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Old 09-30-2019, 10:44 AM   #1
oldskool
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Default steering columm bushing

my 46 merc needs a new bushing bearing at the top ,i read here somewhere there is an upgrade for this anyone know where I can get one?,
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Old 09-30-2019, 10:56 AM   #2
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Default Re: steering columm bushing

I’ve heard a lot of guys talk about using a common wheel barrow bearing from the hardware store. Although I’ve never tried it.
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Old 09-30-2019, 11:03 AM   #3
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Default Re: steering columm bushing

Dan Brusegard. Tel.# 763-533-9879 or dancb@comcast.net
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Old 09-30-2019, 11:52 AM   #4
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Default Re: steering columm bushing

C and G and other vendors sell a bearing retrofit kit consisting of a bearing, tapered sleeve and a spring. It is copied after a system that Ford began using in the 50's. I've used them many times and they work good. I think the kit is about $25. As for wheelbarrow bearings, those I have seen have a flange on them that will not allow the bearing to slip down into the column. They will not allow the steering wheel to fit properly
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Old 09-30-2019, 07:54 PM   #5
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Default Re: steering columm bushing

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Originally Posted by oldskool View Post
my 46 merc needs a new bushing bearing at the top ,i read here somewhere there is an upgrade for this anyone know where I can get one?,
On my '48 truck I used a roller bearing. Maybe it fits your situation as well?
My upper column bearing is now a Briggs & Stratton 7028722YP
The bearing was used to eliminate the stock Ford upper column bearing.
Bearing's flange was machined down to 1.44 and bearing tapped into place in column. Bearing ID matches the OE shaft at 0.75"
B&S bearing is made in the USA too.
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Old 09-30-2019, 09:14 PM   #6
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Default Re: steering columm bushing

i know nothing about a 46 merc, but the flange on a wheel barrow bearing is what keeps it from sliding down into the tube. they sit at the top and fit perfect on the older fords. about 2 bucks for the chinese thing at the hardware store, and your auto parts store will have a nicer real sealed bearing if you ask them, for a few bucks more. i now the shafts are the same size, i believe the tube is the same size, whats different at the top on a merc that prevents it from use?
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Old 09-30-2019, 09:52 PM   #7
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Default Re: steering columm bushing

Cas3 has it right. I have a wheel barrow bearing in my 38 ford. Remove steering wheel, use 1/8th drill bit in an electric drill to aid in removing rubber bearing, use vacuum over shaft to remove crumbs, insert wheel barrow bearing, reinstall steering wheel and your done.
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Old 09-30-2019, 11:26 PM   #8
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Default Re: steering columm bushing

I've used the later bearing, spring, and either an original steel or replacement plastic cone as a retrofit for the rubber bushing. I have also used wheel barrow bearings at times; but usually have to sand the bore out a little as Henry's shafts seem to be a little over 3/4".
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Old 10-02-2019, 04:22 AM   #9
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Default Re: steering columm bushing

Go to ACE Hardware and look at their bearings - the one pictured is perfect for a 1.5” od tube .... just found this out a couple days ago .... it has a slight shoulder that could be machined off ......
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Old 10-02-2019, 09:24 AM   #10
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Default Re: steering columm bushing

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Go to ACE Hardware and look at their bearings - the one pictured is perfect for a 1.5 od tube .... just found this out a couple days ago .... it has a slight shoulder that could be machined off ......
That be the wheelborrow one.
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Old 10-02-2019, 03:12 PM   #11
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Default Re: steering columm bushing

A few years ago, I used a Timken/Torrington BA-1210 Needle Bearing inside 1.25"x1.437"x1.5" and 1"x1.25"x1" bronze sleeves for my '40. Total cost at a local bearing supply house was $6.31.
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Old 10-02-2019, 05:23 PM   #12
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Default Re: steering columm bushing

you dont want to take off the shoulder, thats what holds it in place at the top of the column.
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Old 10-02-2019, 07:07 PM   #13
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Default Re: steering columm bushing

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i know nothing about a 46 merc, but the flange on a wheel barrow bearing is what keeps it from sliding down into the tube. they sit at the top and fit perfect on the older fords. about 2 bucks for the chinese thing at the hardware store, and your auto parts store will have a nicer real sealed bearing if you ask them, for a few bucks more. i now the shafts are the same size, i believe the tube is the same size, whats different at the top on a merc that prevents it from use?
Just for info the wheel barrow bearing will not work on a '40 column. The lip on the bearing will not allow it to go far enough into the column so you can get the '40 wheel to come close to the end of the column. Can't speak about other columns with different steering wheels, but the '40 column with the stock '40 wheel will not work with the wheel barrow bearing.
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Old 10-03-2019, 08:06 AM   #14
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Default Re: steering columm bushing

looks like the kit C&g sells is the one I will be trying..thanks guys
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Old 10-03-2019, 04:54 PM   #15
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Default Re: steering columm bushing

I use the hardwear store bearing with my 40 column and wheel in my 32. Been in use 30 years, I also put one in my other 32 but sold it after 15 years. It had a 40 column and wheel also. I think I just shortened the tubes. I used a spring on top of them.
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Old 10-04-2019, 09:27 AM   #16
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Default Re: steering columm bushing

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Originally Posted by TJ View Post
C and G and other vendors sell a bearing retrofit kit consisting of a bearing, tapered sleeve and a spring. It is copied after a system that Ford began using in the 50's. I've used them many times and they work good. I think the kit is about $25. As for wheelbarrow bearings, those I have seen have a flange on them that will not allow the bearing to slip down into the column. They will not allow the steering wheel to fit properly
Tom, It depends on which year steering column you are putting that flanged wheelbarrow bearing into. Works great on '35-'36 steering columns, and probably other years before and after those years. Somewhere in the 40's is where a problem apparently exists.
Which year column were you trying to fit a wheelbarrow bearing into??
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Old 10-04-2019, 09:44 AM   #17
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Default Re: steering columm bushing

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Originally Posted by TJ View Post
Just for info the wheel barrow bearing will not work on a '40 column. The lip on the bearing will not allow it to go far enough into the column so you can get the '40 wheel to come close to the end of the column. Can't speak about other columns with different steering wheels, but the '40 column with the stock '40 wheel will not work with the wheel barrow bearing.
Okay Tom, I should have read further down the thread and read this before making my previous post. So it looks like it's the 40 column where the wheelbarrow bearing doesn't work too well. What about the '41 to '48? Do you know if those years had the same issues as '40??
They sure work well in the pre '40's that I've tried them in.
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Old 10-04-2019, 11:22 AM   #18
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Default Re: steering columm bushing

John, I can't speak about other year columns as I never tried the bearing in them. After not being able to use the wheel arrow bearing in the '40 column some years back I have been using the Ford kit ever since.
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