Jump to content

1920 K45 steering problem?


Recommended Posts

my 1920 is up on stands. With the wheels straight ahead I start turning the steering wheel left and it takes several truns until it engauges the wheels to turn left and while I'm turning the steering wheel it starts pushing the steering wheel itself up.  This also happens when I turn to the right.  But when I return from the direstion I'm going it screws itself back donw into the colum jacket.    Whats going on..?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Adjust it if you can. Whatever bearings it has to locate the steering shaft up/down (not the mesh adjustment) are loose or bad. It translates directly to steering slop, just as an incorrect mesh adjustment would. On some cars the column tube itself is threaded into the steering box, but I'm not sure about a K45.

 

If it won't adjust, I guess you will have to take it apart and see what happened.

 

Edited by Bloo (see edit history)
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Pull the box out of the car, and tear it down. Some boxes in the 20’s had pot metal shims on the sector, and cause this exact problem. I have never serviced a Buick box, but what you described means you need to take it all apart. Be prepared for finding a used box, or making parts. It can get expensive.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Don't do any of this. The way to tighten the steering on these cars is to tighten the really big nut on the column. It's a huge nut I'm guessing 1.5 inches or maybe even bigger, I'll go out and see, and report back.

 

Hopefully some idiot didn't paint the nut on your car. Actually, I'm guessing all the cars with painted adjustment nuts cannot be adjusted so they get crazy loose like this. Might have to paint some bulldog paint remover so you can adjust the nut.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

My 1921 K45 steering would turn fine to the right but about halfway thru the left turn it would bind and would not make a full turn.  I tried the special agriculture grease recommended here on the site but that did not improve it so I removed the column and steering box and sent it off to be rebuilt.  I got it back and I need to get it back in the car to see how it turned out.

Edited by chuckfmtexas (see edit history)
Link to comment
Share on other sites

From your description, your box is out more than an adjustment.  An adjustment is if you have say 2" of play in the steering wheel.  Pushing the steering wheel up - there is a major problem in the box.  Pull it out, put it on a bench and rebuild it or send it off.  They are not that complicated.  You should be able to tell what is going on if you look inside.  In the link is a rebuild procedure if you are going to do it yourself.   I found enough wear inside, and very thick grease, that iI was glad I went thru it.  I did replace one of the bushing.  I replaced a felt seal with a lip seal.  I have almost no play in my steering wheel.      Hugh  

 

 

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Buick used a JACOX (Jackson-Church-Wilcox) steering gear assembly.  Hugh is right, they are not that complicated of a unit, but they do have to be adjusted right.  There are two half-nuts in the box and they can be turned around so that when a person turns the steering wheel to the right the car turns left.  When my Dad rebuilt the front end on my car years ago, he was told about that and was very careful setting things back together.

 

Terry Wiegand

South Hutchinson, Kansas

AACA Life Member #947918

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

6 hours ago, Morgan Wright said:

Don't do any of this. The way to tighten the steering on these cars is to tighten the really big nut on the column. It's a huge nut I'm guessing 1.5 inches or maybe even bigger, I'll go out and see, and report back.

 

Hopefully some idiot didn't paint the nut on your car. Actually, I'm guessing all the cars with painted adjustment nuts cannot be adjusted so they get crazy loose like this. Might have to paint some bulldog paint remover so you can adjust the nut.


 

Any wheel that takes two turns to engage is not having an adjustment problem from wear. It won’t adjust. It’s a ridiculous statement. Many boxes have pot metal shims inside and they fail......fall out of position and cause this problem. Pull the box, tear it down. Boxes can bind and lock causing total loss of control, and driving off the road into a tree with a 1920 Buick wouldn’t be high on my list of things to do. We specialize in steering boxes at my old shop. We have done countless rebuilds over the years. Also we have built a box from scratch for a car, that was missing the factory unit. It worked out well, as the car we made the box for won best in class, at Pebble. It was a Duesenberg. 95 percent of the people adjusting steering boxes have zero clue. All box adjustments should be made on the bench. NOT IN THE CAR. In the case of the original poster, I would be looking for a used box before I do anything else. Boxes with the condition described above are usually so galled up, they can’t be repaired. Also, heat treating is critical to safety and performance in a box......get it wrong, and you can kill someone. So replacement parts must be correctly engineered.........thus it’s usually much less expensive to locate a good used box, rebuild it, and install. 

Edited by edinmass (see edit history)
  • Like 9
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Talk a breath everyone.

 

There is no harm attempting an adjustment first.  

If that doesn't address the problem then something more radical might be in order.

 

Let's keep the sarcasm and personal attacks out of this.

  • Like 3
  • Thanks 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

26 minutes ago, Morgan Wright said:

 

That's great, but since the thread is about Frank Wilkie's steering box, and not about Ed in Mass, why don't we stick to the topic?

 

Taking the steering column out of a touring car is very difficult, just be glad it's not a sedan like the K-47. With a touring car you can put the top down, and stick the column in the air to get it out after about 25 hours of labor disassembling everything and ripping half the car apart. With a sedan it involves removing the body from the frame. All because you didn't have this steering column adjustment tool, which my family made when we started forging tools in Ohio in the 1920's:

 

There is a certain amount of anonymity that comes with the forum and not everybody knows who everybody is.    I'm suggesting you listen to what Ed is saying.   A box with that much play is broke as well as dangerous.   It is not a case of adjustment being off.

 

 

  • Like 4
  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

It is important not to try and remove all the play in the stearing by overtightening the adjustment nut. Most of the  wear in the half nuts occurs in the straight ahead position,  If all the play is removed when the wheels are in the straight ahead position,  the stearing will lock up on full lock.  Many times when I have been removing the stearing boxes on my cars,  I have wished they were left hand drive,  as the starter/generator has to be removed to take out the stearing box on RHD cars.

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...