Well, why not?
The rust in the drivers kick board and firewall extended up to just below the steering column hole. I needed more room to work so I decided to remove the steering column tube. Whilst doing this I found a possible reason the horn didn’t work. Loose screws and connectors in the turn signal assembly!
The wheel was removed and then the steering shaft nut. Then the Grant horn plates & adapter hub before cutting (and labelling) all the wiring from the column. After removing the U bracket (holding the shaft to the bottom of the console) I was able to slide the entire tube up and out.
I then removed the two screws which allowed the ‘cup’ to be removed before pulling the cables up and out of the top of the column. I’m replacing the entire mechanism but will probably keep the under dash wiring. The inside of the shaft had grease and the remains of the old column seal which I removed before using a wire brush to get the worst of it out.
You can see the bushing in the picture above. It seems ok but as I’m this deep in I will replace it also. I’ve noticed that the two bolts have square heads which seem to lock the cover in place.
After sanding the column & cover I coated everything in rust inhibitor before a coat of primer and finally a few coats of Antique Heirloom & clear gloss.
Installing the turn signal assembly went a lot smoother than I thought. The new cables slide easily through the tube and out of the opening. I did forget to put the ‘cup’ on the shaft first so I had to remove the wires but they went through easily the second time also.
The upper bracket and the main bracket were sanded and painted. I then used a thin strip of the sound deadening material inside the bracket so that the main column wouldn’t get scratched to pieces.
I was able to install the rubber firewall gasket and the metal securing bracket with three screws (slightly different locations than stock) before sliding the column down the steering shaft and through the firewall gasket. The main bracket was reinstalled and hey presto the column is back in the car!