How do you remove steering column? - Ford Mustang Forum
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post #1 of 21 (permalink) Old 08-11-2004 Thread Starter
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How do you remove steering column?

Can anyone tell me how to remove the steering column on a 66? Standard column, no tilt or anything. I have removed the brake pedal bracket, so the whole column is loose now. But how do I disconnect it from the steering box? My Chilton's manual is totally useless, and the Haynes manual only shows a diagram for a 69 model, with a flex coupling, which I don't have. Need some advice!

When the only tool you have is a hammer, everything starts to look like a nail.
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post #2 of 21 (permalink) Old 08-11-2004
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Well a very helpful book available at any Mustang part dealer is "How to Restore a Mustang". Great book. It's got a like a 65/6 Fastback on the cover.

Anyway, it's probably bolted to the dash as is my 67, so take those 2 bolts out. I assume you've pulled off the steering wheel and other little trinkets in there. After all that there should be nothing restricting it. It will be difficult to get off though, mine was too. I tried and tried and tried to muscle that damn thing. Get a pry bar(maybe even crow bar?) and pry it away from the steering box. Twist and turn it and pull man. It's a burden I know, but that's how I did it. You'll sweat, cuss, and get pissed at it, but that's how it goes I guess. Make sure to grease the shaft back up before putting it back in!
post #3 of 21 (permalink) Old 08-11-2004 Thread Starter
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I did remove the 2 bolts that hold the steering column, they attach to the brake pedal bracket which is removed from the car. The entire steering column is loose now, the ONLY thing holding it is the steering box itself.

I did not remove the steering wheel, I don't think that would affect being able to remove the whole column for the other end.

I have the "How To Restore Your Mustang" book, but it is not very specific about removing the steering column. It tells you to remove the steering wheel for restoration and advises you to use a puller, and then says "you may need to remove the steering column also". Big help.

I think you are right, that now I am at the stage where I just have to muscle it out. I used a small pry bar, and the thing is, the case of the steering column itself will move about 1/4 inch, but the steering bar inside it is not moving. Turning it back and forth does nothing because the car is up on jacks and all of the suspension and wheels, etc, are removed.

I wish I could see one that is removed so I have a better idea of how it goes together, maybe then I would know better which part to beat on! I sprayed it all down with WD-40 and let that soak, and I'll give it another try tomorrow.

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post #4 of 21 (permalink) Old 08-11-2004
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Hello.You have to remove the steering wheel,then take the metal strap off that holds it to the dash,then give the tube a couple of little twists to loosen it at the steering gear box,then pull the tube off of the steering shaft.The long shaft that is still sticking through the firewall is an integral part of the steering gear box on the 65/66 cars.To get that out go under the car and disconnect the pitman arm from the bottom of the steering gear box then go to the driver's side wheel well and remove the three bolts that hold the steering gear box in place and remove the assembly from the car.Hope that helps.
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post #5 of 21 (permalink) Old 08-12-2004 Thread Starter
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Hi Veronica,

I am not planning to remove the steering box in the engine compartment, just the steering column.

So I definitely have to take off the steering wheel, and then slide the steering tube out, leaving the inner shaft connected, in order to get to it?

John

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post #6 of 21 (permalink) Old 08-12-2004
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Yeah, your steering column will slide off the metal saft sticking out of the steering box. Look at pics of steering boxes on like Mustangs Plus' site or somethin. The shaft stays and that steering column has to come off. Believe me, it will suck to try and muscle it off. Just twist it back and forth as you pull out on it.
post #7 of 21 (permalink) Old 08-12-2004
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If for some reason you still can't get it off, let me know, I've got some friends I can ask on what they did.
post #8 of 21 (permalink) Old 08-13-2004 Thread Starter
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Well the only way twisting it back and forth will work for me is if I put the suspension back on a tire back on and lower the car, otherwise when I twist all I am doing is turning the steering box. You think this might be a time to break out the torch and heat it up, or will I screw something up if I do that?

I have the tube loose enough to move about 1/4 inch and expose some of the shaft. I can pull the tube all the way if I have to, I just don't understand what good that will do...

I did not get to work on it today and probably won't get another chance for a few days, we got storms rolling thru here all weekend. Gotta love hurricane season.

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post #9 of 21 (permalink) Old 08-13-2004
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cracker289
Well the only way twisting it back and forth will work for me is if I put the suspension back on a tire back on and lower the car, otherwise when I twist all I am doing is turning the steering box. You think this might be a time to break out the torch and heat it up, or will I screw something up if I do that?
Sorry, I'm a little confused. What are you talking about twisting back & forth? It sounded like AJ was talking about the steering box which you said you did not plan on removing.
Its sounds like you have the column strap (2 bolts underdash) off already and the only thing keeping in place is the steering wheel. After you remove the hex nut in the center of the steering wheel you will probably need a puller to remove the sterring wheel. After the wheel is off the whole column will slide up off the steering shaft (don't forget to disconnect the wiring near the base of the column).
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Yeah, like I said, it's not easy, but it will come. Try have someone using a pry bar or crowbar and pry away from the steering box while you're pulling out on it. Just don't screw up the splines on the steering shaft. And DEFINITELY don't use the torch. I'll talk to a friend(rodbender) tonight and see what he thinks cause he's a Ford-genius.

Also, I almost forgot, there are 4 bolts retaining a plate that goes around the steering column at the firewall. I'm not sure if this makes a difference but it can't hurt to pull the bolts out and just leave the plate hanging on the column.
post #11 of 21 (permalink) Old 08-13-2004 Thread Starter
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So basically then I would be removing the steering tube and leaving the shaft connected? I would rather take the whole assembly as one peice. I already removed all the bolts and disconnected the wiring.

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That's impossible with the old cars as Veronica stated earlier. In 65-66 Nader didn't yet enforce a collapsable steering column, hence the long integral shaft. Also I don't recall if you loosened the steering gear box bolts. You may have to to get the steering tube over the shaft. I was quite a suprise to me when I took mine out also.Good Luck

Old and in the way.
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Hi again. Don't get out the torch.If you want to remove the shaft,the only way to do that is to remove the steering gear box.The steering shaft can't be removed without also removing the steering gear box.It would be like trying to remove the front side of the steering gear box while leaving the backside in the car.The shaft is part of the steering gear box assembly.You have to destroy something to get the shaft out by itself.It isn't a big deal to remove the entire assembly,though.Once the tube is out of the way the only thing holding it into the car is one nut and three bolts.It would be helpful to know what it is that you are trying to accomplish.If what you are doing is purely cosmetic,then once you have the tube out you can strip and paint it.If you are having a problem with the steering itself,the steering shaft is the one place that the problem is not.The problem would have to be in the steering gear box or some component underneath the front of the car.Good luck.
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[QUOTE=Acooljt]Yeah, like I said, it's not easy, but it will come. Try have someone using a pry bar or crowbar and pry away from the steering box while you're pulling out on it. ...QUOTE]

I would not recommend using a pry bar, the only thing you can pry against would be would be the sheet metal column or the turn signal mechanism inside. Use a steering wheel puller if its stuck. They are cheap if your local parts store does not rent them (most offer them as free loaners). Otherwise I think everyone here is giving good advice. Just my 2 cents. :smilie
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NOOOOOOOO!! LOL, I meant to use a pry bar or crow bar to pry the column off at the gearbox. Haha. Like prying the end of the column away from the steering box. Haha, NOT the steering wheel.
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