Handy Howie
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While driving my 1999 Land Rover Discovery 2 TD5 recently, the steering felt different to usual.  Rather than a smooth motion when turning the steering wheel I was experiencing a feeling of tightness when the steering wheel was in certain positions.  On some journeys the tightness would go away, only to return at a later date.  The only thing that I believed could have caused this effect on the steering was a worn universal joint on the steering column.  I decided to remove the intermediate shaft to see if I was correct.

The upper universal joint that connects to the steering column spline.

The intermediate shaft centre clamp that locks the length adjustment of the shaft.  The locking bolt has been removed

The bolts that fasten the upper part of the intermediate shaft.  The left bold secures the upper universal joint to the steering column spline.  The right bolt locks the length adjusting clamp.

The bolts must be fully removed to separate the universal joints from the splined shafts. Even when removed, the joins were difficult to separate.  I used a crow bar with a hammer behind pressing against the bulkhead to drive the spines apart.

The upper intermediate shaft removed.  However the universal joint felt free to move, so this one obviously wasn’t causing my problem.

Releasing the clamp from the lower universal joint that connects to the splined shaft on the steering box.

The lower universal joint with clamping bolts removed.  Again I used a crow bar between the universal joint and the steering box.  You can just make out the crow bar in this photo.

The lower universal joint removed.  This is where the fault lies, one of the axis moved freely, while the other axis moved with lots of resistance.

The complete intermediate shaft removed.  Since I didn’t have a new shaft to replace this one, I tried freeing the lower joint with some oil while moving the joint back and forward.  I also tapped the joint with a hammer, this did free the joint enough to put the shaft back on the car until I could buy another.

The new intermediate shaft fitted to the car.  The steering is smooth to turn again