Need help/feedback for steering column!

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Trigger

Not-quite-so-new-guy
Apr 27, 2019
22
13
Denver, NC
I know this subject has been gone over before a million times. I need some clarification though from someone who has actually done it and knows what im gonna be looking at with it apart. I've read through 25+ threads asking some of the same questions I had originally. I have the tools to complete the job except pivot pin remover and lock plate tool but I can pick them up easily. Anyways my question is while I'm in there is there anything I should replace? I'd like to only have to do this once! The tilt column is loose but not locking up like I've seen in some threads. Just floppy. It will still lock in place but with some up and down movement. Just trying to get an idea for how I should tackle this job before I even start. If I need a kit like the one pictured on Amazon, or the kit like on mikesmontes? Won't necessarily buy either of those but for reference they are fine for someone to provide some feedback. I know some people have said you just need to Loctite the 4 bolts. I just want to ensure I'm replacing sh*t that might also be bad or worn out. I want to do it once and have firm, crisp response from the column after. Any help would be greatly appreciated fella's. Thanks
 

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69hurstolds

Comic Book Super Hero
Supporting Member
Jan 2, 2006
4,240
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Can only guess at the year make and model since everyone seems to think people can read minds, but GENERALLY SPEAKING.....

If you're going in, replace the pivot sphere/spring. It's a mightaswell piece that if it wears completely out, you'll get clunking up top and you'll be yanking it apart to replace it anyway. GM p/n 07844652 or equivalent for G-body.

If you're diving all the way in, replace the bearings too. If your switches are good, you can simply reuse, but if your turn signal switch plastic or wiring looks dubious, think about replacing that too. Some of the stuff you can still get new, some you can't. But you can usually find all the pieces parts to make yours new again. So don't lose or break anything you don't have to unless it's total junk. Some of the used prices for some of this stuff can be scary as well. Upgrade bearing on the bottom end is probably a good idea. Make sure to check if it's a 3/4" or 1" center shaft size. Usually it's 1".

To me it just sounds like you need to tighten up the 4 bolts on the tilt housing based on your description. Common issue of coming loose over the years, unfortunately. To get to it, though, you pretty much need to disassemble everything to get to it. Last picture here in the following article shows the 4 bolts that are probably causing your problems.

http://www.fieros.de/en/articles/steering.html
 

Trigger

Not-quite-so-new-guy
Thread starter
Apr 27, 2019
22
13
Denver, NC
My bad man. I've been jumping through 70+ different threads plus g body Facebook so I apologize. Car is a 87 Monte Carlo LS. Completely stock. Just read through what you said. Thanks man. I appreciate it. That helps me start to get my stuff together. I won't know what the switches or wiring on the inside look like until it's apart but on the outside it's all in really nice shape. Everything works. Just have the flop. Wanted to make sure while I got it off that I replace anything that might need it. I know my grandpa never had it apart. I don't wanna have to pull all this apart again after this. Even if it costs a few extra $$'s.
 

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Longroof79

Rocket Powered Basset Hound
Oct 14, 2008
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Gainesville, Fl
Chances are you may not have to replace anything, other than grease the bearings and gain access to the four torx head bolts and Loctite them with the red stuff. Again, you'll have to make that assessment once you open it up.

When I had my Monte Carlo tilt column apart, that's pretty much all I had to do to it other than repaint the column to match my interior.
It's been about 10 yrs or more and it's functioning like it should.
 

Trigger

Not-quite-so-new-guy
Thread starter
Apr 27, 2019
22
13
Denver, NC
Chances are you may not have to replace anything, other than grease the bearings and gain access to the four torx head bolts and Loctite them with the red stuff. Again, you'll have to make that assessment once you open it up.

When I had my Monte Carlo tilt column apart, that's pretty much all I had to do to it other than repaint the column to match my interior.
It's been about 10 yrs or more and it's functioning like it should.
That's good to hear. I haven't gotten around to having the title switched over and all that yet do I have time to take a look once it's apart. I'm OCD about labeling stuff when I take it apart. Or I will separate everything based upon where it came from. I just didn't want to get it apart and then find out I would have been better off replacing something that was worn out but I would have needed to order it or get it from parts store. Happens to be 1st GM column I've needed to pull apart.
 

Longroof79

Rocket Powered Basset Hound
Oct 14, 2008
11,058
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Gainesville, Fl
They're not really difficult. It's a matter of paying attention to how it's assembled and having an exploded illustration nearby couldn't hurt.
Here's a site that I found helpful. http://www.fieros.de/en/articles/steering.html I know it's for a Fiero, but it's basically the same animal.
If I recall correctly, I used a small threaded bolt with a slide hammer to remove the pivot pin.

Oh, and having a touch of OCD is not entirely a bad thing, especially when you're taking things apart that will eventually have to be reassembled again.
 

Trigger

Not-quite-so-new-guy
Thread starter
Apr 27, 2019
22
13
Denver, NC
Yea I'll just send some of the exploded view illustrations to my printer and take them with me down to the shop. That way I'm not trying to hold my damn phone and do it. I've tried that working on the Jeep and broke two phones. I think the wife would kick my *ss if I break another one while working on something. Haha. I'll print em off and hang them up on a small corkboard I have and prop it over in the passenger seat. I have my magnetic tray with dividers I built for it. So alot of stuff can go in there. I like that just wrap a piece of painters tape over in half on stuff and write real quick in a sharpie what it is and where it goes. If something looks really complicated I'll get one of my daughters to snap pics on the phone of it from a couple different views. That's how I've tackled stuff in the past. I would have already began to attempt the repair but I need a steering wheel puller, the lock-plate puller, and I guess a pivot pin remover. I'm sure I can find something for the pivot pin in the shop. I have a jaw/gear puller too. But if I'm already purchasing the lock plate tool and the steering wheel remover than why not get the pivot pin also. I'd like to swap out my steering wheel at some point down the line so I'll keep the stuff. If someone is within driving distance to me I could help someone with it also. Thanks for the info though Longroof. I appreciate it man, I really do! I'll take some pics and post some progress. Maybe a little tutorial could help others a little more than what I found. Who knows.
 
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Longroof79

Rocket Powered Basset Hound
Oct 14, 2008
11,058
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Gainesville, Fl
Good luck with it, Jeremy.
I'm sure you'll do just fine. I use a simple wheel puller which consists of a steel disc with a variety of different slots and bolts. I have removed steering wheels before using a hammer and loosening the nut till it's even with the top of the threads. I've used that method only when pulling steering wheels at the junkyard. It generally works like a charm, but doing it on your own car is kinda risky.
However, I would strongly recommend getting the lockplate/ snap ring puller. I have seen the pivot pin remover before at one of the local auto parts shops. I believe they're made by Lisle. I should've picked it up when I saw it.
 

69hurstolds

Comic Book Super Hero
Supporting Member
Jan 2, 2006
4,240
113
There's a pretty good video of a steering column rebuild, albeit a column shift, but it's essentially what you would have to do to rebuild yours.

Review it and get comfy with what's going on and it will help you. If the column isn't a high mileage one, you may just be able to get away with tightening up the 4 bolts, and cleaning and re-greasing the bearings, etc. without a whole lot of $$. It's all up to you. But I definitely agree, if you have it apart and already have the bearings and parts already, use them.

 
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Streetbu

Know it all, that doesn't
Supporting Member
May 22, 2011
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Central NY
I had to do this decades ago on a previous Malibu I owned. I was so concerned about it but the car was almost undrivable it was so loose. Ended up taking me about an hour in the parking lot with some very basic hand tools. I only removed the screws and put loctite on them you don't have to go as deep as people think. There is enough room to move the shaft off to one side and tighten the bolt, then move it again and tighten another. Repeat until done... Don't replace parts and make a bigger deal out of it than needs to be. Gotta have a magnet on a stick, you WILL drop a screw or two. Oh and a good light. Pays to vacuum the carpet before you even start. That way when you do drop something, you can find it quicker Hahaha
 
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