<VV> Steering diagnosis - Pittman shaft spline question (long)

paulsgt at aol.com paulsgt at aol.com
Tue Jul 4 23:09:18 EDT 2006

Good evening!
Happy Independance day.
I have been trying to diagnose a problem with the steering in my 65 Monza convertible for some time.  I finally dug into it today and am puzzled with the results.  
The steering at highway speeds had a lot of play (maybe 30+ degrees) but it seemed that the play was only to the right and not left.  It was a handful to drive at highway speeds.  Anyway, I was determined to follow the shop manual instructions for adjusting the steering gear.  Once I got the pittman arm off, I followed the directions.  When I went to put the pittman arm back on, I tried to line up the 4-key ways (?) on the pittman arm with the same on the pittman shaft.  to line these up, I had to turn the wheels so they were pointed about 20 degrees to the right.  I know the steering shaft is lined up correctly with the shaft coming out of the box, I can feel the steering box 'center' at the steering wheel with the pittman arm disconnected.  I thought about trying to adjust the tie rod sleeves but I could not take up that much distance with the tie rods alone.  So I have a problem that is a little out of my league.  to straighten the wheels, I have to turn the steering wheel about one turn to the left.
Can someone help me understand what I missed?
A couple of other points.  1) all front-end parts are newer with less than 3,000 miles.  the front-end seems tight otherwise.  2) I had the steering box disassembled and cleaned by a professional.  I don't remember how (or if) I lined everything up with the splines on the pittman shaft when I installed the box 2-3 years ago.  My geuss is that I did not based on how much trouble I had getting the pittman arm off the shaft.  It goes on/off much easier than it did before.
Help, advice, direction, thoughts, guidance all welcome.
Thank you!
Paul Sergeant
Member - Corvair Minnesota, CORSA, VV, Corvanantics, POCI, Little Indians
65 Monza Convertible (110/PG)
61 Pontiac Tempest Safari Wagon
Several newer rides.
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