Sloppy Intermediate Shaft to Column Connection

Discussion in 'Suspension, Steering, Brake & Wheel Topics' started by Ratty_81, Feb 23, 2021.

  1. Ratty_81

    Ratty_81 Member

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    My 81 has a lot of slop at the connection to the column. It's like it flops around/pivots around the through bolt. Is this normal for the DD type joint?
    Also, what boot do I need to repair this? It's the new style without the circlip. Will the generic 70-81 boot work?

    Thanks!
     
  2. Gasoholic

    Gasoholic Veteran Member

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    My 78 was real sloppy when I bought it. Rag joint and DD shaft both.
    I got rid of the stock intermediate shaft and made one from parts I picked up from Borgeson and Flaming river. Drove it around for awhile like that it was nice and tight.
    Now I'm rebuilding again and setting up for drag racing so I went to manual. I posted a lot of pics about it in my build thread if you want to see what I did.

    If your looking to keep it stock, have you tried NPD? They carry quite a bit of parts for it.

    If you want to make it better, check out Flaming river and Borgeson web sites. They have anything and everything you could desire to build your own shaft. Flaming river has billet joints that are very nice. Borgeson is a little bit cheaper stuff.
     
  3. Zee

    Zee Veteran Member

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    Gasoholic likes this.
  4. Ratty_81

    Ratty_81 Member

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    Thanks for the replies. Really don't want to spend the money on a new I-shaft since the car is a sh1tbox, Mainly just curious if there's something wrong with the connection at the column or if they're all like that.

    NPD only carries the rag joint. Classic industries has the whole shaft for $130 or so.
     
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2021
  5. DrPepper

    DrPepper Veteran Member

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    I had the same problem w/ my 81. I could wiggle the steering wheel and the I-shaft didn't move. And I wasn't able to draw the joint tight w/ the bolt. It made for some interesting driving.
    I've heard that there is supposed to be a shim that goes inside the I-shaft and that it slips over the column shaft. I have never seen such a shim and have no idea where to find a repop of it.
    I used a brass washer and fabed a shim to fit inside the I-shaft coupler. It took a bit of fiddling, but it works and there's no more slop in the steering wheel. Hope that helps.
     
  6. Ratty_81

    Ratty_81 Member

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    Yeah, I didn't think cranking the bolt tight would be good. So you shimmed between the end of the column shaft and u-joint cup?
     
  7. DrPepper

    DrPepper Veteran Member

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    yes. The washer/shim fits inside the u-joint and the bolt goes through it to keep it in place. Like I said, getting it in place was a PITA. But it works.
     
  8. Wolfman911

    Wolfman911 Member

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    Slop at the DD connection to the steering column is definitely not normal. I have a factory intermediate shaft and when I replaced my rag joint I had to pry it off of the steering column with a large pry bar. The connection was/is very tight.
     
  9. Ratty_81

    Ratty_81 Member

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    Hmm, interesting. Do yo have the clamp type or thru bolt? Notice any spacer/insulator in the female end?
     
  10. Wolfman911

    Wolfman911 Member

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    I have a through bolt. I didn't notice any spacer or insulator. It probably would have fallen out when I was hammering and grinding the intermediate shaft to remove the original rag joint. It was actually quite difficult to reinstall the shaft to the steering column because it was such a tight fit. I had to put a little bit of lube on it, and have it at the exact angle, then use a little hammer persuasion. I'm actually going to have to disconnect it again when I replace my steering column next weekend.
     

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