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Old 07-29-2008, 07:37 PM
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Loose steering wheel on GM tilt column, how to fix ??

I've got a GM steering column, tilt wheel , out of a 73 or so Oldsmobile in my 32 Pontiac. The steering wheel end has been loose for many years, the wheel can be moved around by hand, and the column stays fixed.

Can these be repaired easily ? seems like worn bushings, or something loose.

This is inside the column, and has nothing to do with suspension system.

Anybody repair one of these?

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Old 07-29-2008, 07:51 PM
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someone posted this link quite recently,
and I bookmarked it because I have a tilt column to install on my 66 as well.
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Old 07-29-2008, 11:37 PM
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Another link:

http://elcaminocentral.com/article95.html

As well check out Jim Shea’s Steering Papers:

http://jimshea.corvettefaq.com/?page_id=5

Scroll down untill you find your column.
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Old 07-30-2008, 07:27 PM
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WOW! Thanks for the links. Looks like loose bolts that need to be removed and re-installed with threadlocker. ...Sounds simple (yea right)

I believe I will wait for the snow to fly before attempting this. But I'm always up for a challenge.

Has anyone actually done one of these? repair the "wobbling steering column"?
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Old 07-30-2008, 08:35 PM
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I have done a ton of them. you need quite a few special tools. Like a lock plate remover, a pair of high quality picks, a tilt pin puller ( most of the time they can be removed with a small bolt) FYI do one side at a time that tilt spring is a mother. You should think about having a pro do it. you dont want to f up your steering.
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Old 07-30-2008, 09:29 PM
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If you take your time .
When you get the steering wheel off , then down to where you can see the bolts . {not so easy}
Sometimes you can sneak the reversed torx in there & get 3 of the 4 with out getting into all the weird stuff.


Thats as far as I have been into them if you wait to long it Will get really sloppy.

Do not grease the turn single kick back things that touches the clock spring it Will not shut of the turn single after a turn.@ least mine didn't.




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Old 08-02-2008, 06:53 PM
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I had to fix one of those blasted things on an '85 Caprice. The only special tool I used was vocabulary. Be prepared to spend half a day on it.

Some Giggling Monkey "engineer" probably gets a bonus payment every time some poor schmuck is caught in that trap. I bought a junkyard Olds tilt column as a replacement before finding out where the problem was with the original.
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Old 08-05-2008, 11:38 AM
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I have done both the older and newer style (71 & 87 in my case).

If it is getting wobbly it is not something you want to wait another few months on. I let my 87 go way too long and it went from bad to undriveable in a hurry. The steering would lock up if I did not hold up the wheel at the exact right angle (which isn't easy to do while steering).

The cost of the special tools is far less then the cost of having it done and if you have the time and some mechanical ability go for it yourself.

Here is one of my bookmarks on the subject
http://buickperformance.com/tiltstee...lumnwobble.htm
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Old 08-05-2008, 04:48 PM
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They're not that bad, if you are gunshy take pictures along the way. I remember way back when I started working on cars a surburban came in with the tilt bowl bolts loose, I got the ticket and was a little intimidated but I got through it in about 2 hours. (we charged 3.5 to do them)

Realy they are not that bad and the tools are pretty cheap if you don't need Snap On.
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Old 08-05-2008, 06:53 PM
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Thanks for all the replies and GREAT links for information.

I should be able to handle it, but will find appropriate tools first.

QUESTION: Do you need to remove the column from the car? Would that make it any easier? or, can you do it OK with the column in place?
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Old 08-05-2008, 07:02 PM
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It is no problem doing it in place. Very comfortable in fact because you are just sitting in the drivers seat. The only issue I had was using a slide hammer to remove the pivot pins and almost breaking the window when it finally came out A slide hammer isn't the best tool to remove the pins but I already had it so why not...it worked but was quite a workout.
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Old 08-05-2008, 09:43 PM
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Snap on makes a specialty socket just for that job.
They work great.

Snap on Stock NO:106STLEY
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Old 08-06-2008, 02:13 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NASCAR314
Thanks for all the replies and GREAT links for information.

I should be able to handle it, but will find appropriate tools first.

QUESTION: Do you need to remove the column from the car? Would that make it any easier? or, can you do it OK with the column in place?
nascar, it is not that bad of a job ( if you are fimiliar with the colunm, and have done them before) it's just a little harder if this is your first one, depending on your mechanical abilities.
MANY little parts are in there. i've done lots of them (100s) and i did all of them myself (as opposed letting my other mechs do them), the pivot pins are always the problem. do not pull out the column, as triaged said, you can do the job sitting in the drivers seat.
i put all the tools on the pass seat, steering wheel puller, lock plate puller, various little wrenches and 1/4 drive sockets, small (very small) screwdrivers to pry out the retainer ring above the lock plate.

i just sit in the drivers seat and disassemble the column from the top down (by the way most are tilt/telescopic columns--more parts), lay the tools and parts on the passengers seat in order, and reassemble the same way after repacing the pivot pins. you can buy that snap on tool, but i just use an appropriate sized 1/4 socket and the correct machine screw to pull the old, worn/broken out pins out and tap the the new pins in with a small hammer.

be advised, study a blown up pic and an old motors manual on doing this repair, you have to punch a slot or sometimes just a casting depression to reaease the key switch tumbler from the column, you can not go any further without doing that. there are little gears on the internally outboard side of the column attached to a rod that moves the ignition switch at the bottom of the top side of the steering column. you also have to deal with the turn signal switch, horn, and sometimes the hi/low beam wiring for the headlights. before i retired, i did this job in like 3-3 !/2 hours, flat rate was 6-8 hours depending on the car. my C2 is much simpler, it just has a key switch on the dash...
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Old 08-06-2008, 08:20 AM
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I fixed mine

I fixed the tilt wheel in my '93 C-1500.

Took a bit of time. The article mentioned earlier,

http://elcaminocentral.com/article95.html

was what I used as a guide.

Three tips:

1. You will need the steering wheel ring compression tool. No getting around it. I bought one at Auto Zone for under $10.00. You'll also need a small puller for the wheel, but just about any generic puller and a couple of bolts will do the trick. As far as the pin puller, some small bolts, flat washers, and a socket will do the trick.

2. You must get everything out so you can get at all four of the Torx screws remove and re-tighten them all with Loctite. Leave one loose and if it comes out it will jamb your steering. Do not leave one loose. This is a job worth doing right. Remember, it's your steering!

3. Print out the article above. When you have the article on your computer screen, double click the photos to open them in Paint (or whatever you default program for photos is), enlarge them to an easily visible size, and print them on a high quality printer so you have the article and large photos to look at when you are working on this project.

You can do this. I did.

Good luck.

2.
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Old 08-06-2008, 08:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Triaged
The only issue I had was using a slide hammer to remove the pivot pins and almost breaking the window when it finally came out A slide hammer isn't the best tool to remove the pins but I already had it so why not...it worked but was quite a workout.
Is this the correct tool for removing the Pivot Pins ???

Snap-On pivot pin puller

Also: Can you re-use the pivot pins, or, must you replace them with new when re-assembling ???

-Tom
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