Even though I’ve just had a replacement steering gearbox fitted, the handling still isn’t right. It is definitely an improvement, in that the steering feels a lot smoother, whereas the old one used to have the occasional dead spot where power assistance used to drop off. My theory now is that the problem is at the rear of the car. Maybe the shocks? They are LAD shocks though, so replacing them is not going to be cheap. It might be that the bushes on the pivot points of the trailing arms have worn, allowing the wheels to change their angle slightly. More investigation is needed…

For a long time now I’ve noticed that the steering is a bit twitchy, and occasionally the car will get diverted from its course for no apparent reason. I’ve replaced the entire front end except for the steering gearbox. Well, today I entrusted it to a local BMW specialists to have the steering gearbox replaced. I haven’t yet taken it on a long enough drive to see if it has sorted the problem. I have retained the old gearbox in case I decide to get it overhauled for sale on eBay. I have one comment: it’s bloody heavy!

Sorry I haven’t posted much up lately. I haven’t done anything to the car because I have no off-street parking, and it’s been too dark at night to do anything when I get home from work. Hopefully this will change as the evenings get longer. I have a few miscellaneous DIY jobs lined up, including sorting my headlight washers (I have a new spray nozzle to fit, and I think there is a leak from the tank) and re-cabling my speakers.

My MOT certificate was due to run out tomorrow so I got my car tested today. It failed because the offside headlamp was aimed too high, which was easily fixed and it passed on a re-test. The emissions test went well, for a 12 year old car with more than 130,000 miles on the clock. The results are reproduced below: </tr> </tr> </table>
Description Limits Actual Value
CO: 0.00 % vol Pass
HC: 9 ppm vol Pass

The site is now (as you can plainly see) back online. I was running out of disk space so I took the opportunity to upgrade my operating system at the same time as fitting a new hard drive. I now have a 120GB hard drive with a fresh installation of Gentoo Linux occupying a small fraction of the space available.