Quote Originally Posted by andyf View Post
It's about centering the rack within the body rather than the body within the car. The rack being the geared bar and the body the cylinder that it's mounted in. So step one is the fit the body to the car via the mounts which fixes its location in the car. Step two is then to center the rack within the body. Then the track rods ends can be fitted and adjusted to get the wheels pointing straight ahead and the steering wheel fitted in the straight ahead position as well
I get what you say, but the position of the rack in the chassis is dictated by its mounting clamps and saddles and the flanges on the rack itself. The position of the rack within the body of the car is non adjustable.

Everything I have ever read about needing longer trackrod threads has been attributable to accident damage and bent front uprights.

it is entirely possible that the hole was intended to be a rack assembly aid when replacing a worn rack gear or the steering box and pinion itself, the obvious time when centering is important.

It is true that there are two different racks, with physically different mounting clamps, and a small difference in overall length. But the mountings have the same pitch for both, and if you can source the correct saddles for each rack they are interchangeable.

Given the general mysticism about steering racks and the fact that some reconditioned racks have been found to have shown a remarkable lack of reliability i am extremely sceptical of any data unless I have seen it myself.

Back in the U.K., in my garage loft, are a couple of steering racks, both Mk1 and 2, if I was there, which currently Covid travel restrictions in place, I cannot be, I would be stripping them down, side by side to find out any significant differences, and to investigate the mysterious hole, which I guess will be virtually invisible to the average mechanic, which may account for the apparently conflicting information.