Give This Volvo A Brake
RAY: What's he going to remove that's right in the middle of the car that's going to solve the problem?
TOM: Oh yeah.
RAY: The brake parts in the middle of the car.
TOM: When you said this, I said, "The hanger bearing." You said, "No." I said, "The transmission mount." You said, "No."
RAY: You were close. You were close.
TOM: Drive shaft!
RAY: Yes, Dick had a seized universal joint.
TOM: No kidding?
RAY: So, when you step on the brake... What happens is this, when you step on the brake at low speed at all, when you step on the brake gently...
TOM: I've got it, of course.
RAY: The angle of the car doesn't change much with respect to the ground, but when you step on the brakes hard, the car does something called nosing or diving, the front bumper dives to the ground.
TOM: Half gainer?
RAY: Half gainer, and the drive shaft has universal joints on it which must flex, but if one of those universal joints is seized when you're asking it to flex to accommodate this new angle of operation, it begins to shake like crazy.
RAY: It was only doing it on hard braking. Ralph figured out that it was because the thing was nosing and causing that seized joint to have to try to bend, and it couldn't, that was causing the vibration. Pretty nifty, eh?
TOM: So, he took out the drive shaft and sure enough, you found that to be true.
RAY: No, it was all right actually. We sold him new U joints and rear struts. No, that was it and it solved the problem. Who's our winner, Tommy, of our 10th Anniversary Car Talk T-shirt this week?
TOM: I'm looking. I'm looking. I'm looking for his name. I've got pieces of paper. Here it is. The winner is Dan Visentin.
[ Car Talk Puzzler ]