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Wheel shaft fix, to get rid of slack

As I've mentioned earlier, everything started with a broken shifter paddle, so I had to take the wheel apart. As the wheel was in small pieces already, I was thinking about, what if I try to fix the loose wheel shaft problem too?

The MOMO Racing has a triple clamping system to firmly attach to the table. In order to get inside the wheel first the third clamping (1) must be removed. Only four screws hold it in place, so it shouldn't be a problem taking off.

After removing those four screws, it's advisable to only remove six from the eight screws (2) which hold the cover and place back the wheel to the table with the normal clamping. The two screws left in place are accessible even if the wheel is fixed to the table as they're under third clamp originally. This way everything will be in it's original place nothing will move out when removing the cover, which eases re-assembly.

After removing cover and watching the steering shaft closely you can see how Logitech designed the shaft.

They used plastic bushings instead of steel ball-bearing (MOMO Force). In fact the whole shaft is from rigid plastic, but the problem is with how steering wheel is attached to the housing of the wheel. There are basically two points where a total number of four screws (3) hold the steering in place. The first is at the end of the shaft (4), while the second one is the bushing itself (5).

After removing those four screws and disconnecting the interface plug the shaft can be carefully taken off. Two other screws hold the large white cogwheel (6) in place and behind it there are four more screws, which keep the bushing together.

At this point the whole bushing can be removed from the steering column only the wiring prevents it from falling apart.

The bearing has a very interesting design: a plastic shaft with longitudinal carves (7) rotates in a plastic tube (8). The gap between the two parts is almost 2mm (1.5mm to be precise), so it's no wonder that is moves sideways. ;)

Thank god these carves came handy, when I was thinking of a solution. I've placed seven special heavy duty stiff rubber pieces (came with my Cateye bicycle tachometer) into these carves. In each carve 2 pieces, 4th carve is too narrow so I placed only one there. The rubber pieces have a special profile, they're not rectengular blocks, so they don't increase turning resistance that much.

Finally I've placed an additional rubber O-ring (1.5cm diameter, 2mm thickness) between the plastic tube and shaft. After this, it's a bit harder to turn the wheel, but very stiff now.

As steering wheel slack is not only determined by the loose plastic bushing, but by the retainer (9) at the end of the wheel shaft too, I had to fix that also. I've applied non-conductive tape to the end of the shaft to reduce slack there after removing grease to allow tape to stick to the plastic. Don't place there too much tape as the wheel won't be able to turn easily, due to too much friction.

VERY IMPORTANT! Make sure that you use grease which won't harm the plastic! Don't tighten all screws completely, otherwise you may experience difficulties.

Step by step guide:
take wheel apart
take out steering wheel
remove large white cogwheel
remove grease from retainer
apply one layer of tape strip
re-apply grease, use proper grease,
not to harm plastic
dis-assemble bushing
put rubber parts in carves
insert rubber O-ring
re-apply grease to lubricate new parts,
use proper grease, not to harm plastic
put bushing together
put back cogwheel
put back steering wheel

if you want to fix knocking sound when turning
the wheel, it's time to do that!
Click here to see how: Knocking sound fix

put back screws, assemble everything together

Click on pictures for more detail

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