Updating your gearbox and column is a necessary evil in most restorations, but in doing so; don't use an old rag joint and shaft. This is a common mistake among builders, and when you don't update your steering shaft components, it's easy to get unwanted sway and vibration from the old rag joints and steering shaft. Another problematic scenario arises when builders update the column and use a rag joint technology that wasn't designed to bend. Most people assume that they all are and encounter major issues when they find out that this isn't the case. Both of these unfortunate oversights are pretty common and should not be taken lightly as they can seriously affect your steering while driving.
One rule of thumb that generally does hold true is the adage that the older the car, the more wear and tear it will show. Our friends at Borgeson Steering Components steered us clear of the learning curve as they provided us with a glimpse of their latest steering components. Now follow along, as we add a new shaft and Borgeson joints to this '70 Monte Carlo.
1. Borgeson stainless steel joints and DD shaft will keep us driving straight while looking good, as these parts are available in a show finish, like the ones pictured here today.
2. The chrome gear-box was ready to steer, but it needed some new components to make it safe and reliable.
3. The first thing that needed to be done was to cut the metal tap from the spines. This was done carefully as the gear-box was already bolted on to the painted frame.
4. The frame was protected and covered to keep the metal fragments from chipping the frame.
5. When it came time to assemble and mock up, the upper joint was slipped on.
6. Once the universal joint was fastened, it was tightened down using the set of screws that came with the coupler to prevent it from falling off.
7. The gear-box received Vibration Reducers. These joints will help to reduce the noise, vibration, harshness, and other concerns which are at the top of the list to all automotive enthusiasts and builders. With the more frequent use of rack and pinions and low profile performance tires, there are more road vibrations transmitted to the steering wheel than in the past. Using a Borgeson vibration reducer results in an immediate change in the steering feel and as an added benefit, this reduction in vibration has been shown to increase the overall life of the steering components.
8. Borgeson does not recommend using less than 3/4" diameter steering shaft. To make it easier to cut the 3/4DD shaft, it was bolted from the top and routed to the gear-box.
9. The shaft was marked and cut with a chop saw to the right length.
10. Any metal burrs were polished off to allow the shaft to slip on.
11. The Borgeson joint was ready to be assembled and allow us to steer.
12. With everything test fitted, the shaft went on with ease as all we did was tighten down the set screws.