Midwest Tony

1957 Steering Wheel Play

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Hello.  First post here.

 

Recently purchased a restored 57 TBird.  Everything looks fabulous and can't wait for better weather to drive it.  When I did drive a bit in the Fall, I noticed some play in the steering wheel.  What is "ok" in terms of play?  How much it too much.  What should I expect.  

 

I've never owned a classic so I'm used to modern vehicles which are tight.  Don't want to overthink or over-worry this.

 

Thank you in advance for all the guidance.  

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If you are not familiar with automobile front ends, I would suggest you take it to a front end shop that has some one who is familiar with the 50's front ends and have them check the various components for any excessive "play".   Could be the steering box or any other component.

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Do as Paul suggests---just remember you are driving 50's technology.  My '56 Thunderbird does not handle anything like a modern car.  Driving a vintage car makes you realize how far automotive technology has advanced in 63 years.  Enjoy your '57 Thunderbird!

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Lots of restored cars have things like steering neglected.  So they look brand new,  but the person restoring it spent the money on paint chrome and interior.  In many restorations,  mechanical parts come in last. I have a friend with a shop and that's all they do is fix "restored" and modified cars that look great but never got to the final stage of being fixed. 

Lots of people hate to spend money on mechanical work because they don't plan on driving it much and it feels like money thrown down a hole for those people because they can't see it, like they can the other stuff. 

The good thing with something like steering is it's very fixable and usually not terribly expensive compared to something like a tranny rebuild. 

If you get it to a good front end shop have it aligned as well. I believe it can be aligned on a fairly modern machine (some old cars can't) as I had mine done on one when I had it.  It was way out.  The guy took a pile of shims out. 

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