Subframe/steering rack question

p.e.fletcher

Well-known member
Joined
May 21, 2019
Location
Tallahassee, FL
TDI
2013 Passat TDI SE/2011 Golf TDI
I’d like to try installing a VibraTechnics subframe bushing without dropping subframe if possible. If not, that’s okay and I will just wait until more of a reason to drop it. For now…

I can get the sway bar out of the way no problem.

I can get the old bushings out no problem.

The steering rack is just barely blocking the back side. Most of these bolts specify one time use, so before I start taking anything apart, can anyone tell me if I unbolted the steering rack from subframe (3 bolts), is there any play where I could push it back or up about an inch or is that unlikely? What about the unbolting the u-joint under the dash and/or anything else I’m missing? Tie rods didn’t seem important should be able to take the movement. If it’s a dumb idea it wouldn’t be my first and that’s fine too just figured I’d throw it out there. TIA.

2011 Golf CJAA



 

oilhammer

Certified Volkswagen Nut & Vendor
Joined
Dec 11, 2001
Location
outside St Louis, MO
TDI
There are just too many to list....
Just drop the subframe out. You can reuse those bolts, just be contentious when going back together when you tighten them back down. The pinion shaft inside the car also comes off easily, and only goes on one way (just make sure you do not rotate the steering wheel while it is off).
 

p.e.fletcher

Well-known member
Joined
May 21, 2019
Location
Tallahassee, FL
TDI
2013 Passat TDI SE/2011 Golf TDI
Just drop the subframe out. You can reuse those bolts, just be contentious when going back together when you tighten them back down. The pinion shaft inside the car also comes off easily, and only goes on one way (just make sure you do not rotate the steering wheel while it is off).
Not what I was hoping to hear, but I definitely appreciate your input. Thanks a bunch 🙏
 

smelly621

Veteran Member
Joined
Nov 13, 2008
Location
Sonoma County, CA
TDI
2001 Golf, 2003 Tacoma
It was enough fun to get the upper and lower bushings pushed in with the subframe off the car - can't imagine doing it on the car without a specialized tool/alignment jig unless the new bushing isn't a press fit.

The rack, control arms, and sway bar can all just stay put thou I think and you can just pop the subframe center portion off
 

p.e.fletcher

Well-known member
Joined
May 21, 2019
Location
Tallahassee, FL
TDI
2013 Passat TDI SE/2011 Golf TDI
It was enough fun to get the upper and lower bushings pushed in with the subframe off the car - can't imagine doing it on the car without a specialized tool/alignment jig unless the new bushing isn't a press fit.

The rack, control arms, and sway bar can all just stay put thou I think and you can just pop the subframe center portion off
Oh for sure, I’ve pressed out the old ones and pressed in new OEM ones on a bench for my NMS Passat and I agree that would not be pleasant to try on the car 😝

Did find this, but too expensive for a one off and wouldn’t work for the VibraTechnic bushing anyways:



For this VibraTechnic bushing it actually has a lip at the top and bottom so you have to insert top half from the top and bottom from the bottom. It’s not as tight of a friction fit and doesn’t need a press - you can just tap it in with mallet then it secures the top to the bottom with bolts. It’s kind of noticeable if you look back at the picture in top post. That’s why I was hoping I could just gain a tiny bit of room then would be good to go without dropping whole subframe.
 

oilhammer

Certified Volkswagen Nut & Vendor
Joined
Dec 11, 2001
Location
outside St Louis, MO
TDI
There are just too many to list....
Every time I've seen someone put something other than stock in a diesel regarding the roll mount, they regret it. It just vibrates too much. But the CR engines are not nearly as rough as the older engines, so maybe they're more tolerant.
 

lemoncurd

Veteran Member
Joined
May 24, 2019
Location
Eastern CT
TDI
2013 CJAA GTB2266
subscribing to this thread, im curious how your car will feel with that vibratechnic bushing installed.

i had the solid subber 034 mount in my car for about 1,000 miles before i swapped it back out for OEM.
 

p.e.fletcher

Well-known member
Joined
May 21, 2019
Location
Tallahassee, FL
TDI
2013 Passat TDI SE/2011 Golf TDI
Every time I've seen someone put something other than stock in a diesel regarding the roll mount, they regret it. It just vibrates too much. But the CR engines are not nearly as rough as the older engines, so maybe they're more tolerant.
That’s fair. I wouldn’t do it in a stock or even lightly tuned car for that reason - will definitely add some NVH. I’m building this Golf up to hoping somewhere close to 300hp end goal. I have my idle set high at 950rpm in the tune to start out which should help. Can always bump it up more if needed as well.
subscribing to this thread, im curious how your car will feel with that vibratechnic bushing installed.

i had the solid subber 034 mount in my car for about 1,000 miles before i swapped it back out for OEM.
I’ll definitely reply with my thoughts after it’s installed and ran for a bit. Probably be a little while because I’m not keen on dropping the subframe again right now - hence the original question. I’m planning on a Peloquin and some 02Q reinforcement later this year so might just put it off until then. I’m actually doing all four of the VibraTechnics offerings - engine, trans, subframe, dogbone. The engine and trans mounts are already in and it currently has a low durometer insert but I wanted to try this instead. I talked to another guy on here that has the VT subframe bushing in an NMS Passat and likes it. It’s supposed to isolate vibration better than the inserts. From their site:

“The use of a natural rubber insulator gives vastly superior comfort and isolation from engine vibration over inferior aftermarket urethane mounts.”

 

oilhammer

Certified Volkswagen Nut & Vendor
Joined
Dec 11, 2001
Location
outside St Louis, MO
TDI
There are just too many to list....
I tried a different mount in an ALH car once (different platform I know, but the principle is the same), and it took only a couple trips around the block for me to switch it back out.
 

MrCypherr

Veteran Member
Joined
Sep 3, 2012
Location
Ontario
TDI
Mk6 Wagon
Can confirm that in a stock CR, upgraded mounts vibrated alot. Even just the dogbone mount when idling or putting in reverse. If its a daily car or driven alot, I would not recommend. Its too much and its annoying,
 

Dalon

Veteran Member
Joined
Apr 6, 2015
Location
Ohio
TDI
2006 MKV Jetta TDI 1.9L - 237k 2013 Passat TDI - 31k
Every time I've seen someone put something other than stock in a diesel regarding the roll mount, they regret it. It just vibrates too much. But the CR engines are not nearly as rough as the older engines, so maybe they're more tolerant.
Usually I'd agree but the VT is a nice piece of engineering and the only piece I recommend in the subframe. Uses higher durometer rubber instead of polyurethane. Having both an insert and a VT, there is no comparison. NVH is slightly bumped up but even the wife didn't realize I had added 20hp to the car 👍

EDIT: I would like to add, most of the NVH will come from whatever "solution" is used in the subframe bushing location. My polyurethane insert in the subframe added horrendous NVH, much more than my BFI stage 1 mounts did, once I swapped to the VT bushing, all was well.
 

p.e.fletcher

Well-known member
Joined
May 21, 2019
Location
Tallahassee, FL
TDI
2013 Passat TDI SE/2011 Golf TDI
Hey @Dalon and thanks @oilhammer and @MrCypherr

Yeah, I absolutely agree with all of you and I wasn’t advocating for this in a stock CR. Was really just wondering if I could get a little play in steering rack without dropping the subframe for install because it’s so dang close.

I have Stage 1 BFI mounts and an subframe insert in my NMS Passat and it’s fine for me the last 20k+ miles almost unnoticeable (but that car does have a smoother idle due to balance shaft so YMMV). It’s also a DSG car.

I have had stock mounts with a subframe insert in this MK6 Golf for the last 10k miles and yes there is a fair bit of NVH, especially in reverse, but it’s tolerable for me so I didn’t yank it. I’m sure others will feel differently and that’s cool too. I attributed some of it to loose engine/trans mounts and I just did the timing along with cp3 so figured it was good enough time to swap the mounts for something stiffer as I build the car up. I read a bit about a swedish company someone on here posted about then looked at the VibraTechnics stuff. I started to read about their subframe bushing and then talked with @Dalon about it for a bit and decided I’d like to try it instead of the insert along with their other mounts that are really high quality nice pieces IMO.
 

p.e.fletcher

Well-known member
Joined
May 21, 2019
Location
Tallahassee, FL
TDI
2013 Passat TDI SE/2011 Golf TDI
Sweet success! I just went for it and in the end I did not have to drop or even loosen the subframe. Took some persistence and few four letter words along the way 😉

Cut the old bushings out with a hacksaw blade. Unbolted the sway bar and end links and tied it up out of the way as much as possible. Paint marked the steering rack bolts so I get them back in the same spot. Unbolted the heat shield and steering rack and pried it up just enough to slip the top mount in level and started tapping it in (did not have to unbolt the u-joint under dash either).

Took a while to get it down flush and wasn’t fun but neither is dropping the whole subframe, buying new bolts, and having to get an alignment 👍


 
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