Home page
SPONSOR AD

Support our Vendors!  |  Advertise Here

Topic: Steering Upgrade

in Forum: C3 Handling Components


Already a Member?
Login
Not yet a Member?
Register for Free!

Steering Upgrade (1/49)
 1/22/24 3:16pm
Dad_Dude_361
Limited Member
Send Private Message

Palacios, TX - USA

Vette(s):
Red 1981


Joined: 1/22/2024
Posts: 19

Hello all, I have been stalking this page and finally decided to join. My father-in-law recently purchased a 1981 Corvette and seeing as how I am his mechanic the duty of making it drivable falls on me. I am an experienced mechanic; however, I have mainly worked on late 90's to early 2000's Japanese cars. The Vette is a new challenge for me. The moment I saw it I fell in love with it and hope to keep it in the family for years to come. The upside is that the engine and transmission seem strong, but the car is all over the road and reading the post on this page has led me to know that there may be many reasons for that. I can clearly see the rag joint is "really bad". The material in the joint is almost shredded in some places so I know I can start there. The power steering pump is new however I can see at least 1 leak in the rack and looks like there may be more. This car will be a cruiser and not a street machine, so I don't need high performance, but I do want to make it comfortable to drive for my father-in-law and mother-in-law. I will keep everyone updated with my progress and thank you in advance for any help.



______________

 

Our Sponsors help support C3VR
Re: Steering Upgrade (2/49)
 1/22/24 3:25pm
Adam WartellLifetime Member
Lifetime Member
C3VR Founder
Online Now! - Send Private Message

Eagleville, PA - USA

Vette(s):
Used to own a 1979 Corvette now owned by JB79


Joined: 11/1/2001
Posts: 17570

Hi Shawn.

I'm glad you found us and decided to join.  What specific questions do you have? (I couldn't quite pull out any specific asks in your post).  Pictures are always helpful too, if you have them.

We have a lot of knowledgeable folks here.

 



______________

-Adam Wartell
NCM Lifetime Member #1222
Founder: C3 Vette Registry 
C4 Vette Registry, C6 Vette Registry

My first Vette, now owned by JB79:

Re: Steering Upgrade (3/49)
 1/22/24 3:55pm
Dad_Dude_361
Limited Member
Send Private Message

Palacios, TX - USA

Vette(s):
Red 1981


Joined: 1/22/2024
Posts: 19

Specifically would I be better off going through the existing OEM system hunting down issues or could it be benficial to just buy a complete kit like the Borgeson or steeriod kit? Beside the new pump the steering system appears to be pretty old and worn.



______________

 

Re: Steering Upgrade (4/49)
 1/22/24 4:11pm
manchestersharkLifetime Member
Lifetime Member
Send Private Message

Equinunk, PA - USA

Vette(s):
1972 conv, 4-speed, 350, 200hp, numbers match, rally wheels, war bonnett yellow w/white top. good condition, nice driver.


Joined: 10/31/2007
Posts: 2376

There are certain contingencies in this area. Do you want to stay O.E.M.? Are you going to enter any judging events? Are finances a concern? The old system was good for the day. Better systems are available. It may be a better option to get a aftermarket system, and do it one time. Costs are more,  but are worth the extra money. D.I.Y. would save some money,  and take some time. It's possible. Just go slow..



______________


Click on image for full view

Re: Steering Upgrade (5/49)
 1/22/24 4:29pm
Dad_Dude_361
Limited Member
Send Private Message

Palacios, TX - USA

Vette(s):
Red 1981


Joined: 1/22/2024
Posts: 19

Not looking to stay OEM, not entering any contest. May drive it in a parade or two but no one is going to judge the car. Finances are not a great concern but not looking to waste money either. The steeriod kit is $2,500 and appears to be a great option. The Borgeson kit seems to be an OEM looking replacement at a third of the cost of the steeriod kit. I am also seeing these "renew kits" for around $400. I am mainly concerned with drivability and do not need "high perfromance" but I would like to do it once and be done. You Corvette guys are nicer and more responsive than the "tuner guys" I usually deal with on other forums. Thank you, I really appreciate it.



______________

 

Re: Steering Upgrade (6/49)
 1/22/24 5:50pm
manchestersharkLifetime Member
Lifetime Member
Send Private Message

Equinunk, PA - USA

Vette(s):
1972 conv, 4-speed, 350, 200hp, numbers match, rally wheels, war bonnett yellow w/white top. good condition, nice driver.


Joined: 10/31/2007
Posts: 2376

I have replaced the O.E.M. system on  my cars with new parts. No leaks or problems so far. Remember even if a aftermarket system is used,  there are other factors that be suspect for problems. Do the easy, less expensive things first. 



______________


Click on image for full view

Re: Steering Upgrade (7/49)
 1/22/24 7:03pm
Dad_Dude_361
Limited Member
Send Private Message

Palacios, TX - USA

Vette(s):
Red 1981


Joined: 1/22/2024
Posts: 19

That being said, the car does have a new pump. I am leaning towards installing a renew set along with replacing tie rods, ball joints, stabilizer bushings, etc.  That should make the car comfortable to drive. Thanks guys and I will keep everyone updated. I will have more questions as the car has many bugs...lol. Head lights won't go down, tach, speedo, fuel gage, etc. do not work. Many other little things that need to be addressed. Till we talk again, thank you.



______________

 

Re: Steering Upgrade (8/49)
 1/22/24 7:10pm
Dad_Dude_361
Limited Member
Send Private Message

Palacios, TX - USA

Vette(s):
Red 1981


Joined: 1/22/2024
Posts: 19

One more question, I hear tale of a guy who is a genius with rebuilding and blueprinting the steering gear box? Does someone have his contact information?



______________

 

Re: Steering Upgrade (9/49)
 1/22/24 7:30pm
manchestersharkLifetime Member
Lifetime Member
Send Private Message

Equinunk, PA - USA

Vette(s):
1972 conv, 4-speed, 350, 200hp, numbers match, rally wheels, war bonnett yellow w/white top. good condition, nice driver.


Joined: 10/31/2007
Posts: 2376

Not sure of whom you mention. All the small parts you mention will make a difference. A new box with a professional assembly will eliminate any problems later after a "You build it" ordeal. Take one project at a time, go slow, and do it once! Old car project ALWAYS snow ball. Plan on fixing several things to accomplish the intended goal. 



______________


Click on image for full view

Re: Steering Upgrade (10/49)
 1/22/24 7:38pm
Dad_Dude_361
Limited Member
Send Private Message

Palacios, TX - USA

Vette(s):
Red 1981


Joined: 1/22/2024
Posts: 19

May be a dumb question but is there a preferred source for these parts? I want to make sure to order good parts. The guru must have been from another forum? Everyone was saying how good his rebuilds are? His name is Gary and apparently he blueprints the steering box with the rebuild?



______________

 

Re: Steering Upgrade (11/49)
 1/22/24 8:09pm
manchestersharkLifetime Member
Lifetime Member
Send Private Message

Equinunk, PA - USA

Vette(s):
1972 conv, 4-speed, 350, 200hp, numbers match, rally wheels, war bonnett yellow w/white top. good condition, nice driver.


Joined: 10/31/2007
Posts: 2376

Ha Ha, No dumb questions,  only dumb answers. There are sponsors for our site. One is "Baers Corvette". They handle many good quality parts. Or there are catalog vendors we can deal with. Top Flight, Mid America, Corvette Central, to name a few. They can be found on line. Your choice. 



______________


Click on image for full view

Re: Steering Upgrade (12/49)
 1/22/24 10:20pm
F4GaryGold Member
Gold Member
Send Private Message

Grapevine, TX - USA

Vette(s):
1972 LT-1 convertible with factory air.


Joined: 8/26/2006
Posts: 1399

Dad_Dude_361 said:

One more question, I hear tale of a guy who is a genius with rebuilding and blueprinting the steering gear box? Does someone have his contact information?



His name is Gary Ramadi or GTR1999  on Corvette Forum.  He blueprints your steering box and it is better than brand new.

He is in Connecticut. 



|UPDATED|1/22/2024 8:20:09 PM (AZT)|/UPDATED|


______________

   

Re: Steering Upgrade (13/49)
 1/23/24 11:24am
Dad_Dude_361
Limited Member
Send Private Message

Palacios, TX - USA

Vette(s):
Red 1981


Joined: 1/22/2024
Posts: 19

What is the quality of the new unit steering boxes that are available? I am not looking to stay original or OEM so is there an advantage to rebuilding the original box as opposed to buying a new box?



______________

 

Re: Steering Upgrade (14/49)
 1/23/24 11:29am
F4GaryGold Member
Gold Member
Send Private Message

Grapevine, TX - USA

Vette(s):
1972 LT-1 convertible with factory air.


Joined: 8/26/2006
Posts: 1399

As I said, he blueprints the steering boxes to tighter tolerances than a new assembly line box. 

To me, a better way to go is to convert to the Borgeson box.  12:1 ratio vs 16:1 stock and you get rid of all that hydraulic stuff under the car.



______________

   

Re: Steering Upgrade (15/49)
 1/23/24 11:40am
Dad_Dude_361
Limited Member
Send Private Message

Palacios, TX - USA

Vette(s):
Red 1981


Joined: 1/22/2024
Posts: 19

The only pause I have about that is the need to "shorten" the column a few inches? I have not been able to determine if that is a matter of just tapping the steering column in towards the steering wheel or if there is more to it? If the Borgeson kit is a direct install then I think I would go that route, I have seen some post that refer to moving brake lines?



______________

 

Re: Steering Upgrade (16/49)
 1/23/24 11:53am
Dad_Dude_361
Limited Member
Send Private Message

Palacios, TX - USA

Vette(s):
Red 1981


Joined: 1/22/2024
Posts: 19

This may be my dumb questions again? As I understand it that system consist of the following components:

Starting at the end of the steering column: Pump is new on this car so not looking to replace

Rag Joint - Steering Gear Box - Steering control Valve - Steering Slave Cylinder - Tie rods?

The Borgeson kit replaces:

Rag Joint - Steering Gear Box - Steering control valve

Would still need steering slave cylinder and new hoses? 

 

I am also planning to replace tie rods, bushings, ball joints, etc. with a front suspension rebuild kit while I have it on the rack.

 



______________

 

Re: Steering Upgrade (17/49)
 1/23/24 2:35pm
F4GaryGold Member
Gold Member
Send Private Message

Grapevine, TX - USA

Vette(s):
1972 LT-1 convertible with factory air.


Joined: 8/26/2006
Posts: 1399

Also the steering cylinder. The hoses go from the pump to the steering box and back to the pump. 

This guy did it to his 74:

https://www.corvetteforum.com/forums/c3-tech-performance/4171768-borgeson-steering-install-on-my-74-a.html

 

Looks like the complete kits are $712.



|UPDATED|1/23/2024 12:35:04 PM (AZT)|/UPDATED|


______________

   

Re: Steering Upgrade (18/49)
 1/23/24 5:30pm
Dad_Dude_361
Limited Member
Send Private Message

Palacios, TX - USA

Vette(s):
Red 1981


Joined: 1/22/2024
Posts: 19

After a lengthy conversation with Gary R. I have decided that I am going to have the original steering box rebuilt and replace the control valve, slave cylinder, rag joint, and hoses as well as new ball joints, tie rod ends, and bushings. Should be a good time had by all..lol. Luckily, I am blessed enough to have a lift and a large shop to work in. More projects to come for this car in the future.



______________

 

Re: Steering Upgrade (19/49)
 1/23/24 7:33pm
F4GaryGold Member
Gold Member
Send Private Message

Grapevine, TX - USA

Vette(s):
1972 LT-1 convertible with factory air.


Joined: 8/26/2006
Posts: 1399

Good plan. 



______________

   

Re: Steering Upgrade (20/49)
 1/24/24 3:22am
73shark
Limited Member
Send Private Message

Overland Park, KS - USA

Vette(s):
1973 Orange Metallic Coupe (orig owner), L82, 4 spd (WR), PS, (A/C & PW (I installed from wrecked 73)), leather, AM/FM Stereo, ran with '65 FI unit earlier & will again some day.


Joined: 7/9/2003
Posts: 862

FWIW, the OEM steering box is adjustable for wear. The Factory Service Manual has the details. 



______________

1973 L-82 4 spd

Re: Steering Upgrade (21/49)
 1/24/24 9:53am
BillHanna
Standard Member
Send Private Message

Cana, VA - USA

Vette(s):
1975 Stingray 71 350 engine Flat top pistons Sniper fuel injection Hyperspark ignition Vintage Air air conditioning Borgeson power steering box


Joined: 7/3/2016
Posts: 319

I replaced my stock steering system with the Borgeson system and have been delighted with the results.

The steering is smooth and tight, and no leaks.

 



______________

   

Re: Steering Upgrade (22/49)
 1/24/24 11:51am
Dad_Dude_361
Limited Member
Send Private Message

Palacios, TX - USA

Vette(s):
Red 1981


Joined: 1/22/2024
Posts: 19

I have been on the fence about how to tackle this. The Borgeson system eliminates the PSCV so that is a plus. Did you have any issues collapsing the steering column? Another issue I have heard of is the Borgeson box damaging the existing frame mounts if you do not use a bracket that can be supplied by Borgeson at an extra cost?



______________

 

Re: Steering Upgrade (23/49)
 1/24/24 1:05pm
TonyCGold Member
Gold Member
Send Private Message


Vette(s):
1980 Coupe, Black exterior, oyster interior.


Joined: 11/14/2006
Posts: 41

I also have installed the Borgeson Steering box.  Fairly easy install.  The Steering column is made to collapse, so it doesn't take much to adjust it.  Just make sure to measure the distance you need more than once.  Collapsing is not difficult, elongating, not so sure how that would go.  It's good to get rid of the leaky hydraulic components and this also takes care of your rag joint issue. Steering is tight and smoooth, better than original in my opinion.  I don't see any issues not using the Borgeson stiffening bracket for a cruiser.  The unit will bolt right to the frame like the old one.  Using the bracket can cause a clearance issue with the mounting bolt heads in the wheel well, possibly causing the tire at full deflection to hit the bolt heads.  I used the OEM bolts instead of the supplied bolts, as the OEM are rounded and have less profile to hit the tire.  There are some good videos on youtube if you search for Borgeson C3 upgrades. 

Re: Steering Upgrade (24/49)
 1/24/24 1:31pm
73shark
Limited Member
Send Private Message

Overland Park, KS - USA

Vette(s):
1973 Orange Metallic Coupe (orig owner), L82, 4 spd (WR), PS, (A/C & PW (I installed from wrecked 73)), leather, AM/FM Stereo, ran with '65 FI unit earlier & will again some day.


Joined: 7/9/2003
Posts: 862

I always wondered why GM opted to go with the slave cylinder route for power steering on the Corvette instead of using the tried and true hydraulic, recirculating ball unit that they used for years on all the other cars. They would have saved several pounds of weight and complexity and it already has a basic manual recirculating ball unit. 



______________

1973 L-82 4 spd

Re: Steering Upgrade (25/49)
 1/24/24 1:35pm
BillHanna
Standard Member
Send Private Message

Cana, VA - USA

Vette(s):
1975 Stingray 71 350 engine Flat top pistons Sniper fuel injection Hyperspark ignition Vintage Air air conditioning Borgeson power steering box


Joined: 7/3/2016
Posts: 319

I already had installed a third-party tilt steering column that used "DD" shafts (one inside of the other), so there was no problem on the length.  The original steering column uses nylon "pins" to keep the shaft in place; the ones on mine were already collapsed.  This made it a bit difficult to push the shaft into the rag joint because the shaft tended to travel back up into the column.  I used a hose clamp to temporarily hold the shaft from being pushed back up while pushing it into the rag joint.  

I went to the Borgeson box after attempting to rebuild the steering valve, and could not get it to not leak.

I did not use the reinforcement on the frame, but I did make sure there were no existing cracks in the frame under the steering box.



______________

   

Re: Steering Upgrade (26/49)
 1/24/24 1:38pm
BillHanna
Standard Member
Send Private Message

Cana, VA - USA

Vette(s):
1975 Stingray 71 350 engine Flat top pistons Sniper fuel injection Hyperspark ignition Vintage Air air conditioning Borgeson power steering box


Joined: 7/3/2016
Posts: 319

73shark said:

I always wondered why GM opted to go with the slave cylinder route for power steering on the Corvette instead of using the tried and true hydraulic, recirculating ball unit that they used for years on all the other cars. They would have saved several pounds of weight and complexity and it already has a basic manual recirculating ball unit. 

I agree 100%.  I had a '76 Chevy pickup truck that had the simpler power steering all in the one unit.  This wasn't good enough for the Corvette???


 



______________

   

Re: Steering Upgrade (27/49)
 1/24/24 2:02pm
Dad_Dude_361
Limited Member
Send Private Message

Palacios, TX - USA

Vette(s):
Red 1981


Joined: 1/22/2024
Posts: 19

So that is my fear, I have heard so many horror stories about the PSCV, seems like whether you purchase a new valve, a rebuilt valve, or rebuild it yourself it is going to leak. 



______________

 

Re: Steering Upgrade (28/49)
 1/24/24 2:06pm
F4GaryGold Member
Gold Member
Send Private Message

Grapevine, TX - USA

Vette(s):
1972 LT-1 convertible with factory air.


Joined: 8/26/2006
Posts: 1399

Corvette box was the fast ratio 16:1.  I think the bigger cars and trucks got the 21:1 ratio.  That may be the difference.

The Borgeson box is 12:1 and saves almost 1 whole turn lock-to-lock. Much faster.



______________

   

Re: Steering Upgrade (29/49)
 1/24/24 2:26pm
Dad_Dude_361
Limited Member
Send Private Message

Palacios, TX - USA

Vette(s):
Red 1981


Joined: 1/22/2024
Posts: 19

At one point I was leaning towards having the steering box rebuilt by Gary R. and keeping the factory system. The issue with that is it seems there are no good sources to get a PSCV and the guys who have factory systems that do not leak are either lying, lucky, or really good at rebuilding the PSCV? I am not sure I trust myself enough and I am typically fairly confident. Not to mention the Borgeson system eliminates the steering slave cylinder which is also prone to leaks. I know there are guys who would never hang a Jeep power steering box on their shark, but it is sure looking like the best to option to me. I appreciate all the input guys, as soon as it dries up enough to get the car in the shop and on the lift, I will update everyone. 



______________

 

Re: Steering Upgrade (30/49)
 1/29/24 3:50am
Kentvetteuk
Limited Member
Send Private Message

, - France

Vette(s):
1978 L48 Auto. Red with Oyster Leather interior. Owned since 1990.


Joined: 8/21/2002
Posts: 79

I've been following thye development of this thread, but picked up on the mention of the "horror stories" about the PSCV.

I had heard all the same, but mine was beginning to leak too much and I decided a rebuild had to be worth a try.

I bought the "small" kit (in those days it was possible to buy a full kit with the metal internals, now not sold), from Corvette Central.   I watched a couple of videos and downloaded a Word doc of detailed instructions and set to work.

I took my time, worked methodically, laid everything out carefully as I dis-assembled and was extremely careful about cleaning everything and taking my time with the re- assembly, especially the fitting of the seals.

The job was actually a doddle.  It all went back nicely and (after I'd also put new seals in the ram) I was able to balance the valve with no issues.    

That must have been at least 5 or 6 years ago now and probably 20k miles.  Still looks like new, no leaks and it works perfectly.    

For me, the horror stories were generally unfounded.    I certainly wouldn't hesitate to do it again myself, if it does actually need it in my lifetime!

 



______________
Stephen J Irons
Corvette Club France
CCCUK Lifetime Member
Corvettes of Southern California
NCM Family Member
Red Corvettes Have More Fun!
Re: Steering Upgrade (31/49)
 1/29/24 8:39am
BillHanna
Standard Member
Send Private Message

Cana, VA - USA

Vette(s):
1975 Stingray 71 350 engine Flat top pistons Sniper fuel injection Hyperspark ignition Vintage Air air conditioning Borgeson power steering box


Joined: 7/3/2016
Posts: 319

I attempted to rebuild the valve on mine, and when I got it all together, is sprayed fluid!  I must have missed something on the rebuild, but I just gave up and bought a new valve.  Not long after I replaced the whole thing with the Borgeson steering setup. This is, in my mind, a much nicer setup.

 



______________

   

Re: Steering Upgrade (32/49)
 1/29/24 11:50am
Kentvetteuk
Limited Member
Send Private Message

, - France

Vette(s):
1978 L48 Auto. Red with Oyster Leather interior. Owned since 1990.


Joined: 8/21/2002
Posts: 79

I looked into the Borganson conversion a while ago, but I didn't like the concept of shortening the column.😱

I have never found the steering on our '78 to be "vague", seemingly the reason most people make the change.  When we bought our car 33 years ago, the system appeared to leaking everywhere - in fact the fluid was coming from the hoses to and from the pump.  Careful cleaning of everything made it easy to see that.  I've put a couple of sets of hoses on the car in 33 years since and did the PSCV and ram rebuild 5 or 6 years ago.   It's been dry ever since. 👍

I remember a friend told me years ago that 9 times out of 10 any fluid leaks are probably hoses, and in my case he was right!😄



______________
Stephen J Irons
Corvette Club France
CCCUK Lifetime Member
Corvettes of Southern California
NCM Family Member
Red Corvettes Have More Fun!
Re: Steering Upgrade (33/49)
 2/5/24 9:09am
Dad_Dude_361
Limited Member
Send Private Message

Palacios, TX - USA

Vette(s):
Red 1981


Joined: 1/22/2024
Posts: 19

Well, a full day of separating 40+ year old parts and a full day of installing the Borgeson upgrade and the steering is better. I think I may still need to do work on the rear end as there is still what I will call looseness in the feel of the car. I do have fluid dripping. So my questions are as follows:

  1. I filled the car with power steering fluid, turned the steering slowly side to side and repeated that process until the system was full. Is it possible to overfill the system and have fluid come back out of the top of the pump?
  2. I installed the brass inserts on the top of the steering box (I do not see leaks from the box). Does the high pressure line going in to the pump need the brass insert as well?

 

Thanks for all your help so far and thank you in advance for any further help.



______________

 

Re: Steering Upgrade (34/49)
 2/5/24 9:59am
manchestersharkLifetime Member
Lifetime Member
Send Private Message

Equinunk, PA - USA

Vette(s):
1972 conv, 4-speed, 350, 200hp, numbers match, rally wheels, war bonnett yellow w/white top. good condition, nice driver.


Joined: 10/31/2007
Posts: 2376

FULL, as in by the dip stick level or by eyeball looking in the reservoir? Do you have correct dip stick? Depending on the definition of FULL, I would think if it is overfull, it will boil out under pressure or when in use. 



______________


Click on image for full view

Re: Steering Upgrade (35/49)
 2/5/24 11:43am
BillHanna
Standard Member
Send Private Message

Cana, VA - USA

Vette(s):
1975 Stingray 71 350 engine Flat top pistons Sniper fuel injection Hyperspark ignition Vintage Air air conditioning Borgeson power steering box


Joined: 7/3/2016
Posts: 319

You should not need the brass insert at the pump.

If the reservoir is over full, it will likely spill out over the top as the system gets hot and the fluid expands.



______________

   

Re: Steering Upgrade (36/49)
 2/5/24 12:35pm
Dad_Dude_361
Limited Member
Send Private Message

Palacios, TX - USA

Vette(s):
Red 1981


Joined: 1/22/2024
Posts: 19

Thank you, I believe that I overfilled and as the car warmed up it began to overflow the top of the pump reservoir. A moment after I would accelerate, I would notice smoke coming from the engine compartment. I believe the fluid was coming from the top of the pump and burning off on the exhaust manifold. I should have some time today to investigate further. 



______________

 

Re: Steering Upgrade (37/49)
 2/6/24 12:10pm
Dad_Dude_361
Limited Member
Send Private Message

Palacios, TX - USA

Vette(s):
Red 1981


Joined: 1/22/2024
Posts: 19

Yes, it was overfilled. I sucked out the excess fluid using a vacuum brake bleeder. The car is much better. I installed the Borgeson steering gear box upgrade and replaced the inner and outer tie rods along with new adjustment sleeves. All moog parts. I have order the upper and power ball joints. That is my next set of questions for the forum:

  1. Do the control arms need to be removed to replace the ball joints?
  2. Are the ball joints riveted in? Pressed?
  3. Anything else I should know before I dive in?

Judging from the looks of it I would guess these are original ball joints I will be removing.

 

As always thank you in advance!

 



______________

 

Re: Steering Upgrade (38/49)
 2/6/24 12:43pm
manchestersharkLifetime Member
Lifetime Member
Send Private Message

Equinunk, PA - USA

Vette(s):
1972 conv, 4-speed, 350, 200hp, numbers match, rally wheels, war bonnett yellow w/white top. good condition, nice driver.


Joined: 10/31/2007
Posts: 2376

1 I didn't remove mine. Not necessary.  

2. They are riveted if O.E M. New ones can be installed with bolts. Which are included in the set. Well...In this economy, you may have to provide your own.

3  You'll need a couple of jacks and stands. A pickle fork, a Great Big Hammer, and patience.

 



______________


Click on image for full view

Re: Steering Upgrade (39/49)
 2/6/24 4:13pm
73shark
Limited Member
Send Private Message

Overland Park, KS - USA

Vette(s):
1973 Orange Metallic Coupe (orig owner), L82, 4 spd (WR), PS, (A/C & PW (I installed from wrecked 73)), leather, AM/FM Stereo, ran with '65 FI unit earlier & will again some day.


Joined: 7/9/2003
Posts: 862

Since you are replacing the ball joints, have you considered replacing the control arm bushings also?  If they are factory original, then they will probably need it.



______________

1973 L-82 4 spd

Re: Steering Upgrade (40/49)
 2/6/24 4:38pm
F4GaryGold Member
Gold Member
Send Private Message

Grapevine, TX - USA

Vette(s):
1972 LT-1 convertible with factory air.


Joined: 8/26/2006
Posts: 1399

73shark said:

Since you are replacing the ball joints, have you considered replacing the control arm bushings also?  If they are factory original, then they will probably need it.



I agree, at least the lower control are bushings.  The upper A arm is a bitch to get out but the lower is easy.



|UPDATED|2/6/2024 2:38:12 PM (AZT)|/UPDATED|


______________

   

Re: Steering Upgrade (41/49)
 2/6/24 5:02pm
Dad_Dude_361
Limited Member
Send Private Message

Palacios, TX - USA

Vette(s):
Red 1981


Joined: 1/22/2024
Posts: 19

Yeah, as I was researching this job, I realized it would probably be best to replace the control arm bushings as well. I have seen how difficult the upper control arm is to remove but I hate the idea of doing something halfway. I am lucky enough to have a lift in my shop and all the tools I could possibly need. As I have mentioned before this is my father-n-law's car and he had the lift installed for me to work on all the family cars, tractors, etc. He really wants this car to drive right so parts are not an issue, the only hindrance is the amount of time I can spend in the shop. That being said if anyone has any tips on getting that rascally upper control arm out, I would appreciate it. Next job is probably going to be the rear suspension components.



______________

 

Re: Steering Upgrade (42/49)
 2/6/24 7:13pm
manchestersharkLifetime Member
Lifetime Member
Send Private Message

Equinunk, PA - USA

Vette(s):
1972 conv, 4-speed, 350, 200hp, numbers match, rally wheels, war bonnett yellow w/white top. good condition, nice driver.


Joined: 10/31/2007
Posts: 2376

In my opinion, there are only two ways to remove the upper control arm. Either take the two bolts out of the cross shaft, or move the radiator support forward. Do not remove the bottom two bolts, one on each side. Rotate the support forward, and pull control arm out. 



______________


Click on image for full view

Re: Steering Upgrade (43/49)
 2/7/24 6:26am
Kentvetteuk
Limited Member
Send Private Message

, - France

Vette(s):
1978 L48 Auto. Red with Oyster Leather interior. Owned since 1990.


Joined: 8/21/2002
Posts: 79

I am currently in the "thinking about it" stage of replacing the ball joints on the '78.  

I'm hoping/planning that when and if I do get around to it, that I won't be removing the A-arms.   

However, I'm not entirely sure that the job is within my capabilities, the cutting/grinding of the rivets for the ball joints (from memory, the tops are original) is a bit daunting as I haven't done that sort of thing before!    That of course is not even mentioning the whole business of releasing the joints and supporting the car on the lower arm etc!😱  That all sounds a bit scary, but the thought of removing the spring to replace A-arm bushings (even if only the lower) even more so!

If an when Dad Dude tackles the job I'll be interested to hear how he gets on - and I'll be suitably envious of his lift and unlimited tool selection!

 



______________
Stephen J Irons
Corvette Club France
CCCUK Lifetime Member
Corvettes of Southern California
NCM Family Member
Red Corvettes Have More Fun!
Re: Steering Upgrade (44/49)
 2/7/24 9:41am
manchestersharkLifetime Member
Lifetime Member
Send Private Message

Equinunk, PA - USA

Vette(s):
1972 conv, 4-speed, 350, 200hp, numbers match, rally wheels, war bonnett yellow w/white top. good condition, nice driver.


Joined: 10/31/2007
Posts: 2376

It's really not that difficult. I have done MANY on the floor. No lift, only jacks. Just do your homework, and go slow. Get the front up off the floor far enough to allow the spring to relax. AND, if the spring is out, replace it. Never be a better time. A angle grinder will do wonders for the rivet heads. The job is a snowball effect. One thing leads to another. While I'm here, I'll do this. Be ready, and do your homework. You can do it! 



______________


Click on image for full view

Re: Steering Upgrade (45/49)
 2/7/24 10:03am
Dad_Dude_361
Limited Member
Send Private Message

Palacios, TX - USA

Vette(s):
Red 1981


Joined: 1/22/2024
Posts: 19

Springs are new, steering is new, inner and outer tie rods are new, tie rod adjusting sleeves are new. The only thing left to do is the control arm bushings and the ball joints. Then probably on to the rear end. I will likely drill the rivets. I had a run in with an angle grinder in my younger days that cost me a day of work and several stitches...lol. I will let everyone know how it turns out.



|UPDATED|2/7/2024 8:03:38 AM (AZT)|/UPDATED|


______________

 

Re: Steering Upgrade (46/49)
 2/7/24 10:12am
Kentvetteuk
Limited Member
Send Private Message

, - France

Vette(s):
1978 L48 Auto. Red with Oyster Leather interior. Owned since 1990.


Joined: 8/21/2002
Posts: 79

I've done the PSCV and ram, plus hoses, and the tie rods are new throughout, ball joints are due I suppose.  From what I can see I may be lucky with the A-Arms......

I've done rear end - new trailing arms, U'Js etc and had the diff re-built.  Plus about 20 years ago fitted a composite spring.  

Time to start reading I guess!😀



______________
Stephen J Irons
Corvette Club France
CCCUK Lifetime Member
Corvettes of Southern California
NCM Family Member
Red Corvettes Have More Fun!
Re: Steering Upgrade (47/49)
 2/7/24 11:31am
Dad_Dude_361
Limited Member
Send Private Message

Palacios, TX - USA

Vette(s):
Red 1981


Joined: 1/22/2024
Posts: 19

Come on in, the water is fine. It is just full of Sharks...lol. I have not even started to research the rear end, sounds like loads of fun.



______________

 

Re: Steering Upgrade (48/49)
 2/8/24 5:45am
Kentvetteuk
Limited Member
Send Private Message

, - France

Vette(s):
1978 L48 Auto. Red with Oyster Leather interior. Owned since 1990.


Joined: 8/21/2002
Posts: 79

Dad_Dude_361 said:

Come on in, the water is fine. It is just full of Sharks...lol. I have not even started to research the rear end, sounds like loads of fun.

Ha!    I just want to be sure I don't wish I'd got a bigger boat!😄

Actually, from what I have read so far, and based on my efforts, the rear end looks a lot easier!  😄 



______________
Stephen J Irons
Corvette Club France
CCCUK Lifetime Member
Corvettes of Southern California
NCM Family Member
Red Corvettes Have More Fun!
Re: Steering Upgrade (49/49)
 2/8/24 3:48pm
CBA Vette
Limited Member
Send Private Message

Tampa, FL - USA

Vette(s):
1977 C3 grey, stock 59,000 miles with A/C, T&T steering wheel, alarm, converted from grey interior to black and grey trim


Joined: 10/29/2016
Posts: 4

The best change I’ve made to my C3 is to remove all original steering and front suspension and replace it with a Sharkbite kit. This includes power rack and pinion, and coilover shocks. Drives and handles so much better.  



|UPDATED|2/8/2024 1:48:13 PM (AZT)|/UPDATED|
Our Sponsors help support C3VR