[Vwdiesel] Vibration under load (hill climbing) and improving cornering

Mark LaPlante laplante at mac.com
Fri Aug 19 03:38:47 EDT 2005


I'm doing better with my hill climbing now that I'm downshifting earlier 
(by 60 mph). Temps are staying a little lower and I'm getting up the 
hill faster. It helps to get a running start, so I get irritated when 
gas guzzling SUVs won't get out of the way. (If I hit the bottom of the 
hill that climbs 600' in a little over a mile going 70 mph, downshift to 
3rd by 60mph, and keep it floored I can make it to the top still going 
around 48mph with about a 2 line increase on the temp gauge. (1.6NA).

Anyhow, when I'm climbing at full throttle if the road curves to the 
right I get a vibration that feels and sounds like the right front wheel 
is wobbling. On left turning or straight climbs or cruise, it's smooth. 
Lane changes at cruising speed on the highway can start a similar effect 
(the end of a change to the left or the beginning of a change to the right).

For convenience I've been having my oil changed by a VW shop and I 
mentioned it to them several months ago and though they took no test 
drive the mechanic said (after yanking on the wheel) that the right 
front outer CV joint was feeling worn. It makes no clicks, so before 
replacing that driveshaft I thought I would ask here and see if anyone 
had any other theories. Could it be a strut or strut bearing problem 

If I have to replace the struts, I'd like to find something that might 
help improve the cornering response. The car seems to want to start to 
"push" (understeer, I guess) too soon for my taste. I have manual 
steering and it seems to lose effectiveness and get "heavy" right when I 
want more turn-in (so I have to slow down or take the turn wider 
instead). I'm probably spoiled by having driven a 92 GTI and 03 GTI. 
Would new struts help or is that going to be more a function of adding a 
sway bar (front or rear?)

I realize these problems aren't really diesel-specific, but I hope the 
familiarity with the vehicles will still result in great responses as usual.



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