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Discussion Starter #1
I have a 1999 6x4 and when parked in neutral the upper part of the steering wheel shaft (up high inside the dash) rattles like crazy. It looks like there is a plastic bushing in there that likely wore out? It looks like I have to remove the whole dash to get access to the bushing. The dash appears to be factory riveted in at several spots. Anyone done this repair before and is it worth the effort? My past experience with factory connections is once you remove them they never go back the same. Thanks!
 

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You need a new steering shaft bushing that goes on the top half of the shaft. It’s not a major deal. Remove the steering wheel, might have to use an air hammer, but I just removed the center piece of the staring wheel and shot some good penetrating oil on top of the shaft ( while steering wheel is still on it) then loosened the nut holding the steering wheel. I backed the nut off maybe 2 turns then hit it with a 2.5 lb shop hammer while prying up on the wheel with a large screwdriver. It flew off ! Then separate the steering shaft at the mid-point knuckle coupling. Tip.. remove pinch nut, drive flat screwdriver into the slot to open it and relieve pressure. Leave the screwdriver in place until you hook the shafts back together. Shoot some penetrating oil in the splines and it will separate. Then put more lube on top half of shaft and pull it out. The old bushing will eventually be laying in the floor. To reinstall the new one, clean up any rust or dirt on shaft, lube it up and put upper half of the shaft through the dash and put on new bushing from below. Lube up shaft and slide new bushing up as you feed shaft down towards the coupler . I used a piece of broom handle and tapped upwards on the new bushing with the shop hammer as my bud pushed shaft down. Once the steering shaft gets close to the dash, line up the mid-point coupler and reconnect. Sometimes you have to work the shaft back and forth to get it to drop into the coupler. Then remove screwdriver, install pinch bolt and you are done ! I hope this helped
 

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Correct way to not hurt your face or the shaft is to put the nut on flush with the end of the thread and hit it with a hammer while you pull the steering wheel.
I usually put a block of aluminium on the shaft but a block of wood will also help protect the nut and threads.


You might need someone to help you though as some of the steering wheels are so tight i had to winch the machine up by the steering wheel and hit it.

Anyway i came here actually to say that before you put the clip back on i always try to shim the space between the bushing and the clip with a washer to reduce play even more.

Also, i just remove the dash with a couple of bolts (maybe some connectors to gain extra space) and just flip it over the shaft instead of removing the shaft.
You can work perfectly with the shaft in place
Whatever floats your boat

It should be a 20 minute job if youre handy and have the right tools so not a big deal
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thank you both, I will give it a go as soon as I can figure out the correct bushing to order!
 

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No I did not. I followed all the steps but the steering shaft is completely fused to the steering wheel. I soaked it and sprayed it over the span of two days with two different kinds of penetrating oil. I backed off the nut and hammered the heck out of it while my buddy pulled up on the wheel. It will not budge. I also tried hitting just the top of the shaft with a big metal punch and sledge but that didn't work either. If I hit it any harder either the threads would have got damaged or the plastic steering wheel would have broke. I thought about heating up the shaft but I'm worried the plastic steering wheel will melt. Thus far it's a fail.
 

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If you can hang it from a winch to a roof or something..

Connect the winch to the steering wheel with a strap and hang it on there so the wheels almost get free and get a block of aluminium copper or brass.

Put the nut on the end of the threads and bang it full force with the block of whatever just keep in mind that wood doesnt work most times as it absorbs the impact.

Only seen a single steering wheel that hasnt come loose so far and that was because we didnt need to in the end.

Normally i have a technique where i put my knees under but it will hurt like youre shot with a shotgun if you do it right.
It comes down to the right technique aswell as most new guys cant pull this off either
 
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