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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi everyone. I found some time and I was in the garage yesterday. I began the process of going from traditional steering to cross steering. I removed the header and I cut the steering rod above the steering box. The rod is now protruding down about 1.5" from the bottom of the steering column jacket. I removed the steering box and this thing is in really bad shape. It isn't frozen but I can get it to turn either. I'm going to take this apart over the winter and see just how bad it is. Anyhow, I'm mocking up the new steering. I'm going from the existing steering rod to a newly located steering box. From the box, it's then across to the passenger side steering arm. I looked at the Speedway catalog last night and made a diagram of what I wanted to do. I selected some parts that I thought would work but didn't order anything yet. My question is in re. to these parts which have a universal joint to them. How much of an angle can these joints accommodate and still be very functional?? I don't see my design being too radical or crazy, but I don't want to bind the joints either. It will have some angles to avoid the frame and then find its way to the steering box. Is there a rule of thumb when using them? I've seen a lot of street rods/customs that have used these joints and some of them had what appeared to be a real serious angle to them. Whatever I use will be 3/4" by 30 spline with DD rod. The ends will vary depending on where I use them. Again, I'm self-taught with a lot of this. My concern is how far off center, off plumb, can I take these universals. I'll do the best I can, but I can't make it perfectly straight. Thank you for any thoughts, input, Carmine.
 

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I would make a visit to the Flaming River Web site as they have some great info on the Joints you are asking about. They are made to be able to run at great angles..just make sure if you have two or more that they are phased correctly or you will certainly experiance binding! The Web site talks about that as well! The web site recommends the ideal angle is 15 degrees but they can go up to a 30 degree angle. You might have to use two or three to get the correct angle.
 

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Yes 30 degrees is about the limit without binding, and you can use more than one joint, but considering the price of joints I'd try to use as few as possible. More than two and you have to add a support or they wont work.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Vega steering box

Hi everyone. I'm still fooling with trying to get the cross steering plumbed in. It looks like I'm not going to be able to use the '65 manual GM box that I bought. I've looked at this for the past 2 days and there just isn't a place that I can see to fit it in. I've made a cardboard template and it just doesn't seem possible for it work. I still have the stock "A" frame in and there just isn't an abundance of room. I'm looking at he Vega steering box which appears to be much smaller and just might work. I read about these and it's recommended not to install them in a car weighing more then 3000 lbs. I think my '56 wagon is in the area of 3100-3200 lbs. Does anyone think it would be pushing the envelope if I could get one of these to work??? The stock gearbox is out of the question. I'm not going back to that short tierod again. For some reason, that setup just scares me. So, it's either cross or ..........Thank you in advance for any ideas, input, thoughts, Carmine.
 

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I've seen a lot of cars over 3,000 lbs. using Vega steering boxes, and not having issues. Maybe they will wear out in 50 years, instead of 100 yrs? ;)
I think you'll be fine.
 

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I've got a vega box, but I have a step down steering link, lots of ways to do it, but i'm still looking at doing a cross link, when I get around to it. made it myself. i used the longer corvair arm, which is about 1.5" longer than the vega one. it's like 7.5 vs 6 inches. better turning radius. but i'm also running a box frame instead of the stock a frame, the vega box fits right under the fenderwell headers...it's kind of tight. welded a plate to the top, drilled it on the sides, and added a stud to the back. one problem, if the bolts in the front part of the steering box loosen up, the stress has cracked the stud in the back once, from doing tight parking spots in town. I have rewelded the stud once in a years worth of driving. I put some lock tight on the two bolts in the front of the box with the lock washers I had before, vibrations like to loosen things up, and so do big blocks. that's how mine is set up now for now. i'm sure others have other ways of situating the box. 3400 lbs, fiber glass front clip and trunk.
 
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