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I purchased a 69 Z/28 many years ago and the car had a tilt column in it. I'm over 6 feet tall so it made it easier to get into. When I got the car I noticed that it only had 3 positions in the tilt not 5 like other cars. I found a 5 position and put it in but saved the original. Does anyone know the story with the different number of positions in the tilt mechanism?
 

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My information from the actual Saginaw drawings indicate that the 1969 Camaro should have 7 tilt positions. 15 deg full up, 10 deg, 5 deg, neutral (0 deg), -5 deg, -10 deg, and -15 deg.

I can tell you about the 7 position tilt mechanism in the original 1969 Camaro tilt columns. There are two shoes in the tilt head. One shoe has three slots. The other shoe has four slots. Both shoes are side by side. They pivot on the same pin. The slots in the shoes engage a common, similar pin. The slots are machined in the shoes so that they alternately engage that common pin so you end up with 3 + 4 = 7 total positions.

The four slot shoe would dictate the following positions:
1. Full up (15 degrees).
2. 5 degrees up from nominal position.
3. -5 degrees down from the nominal position of the column head.
4. Full down (-15 degrees).

The three slot shoe would provide these increments:
1. Halfway between full up and 5 deg (10 degrees).
2. Nominal or straight position (0 degree)
3. Half way between full down and -5 degrees (-10 degrees).

I am sure that Saginaw could provide some matching and machining of different shoe slots to provide different angles of tilt for clearance of the steering wheel to particular dash pads, different seat designs, unique body styles, etc. If your original tilt steering column only had 3 positions, I would guess that someone removed one of the tilt shoes. I don't have any first hand information on the question but I would guess that Saginaw never (intentionally) manufactured that column with only one shoe.

Jim
 
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