RE: rack and pinion assembly leaking
Who told you a $1000? The Dealer? Call them and tell them to go to hell. Go to Sears and buy a set a wrenches for less then $100, then go buy either the steering box, or the pump. (Which ever is leaking) for at most $400. Take the $500 you saved, and send it my way if your that interested in spending $1000. [8D]
You can buy a NEW Power Steering Pump, Gear Box, and a set of wrenches for under $1000, and the odds that both the box and pump are leaking, is slim to none. They're screwing you, thats what they do.
Which is leaking first off, the bump of the box? My bet is the box. If its coming from the pitman arm, replace the seal, if its coming from the top of the box or something, try some Lucas PS Stop Leak. My advice is to start wrenching and see what you learn. Every time you pay somebody else to do it, your generally paying at least 4 TIMES what you would if you did it by yourself. Think how fast that adds up, and think how much money you've already gave away [&:]