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my whacked column rebuild

Discussion in 'Suspension, Steering & Brakes' started by Raider L, Jan 30, 2021.

  1. Raider L

    Raider L Full Access Member

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    Engine Size:
    355
    I noticed reading those last two pics of the text out of the maint. book that it talks about putting washers on the pin then putting the block on the pin so it doesn't bottom on the pin. And then take off the block and washers and put them on the other side and the difference isn't more than twelve thousandths, .012". I did not have any washers when I took mine apart, on the pin on either side. Now, I have had this intermediate shaft out about thirty years ago when I had to repair the mast tube. But I never did take the intermediate shaft apart. So this time when I took it apart that was the first time since the truck was new in '74. I'll try this and I might have some real thin washers in my aircraft open stock. We'll see what happens with washers on there, then I'll put the blocks on with nothing and see what the difference is.
     
  2. Raider L

    Raider L Full Access Member

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  3. Raider L

    Raider L Full Access Member

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    Well, I can't wait for these parts people to call me back on the intermediate shaft seal I want them to find. One of the companies I bought one from didn't want theirs back and I kept it. So I've already devised a way to make it fit my coupler so it works and i will show you all what I've done to it with some new pics. It ain't rocket science but you know how inventive we can be when we have to be and so I've employed that "skill".

    In the meantime I will continue to look for someone in the industry who has what many need so they don't have to destroy their shaft just to get the thing back on their truck so it can be driven. This is the fix I find myself in, I need to drive my truck and it's stupid to have it parked here in the drive when I have all the money I need to overhaul everything that needs to be fixed. I'm not physically able to do all the work like I used to be able to do anymore, and I'm getting worse. I need to get to doctors and I need my truck to be able to get there when I need to get there and not have to wait for my son to have a day off, or try and borrow my daughters car. If any of you have been through that in your life you know it gets old quick.

    Photos to follow soon, like tomorrow.
     
  4. Raider L

    Raider L Full Access Member

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    Okay, here we go.

    I decided to use a piece of windshield washer tubing to rap around the seal to 1. Take up the space that the seal was short in diameter enough to press up against the inside diameter of the bottom of the coupler to keep the grease in. And 2. To not be so thick that I can't put the washer and the clip ring in securely. This was the first hose I tried. First I cut the "inside of the curve" of washer tubing. inter. shaft seal mod. 004.jpg Then rolled the tubing onto the seal outter edge. inter. shaft seal mod. 005.jpg And placed the seal into the coupler. inter. shaft seal mod. 006.jpg But in checking to see how far out it stuck I noticed it was to far past the clip ring slots. It was to thick. inter. shaft seal mod. 007.jpg
     
  5. Raider L

    Raider L Full Access Member

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    I had another piece of washer tubing that was smaller in diameter and not much smaller in inside diameter so I tried that instead of the thick tubing. The first tubing is standard washer tubing at 7/32" I.D.. This smaller tubing is 5/32" I.D. or so. inter. shaft seal mod. 008.jpg Then rolled that piece of tubing onto the seal. inter. shaft seal mod. 009.jpg I used a X-Acto blade, a #2 to cut down the inside of the curve. Then tried it in the coupler. inter. shaft seal mod. 010.jpg Now, that's much better. And the seal does fit nicely in the inside the diameter of the coupler. I feel confident it will seal against the grease inside the coupler once it's assembled. I'm using the 3M weatherstrip adhesive to glue the hose to the seal. inter. shaft seal mod. 011.jpg Once that's set, maybe tomorrow I'll remove the seal and begin the reassembly of the intermediate shaft.
     
  6. Raider L

    Raider L Full Access Member

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    Engine Size:
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    This is a pic of the first tubing I tried, standard washer tubing. inter. shaft seal mod. 012.jpg And this is the diameter of the smaller tubing on the outside. inter. shaft seal mod. 015.jpg I tried to measure this smaller tubing on the inside and it seems to be 5/32". inter. shaft seal mod. 001.jpg This isn't very clear but this is the thicker tubing I tried first. You can see how much larger in outside diameter it is. inter. shaft seal mod. 003.jpg And this is the smaller tubing. The wall thickness is still about the same as the thicker tubing, which I needed it to be so that it fits inside the coupler tight enough to seal against the grease. Once that thin flat washer is put in, and the clip ring it will sqawsh down enough to seal okay.
    Like, where the heck is this seal going to go? It doesn't move anywhere so that it's breaking seal all the time. So it will be sealed fine as long as it needs to be.
     
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  7. Raider L

    Raider L Full Access Member

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    Engine Size:
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    That worked good. It fits right in the end of the coupler. But I think I need to take a little bit off the back so it sits a little deeper in the end. So I trimmed off the back of the hose down to the edge of the seal. I know you don't know what I'm referring to, it's a little lip that is standing up just off the very edge of the outter edge of the seal. I doesn't do anything it just looks like part of the side that looks back inside the coupler. It's no big deal. I did provide me with an indicator where the flat of the back of the seal was so I didn't cut into the seal. I just trimmed the piece of the hose off that was covering the back of the seal. So, now it's flat and the weather sealant was full back at that point to. It looks factory, kinda.

    Tomorrow I'm going over to Harbor Freight and pick up a Arbor Press that they advertise is a 2,000 lb. press. It's for a bench. I will try and use that to press that pin back into the shaft end.

    Film at eleven!
     
  8. Raider L

    Raider L Full Access Member

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    I finally heard from the one vendor who I believed would persue trying to find the 2 1/4" seal that fits our trucks. He called today and said that he talked to some people in the business and from them he was able to talk to others. What he found out was GM never did release that seal for reproduction! That's why no one has ever seen it or have one unless they actually have a NOS sitting on the shelf. So, I guess that may be the end of the line on the seal. Well, that's more than I have seen from most who've tried to see if they could find one. See, I couldn't find one either, but that's not enough for me. I want to know why one can't be found and why it's not being made available, and in some cases who is not making it available.
     
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  9. Raider L

    Raider L Full Access Member

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    Well, I went over to Harbor freight today and got the 2 ton Arbor Press today. Brought it back and got it up on my work bench, it was heavier than I thought it would be. I got the seal slid on the end and put a hose clamp on the end of the seal.

    Then I got the shaft set up on the press all blocked up and everything so it was level with the plate on the press. Got the pin lined up with the beveled and the hole, this shaft has bevels on both sides of the shaft end some have only one side beveled, and pulled down on the arm on the press.
    MAN!!! I pulled on the press bar every which way I could think to set it up and all, I was only able to get that pin in, which was just started in the hole!

    So, I sat down looking at it and figured, "I can't get enough pull on that bar like it was. So I realized, "I can change out where the bar is by pulling the gearing out and reposition it so the head is already pushing down on it. In other words the bar will be in a position where the flat part of that square part that sits on the object, ( I know it's called something but I don't know what it's called)is already making contact with the pin before I start pushing down on it, and the bar is in a horizontal position. I hope that's clear. Well, I pulled and pushed and grunted, and pulled the damn press off the bench because I wasn't able to hold it down in the back and pull on the bar at the same time. All that.

    So, I sat down to think about it and it dawned on me, "I'll put the thing on the floor and use my leg to push down on the bar". Got that all set up where the shaft was level and all, and put my foot on the back of the press, where there is a big flat place, and pushed down on it with my other foot. I could feel it move!! So I got it out from under the press and looked at it and the end of the pin was near the end of the hole on the other side!!

    So I tried it again and again but I just get it to move anymore. Man, I just don't have enough ass!!
    So I went in the house and got my son. He's 6'2" and weighs about 265. I'm 5'9" or so and about 187. I'll hold the press down in the back by standing on it and have him push down on the pin with his huge leg. That ought to get it.

    WE DID IT!!!! It took a few going back and forth, pushing it in one way and it was to far, and pushing it back the other way until it was finally .515" on both sides!!

    Now I can put the shaft back in the truck and install the steering column! pressing in the pin 001.jpg After the press was moved to the floor. pressing in the pin 002.jpg Kinda dark in this shot, but it's just showing the end sitting on the plate over the narrowest slot. pressing in the pin 005.jpg Pretty damn close. pressing in the pin 006.jpg .515"
     
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  10. Raider L

    Raider L Full Access Member

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    I measured the pin and block like the factory book said to do it. It said that there couldn't be more than .012" difference between the two ways of measuring. You put a block on one side of the pin. And you measure the distance from the top of the block on one side to the end of the pin on the other side. You're supposed to put "...washers under the block...", but my end never had any washers under the blocks so I just put the block on the end of the pin and then using a vernier scale I took my measurement. It measured 1.810". Then I flipped the block to the other side and measured that side. It measured 1.810". In other words it's exactly the same side to side. That's pretty good for doing it by hand, well my son's hand.

    He's the one who pushed down on the Arbor Press and had to put up with me saying, "Well that's pretty close. Let's push it back the other way a little bit and see what that is." Back and forth we went. Then we almost got it one time and he pushed it to far. "Damn!" Then he pushed on it one time and said, "I felt it move a little. Let's check it." And sure enough it was right on the money. I think a few more times of going a little one way and a little bit more the other way creeping thousandths at a time, and he would have given up on me. We've all gone through it a million times, but he doesn't know anything about any of it. He just gives me a hand every once in awhile.
     
  11. Raider L

    Raider L Full Access Member

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    Preparing to install the intermediate shaft. Just some last minute fittings. steering column bracket paint inter. block alignment 001.jpg firewall bracket that holds the steering column prepared to paint. steering column bracket paint inter. block alignment 002.jpg steering column bracket paint inter. block alignment 004.jpg minor marks on blocks from wear. steering column bracket paint inter. block alignment 005.jpg And this one. You can see the hose I put around the seal so it will fit in the bell end of the coupler. It fits good and snug. It will keep out the grease from the inside. I'm still not going to fill the coupler up with grease. It does not need it. There is no way the intermediate shaft moves enough to need that much grease. The factory maint. book says: " 4. Apply a liberal amount of wheel bearing grease to inside and outside of bearing blocks and inside of cover." It doesn't say, "... fill bearing blocks and cover up with grease..." "Liberal amount" could mean anything. Me, I'm going to wipe grease inside and onto the blocks and inside the cover and be done with it.
     
  12. Raider L

    Raider L Full Access Member

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    And... steering column bracket paint inter. block alignment 006.jpg When the paint dries by tomorrow I'm going to start the column back in the truck.

    As soon as I get this last stimulus money I will schedule getting my transmission overhauled. Hey @Grit dog aren't you the transmission tech that rebuilds transmissions? How much would it cost to have my truck hauled to where you live and have you rebuild it for me? I want Torrington bearings put in it and a hardened sprag race put in it. And any other tricks you can think of to make it last forever. No, I know who it is, it'd @Olds68. Heck, both of ya'll might know how to rebuild TH350's!
     
  13. Raider L

    Raider L Full Access Member

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    I put the seal into the end of the coupler today. Man, it was hard! I knew I would have to push hard on the seal and that flat washer to get the wire clip into the slots on the coupler, but good gosh almighty!! I had put the shaft in the vice to hold it because I don't have three arms although I have wished I had for many years.

    I ended up putting the the bottom hump in the middle of the wire clip, but the I saw I wasn't going to get those turned up ends of the clip in the other slot unless I put one end into the other slot one at a time. So, that's what I did. But it was still real hard just to get one end in. Once I got one of the ends in I had to try to get the other end of the wire clip into the same slot where the other one was without disturbing the first one of the wire clip. All along I had to hold the end of the coupler with my chest to hold it in place in order to keep the seal from being pushed or pulled out of place while at the same time messing with getting that damn wire clip in place. I ended up holding the wire clip with a pair of duck bill pliers while pushing on the end of the wire with a screw driver. After about four tries I finally got it. all shaft parts and column ready to install 001.jpg This first pic is of the bottom of the wire clip with the hump in it that fits in the first slot. all shaft parts and column ready to install 002.jpg This second pic is of the ends of the wire clip that were so hard to get in. all shaft parts and column ready to install 004.jpg This third pic is the column clamp that secures the end of the column at the firewall. all shaft parts and column ready to install 006.jpg This pic is all the intermediate shaft parts that go to together.
     
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  14. Raider L

    Raider L Full Access Member

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    This is all the steering column parts that will restore my steering in my truck. I'll try to start all that back in the truck tomorrow. all shaft parts and column ready to install 007.jpg all shaft parts and column ready to install 008.jpg all shaft parts and column ready to install 009.jpg
     
  15. Raider L

    Raider L Full Access Member

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    I put the rag joint in the truck but I'll reserve photos until I start the intermediate shaft and column in all at one time, since you could do them one at a time I'd rather put both in so I can line all that up together. The thing I'm thinking about is making sure I get the shifting working together where the column shift is doing the same thing down at the transmission. I'm thinking it's either right or wrong and it's one of those deals where it can only go on one way.

    My wife said she saw where she got her $1400 gov'ment give away money in her account. She asked me if I've got mine yet? I said, "I don't know." I'll have to go to the bank Monday and see." If I do then there's my transmission overhaul money!! I now have enough money saved up and from the government to get all the big work done on my truck. And it's a lot to. When it gets done, especially the suspension work I'll take pics of it all. I'm going back in with a complete Energy Suspension polyurethane bushings bumper to bumper, which I already have in a box, and poly dust boots on everything like it was when I first rebuilt the truck. It'll look great! Except this time they aren't yellow like they were back in '95. Energy doesn't make yellow bushings anymore. They only make Red and Black, mine are Red. And it will handle good again to.
     
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