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Old 12-30-2020, 11:36 PM   #1
OldGold360
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Default Steering box light switch

Iím hoping you all can help me once again. I am running a 1940 steering box on my Ď36 pickup but I still want to run the horn rod/light switch as it came in Ď36. Can I use my existing 1940 box or do I need to find an earlier box that came factory with the light switch on the box?

Thanks for the help
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Old 12-30-2020, 11:59 PM   #2
VeryTangled
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Default Re: Steering box light switch

Hi Everyone. OldGold, I'm not an expert but did, ten years ago, update a 36 car to having the later box. It involved using a later bulb/light switch housing that covers the light switch and spring bail that holds it on, if I recall correctly. I think you need longer than the 36 used.

Someone will be along that knows better than I. But it's doable.

The earlier box didn't have ball bearings on the worm/sector so your later one is more better at ease of turning, like in parking lots. That's what I noticed the most.
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Last edited by VeryTangled; 12-31-2020 at 12:17 AM.
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Old 12-31-2020, 12:35 AM   #3
Brian
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Default Re: Steering box light switch

up to 1939 used the light switch at bottom of steering box.
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Old 12-31-2020, 09:12 AM   #4
JM 35 Sedan
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Default Re: Steering box light switch

Quote:
Originally Posted by OldGold360 View Post
I’m hoping you all can help me once again. I am running a 1940 steering box on my ‘36 pickup but I still want to run the horn rod/light switch as it came in ‘36. Can I use my existing 1940 box or do I need to find an earlier box that came factory with the light switch on the box?

Thanks for the help
The internals of early ford steering boxes from '37 to '48 are all basically the same, but the steering shaft, column tube, mounting location for column drop, and mounting provision for a light switch at bottom of box will be different in some of those years from '37 to '48.
In your case, you could use the '40 box by interchanging the '40 steering shaft with the original shaft from your '36 steering column. You would need to press the '36 worm gear off that shaft, and press the '40 worm on to the '36 shaft. This usually requires access to a hydraulic press, proper fixturing, and correct alignment of shaft and worm gear as you press these parts together. There have been some good posts in the past on how this is all done by a Fordbarn member known as.... "Neal in Ca" and I also did a similar post using some of Neals pictures. Those posts are in the archives.
You would also need to find the parts from a '37 to '39 box that are necessary to mount the '36 light switch ball on the bottom of the '40 box.

The major improvement in the '37 to '48 boxes was the addition of a rolling sector gear as opposed to a fixed sector gear on '36 and earlier Ford steering boxes.

Once you switch steering shafts and use your '36 column tube, everything basically bolts back together and looks as it did originally.

*Note: Another, and possibly easier option would be to find a complete steering column originally used in a '37 to '39 Ford PU.
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Last edited by JM 35 Sedan; 12-31-2020 at 09:56 AM.
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Old 12-31-2020, 11:55 AM   #5
OldGold360
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Default Re: Steering box light switch

I’m not 100% sure that my box is a 1940, but it was removed from a 1940 chassis. It just has no provisions, that I can see, for the light switch. It was at some point rebuilt and painted according to the guy I bought it from. What changed after ‘39? The thru hole for the horn/light switch rod? Since I do not have a horn/light switch rod yet, does anybody know the diameter of the rod or at least the inner diameter of the pass thru hole in the steering shaft?

Thanks
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Old 12-31-2020, 12:34 PM   #6
OldGold360
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Default Re: Steering box light switch

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Iíve attached two pictures of my box. Iím sure someone here knows which year it is.
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Old 12-31-2020, 12:36 PM   #7
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Default Re: Steering box light switch

1940 to 48
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Old 12-31-2020, 03:14 PM   #8
OldGold360
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Default Re: Steering box light switch

If it’s a 1940, is it a simple task to use an earlier style switch or should I look for a ‘37-‘39 steering box? I’m wanting to use a ‘37+ box only because I’ve read that they work much better.
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Old 12-31-2020, 05:23 PM   #9
cas3
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Default Re: Steering box light switch

can you not just change the end plate for an earlier one with the tube, or is the bolt pattern different 40 & up ?
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Old 12-31-2020, 05:50 PM   #10
OldGold360
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Default Re: Steering box light switch

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Originally Posted by cas3 View Post
can you not just change the end plate for an earlier one with the tube, or is the bolt pattern different 40 & up ?
These are the answers Iím trying to figure out. If the hole thru the steering shaft is big enough for the horn rod then I donít see any reason why I canít adapt it all onto my Ď40 box
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Old 12-31-2020, 07:24 PM   #11
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Default Re: Steering box light switch

You would need the 37-39 bottom plate with the brass tube. Your plate with the steel tube will not let the rod go thru. The rod is .380 or so. They are rolled and not completely round. There is an adapter with two catacorner screws to mount the switch. The rest of your parts will work.
Your main problem is the horn button. It will not fit a 40 wheel. I don’t know what could be rigged up to work. Maybe the od of you button could be cut down.. I don’t know if the length would work.
A banjo would be easier.
A 40 wheel needs 40 mast jacket column. A banjo would work with your column.
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Old 12-31-2020, 07:54 PM   #12
OldGold360
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Default Re: Steering box light switch

Thanks for the info Andy. I plan to use a ‘36 wheel, and I believe that is what was on the truck, however it’s probably not worth saving since it has chunks missing.
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