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Cayman Power Steering Going Out on Track

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Old 12-02-2016, 08:44 PM   #1
bldn10
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Default Cayman Power Steering Going Out on Track

987.1 w/ 3.8 L X-51 driven hard on R-compound tires for 4 years. L&N in-line PSF cooler. Last event, halfway through first lap of 2nd session the power assist went away. Checked the PSF and it was at the cold mark so I topped it off. Steering felt normal in paddock so I went back out. Same result. Checked PSF and it was full. Parked it. There was never the characteristic whine but there was a grumbling kind of noise when I turned the wheel lock to lock. But then I drove home about 250 miles and have driven another 250 since then w/ normal steering effort.

This certainly sounds heat related. Does PSF act like brake fluid? I.e. it boils and stops working when really hot? Why is this just now happening after 4 years?
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Old 12-08-2016, 07:06 PM   #2
Bill Lehman
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You probably have a leak caused by hard driving and letting the fluid level drop. The LN solution is a band-aid. Much better coolers available which you should buy.
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Old 12-08-2016, 07:47 PM   #3
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Of that much I'm sure you are correct, Bill, but what about: "Steering felt normal in paddock so I went back out. Same result. Checked PSF and it was
full." I.e., it did it w/ a full reservoir.

Some background. At St.Louis last year I cranked up to go out and heard the characteristic PS howl. Checked the fluid and it was empty or close to it. But in the previous session I never lost power assist. I filled it up and started it up and realized fluid was leaking onto the header. Not good! I feared the Cayman curse but it turned out that I had a pinhole leak in the return line. Car was 3+ days at the St.Louis dealer and cost me $2000+. They said the pump was OK.

Bottom line is that I was not totally devoid of fluid and never heard it howl but still lost power assist.

When I got the car I bought an underdrive pulley but could not get it on because of the lack of clearance w/ the 3.8.

I already have a center radiator so where would a real cooler go?
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Old 02-26-2017, 05:03 PM   #4
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Update: I installed a small cooler in front of my center radiator. I discovered in the process that the high pressure line was leaking at the rack, and replaced it. I was at Sebring 2/17 and so far so good. Not very hot though.
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