Author Topic: Steering coupler- how to pull shaft into cabin?  (Read 229 times)


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Steering coupler- how to pull shaft into cabin?
« on: 25 December 2019, 05:08 PM »
I started to replace my bad steering coupler. I have
1) loosened the side of the coupler that holds the steering shaft
2) pried off the Benz center piece on steering wheel
3) removed the steering wheel
4) removed the large circle clip
5) unscrewed the turn signal assembly ( but did not completely pull the wiring)
6) unlocked the wheel via the ignition

With all of that done, I still can’t pull the shaft up to remove from the coupler. It only comes up about an half an inch by hand.

Am I missing something ( ie remove the 4 Allen screws and assembly) or do I just need to use the wheel to get the leverage to pull the shaft up?



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Re: Steering coupler- how to pull shaft into cabin?
« Reply #1 on: 25 December 2019, 06:39 PM »
Its been a while since I have done this job, but an inch and a half should be enough to get the clearance to remove the coupler below isn't it?
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Re: Steering coupler- how to pull shaft into cabin?
« Reply #2 on: 25 December 2019, 10:20 PM »
Yes you must remove the 4 in hex bolts to pull the unit into the cab. Careful to get a good bite on the bit as these bolts can be hella tight :o
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Re: Steering coupler- how to pull shaft into cabin?
« Reply #3 on: 26 December 2019, 05:21 AM »
The bolt on the coupler has to be removed, it fits into a notch on the shaft.
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Re: Steering coupler- how to pull shaft into cabin?
« Reply #4 on: 26 December 2019, 07:25 PM »
Great, thanks! Here is how I would go about doing it again step by step, feedback welcome.
1) Put car on blocks with wheels/steering straight.
2) To maintain alignment, mark/scribe of 1) the coupler and steering shaft and 2) the coupler and steering box. I did this to ensure I could put the new coupler in the same position.
3) Loosen both sides of the coupler. I would do this first in case I need to abort (ie couldn't get the bolts to loosen or strip). I would remove the bolts from the steering box side only, so that you can use the shaft to help pull it off the box later
4) In the cabin, carefully pry out centerpiece emblem from the steering wheel.
5) With ignition in lock, remove steering wheel nut. In my case it was a 27mm socket. Pull of the steering wheel and put the nut back on the shaft immediately. It will be helpful to pull on
6) Remove the plastic covering the turn signal/cruise control assembly.
7) Remove the two screws hold in the turn signal/cruise control assembly, and move it away from the column.
8) Look down at the steering shaft, there are two circlips over a bearing.  Remove the largest circlip. The largest circlip holds the bearing and shaft down below the surrounding plate.The smaller circlip hold the bearing down on the steering shaft  but does not need to be removed. There are 4 hex screws holding down the surrounding plate with the horn contacts, and these do not need to be removed unless the following steps don't free the shaft and bearing to move up the plate.
9) Mark/scribe the shaft and the plate held down by the four hex screws. I did this so that I could align and insert the shaft back in the same position. Don't mark the bearing since it will surely move.
10) Unlock the steering wheel by putting the keys in the ignition and turning the key so the steering shaft is unlock.
11) I was now ready to pull the coupler off of the steering box. This can be done by pulling on the shaft in the cabin (could use the wheel or block of wood drilled with a hole to fit on steering shaft) or pulling/prying the coupler off of the box. In my case, it was easier to pry from underneath with my son pulling in the cabin. This was the hardest part because the bearing is tight and the coupler is on tight. Once it the coupler is off the steering box, the shaft should go at least 3 inches into the cabin.
12) The steering shaft will go at least 3 inches into the cabin.
13) Remove the hex screw on shaft side, and slide off the old coupler.
14) Put the new coupler on the steering shaft in the same orientation as the old coupler and put on the hex screw. Do not tighten all the way, in case I need to undo.
15) In the cabin, align the shaft with the scribe/mark on the plate. The steering shaft should have turn signal "trigger" pointing directly at the turn signal assembly. If it slightly up or down, the turn signals may not switch off.
16) Under the car, pull/push the coupler onto the steering box. Use the mark on the old coupler/shaft/ steering boxto confirm that the new coupler is in the same position as the old coupler.
17) In the cabin, press the bearing down onto shaft and reinstall the circlip.
18) At this point, I put the steering wheel back on and reattached the turn signal assembly. I did a very slow drive in my neighborhood the confirm the turn signals and wheel alignment were correct. The shaft was a bit off, so I pulled the shaft back off the steering box, rotated a bit, and fixed it.
19) Tighten down the coupler hex screws on the shaft and steering box.
20) Reattach the turn signal assembly and steering wheel. In my case, the horn went on whenever I turned on the car which I fixed by fixing the horn pins (they were stuck).

Anyhow, there are a lot of different descriptions how to do this but none were detailed complete enough for me,  Specifically about the steering bearing, and that I need to completely remove the shaft side screw on the coupler to slide it off the shaft.