:

Forget about what happens when the vehicle is in motion for a moment.
Turn the steering wheel as far as it will go to the left.
Then turn it all the way to the right, counting the turns.
Then cut that number in half and turn it left again exactly half of the total number of turns.
At that point, your steering wheel _should_ be straight/level, and centered on the rack.

If it is not, then your wheel is not installed on the splines correctly. Feel free to remove it and replace it straight.
If the steering wheel IS straight and level after you have centered the wheel on the rack, then it is not the wheel or the rack that is misaligned - it is the tie rod ends.
 

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Yes, like Scoundrel said the steering rack is designed to be run in the center of the travel when moving straight ahead. It was even more critical on your old Jeep with a worm and ball steering gear. On those the worm was cut with more precision, closer tolerances, in the center for better straight line control.

On the ACE you also have the cvt's which are limited in the range of angle of motion. If the steering rack is too far off of center you can put them in a bind when you turn to one side because the wheels will turn sharper to one side than the other.

It only takes a few seconds to check the rack centering. If it is good then just set the toe like you normally would. More than likely the rack will be pretty close. Mine appears to be less than a tooth off so it was good.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Scoundrel, I will definitely try that. Thank you and thanks rockman.
 
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