Celebration . . . and Frustration

I finished up the last elements of the steering column this afternoon. Attached the neutral safety switch. (The holes were stripped for the stock screws; spent an hour finding and modifying a bigger screw to fit without interfering with the shift column.) Also put on the new shift boot. In retrospect, the rubber boot needed to go on first, long before anything else, but no manual or forum tip mentioned this. Once everything else is in place on the column, a new boot will not stretch far enough to fit over all the appendages. I had to cut it to put it on, which really defeats the purpose of buying a new one.

However, those difficulties were forgotten when the column went back into the car. A twist and a wiggle and it all fell into place. I was able to insert and tighten the nearly inaccessible screws at the bottom of the column with little difficulty. The steering shaft even fell right into its socket. What appeared to be difficult turned out easy!

But, what appears to be easy is often difficult. Thinking I was on the downside, of this project, I slid into the driver’s seat and did a test shift; but the shifter was stuck. I immediately thought that there was something wrong with the detente and shifter I put in, so I began, once again, to disassemble the upper steering column. (Breaking a C-clip in the process, of course. Sheesh, I thought they were unbreakable!) Getting it partly disassembled, I could see that there was something else wrong. It was getting dark, but I think part of the swing-away mechanism is jammed up under the dash.Too dark to work on it now, and hell, it’s cocktail hour anyhow.

Photos, and more, tomorrow.

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