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Old 09-19-2007, 11:22 AM
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Steering Wheel Position

I am getting ready to position my steering column and wheel in the street rod and want to know if there is any optimal position left-to-right relative to the drivers seat. Most modern cars seem to have the wheel offset 1-2 inches to the right of center of the seat.

I know if will come down to personal preference and my slotted mount holes allow for about 3/4 inch adjustment later. Just trying to decide where to drill the mount holes in bottom of dash for initial placement.

John

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Old 09-19-2007, 11:42 AM
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Auto makers have done a lot of research on interior ergonomics so if most auto makers put the wheel right of center I would do as they do, unless your left handed. You are building the car for YOU and not the average consumer.
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Old 09-19-2007, 12:27 PM
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Could be that they put the column is the best place considering all the modern obstacles, too.

I'd get the seat mounted, grab a coffee & a wheel mounted on a shaft, and take the time to find the right spot that fits you.
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Old 09-19-2007, 12:33 PM
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John,
I recently bought my column for my street rod from ididit, and they have some good advice on how to measure and locate your column. Go here:

http://www.ididitinc.com/catalogs/volume21/pg5.html

It's a page from their catalog. I think it would be much more comfortable to have the wheel centered on the drivers seat than offset. The auto manufacturers do it more for clearance than for ergonomics in my opinion.
Any, take a look at the ididit website and catalog. It may give you what you are looking for.

Hope this helps,
Steve
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Old 09-19-2007, 12:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by F&J
I'd get the seat mounted, grab a coffee & a wheel mounted on a shaft, and take the time to find the right spot that fits you.
Gotta second F&J's thought. I recently fabricated the steering wheel position on my sedan delivery and I spent a LOT of time testing out various positions for the wheel...up, down, short, long, left, right etc. The final mounting is shown in the picture.

Mock the wheel up solidly in various positions and then really think about how YOU like to drive, hands in 10 & 2 position? Wrist hooked over top of wheel? Holding the spokes? Hands at bottom of wheel? Even test arm out the window and driving one handed etc. I know on my 32 pickup the wheel is just a fraction off and I can't drive with my wrist hooked over the top of the wheel...which I like to do.

Bottom line, invest the time NOW to make sure the wheel position fits YOU...not some automotive "one size fits all" positioning.

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Old 09-19-2007, 12:50 PM
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I think a lot of this assumes you are using a "bucket" or indivialized sort of seat. If you're using a bench, consider finding a comfy place on the bench, fatarming to get that classic John Milner look, and locating the wheel where you can just reach it with you left hand.



Pat
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Old 09-19-2007, 01:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PatM
... fatarming to get that classic John Milner look,
Fatarming????? I love it. Never heard that term for it before. Must be a west coast invention (or I've just be stuck up here in northwoods WAY too long.)
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Old 09-19-2007, 01:13 PM
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Hey Cboy.

First heard the term from a guy almost as old as me (that is, old as dirt) who grew up in Pittsburg, PA. So, I don't think it's generically a west coast term. But it DOES make for a good way to position a wheel to the car. If the seat is either a straight bench, or to be stitched up/positioned later it's a pretty good way to get started.

Have a great day, Pat
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Old 09-19-2007, 01:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by F&J


I'd get the seat mounted, grab a coffee & a wheel mounted on a shaft, and take the time to find the right spot that fits you.


Good advice ... I did the same thing with my 3W coupe project. A tilt column also gives a little leeway in positioning up/down. I had to come up with a smaller diameter wheel. A stock original 40 Ford wheel adapted to the Chevrolet van column was about 2 - 3 inches too large. I had to buy a repro Lecarrea 40 Ford wheel.

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