Steering Wheel Removal

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Ruabon Red
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Forename: David
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Steering Wheel Removal

Post by Ruabon Red » Tue Apr 23, 2019 10:36 pm

I spent most of a sunny Bank Holiday Monday yesterday trying to remove an Astrali 6-hole boss from my steering column.

Soaked in penetrating oil, the nut eventually came, but do you think I could get the boss off - no chance, it wouldn't budge.

I'm replacing it (or rather, hoping to replace it...) with a 9-hole Moto-Lita boss and wheel, but it's not as straightforward as I'd anticipated.

I've searched the internet and watched YouTube videos all to no avail, so just wondered if anyone else has had similar problems?

Steering wheel pullers are available I see, but I'm loathed to buy one just to use it the once, although if others have found them useful I may have tyo bite the bullet and get one.

Advice and top tips gratefully accepted!
Ian Fozzard
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Re: Steering Wheel Removal

Post by Ian Fozzard » Wed Apr 24, 2019 7:44 am

Dave,
a couple of pointers which may be of some help:

# if your B has one of the two types of collapsible columns (from circa 1970 onwards) do not try to get the wheel or boss off by hitting from behind. You will shear the sliding collapsible joint in the column (this will manifest itself as in/out movement of the inner column, which should not happen!)

# For my 72 BGT which has an original wheel, the boss has six bolt holes to which the wheel itself is fastened. Not sure if you have something similar? I made up a heavy steel plate with six holes aligned with those on the boss
Then welded a large nut over a hole in the centre aligned with the end of the inner column. Bolting this in place I was able to pull the boss off the inner column with a large bolt through the welded nut. Something like this may be possible with the arrangement you are dealing with?

Ian F
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Ruabon Red
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Re: Steering Wheel Removal

Post by Ruabon Red » Wed Apr 24, 2019 9:06 am

Thanks Ian, it's a December 1970 GHN5 build (car no 120930), not sure on the steering column so have erred on the side of caution.

I do have the six-hole boss as you describe - presumably the original - so it's good to hear I'm not the only one to have had this issue and of how you eventually got it off.

Your fabrication skills are clearly far more advanced than mine though so it sounds like I need to invest in a puller
Ian Fozzard
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Re: Steering Wheel Removal

Post by Ian Fozzard » Wed Apr 24, 2019 9:55 am

Hi Dave. You probably do have the "semi-collapsible" column with the sliding joint on the inner part. As you may have guessed I did damage mine by trying to get the steering wheel off!
You could probably make up a puller if you have a drill and some heavy steel plate, you could probably devise something to avoid any welding.
I found that the usual two-legged or three-legged pullers did not work for me in getting the steering wheel off (difficult to get a purchase on the boss with the legs).
Ian F
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Paul Hollingworth
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Re: Steering Wheel Removal

Post by Paul Hollingworth » Wed Apr 24, 2019 7:25 pm

My B is a 71 GHN5 and I'm pretty sure it doesn't have the collapsible column. It also had an Astrali steering wheel when I bought it. I have fitted the original MG wheel (well its off a V8 actually) because I was finding the steering heavy at parking speeds. I got the Astrali off by jamming my knees under the rim of the wheel, pulling with my left hand as hard as I could whilst smacking the middle shaft with a lump hammer.
1971 MGB roadster & 2006 MGTF
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Ruabon Red
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Re: Steering Wheel Removal

Post by Ruabon Red » Wed Apr 24, 2019 7:30 pm

Thanks Paul,

The Astrali wheel isn't the most robust of things, so I'm a little wary of using it as a means of getting the boss off in case it snaps and leaves in a worse position!
Ian Fozzard
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Re: Steering Wheel Removal

Post by Ian Fozzard » Thu Apr 25, 2019 8:36 am

Paul - I have just checked the build date of my BGT - April 1972 - so I think the change to the semi - collapsible column must have occurred between your car and mine. The parts suppliers certainly state 1972 onwards as the date for this change, but there seems to be a little uncertainty over the exact dates.
As far as I can tell it is difficult to tell these two earlier columns apart without some dismantling - the later fully collapsible column is quite distintctive.
So Dave - looks like you have no danger of wrecking any sliding joint after all!

Ian F
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Ruabon Red
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Re: Steering Wheel Removal

Post by Ruabon Red » Thu Apr 25, 2019 10:16 pm

Thanks Ian, I noticed when I took the housing off that it does have nylon bushes where the column meets the dashboard, not sure if that indicates whether it's a collapsible column?
Ian Fozzard
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Re: Steering Wheel Removal

Post by Ian Fozzard » Fri Apr 26, 2019 7:37 am

Dave, the most certain difference between the two types is that the lower bush on the inner column is felt on the non-collapsible column, whereas it's nylon/plastic on the later type. This is only visible when you dismantle of course.
The two bushes on my column are black plastic/nylon. I believe the earlier top bush is white nylon - but I guess colour is not such a reliable indicator of the type (not included in the technical spec. of the part!).

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Ruabon Red
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Re: Steering Wheel Removal

Post by Ruabon Red » Fri Apr 26, 2019 12:03 pm

White nylon top bush on mine - probably the earlier non-collapsible version then :)
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