let’s skip the usual long-time-no-post bs and get you some news. A few weeks ago i aquired some steering column collars off a Duster, suspecting the Duster and it’s sisters, brothers and cousins use basically the same Saginaw steering column as the truck.
Thinking logically they should interchange, right? I found they in fact do fit together! That makes a cheap parts source for manual conversions that actually want to eliminate the automatics gear shift lever on the colum.
This conversion turned out to be very simple. Basically what you do is a complete tear down of the column until you’re down to the outer and inner tube (the inner is your old gear shift tube). From here on, replace the collars with the manual Duster/Dart/Demon /whatever donor you got them from parts and reinstall everything.
You might find that the emergency flasher switchs knob doesn’t fit into the upper collar, at least i did and i had to break out the Dremel tool with one of those 1/2″ 80-grit sand rolls and grind it to fit. I copied the truck collars opening with a pen and opened up the collars slot along the lines.
It’s quite a good fit now:
You may find that the donor columns bring a steering and transmission lock mechanism with them. You can easily transfer them, all you have to do is drill a 0.25″ hole through the steering shaft for the roll pin that locks the toothed plate to the shaft. Voila, steering lock!
Local authorities sometimes demand a built in steering wheel lock or other vehicle theft protection equipment like those ugly bars that interlock brake pedal and steering wheel.
These built in locks are pretty solid and sound awesome 😉
Here’s a litte insane video of the locking mechanism in action:
My 445 trans and the parts package are in the container and should arrive mid to end of this month. Can you say premature christmas presents real fast? ;D