I'm in the middle of a restoration on my "69 Camaro, and have run into a snag that I don't know how to fix. First of all, I had all new floors put in the car, from firewall to rear bumper. Right now I'm trying to connect the steering box to the column, and I've got about a 3/4" gap. I have not touched the steering column mounting at all, and the steering box mounting location is not adjustable either. What could have changed? The only thing I can think of is that perhaps the body was not put back on the sub-frame in the right spot? How much adjustement is there in the body mounts? Is there anything else I should look at?
There are two half inch gauge holes that are easily spotted on the flanges for the middle two body mount locations.
A tire iron provides a great gauge as it's about half an inch in diameter.
Poke the tire iron into the driver's side middle gauge hole and see if it engages in the body gauge hole on a perpendicular line. If it doesn't, loosen the two body mounts on the driver's side and pry/align the tire iron until they do and then tighten the body mount bolts.
This is a drawing of a tilt column lower end, but the 2.00 inch dimension should be the same for your standard (non-adjustable) steering column.
If the face of the flange to the face of the bearing adapter is less than 2.00 inches, you will need to pull the steering shaft back our of the steering column jacket. It may not come back out easily, but try and pry it out to the 2.00 inch dimension. Please try to NOT hammer on the steering shaft because that kind of procedure is very hard on the steering column bearings.
Looking at the bow tie shaped flange that attaches the flexible coupling assembly to the steering gear input shaft. The height of the bow tie flange appears shorter than the production cast bow tie flange on the production flex coupling assembly. That would tend to aggrivate your condition. From the face of the bow tie flange next to the steering gear to the surface of the bow tie flange that touches the rubber coupling disc, the height of the barrel should be 0.95 inch. If it is less than that dimension on your replacement flex coupling assembly, that would also cause problems.
Thanks for all the tips, guys. I will check further this weekend.
To JimL82, so what you're saying is that the end of the column moves in and out in the housing (see pic below)? I did try pulling on this, but it didn't want to budge, and I didn't want to force it too much.
Success! There were 2 more screw right at the firewall that I missed before. Lossened them off and, with a bit of persuasion, got the steering column to slide down the amount that I needed. Column and box are now connected and everything moves nicely.
I would say check the alignment of the subframe first and work from there. There are two alignment holes that match up with holes in the floor. Then you may have to move the steering column. Should be an easy fix. Good luck