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I need schooling on Riviera Wood Steering Wheels


Seafoam65
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          Can one of you long time Riviera experts please enlighten me regarding Riviera

Wood Steering wheels. I've seen them for sale on ebay and there are several variants

although in the ads they just refer to them as Riviera wood wheels as if they are all one and the

same which they aren't. I've seen them with the center spokes straight across and with the center spokes

angled downward. Also on the straight spoke wheels, I've seen them with the metal strip in the middle of the

outer circumference and I've seen the same exact appearing wheels for sale without the metal strip in the

wood grip. What wheels were used in what model years? 

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That picture is correct for a factory wood wheel. Most of them are missing horn bars, but they are reproduced by a memeber here, look up buickbonehead. The horn guts are basically the same as other GM cars of the era, and CARS offers the internals as a kit. If your car is a 65 like mine with tilt, be sure and try to get the correct offset roll pin to cancel the turn signals, or seek out the right 65 hub. I have a thread on mine posted in here about getting mine to work. All the factory ones have the steel rim sandwiched between the wood.

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I think that if a picture is posted and the angle of the wheel to the lens of the camera shows the front to back offset, then sometimes it appears that the bars on the wheel are set at an angle to each other when in fact they're opposed to each other at 180°.

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              OK here are two Riviera steering wheels currently for sale......the first clearly has no metal ring

around the outer rim whereas the second clearly does have the ring. They are not the same. Were there

two designs used or was there a difference from one year to the next?

riviera wood wheel.jpg

riviera wood steering whhel 2.jpg

Edited by Seafoam65 (see edit history)
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Just my opinion.  The top one does have the metal rim it's just not a very good picture of it.  If you look at the bottom outside curve of the top picture you can see what appears to be a small white line running around the circumference of the wheel.  That is the metal ring.

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  • 9 months later...
Guest Mr Jones
On 12/11/2016 at 1:46 AM, Seafoam65 said:

              OK here are two Riviera steering wheels currently for sale......the first clearly has no metal ring

around the outer rim whereas the second clearly does have the ring. They are not the same. Were there

two designs used or was there a difference from one year to the next?

riviera wood wheel.jpg

riviera wood steering whhel 2.jpg

 

 

I know this is an older post, but having noticed my steering wheel has a few cracks in it I was wondering about the practicality of swapping in something like one of these, the top one of which is still for sale.

I would keep my original in a box for posterity as it is still in generally good condition.

Is anyone still making parts to make these walnut type assemblies complete?

I read elsewhere that member Buickbonehead was making these at one point but that was five years ago and I do not know if he is still active.

 

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On ‎8‎/‎27‎/‎2017 at 1:02 AM, Mr Jones said:

 

 

I know this is an older post, but having noticed my steering wheel has a few cracks in it I was wondering about the practicality of swapping in something like one of these, the top one of which is still for sale.

I would keep my original in a box for posterity as it is still in generally good condition.

Is anyone still making parts to make these walnut type assemblies complete?

I read elsewhere that member Buickbonehead was making these at one point but that was five years ago and I do not know if he is still active.

 

I bought my reproduction hornbars from him less than a year ago. Also supplied me with a nice, used center cap. Hornbars are top quality; won't ever break, made from cut steel rather than the pot metal like the originals.

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3 hours ago, jframe said:

I bought my reproduction hornbars from him less than a year ago. Also supplied me with a nice, used center cap. Hornbars are top quality; won't ever break, made from cut steel rather than the pot metal like the originals.

Buickbonehead's repo bars are excellent quality.  As mentioned, they're cut steel. One thing that is a little different is the profile of the bars. They do not have the small relief cut into the edges like the originals. But only someone who spends way too much time paddling with this stuff would recognize that.  Well worth the investment. 

 

No one has yet answered the original question.  

 

Ed

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Greetings!     BTW... the wheel is not made of wood. It is molded from a wood colored polymer. The ring rides in a groove around the rim.  IMO... the ring is missing from the top wheel. I believe what we are seeing on the left is light reflecting off the empty groove.( the ring should reflect enough light to be quite visible, as in lower pic.) I would avoid the ringless wheel. It will have an annoying groove under your hands, and a replacement ring may be hard to find. If you are lucky enough to find a wheelless ring it may be stretched out and will be loose in the groove.(like two I have encountered)  In fact, it looks to me like the lower wheel has a loose ring...it appears to bulge slightly at the bottom  As always, Buyer Beware! 

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Guest Mr Jones
14 hours ago, RIVNIK said:

Greetings!     BTW... the wheel is not made of wood. It is molded from a wood colored polymer. The ring rides in a groove around the rim.  IMO... the ring is missing from the top wheel. I believe what we are seeing on the left is light reflecting off the empty groove.( the ring should reflect enough light to be quite visible, as in lower pic.) I would avoid the ringless wheel. It will have an annoying groove under your hands, and a replacement ring may be hard to find. If you are lucky enough to find a wheelless ring it may be stretched out and will be loose in the groove.(like two I have encountered)  In fact, it looks to me like the lower wheel has a loose ring...it appears to bulge slightly at the bottom  As always, Buyer Beware! 

 

 

Thank you for the heads up

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On 11/10/2016 at 5:21 PM, Seafoam65 said:

          Can one of you long time Riviera experts please enlighten me regarding Riviera

Wood Steering wheels. I've seen them for sale on ebay and there are several variants

although in the ads they just refer to them as Riviera wood wheels as if they are all one and the

same which they aren't. I've seen them with the center spokes straight across and with the center spokes

angled downward. Also on the straight spoke wheels, I've seen them with the metal strip in the middle of the

outer circumference and I've seen the same exact appearing wheels for sale without the metal strip in the

wood grip. What wheels were used in what model years? 

Mr. Seafoam, I met an early member of the ROA last weekend in Philadelphia PA. I bought some cast aluminum wheels with center caps at a fair price. ( I do have to clean the up... a lot). The gent was friendly and had about 6-8 Riviera wood steering wheels along with mountains of other original stuff.

call Gene at(610) 359-8901 eastern time.

RRB

Edited by Red Riviera Bob (see edit history)
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On ‎8‎/‎28‎/‎2017 at 10:20 PM, Rivdrivn said:

 

They are around. Usually about $300 for a nice one

IMG_0817.JPG

Wish I had one of those nice trunk lock emblems to go on my freshly painted '65. Those things are DEAR. BTW, I found that same Riviera Hotel ashtray a few weeks back in an antique store in Lawrenceburg, Tn. :)

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  • 3 weeks later...
  • 4 years later...

Hi. Recently acquired a 1964 Riviera and a wooden wheel.  I need a horn bar though.  I reached out to the member who had been reproducing them, but he advises he’s been out of that for a while now.  I realize OEM originals can be purchased on eBay but, after doing some reading on this board, I understand they are of poorer quality and disposed to breaking easily.  Just wondering if anyone out there has a line on a reasonably priced reproduction.  Thanks in advance for the help.

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The OEM bar will last you a good while if you remember to push up on the bar from the back rather than pushing down on the front.  The breakage seems to fit the logic that the harder you push on the horn the louder it blows.

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Thanks for the replies; I appreciate the help.

I am apparently not permitted to send personal messages yet? on this board.

abandg, if you’d be good enough to email me at darinchow@hotmail.ca, so I can get the necessary information about payment and shipping, that would be great.  Thanks

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1 hour ago, Byondxtrme said:

Are the wood wheels same diameter and non-wood? I want a wood but few inches smaller since I have non-tilt column and want little more leg room without moving seat anymore. 

There are plenty of good aftermarket choices for smaller diameter wood wheels

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On 8/10/2022 at 8:32 AM, EmTee said:

Where did you get that wheel?  Looks great!

I bought a cracked up wheel from Steve Lorenzen and had my friend Paul do his thing with it. My perfect original hangs out in the basement safe and sound. Paul does these all by hand and is quite the craftsman 

 

 

26F00A3A-3A82-4EA1-A93B-7FA334F770BB.jpeg

58F847D8-77FE-402C-8505-AB9DA9556601.jpeg

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