w126 steering problem

well... last time i've been posting here was when i was planning to check one '82 500sec, i was planning on buying... yesterday i checked the car, i'm really considering buying it. sure i would
have to spend about 2000euros to get it in good shape, it's rusty under the...that metal part which is above wheels...anyway, but i'm gonna restore it myself, slowly... point - my problem is this: yesterday when i took it for a test run...the engine runs perfectly, smooth, strong, it runs on gasoline and liquid gas - like the one you use one stoves. european benz owners should know, and has enough power on both. so, the problem occured when i was checking the steering. the steering wheel feels like it has about an inch or two of free spin. what could be the problem? the owner told me it might be because of the steering oil, that it needs to be filled up, but i think the problem is on the steering wheel board - i translated our name for that, i don't know the name in english. so, -the place where the steering wheel pin meets the ankle where steering is transfered to steer the wheels.
i hope some of you understood what i'm asking, and can help.
thanks, filip
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No way to tell from here... Coujd be lots of things from tires to alignment, to the rack or pinion, or tie rods etc...
Find a car without rust in it, it's worth waiting for one. Marty
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said:

'82
would
restore
run...the
gas -

has
free
of
is
know
the
the problem is...i'm from croatia...i think there are at most TWO of this cars here. that one, and one is in the eastern part of country - who knows in what shape. i would take the car to get restored - for the rust issue.
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Rust on the fender shouldn't be a big deal. If it can't be repaired you can buy them in the UK for next to nothing and paint it to match. The steering could be a lot of things, but I don't know what.
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the steering box is adjustable to compensate for this normal ware and tare, if its no longer adjustable then it needs to be rebuilt $$$ - if it is actually the steering box, which it most likley is.
the liquid gas you talk of is "liquified petrolium gas" it is very popular in australia too, the good thing is, it runs completly independant of the normal fuel system, so if/when your $1000 fuel distributor dies, you can continue driving the car without issue on LPG till you get it fixed.
rust is a problem, as soon as you start fixing it, you will find more, and more, never assume its isolated to just the place where its visable.
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With 1" to 2" of play... it is possibly the impact coupler inside the car by the steering wheel is broken... Should be fairly easy to tell if it is it by looking at it once the bottom panel is removed.
Other thing it could be is bad bushings or ball joints in the steering components... like the tie rod, idler arm bushing... etc. Easy way to tell on this is jack up one side and try to rock the wheel so that you can tell where is loose.
Either way, you need another person to help you diagnose the problem. Be sure to use safety jack stands whenever you are underneath the car... DO NOT RELY ON the factory jack to hold up the car... that is extremely dangerous... and also engage your parking brake too.
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First locate the problem. The steeringbox always has some play if the engine is not running. If the play is to much it can be adjusted. There is a bold on the top with an big nut. It may be difficult to reach. If you turn this bold COUNTER clockwise it will tighten the steering. Do this very carefully and check if the steering does not stick if you turn the steering wheel from side to side. But first check al the linkage, balljoints etc.
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