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Old 04-17-2008, 10:37 PM
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Swing away steering column

Has anyone done this??..I was doing the mock up of my interior today and as low as this car is it is going to be tough for the ole guy to get in and out..thought I might go for swinging the steering column to the side to allow more entry room..Please tell me I am not the guinea pig for once..

Sam

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Old 04-17-2008, 10:50 PM
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Ford did it on there T_Birds back in the 60's
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Old 04-17-2008, 11:06 PM
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And the Cougars, and Shelby Mustangs.
It is a gigantic PITA! Levers and wires and vacuum cannisters, all prone to problems.
My older brother had a '68 BB Cougar with the tilt-away and i've had to repair a few cars with it. When it works, its pretty cool, but.....
The Tbirds had swing away (pretty much same thing standard from 1962 to 1966. Most 1961's had it as a $25 option. Very expensive to fix if broken.
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Old 04-17-2008, 11:10 PM
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I once owned a '66 t-bird with the swing away column. I think it would be easier to "borrow" one of these off an old bird rather than fabricate one. Or see how it was done and fabricate one if you have lot's of time.

Just make sure if you "borrow" one.........it's off one that is on it's way to the crusher with no value....
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Old 04-18-2008, 12:20 AM
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How about making one by modifying the column drop and use one of those ball-style column floor mount? Probabiy not as much swing away as the above mentioned ones, but maybe enough to solve your problem?
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Old 04-18-2008, 12:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by staleg
How about making one by modifying the column drop and use one of those ball-style column floor mount? Probabiy not as much swing away as the above mentioned ones, but maybe enough to solve your problem?
Something like that might work..need to invent some kind of locking device to keep the column in place while driving..

Keep the ideas coming..

Sam
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Old 04-18-2008, 05:20 AM
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Or use one of those quick disconnect steering wheel devices?
Looks a little strange to have to remove the steering wheel when leaving the car maybe...
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Old 04-18-2008, 10:49 PM
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I used a tilt column that also had the swing away. It was 66 or 67 Tbird. I did not use the swing away feature because there was no need to in my streetrod. I do remember how simple it was to make it deploy. It had a thin braided steel cable going to the column. If you pulled that cable, it would unlock the swing feature. I am 99% sure it was triggered by a lever activated by the drivers door. Sort of like a lever that moved as the door touched it.

I'd find a Tbird column, it would save TONS of work compared to building something.

The reason I used the Tbird column is that I wanted a tilt, but wanted a nice thin looking column, compared to most "fat" tilt columns. The Tbird can be modified to look like an antique column....which is what I did. I fabricated a tapered cone out of sheetmetal to slim it down, near the tilt portion.
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Old 04-19-2008, 07:35 AM
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Yea, it's a great idea, but if you find one in a scrap yard or donor car, they are worth big bucks! I parted out a 69 Cougar and got $650 for a tilt/swing away column. They are a mix of electromechanical controls. There is a door switch which activates a vacuum motor which pulls the operator cable to swing the column away.

I like staleg's idea of a modified aftermarket column. Heck you could probably rig up a mechanism that will mechanically swing it as the door opens and closes. (sound pretty dangerous too though) I think i'm going to have to add that to my build list for my next hot rod!
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Old 04-19-2008, 08:32 AM
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H'mm sounds like something can be done here..well out to the shop for a head scratching session..

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Sam
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