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I have 1956 PS pump. Im wondering if its an upgrade/improved somehow version I should consider swapping with the 1955 PS pump currently on the car. It looks similar to a 1957 PS  pump with what look like cast cooling fins. Any Buick text documenting the switch?

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Back then the pressures and volume would probably be similar, but a smart feller like you could measure and check that out:D.

Your 55 pump will serve you well unless you frequently drive the Tellico River Road where I lost power assist in my 55 near the end.

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Thanx for input! Always lookin to improve an already great car, I try to pick the "low hangn' fruit". Since Ive got the spare 56 pump I thought worth considren if Buick did an improvement. The added cooling fins meant someone had an eye toward improvements at Buick. Fins for cooling? Couldnt hurt, right?

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-  The Buick Shop Manuals have all the numbers to compare. Go with the 1956 unit that pumps more juice per minute than the 1955 pump at lower RPMs and increased pressure.

-  FWIW. The 1956 steering gear ratio was also quicker than the 1955 and the lock to lock turns decreased by more than one revolution in 1956.  

 

 Al Malachowski

BCA #8965

"500 Miles West of Flint"

Edited by 1953mack (see edit history)
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Thanx! Very interesting. I will clean up and test the 56 pump. Im also gonna check the 55 sector to see if it will bolt to the 56 frame section I cut out, if so, Ill hafta locate another 56 sector and column, cuz I sold one not long ago, arggghh!

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11 hours ago, 2carb40 said:

Thanx! Very interesting. I will clean up and test the 56 pump. Im also gonna check the 55 sector to see if it will bolt to the 56 frame section I cut out, if so, Ill hafta locate another 56 sector and column, cuz I sold one not long ago, arggghh!

Let us know how the test goes.  Be aware that the discharge high pressure hose on the 55 has a reduced diameter section before the steering gear.  it will be noisy if not there.

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Before the test you should make sure the thrust adjustment on the shaft and sector is set properly. That has an affect on the sensitivity of the power application. A lot of boxes get over tightened by people thinking "I'll tighten this up". That's what will cause the twitchy, over assist feeling. Internal wear on the box will show up as small black pits on the surface of wear parts. That is where the thin layer of hardness has worn off and the underlying metal begins to wear. I would think inspecting for hidden wear would be the first step toward improving performance even if you have to take the box apart.

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  • 3 weeks later...
On 3/8/2021 at 4:30 PM, old-tank said:

 

Your 55 pump will serve you well unless you frequently drive the Tellico River Road where I lost power assist in my 55 near the end.

I assume that you are an East Tennessee resident if you drive that road often. 

Edited by Rusty Heaps (see edit history)
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What about a slightly smaller power steering pulley to turn the pump faster for a given engine rpm?  Not a huge difference, but probably 1/2" smaller diameter at the most?

 

I suspect that having a properly adjusted "low wear" gear is important, probably more than pump volume for a given line pressure?  Plus any "joints" in the steering column/steering gear interface that are still "tight"!

 

Enjoy!

NTX5467

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