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Old 09-11-2019, 09:26 AM   #1
alexiskai
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Default 7-tooth column leaking post-rebuild

I had my 7-tooth steering column rebuilt by a local machine shop. I'm pleased with the result, but after several months it's developed a bad leak. I can't quite tell whether it's leaking out the cover housing or the lower bearing or both.

Question for the forum is, is it feasible for me to try to repair this without pulling the column? My plan is to remove the cover housing and install a new gasket with sealant, then wait and see if the leak resolves; if not, do the same with the lower bearing. I would re-use the lower bearing shims.

Thoughts? Good/bad plan?
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Old 09-11-2019, 10:21 AM   #2
denniskliesen
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Default Re: 7-tooth column leaking post-rebuild

Determine where the leaks are coming from first. You don't want to take something apart when nothing is wrong with it. If it's leaking down front then remove the light switch and look in the area of the seal area where the horn rod goes through the steering shaft. If it's leaking where the nut screws up in the housing, it could be it's not sealed around the threads, or they used a felt packing for the seal. Get a nut with the brass tube to replace it, they work much better. If it's leaking from the lower bearing housing bolts to the box, then they might have used brass shims which will not seal oil from leaking out, I've used a little sealer there and stopped leaks.

A 7 tooth steering box can be the worst, but can also be sealed up. Several things can be done without removing the steering box from the frame.
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Old 09-11-2019, 10:24 AM   #3
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Default Re: 7-tooth column leaking post-rebuild

Good idea, I'll inspect the location where the horn rod exits; if there's fluid there then that's the likely culprit.

What should I use to seal around the threads?
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Old 09-11-2019, 11:41 AM   #4
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Default Re: 7-tooth column leaking post-rebuild

https://modelagarage.com/service_bul...steering-gear/
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Old 09-11-2019, 11:49 AM   #5
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Default Re: 7-tooth column leaking post-rebuild

I know how to pull it, I just don't want to pull it.
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Old 09-11-2019, 02:49 PM   #6
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Default Re: 7-tooth column leaking post-rebuild

Use some solvent or BrakeKleen and get the parts good and dry. that will really help in locating the source of leakage.
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Old 09-11-2019, 03:40 PM   #7
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Default Re: 7-tooth column leaking post-rebuild

They actually do leak, right from day one [Model A era]. That is why grease was put in them in the old days, which is a bad thing to do to a steering box of this type.
Go to your John Deere agent & buy a cylinder of Corn Head grease which is a very thick oil/grease designed for combines etc where gear oil can leak out. I put it in via a syringe, as it does not really pour. Under heat or pressure it will act like the heavy oil that was originally used.
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Old 09-11-2019, 03:45 PM   #8
BRENT in 10-uh-C
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Default Re: 7-tooth column leaking post-rebuild

Quote:
Originally Posted by alexiskai View Post
I had my 7-tooth steering column rebuilt by a local machine shop. I'm pleased with the result, but after several months it's developed a bad leak. I can't quite tell whether it's leaking out the cover housing or the lower bearing or both.

Question for the forum is, is it feasible for me to try to repair this without pulling the column? My plan is to remove the cover housing and install a new gasket with sealant, then wait and see if the leak resolves; if not, do the same with the lower bearing. I would re-use the lower bearing shims.

Thoughts? Good/bad plan?


Do you know whether one of these was installed?

https://www.snydersantiqueauto.com/P...INER-WITH-TUBE




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Old 09-11-2019, 07:26 PM   #9
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Default Re: 7-tooth column leaking post-rebuild

I did install the oil retainer, yep. That's why I thought the cover housing was a more likely source of the leak.

This leak is a big one, and fairly sudden. Like, no leaks for a couple months and then one day a big puddle of steering fluid on the floor after a drive.
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Old 09-19-2019, 11:07 AM   #10
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Default Re: 7-tooth column leaking post-rebuild

Quote:
Originally Posted by denniskliesen View Post
If it's leaking from the lower bearing housing bolts to the box, then they might have used brass shims which will not seal oil from leaking out, I've used a little sealer there and stopped leaks.
Quote:
Originally Posted by J Franklin View Post
Use some solvent or BrakeKleen and get the parts good and dry. that will really help in locating the source of leakage.
Thanks to both of you for this advice. I used carb cleaner to dry off the underside of the steering box and was able to isolate the leak to the bottom edge of the lower bearing housing. I don't know which shims were used from the gasket set that I gave to the shop, but I'll use Purdy's advice from this post to pull the cover and see.

Will update with results.
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Old 10-07-2019, 08:46 AM   #11
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Default 7-tooth column overhoul

Good morning, I also have a question about that.

I prepare the overhaul of my 7-tooth steering gear. I want to install the needle roller bearings, new spindle bearings, new segment with worm.

For the 2 tooth segment there is advertised this sealing simmering:

SEAL FOR HOUSING A-3574-SEAL 29-31 from Don Snyder III.

My question: Does this part also fit for the shaft of the 7-tooth segment?
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Old 10-07-2019, 08:56 AM   #12
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Default Re: 7-tooth column overhoul

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. I want to install the needle roller bearings, new spindle bearings, new segment with worm.


Do as you wish but I highly recommend against this. My experience is the sector shafts are not hardened enough to allow this conversion to use the roller bearing. What happens is the shaft become riddled with ridges as the impact (shocks) transferred thru the drag link imprint the sector shaft.


To further this, bearings are typically used in applications where there will be revolutions of the shaft. In the case of the sector shaft, it really is not making revolutions, but is being supported by the bushings. The bushings have much greater surface area for support.
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Old 10-07-2019, 08:58 AM   #13
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Default Re: 7-tooth column overhoul

Quote:
Originally Posted by Werner View Post
For the 2 tooth segment there is advertised this sealing simmering:

SEAL FOR HOUSING A-3574-SEAL 29-31 from Don Snyder III.

My question: Does this part also fit for the shaft of the 7-tooth segment?
You should maybe start a new thread about that.
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Old 10-07-2019, 09:17 AM   #14
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Default Re: 7-tooth column leaking post-rebuild

Status update on my original question: I pulled the housing cover and the lower bearing, and instead of cork/paper gaskets I sealed them both with Permatex Ultra Blue gasket maker. One thing that was nice about using RTV silicone gasket material in the lower bearing specifically was that, because the silicone is flexible, I was able to get the same result that you get from swapping out different shims without the hassle of swapping out shims.

What I did was:
  1. Clean the mating surfaces
  2. Apply gasket material to the bottom of the steering column and around the bolt holes
  3. Carefully insert the lower bearing assembly (make sure it's right-side-up)
  4. Tighten the bolts gently until the silicone spreads out across the flange surface
  5. Wait 1-2 hours
  6. Remove each bolt, apply Permatex thread sealant, reinstall with light torque
  7. After all bolts are sealed, tighten down the bolts in an X pattern, testing the motion of the steering wheel about every 1/2-turn
  8. When the wheel starts to get hard to turn, back off the bolts slightly
  9. Wait 24 hours before refilling with lube

No leaks so far, but it's only been one day. Too early to tell whether this approach will work. Will update after a couple weeks.

Separately, I adjusted the sector shaft thrust screw all the way out, applied thread sealant around the threads as best I could, then screwed it back in until the end play was removed. I think this was a major source of the leak.
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Old 10-07-2019, 02:40 PM   #15
Werner
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Default Re: 7-tooth column leaking post-rebuild

Sorry Alexis, I did not want to disturb your question series.

Even exceptionally, please one sentence to Brent: Right you have written! Needle roller bearings are not suitable for impacting partial loading. I overlooked that. So I will take MoS2 oil.


Thanks!
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