Moparts Tech Archive
Question about a manual steering swap.
Who sells the extention pieces to lengthen the steering shaft when switching to a manual steering box? My Cuda's steering shaft is too short know with the manual box.--Thansks, Dan
Here's the exact page:
Next Question: Anyone make these for less than $125.
Here is an old Moparts post by Russg on using an adaptor from a van.
Re: Here's an Adaptor, Real Cheap
Don't pay Firm Feel $100 for their steering column adaptor! You can get the parts to do the job at the boneyard. Look for an early '70's Dodge Van, preferably a stripper Tradesman painted with a utility co's logo. They were generally too cheap to put P/S on their fleet trucks, which is lucky for you now. Dodge finally got smart, and used the SAME column length on both P/S and unassisted-steering vans. There's a coupler EXTENSION on the manual box that - lo & behold! - looks a lot like the one from Firm Feel! So, what's the difference, you say? Well, the truck's piece has both internal and external splines that match factory manual steering parts, both the shaft AND the coupler's. The FF one has EXTERNAL splines that match P/S, so FF says "you don't need to buy a new manual-steering coupler" and claims that saves you $55. But that's nonsense, b/c you now have BOTH parts off the junker! If the boneyard wants to charge you any more than $20 for the whole box, tell them to shove it. That truck's box will drop right in a '73 or later car, but you'll have to remove your trophy parts and swap them onto an old-style box for earlier cars - the Pitman shaft is larger '73 and up. I have spotted several donor trucks for this part if anyone has trouble finding it.
I think going this route provides much more peace of mind than messing with the factory column, and it's probably less work. I don't know the exact year-range for the vans that have the part, but I generally haven't had too much trouble finding them; they're probably mid'70s to early '80's. Look for your typical worn-out utility co. fleet van, as they were too cheap to put power steering in those. If there's a demand for these, I can score a few & charge only for my time. The Firm Feel piece looks IDENTICAL to this factory part, BUT the 'male' end has the different splines, or at least FF says. Why pay $100 when you can get it for $20, maybe less, with a half-hour's work? You're going to spend more time than that modifying the column! I have this set-up on my '69 Barracuda and it fits & functions beautifully!