32 BMW 1983 R100RS Install Steering Damper Mechanism

Installation of the steering damper mechanism is straight forward. One thing that you can get wrong is aligning the number on the damper rod with the correct position of the damper rack it adjusts. I show how to get that orientation correct.

Parts

I replaced the damper itself with a new one (part# 31 42 1 232 361) and also the white plastic bushing (part# 31 42 1 232 556) that fits on the damper rod to keep the damper knob from rattling.

Video

Here is a short video showing the installation and how adjusting the steering damper works.

VIDEO: 1983 BMW R100RS Install Steering Damper Mechanism

Assemble Damper Mechanism

The picture below shows the parts used in the steering damper mechanism.

Steering Damper Mechanism Parts

Steering Damper Mechanism Parts

The damper has cups on the ends that connect to a ball pin on the bottom of the damper rack and to another ball pin mounted on the frame. The cups are secured on the balls with a locking clip.

Damper Rack With Ball Pin Inside Cover

Damper Rack With Ball Pin Inside Cover

Ball Pin The Damper Connects To On The Frame

Ball Pin The Damper Connects To On The Frame

Damper Cup Retaining Clip

Damper Cup Locking Clip

The damper rack has teeth that engage teeth on the end  of the damper rod. When the rod turns, it moves the rack back and forth. There are three notches in the rack that spring loaded pins engage to hold the damper rack in a fixed position.

Damper Rack Mechanism-Note Retaining Pins The Fit In Slots Of Rack

Damper Rack Mechanism-Note Retaining Pins The Fit In Slots Of Rack

How Damper Rack and Damper Rod Connect

How Damper Rack and Damper Rod Connect

The damper adjusting knob changes the offset between the damper and the steering axis; more offset provides more damping. It has three positions noted on the top of the damper knob indicating the amount of steering damping; “0”, “1”, “2”. The knob is secured to the end of the damper rod with a Phillips screw. There is a notch inside the damper adjusting knob that mates with the flat on the end of the damper rod.

Damper Adjusting Knob In "2" Position

Damper Adjusting Knob In “2” Position

Install Damper Mechanism

I grease the teeth of the damper rack and the bottom of the damper rod with wheel bearing grease. I slide the damper rod up the center of the steering stem and out the hole in the top nut. I put the plastic bushing on the end of the rod. I have the damper rack in the “2” position which is where the ball on the rack is at the edge of the cover and farthest from the center. So I install the damper knob with “2” at the 12:00 position which also puts the flat on the damper rod at the 12:00 position.

Wheel Bearing Grease On Damper Rack And Damper Rod

Wheel Bearing Grease On Damper Rack And Damper Rod

Steering Stem Cap Nut Has A Hole For The Damper Rod

Steering Stem Cap Nut Has A Hole For The Damper Rod

Hole In Steering Stem Where Damping Rod Fits

Hole In Steering Stem Where Damping Rod Fits

Damper Rod Inserted Into Hole In Steering Stem

Damper Rod Inserted Into Hole In Steering Stem

Damper Rod Bushing

Damper Rod Bushing

Damper Rod Bushing Installed

Damper Rod Bushing Installed

Damper Adjusting Knob In "2" Position

Damper Adjusting Knob In “2” Position

I slide the cover plate with the damper rack over the bottom end of the damper rod so the teeth on the rod engage the teeth in the plate. I secure the cover and damper rack using the two Allen bolts with some blue Loctite on the threads since there are no wave washers and these bolts are on the bottom and I don’t want them to back out and fall off.

Blue Loctite On Screws Securing Damper Rack Cover

Blue Loctite On Screws Securing Damper Rack Cover

Cover And Damper Rack Installed On Bottom Of Steering Stem With Damper Rack In "2" Position

Cover And Damper Rack Installed On Bottom Of Steering Stem With Damper Rack In “2” Position

I put a little grease in the cups of the damper for lubrication. I attach the damper to the ball pin in the bracket on the frame rail the oil cooler is mounted on and the ball pin on the bottom of the damper rack using the locking clips.

Damper Cup Retaining Clip

Damper Cup Locking Clip

Damper Cup Locking Clip Detail

Damper Cup Locking Clip Detail

Damper Cup Locking Clip Detail

Damper Cup Locking Clip Detail

Damper Upper Cup Locking Clip Installed

Damper Upper Cup Locking Clip Installed

Damper Lower Cup Locking Clip Installed

Damper Lower Cup Locking Clip Installed

Test Operation

The damper is in the “2” position after I install the mechanism. I rotate the damper knob to the “1” and “0” positions to be sure the rack moves freely inside the cover.

Damper Adjusting Knob In "2" Position: Highest Damping

Damper Adjusting Knob In “2” Position: Highest Damping

Damper In "2" Position: Highest Damping

Damper In “2” Position: Highest Damping

Damper Adjusting Knob in "1" Position: Intermediate Damping

Damper Adjusting Knob in “1” Position: Intermediate Damping

Damper in "1" Position: Intermediate Damping

Damper in “1” Position: Intermediate Damping

Damper Adjusting Knob In "0" Position: No Damping

Damper Adjusting Knob In “0” Position: No Damping

Damper In "0" Position: No Damping

Damper In “0” Position: No Damping

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