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Old 09-23-2007, 08:17 AM
F&J F&J is offline
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Steering box dilema on an old school 32

I am gathering parts for the chassis on a hiboy 32 Ford fenderless car. I just got back from a traditional meet and I looked at every setup there.

Every one that used the side drag link with the dropped I beam axle, had the drag link at a severe angle, not parallel to the frame. How does that work out in driving conditions?? I really did not want to use a modern box like a vega cross steer or Mustang side steer, and I have a chance to pick up a good F-1 box early this week. I can't see a way to get the angle better by using one; is there a way?? This F-1 box has the threaded shaft, not the thru-bolt pitman like on 53-56.

Just wondering, at what point, should "old school" should be avoided?

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Old 09-23-2007, 09:03 AM
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It's my understanding that this doesn't matter, as long as it's at a right angle to the tie rod, (or very close to that) viewing from above.
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Old 09-23-2007, 11:09 AM
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Better description; These cars had the drag link not parallel with the frame when viewed from the side...I thought a drag link should be parallel with the road on a car that has a frame that is level with the road.

Also, "some" of these cars also had a severe angle when viewed from above; the drag link was almost under the frame rail at the pitman arm, and the front of the link angled out to the spindle.

Just trying to get your opinions on grabbing the nice condition F-1 box on Tuesday Thanks
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Old 09-23-2007, 12:28 PM
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I use a Reversed Corvair box on my T Buckets which have a front axle just like you mention. Yes it has a pretty sever angle to it. The lower the car the worse the angle. It does not seem to matter. The Corvair box mounts on top of the frame rail and the pitman arm points down. I have some pics but don't know how to post them. Email me if you want to see the pics..


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Old 09-23-2007, 02:18 PM
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I side steered my Model A with a Mustang box and my drag link sits paralel to my four bars. Works great. The box mounts right behind my four bar bracket which puts it below the frame. The pitiman arm points straight up with the wheels straight ahead.
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Old 11-09-2007, 09:22 AM
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If you take a look under a stock Model A or 32-34 Ford you will find a draglink running up at an angle from the pitman arm to the steering arm on the spindle and looking down find a goodly angle out from pitman arm to steering arm on spindle as well.
Ideals are easy to engineer but compromise is what hits the road.
Some setups handle better than others for many different reasons so take a ride in someboy's car(they'll be happy to accomodate you) and see what you think.
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Old 11-09-2007, 10:40 AM
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I've since picked up a 40 parts car. Any thoughts on using the 40 passenger car steering box with the cross-steer setup?

Did the old school rodders ever use this...or does it cause clearance problems with a non-Ford motor?

I don't have the 324 Olds motor in the frame yet to check it out.
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Old 11-09-2007, 02:25 PM
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Quite a few rodders used the "upgraded " 40 Ford column. I actually prefer the cross steer ...
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Old 11-09-2007, 05:36 PM
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Steering box dilema on an old school '32

Are you going to run split bones or hair pins? The thing with the angle of the drag link dosen't really make any difference. The thing you want to be sure of is that your bones frame mount is directly under the steering box. That way the bone and the drag link are both making the same arc at the axle. You will get a little 'twitch' on bumps, but that's just to remind you of the old school flavor of your Deuce.

Every and any one who is thinking about building a traditional front suspension like this should have a copy of a Pete and Jakes catalog in their possession. In the front of it is nearly all of the information you will need for this type of set up.

See Ya, Youngster.
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Old 11-09-2007, 05:51 PM
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Steering box dilema on an old school '32

Opps....forgot to applaud your choice of steering box, . If it needs to be freshened up, look for a low mileage '40 to '48 box from a car. The innards are the same and most of the cars didn't get as thrashed as the much as the pickups.

One other thing as long as we're here... when you bolt the box to the frame, you might find that the column is too far to the left at the dash. Most people use washers between the box and the frame rail to space the box out. This puts a lot of stress on the rail. The best thing to do is to use a wedge shaped plate. I see Speedway now lists them.

See ya, Youngster.
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Old 11-09-2007, 06:17 PM
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If you look through many old magazines you will many pre-35 cars using cross-steering columns and boxes from the 35-39 and 40-48 cars. Many in fact chose to "upgrade" to the "new" column-shift of the 40-48 cars as well!
Sure, they had to, in most cases, shorten the column and steering shaft for early car usage but that's what it was all about.
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