Steering Column on '64 thru '66 Thunderbirds
This is the complete breakdown of the steering column
NOTE:----- The main item to identify is the "Nylon Bushing" at the top of the picture. This is the bushing that disintegrates causing much slop in the shifing tube. The column must be removed from the car to properly replace this bushing.
ALSO NOTE that the Nylon Centering Cone located at the bottom of the column actually does no more than keep the dirt out of the column end. This is not a critical part.
This picture shows the end of the steering column where it comes thru the firewall and connects to the gearbox. You can see the coupler that it connects with. You can also see the arrow coming down from the top of the picture - - - - - this is right where that "Nylon Bushing" is located. If you can locate that lever on your car and wiggle it you will be able to tell if that bushing is bad. When it is bad the tube will flop around inside the outer steering column tube.
OK, this is a bit different. Now we are looking at the upper part of the column where the signal light switch is located. If your steering wheel is able to be wiggled up and down any amount at all then you probably have a bad "Insulator" on the Upper bearing (the one that has a line but no name) right below the signal light switch.
Photos credit of Ford Thunderbird Shop Manual for 1965
These are the parts that are discussed in the Tech Tip
lower left is the Insulator located up by the signal light switch
top center is the Nylon Centering Cone
lower right is the Nylon Bushing
All these parts are available from Thunderbird Ranch at the present time.
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