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Steering Column Mk1 Cavalier

Jason b

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Hi guys,

my first proper post on here... well, looks like I've gone and done it - just bought a mk1 cavalier (with a solid shell! - I nearly choked in amazement) with a nice slice of straight 6 swap semi completed, couldn't let such a nice project go to the scrapper!

However, I was wondering if anyone could describe to me how the steering column is constructed on a mk1 cav... basically the way this person has designed the manifold/downpipe means that the steering column passes very close to an exhaust pipe. I am concerned that if there are any silly rubber-donut-esque bits in the column like on some older cars that heating the metal part of the column will cause failure in no-time.

So really I am wanting to understand how the steering column is constructed from wheel to rack.

Blimey that was long winded!



p.s. I have yet to take delivery of the car, so I am asking this as I have no haynes or similar and have yet to start taking bits off the car to investigate myself.

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basically the column itself it totally inside the passenger compartment with only the bottom 1 inch approx visible into the engine bay. this bottom bit houses a nylon caged ball bearing to support the bottom of the shaft(the shaft passes throu this but is not fixed to it)it is located positively at the top of the column with a metal ball bearing circlipped into place & spring loaded lengthways into position by a spring under steering wheel.

the steering rack is bolted solidly directly to the front crossmember rather than on rubber mounts like some cars.the shaft that comes out of the steering rack has a flexi rubber coupling near the bottom then into a metal clamp joint. into this fits a linking shaft approx 7inch or so long with a metal universal joiunt near the top into which slides the steering shaft just coming out of the bottom of the column. a spring here gives some pre load to the bottom column bearing.

so assuming the exhaust doesnt pass too close to the bottom of the column you only realy have the rubber joint to watch out for ? ?

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Done this a couple of times and not had any ill effects from this. As above only big rubber bit is right above the rack.

One of my mates used his as a daily drive, this was the one where we went 2 into 1 directly below the manifolds.

The other I got my mate to collect some of those bolt together joints from an exhaust places scrap pile so one pipe we made up went from the rear manifold to a 2 into 1 made out of sheet between the cross member and gearbox (space the sump would be in if you convert to front sump and you should) other pipe from front manifold goes on wheel arch side of column and then to 2 into 1 but with a recycled joint so it can easily be assembled and disassembled around the column.

I used Monza rubber mounts as 50% bigger than Manta but the same design and as long as it doesn't rub the column on engine rock it's mostly right.

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