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 FAQ: Steering Column Slop, Problems & Replacement

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Eldo
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Steering Column Slop, Problems & Replacement   Wed May 26, 2010 11:20 pm

Evening Update...


Props again to 99Rivman & BMD - Turns out that if you're careful with lifting the dash pad and 'twisting' the dash trim panel down and out, you can pull the trim panel without taking the dash pad, etc. out...

Luckily, after that break with the 3/16" nut-driver, things kept going carefully but smoothly, and I found exactly what I'd hoped/expected: the left pin was still in, and the right pin had slid out... and the ears were intact. smile

The multi-function switch and all its wires pretty much blocks the view of the left pin, but this shot does kinda' show that the pin has not extended past the outer ear (next to that red square):


However, this is what I found on the other side:


This is what the pin looks like, and boooooooy you can't hardly tell any difference in diameter between the inner and outer races (not to mention that the dummies could have put longitudinal grooves on the outer race to make it grip the outer ear when it was pounded in...):


Finally, this is where that right pin belongs:


I figured that LocTite was probably a little thin for the job, and was seriously thinking of using a serious epoxy like Marine-Tex. However, my brother (who says he's never seen these pins come out!) advised against a really permanent repair because he has had to pull these pins out in order to take the joint apart and tighten 4 screws that are down inside...

So, after perusing the Permatex aisle, I decided against both the LocTite-type stuff and also the Sleeve Retainer. Too thin and in the case of the latter, you have to heat it to 500*F to break it loose later. The Bearing Mount for Worn Parts description sounds more appropriate, is thicker, is rated to fill up to 20-thousandths, and is 'adjustable' in how tough you want to make the bond - and it's only rated to 300 degrees...

http://www.permatex.com/documents/tds/Automotive/20297.pdf


Tomorrow I'll pull on the screw a little and find out if I have to use more, or if I can just peen the edges and put everything back together... and stop using the wheel to climb out of the car. oops
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BMD
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Steering Column Slop, Problems & Replacement   Thu May 27, 2010 12:02 am

Interesting, would like to see how that product is used. Also, I agree that longitudinal grooves on the outer race would have helped, I actualy thought if the rim of the pin had resembled a star washer that when pounded into the aluminum, would help it stay put.


Last edited by BMD on Thu May 27, 2010 12:21 pm; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Steering Column Slop, Problems & Replacement   Thu May 27, 2010 10:09 am

I can't really see how much space there is on the left, but I had an idea. Couldn't you drill and tap 2 or 3 holes outside the pin then screw a plate over the pin to keep it from backing out? Just a suggestion, I have never taken mine apart to see it in person.
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Steering Column Slop, Problems & Replacement   Thu May 27, 2010 12:42 pm

moldymac wrote:
I can't really see how much space there is on the left, but I had an idea. Couldn't you drill and tap 2 or 3 holes outside the pin then screw a plate over the pin to keep it from backing out? Just a suggestion, I have never taken mine apart to see it in person.
agree
I kind of thought about doing that, even if you just drilled one hole and used a screw with a washer that went over the pin it might work? One problem with doing that is drilling even a small hole could cause the bracket to break?
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Eldo
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Steering Column Slop, Problems & Replacement   Thu May 27, 2010 3:43 pm

That's not a bad 'idear' either, David smile

After all, there's really not much force pushing the pin sideways, and just 2 screws in the meatier parts of the ear would probably do the trick. The only downside is that you'd have to drop the column to do the work - unless there's such a thing as a Dremel with a 90-degree drill attachment.

BTW, I just ran the tilt up & down a bunch of times and yanked on that screw, and nothings budging... So, I put 4 new peens around the edge and just started putting things back together. (Starting with Krazygluing a cracked bracket on the bolster... mad )
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Steering Column Slop, Problems & Replacement   Thu May 27, 2010 3:55 pm

Eldo wrote:
That's not a bad 'idear' either, David :)So, I put 4 new peens around the edge and just started putting things back together.

That actually does sound like it would work David, should someone decide to drop the column. Mark, could please explain what you mean above?
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Steering Column Slop, Problems & Replacement   Thu May 27, 2010 4:02 pm

BMD wrote:
Eldo wrote:
That's not a bad 'idear' either, David smile
So, I put 4 new peens around the edge and just started putting things back together.

That actually does sound like it would work David, should someone decide to drop the column.
Mark, could please explain what you mean above?

It means that despite the appearance that the Permatex 'filler' has worked beautifully, I still don't trust it enough not to use a hammer & screwdriver to put 4 little smushes around the perimeter to further help keep it from sliding out again. (The factory put 2 or 3 in themselves...)
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Steering Column Slop, Problems & Replacement   Thu May 27, 2010 4:22 pm

Thanks, Mark. This is good info. I'm going to be working on mine very soon!

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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Steering Column Slop, Problems & Replacement   Thu May 27, 2010 4:55 pm

Dropping the column is a downside, but theres a good chance you will never have to deal with this problem again. I suppose if you really want to get lazy with it you could just put a big hose clamp around the column.
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Steering Column Slop, Problems & Replacement   Thu May 27, 2010 6:12 pm

moldymac wrote:
I suppose if you really want to get lazy with it you could just put a big hose clamp around the column.

Just take it to Big Bob's Backyard Mechanics and Mammoplasty. They can do that fix there shocked .
LOL. VERY bad idea.....
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Eldo
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Steering Column Slop, Problems & Replacement   Thu May 27, 2010 6:56 pm

Abaddon wrote:
moldymac wrote:
I suppose if you really want to get lazy with it you could just put a big hose clamp around the column.

Just take it to Big Bob's Backyard Mechanics and Mammoplasty. They can do that fix there shocked .
LOL.

Or the Flagstaff International Airport, Hair Care and Tire Center... joker


Last edited by Eldo on Sun Jun 20, 2010 4:47 pm; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Steering Column Slop, Problems & Replacement   Thu May 27, 2010 9:49 pm

I much prefer the Flagstaff Int'l Airport, Hair Care and Tire center.
They offer a Taillight Guarantee.
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Steering Column Slop, Problems & Replacement   Sat May 29, 2010 12:54 am

Eldo wrote:

And you just gave me another possible explanation - perhaps after one of his previous jobs, Okie left out the 2 screws for the bolster that are hidden by the dash panel...
As I was putting everything back together ('properly', because I'm trying to imbue the car with some faith jesus) I realized that there are 2 possible ideas for leaving yourself with an easier entry in the future... If you aren't someone like me, who tilts the column every time you enter/exit, you could leave the 2 forward E-Torx screws out of the column covers, as Randall has said.

Another idea, though, is to leave the right-upper bolt out of the knee bolster. Both of the upper ears for the bolster have pilot holes that mate with pins from the dash, besides the holes for the bolts. If you put a little foam pad where the right ear meets the dash, to avoid any buzzing, you could probably leave that bolt out, and the upper-left bolt is removable from the side, after you unplug & remove the headlight switch...

Quote :
... I'll be using the laptop to check back now & then (especially if anyone knows where to get that stupid E-Torx nut-driver.) confused
Just want to reiterate that those damned E5-Torx come out beautifully with a normal 3/16" nut-driver...

BMD wrote:
Interesting, would like to see how that product is used...
Per the instructions, I inserted the pin with a 1/4-turn motion to help ensure that the goop got where the original material was worn. And to balance strength with the possibility of ever having to pull the pins to work on another problem, I used a thin-to-moderate coat of the Permatex over half of the circumference of the outer race...
.


Last edited by Eldo on Sun Jun 20, 2010 4:55 pm; edited 3 times in total
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Steering Column Slop, Problems & Replacement   Sat May 29, 2010 11:22 am

Good work Mark and thanks for the product info. I'm dreading taking everything apart AGAIN to do this. When the dealer took my dash apart to replace the radio under warranty, they cracked the tabs that are hiiden by the side panels, so everytime I take out the dash I worry about re-cracking them. This shouldn't be a job you have to do every five years or so. I wish there was a permanent solution. Maybe Aaron can design a new bracket in CAD and price out a group buy?!? lol
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jenkkijussi
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Steering Column Slop, Problems & Replacement   Sun Jun 20, 2010 5:43 am

I have this same problem in my 1995 Riv. The holes are so worn out that I don't believe gluing would work. Has anyone found place to order new lower support and upper housing? I already asked from Monsterparts but they answered that not available.

Johannes
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Steering Column Slop, Problems & Replacement   Sun Jun 20, 2010 9:35 am

jenkkijussi wrote:
Has anyone found place to order new lower support and upper housing? I already asked from Monsterparts but they answered that not available.

Nope! You aren't going to find one. It's a discontinued part. Last I checked (as stated on Page 7 of this thread), only 2 dealers in the whole country have the upper sitting on their shelf. It's $500. This was over a year ago......
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Steering Column Slop, Problems & Replacement   Mon Aug 02, 2010 12:19 pm



I had this issue already and found the pin came out on the right side. There didn't appear to be anything else wrong. I put the pin back in. I didn't like how there didn't seem to be anything that held it in though. Bastard came out again.





I have the dash taken apart again working on a few different things. I put the pin back in on the right side and the left is backing out before I even touch anything else. As I've said there is nothing on the outside that holds these in really. The left one has a switch enclosure covering it so it doesn't look like it can actually fall all the way out but I can see its backed out.
Someone said, in an earlier post, these pins are supposed to be pressed in? Is there something else I can do? I don't want to spend a bunch of money on replacing stuff here.
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Steering Column Slop, Problems & Replacement   Mon Aug 02, 2010 12:26 pm

Thx for pics! Is there any way a band or clamp could be installed to hold the pins in place?

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'98 SC Riviera 268k miles 298 HP/370 TQ 0-60: 5.79s ET: 13.97 @ 99.28 4087 lb 20.1 avg MPG Nelson Ledges Lap: 1:30
3.4" pulley AL104 plugs 180 t-stat FWI w/K&N 1.9:1 rockers OR pushrods LS6 valve springs SLP headers ZZP fuel rails
KYB GR2 struts MaxAir shocks Addco sway bars UMI bushings GM STB Enkei 18" EV5s w/ Dunlop DZ101s F-body calipers
EBC bluestuff/Hawk HP plus SS lines Brembo slotted discs DHP tuned Aeroforce Hidden Hitch


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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Steering Column Slop, Problems & Replacement   Mon Aug 02, 2010 1:11 pm

I would drill and tap into the aluminum housing just outboard of the pin and then screw a button head screw in with a little loctite to hold the screw.
I would try a #10 or #12 and again a button or fillister head (screw with large diameter head), where just the edge of the head of the screw would capture the pin without affecting the pin from rotating if it needs to.

Don't know if this is clear, but I can visualize what appears might work.

Don't know how to make drawings on the computer so I can't help there.
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Steering Column Slop, Problems & Replacement   Mon Aug 02, 2010 1:47 pm

Mark, if you're around, how is that Permatex holding up so far and where do you get it? I just tried calling advance auto and it doesn't even come up in their system.

I sorta thought about that clamp idea but the column doesn't make it easy, especially on the left side and bottem. What I'm trying isn't grossely far off that concept, though.

Zipties are my friend.



another to help hold the main one in an optimal position when the tilt is adjusted

can't really see much on that side but there is coverage over the pin


ziptie looks pretty secure

We'll see how it goes. It's not like this is expensive or irreversable.
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Steering Column Slop, Problems & Replacement   Mon Aug 02, 2010 3:22 pm

Well of all the mechanical ideas so far, zippies are certainly the cheapest, easiest and most elegant solution...
Necessity is the mother of invention!

Cody, I went to Napa for the Permatex.
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Steering Column Slop, Problems & Replacement   Mon Aug 02, 2010 3:24 pm

I like Rick's idea.

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'98 SC Riviera 268k miles 298 HP/370 TQ 0-60: 5.79s ET: 13.97 @ 99.28 4087 lb 20.1 avg MPG Nelson Ledges Lap: 1:30
3.4" pulley AL104 plugs 180 t-stat FWI w/K&N 1.9:1 rockers OR pushrods LS6 valve springs SLP headers ZZP fuel rails
KYB GR2 struts MaxAir shocks Addco sway bars UMI bushings GM STB Enkei 18" EV5s w/ Dunlop DZ101s F-body calipers
EBC bluestuff/Hawk HP plus SS lines Brembo slotted discs DHP tuned Aeroforce Hidden Hitch


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Eldo
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Steering Column Slop, Problems & Replacement   Mon Aug 02, 2010 4:40 pm

I think you'd have to drop the column for Rick's idea.
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Steering Column Slop, Problems & Replacement   Mon Aug 02, 2010 9:11 pm

Well, I meant to ask if there would be enough room for a drill, first of all.

But I was being selfish and only thinking of some of the very small precision tools I have such as a 90* drill attachment that is so small I only think it will accept a #12 or what would be the equivalent of a #40 Drill bit. Strictly used in tight places on Aircraft where a #40 is common.

Anyway, I think the concept is a great repair and permanent. But as you all know that have had the cover off the column and I haven't, you're better able to say whether the column would need to be dropped to drill and tap with a standard size drill, etc.

I certainly hope the wire ties hold up and don't chafe and break eventually, otherwise, I think you will have to drop the column.
Just how difficult would that be anyway. How many man-hours would be involved.????
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Steering Column Slop, Problems & Replacement   Mon Aug 02, 2010 9:20 pm

I have one other Major question.?

If there is nothing holding these pins in, other than possibly friction, from the factory, how come more of us or all of us don't have the exact same problem with the pins falling out.?

If normal usage of the steering column causes the pins to rotate and eventually work there way ou of the holes, how come it doesn't happen more frequently. I'm a tad confused.
Am I lucky that my column is still tight or was there a mechanism used to secure these pins, be it an adhesive or something that I'm not aware of.

Thanks
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