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Steering Column Switch (inc Ignition Switch) Repairs 101

Discussion in 'Fuel System & Electrics' started by Doc, Nov 8, 2008.

  1. Doc

    Doc Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,902
    Location:
    Gunnedah
    There is a new Kombi in Doc's household a 1974 1800 Kombi called Myf (Myfanwy).
    Kombidaughter is keen for me not to do toooo much work on her as this is what happened to her first Kombi and the next thing she new she wasn't allowed to drive it.

    The Kombi was in much need of TLC and so there is a great list of jobs and so after fixing her two speed gearbox, crumbling exhaust, krumbling lights and non existing fuel gauge and non opening sliding door, I got up to the Steering column.

    Steering Column removal
    1. Prise off horn button
    2. Unclip spade connector
    3 24 mm socket to steering column ...... pray that you don't have the type that needs a puller and then pray that if you do have the easy to come of that its not stuck and needs a puller
    4. Now go to under the lower plastic cover o the steering column and pull the three sets of cables ..... pull them straight down they should come out easy.
    5. Now wearing a headlight and looking up under the plastic shroud of the steering column
    and there are two screws holding the cover in place (phillips head) don't remove them yet just find them.
    6. Now is the tricky bit.........Aproaching the steering wheel from the front seat on the left side on the lower plastic cover you will find a hole in the plastic moulding and when you look in the whole you will see the rounded head of a stud (looks like a rivet) If it has a hole in the centre then someone has been there before. Spray the stud with WD40 or equivalent. For the record it is not a rivet or a stud but a shear bolt......A bolt that shears its head off when is tightened to stop thieves from removing your igntion switch ohhh and your Kombi.
    7. Wash your hands.....deliver a baby and then go and buy some easy outs (only because I can't remember where I left mine ....mental note to self must be more tidy and organised)
    b.) Easy outs are bought from your local hardware shop in the section that sells drill. They come in numbered sizes eg 1,2,3,4,5, . They will be the cheapest part of the project my suggestion is you buy 1 of every size! They look like a cone shaped drill with a reversed thread. If you read the packet you will see that they state what size hole you need to drill for what size easy out. The idea is you take a normal drill and drill into a bolt that has lost its head or you cant get anything on its head or in this case into a shear bolt. Normal bolts tighten clockwise as do drills twist/drill in. Easy outs then are inserted into the pilot hole and twist in counter clockwise. They then bite into the metal of the pilot hole you then put a spanner or vice grips on the shaft of the easy out and continue to turn it counterclockwise. Hopefully the easy out jams in so hard the bolt then starts turning counterclockwise and comes out (errrrr easily)

    [EDIT: Some additional info from a related thread, Post by T1 Terry:
    I discovered that the ignition switch part comes out without having to remove the whole column or disconnect the indicators and headlight switch.
    Steering wheel off, 4 Phillips screws out of the mount bracket from underneath, slide the column tube up the steering shaft far enough to lean the column to the left. A small screw holds the ignition switch in place, take that out and loosen the 2 locating screws up inside the mounting screw holes closest to the column. The steering lock assembly can be moved far enough to get the old plastic switch out and the new one in. swap wire for wire in the plastic plug, re-tighten the locating screws to hold the steering lock in place, swear a bit and finally get the little switch locking screw back in and then put it all back together. ]
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 27, 2017
  2. Doc

    Doc Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,902
    Location:
    Gunnedah
    Now
    If the shear bolt has not been pre drilled (someone hasn't done this before). You need to get your Number 2 Easyout .... read on the packet the size of the pilot hole ........and then take a centre pop and hammer a dint into the shear bolt head so when you drill the pilot hole the drill wont slip. It is important to try and drill in the centre of the shear bolt and in the same direction as the shaft but its not hard. The depth needs to be at least 4-5 mm.
    Next take your easy out and wind it in your pilot hole counter clockwise. New easyouts are sharp and clean and you will find that it bites easily by hand now get you vice grips/spanner and continue to rotate counterclockwise and the bolt should come out (remember you have presprayed it with penetrating oil before you went and delivered the baby). (possible problems are that the pilot hole is not deep enough and the easy out will not bite.... drill the pilot hole deeper. If you still cant get the shearbolt out go up a size in easy out redrilling the pilot hole and using the bigger easy out..... I needed to go up to a size 4!
    9) Now ....with the shear bolt our lift all the steering column plastic shroud and innards up and off the column itself !!!!! The indicators and wipers etc will all come away in one piece and you can seperate it in a more comfortable environment.
     
  3. Doc

    Doc Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,902
    Location:
    Gunnedah
    With the guts of the steering wheel out you can go to town. If your battery seems to just turn your engine over try this
    1. See Roy and buy a new ignition switch ($16).
    2. From the underside of the housing and under the igntion key barrel you will see a white nylon block with some big spade connectors. It is held to the key barrel by one small screw ......remove it put the new one in and woofter you will be amazed how your engine turns over!!!!
    3. I also changed the ignition key barrel (more complicated)
    4. Wipers switch ( I thought the wiper motor was gone as the wipers just moved slowly ....... mate there is nothing wrong with them as now they are like brand new)
    5. The indicator switch now works and cancels etc.
     
  4. Doc

    Doc Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,902
    Location:
    Gunnedah
    Reassembly

    Reassembly is just the reverse
    Except ......

    The shearbolt
    The shearbolt is what adjusts the electics to the steering wheel
    1. To high and your horn will come on around corners and you'll get a horrible grinding sound as you turn the wheel
    2. To Low and no horn and no self cancelling indicators.


    With my shear bolt I cut a slot in the top for a blade screw diver with my trusty dremel tool.

    So now
    you are up to the stage you have put innards and plastic housing that has already been reassembled back on your steering column..... put your steering wheel on and tighten it up.

    Now lift the plastic housing up until it is 2 mm away from the steering wheel. With it being held there with a spare piece of anatomy replace the shearbolt and tighten it up with a big bladed screwdriver!

    Check you can use high beam without the horn coming on or turn corners.....
    If your indicators don't cancel the gap between the housing and the wheel may be tooooo big or you put your steering wheel 180 degrees in the wrong direction or if you didn't change the indicator switch it has a broken nylon lug
    Have fun
     
  5. kenhell

    kenhell New Member

    Messages:
    54
    Location:
    Rockdale, Sydney
    Hi Doc, read your informative posts on the steering column switch repairs and the ratwell post also.Have to say it made replacing the indicator arm and the wiper arm on my 76 all the easier, thankyou .
     
  6. Doc

    Doc Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,902
    Location:
    Gunnedah
    Good to hear I would change the information now and tell you to replace the shear bolt with a hex socket head bolt ....much nicer
     
  7. oldman

    oldman Super Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    8,026
    Location:
    Avalon Beach NSW
    Just used this thread of Doc's as a guide for the replacement of the ignition switch today…..easy to follow & very helpful.
    I would also add a couple of additional things that I found:
    1. If your windscreen washers are activated by a stalk on the column, you'll need to remove the two rubber wiper/washer hoses from the steering block before trying to pull up the assembly …..otherwise you'll be having a tug-o-war with them….:rolleyes:
    2. You MUST have the ignition switched to the "on" position ,(as if the engine was running), before you can remove the assembly from the steering column….if you don't, you'll spend a bit of time - and a lot of inapropriate language - trying to work out what is stopping everything from sliding upwards…….it's the steering lock mechanism….:rolleyes: It'll slide up a bit…but no further.:mad:
    Not sure if those are peculiar to later bays - Doc's original post was about a '74 - but once those two bits were sorted, replacing the ignition switch was very straight forward & simple.
    Cheers,
    Mark
     
    Last edited: May 9, 2016
  8. oldman

    oldman Super Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    8,026
    Location:
    Avalon Beach NSW
    ....and don't forget to test drive before heading out in the traffic.....
    Drove to work with the steering wheel 90 degrees out....:rolleyes:
    Easy enough to rectify....but ........:oops:
    Cheers,
    Mark
     
  9. Grantus

    Grantus Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    14,658
    Location:
    Southern ACT
    Or just mark the position of the wheel to the column, before removing, so you know which spline to put it back on too...;)
     
  10. oldman

    oldman Super Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    8,026
    Location:
    Avalon Beach NSW
    Which would be sensible.......I thought I had carefully laid the wheel to the side, in its correct orientation....what I didn't consider was that the wheels weren't dead ahead....
    Cheers,
    Mark
     
  11. cbus

    cbus Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    10,895
    Location:
    sunshine coast
    :rolleyes:

    Chippies?
    Just brace the wheels,
    Get a big pipe to lever (needs to be long to overcome the spline) the steering wheel into position.
    Big drill to run a couple of batten screws thru column/steering wheel to secure in new position.
     
    oldman and syncro like this.

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