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Discussion Starter #1
Would anyone know what the length of a non tilt steering shaft measured from the flange where the rag joint bolts on to the end of the threaded section where the steering wheel nut is. Mine is 32 13/16". Just trying to figure out if it has been collapsed from a collision sometime in its life.
Anyone ever re-pin a collapsed one to its original length?
Thanks
Phil
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks for the replies. I guess I now know why it is too short for my column. I am guessing it has been collapsed sometime due to a collision.
So, now has anyone ever attempted to replace the original plastic sheer pins?
Phil
 

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Your steering shaft appears to be a shortened by a bit more than 1/2 inch.

Is your steering column a floor shift? If it is a floor shift the shift tube provides some strength to the steering column in bending. But shearing the plastic injection between the two tubes may not be really detrimental to the column.

If it is a column shift, rotating your shift lever may eventually weaken the shift tube joint at the plastic injection because it was shortened and the plastic partially sheared in the past.

As far as the steering shaft, (where you measured the 32 13/16 inch steering shaft length) I would try to pull it back out to obtain the original 33 3/8 inch length. The steering column may function quite well as is.

FYI, the steering shaft is formed from two very close tolerance shaft. A solid shaft up to the steering wheel and a hollow tubular shaft that extends down to the flange on the lower end. There is generous overlap where the two shafts come together so there is really no safety concerns. The worst that can happen is a small amount of looseness at the junction of the two shafts. The injected plastic at that point may very well prevent any looseness even though the shaft has been pulled back to its original length.

Jim
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Jim, Thanks again for the fast reply. I have a floor shift column. When looking at my inner shift tube, you can see where the plastic in the slots has moved about a 1/8 of an inch. So I will leave that alone.
I did put nut on the threaded upper end of the steering shaft and then put it in a vise. Pulling did not move the lower shaft. I guess I will try again and pull harder. I was thinking I would remove the pastic pin material when seperated and then put it back together lining up the holes on the two shafts to original. I will need to find some small pastic material to re-pin the two.
Thats my plan for now, unless there is a better solution.
Thanks again.
Phil
 

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Discussion Starter #8
That would be an option as well. But I think the whole idea of the collapsable shaft is that you do not get the steering wheel pushed into your chest if you are in a front end collision.I would like to keep as close to the original design if at all possable.
 

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First of all!!! Do not pull on the steering wheel end of the column. You can damage the upper bearing in the steeirng column head. You want to pull the lower end out by the 1/2 inch!

If you are concerned about the upper and lower steering shaft having a slight amount of looseness, use epoxy glue to take up the clearance. Welding the parts together could result in a steering shaft "spear" in a severe frontal collision.

Jim
 

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Although the risk of a severe frontal collision is very, very low, please don't even think about tack welding the upper and lower steering shafts together.

Jim
 
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