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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi,
i have purchased a leather and wood steering wheel off Ebay, and it has arrived today....its just lovely, anyway, ive done a quick search and had a look a Scarlets site..(excellent) but am still a little nervous about doing the job myself, but will give it a shot.....just a couple of quick questions if anyone can offer advice id be gratefull,
1, if i disconnect the battery for 10 mins then take off the air bag, is it safe? and will my central locking etc work after i reconnect the battery?
2, do i need to replace anything (nuts and things) after i have taken them off?
3, does the steering wheel need to be torqued on (think thats spelt right)
4, anything else you guys think is relative and may help??

Cheers
 

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1. should be okay.
2. as long as u have put everything back and not got the usual spare bolt left over trick like when u do DIY then u should be okay
3. finger tight (or done up) then a quick turn to tighten up should suffice, just dont try overtightening. i wouldnt imagine u need to tighten to a certain torque.
4. one thing u may need to look into is your car stereo, make sure u have a code or can disable it while disconnecting the battery as when u reconect the astereo wont work unless u have a code for it.

cant think of anything else at the moment. i know sharky swapped his wheel over a few weeks back, maybe it might be good to PM him to doublecheck anything.

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks Deano, i feel a little more confident now, Stereo will be ok, it a Kenwood with my own code in so i cant forget it! There is no chance of the air bag setting off after battery is disconnected then?

I have this vision of me stuck in my 'F' spanner in one hand and a bloody big bag of air in my chest! What a thought :idea:
 

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Thanks for the kind words. :)

Deano has covered most of the points, but here's my spin on things.

1 ) Airbags contain a small explosive charge and therefore should be treated with respect, this is the reason for the disconnect battery (i normally wait 15 minutes), to remove any residual current from the system and also the safety tips on my site - never place air bag pad down (if it goes off it'll fly across the room) likewise never put anything on top of the pad (they will become projectiles if it goes off). In reality the airbag is very safe, indeed i have seen airbags and pre-tensioners swapped 'live' in a couple of garages, but the above safety advice is good common sense and i personally always follow it.

2 ) You shouldn't need to replace anything - there is a case for replacing the 19mm central nut as it has a plastic locking ring that is threaded when the nut is first put on, but i personally feel that given the amount of thread on the bolt and the fact the wheel sits on a spline it isn't necessary (indeed i am still on my original nut and my wheel has been on and off 8 or 9 times now with no undue effects).

3 ) It should be, but i have no idea what the correct torque is and indeed have never done so on my F. In reality the amount of torque you can put on the nut is limited by how firmly you can grip the steering wheel with one hand - as you turn the ratchet the wheel will want to turn rather than the nut. So, my advice to you is to grip the wheel firmly and then do it up as tight as you can (which will be about 75% of the normal max torque you can normally put on a nut).

4 ) Radio code is spot on Deano. Also, i normally put a short plank of wood on top of the battery and then rest the wires on this - it stops them coming into contact with anything metal by accident. You will also need to reset your clock, it will have lost some time while you are doing the job.

The main ones though are to park the car with the road wheels straight and the steering wheel dead upright and fit the new one in exactly the same position. The splines are quite small and it is very easy to get the wheel one notch left or right of vertical, resulting in the wheel being off centre when you are driving straight (very annoying).

Also, be careful with the rotary coupler. This is the yellow circular ring behind the wheel that the wiring goes into. It is a donut with a (hidden) long tape inside it and when the road wheels are straight the tape should be half spooled onto the donut and half off - this gives you full rotation left (spooled on fully) and full rotation right (spooled off fully). It will move when you take the wheel off, but try to keep it in position (you can tape it to keep it in position, but when doing a wheel swap it is exposed for such a short amount of time it would be difficult to move it out of position too far i reckon). If you do loose the position of the rotary coupler, you just need to centralise it again, here's how:

Wind the coupler fully in one direction. Then unwind it slowly, counting revolutions as you go. Halve the revolutions and then wind it back this many turns. There is a little bit of slack on the tape, so exactly half will be close, but not 100% spot on to mate with the wheel - rotate the coupler the shortest distance to line the wiring up with the hole in the steering wheel.

It is important to get this right, if not the first time you apply full lock the tape will tear and the coupler will need replacing. Replacing the coupler isn't too expensive, but it requires the wheel to be removed (and the steering collumn cowl) so you will have to go through the whole process again.

On the whole it is a pretty easy job to do, i know i have written a lot, but in practice it is very simple and well within the means of just about any amateur DIY grease monkey. :D

Hope this helps.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thsnks Deano......illustrations are a huge help, i have saved that site for future reference.....I think i may be able to manage the task at hand...will let you all know how i get on!
 

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torque setting for some of the steering parts.......

Steering arm bolts All models 60 to 65
> > > Steering rack fixings v 30
> > > Steering wheel nut 41 to 43
> > > Steering wheel nut, 9/16 in. UNF 27 to 29 GHN4, GHD4,GHD5,GHN5
models
> > > Steering wheel nut, 11/16 in. UNF 41 to 43 GHN4, GHD4,GHD5,GHN5
models
> > > Steering wheel nut 36 to 38 GHN4, GHD4,GHD5,GHN5 some local models
> > > Steering column universal joint bolts All models 20 to 22
> > > Steering rack and pinion bearing nut All models 40
> > > Steering tie-rod lock nut All models 33 to 38
> > > Steering lever balljoint nut All models 34 to 35
> > > Swivel pin nut All models 60 tighten to align to next hole
> > > Steering column top fixing bolts All models 12 to 17
> > > Road wheel nuts All models 60 to 65


but i would just do as andy says, tighten to nealry as tight as u can get it.

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Scarlet......Thanks so much, you posted that just as i was replying to Deano, i feel even more confident now......Plank over the battery to stop in-advertant reconnection of positive and negative a brilliant idea!

Isnt this furum just the best thing since sliced bread, amongst other things!
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Job done......it looks great and when i find out how to add a photo ill post a piccy....ive also replaced the carpet behind the seats with some 'better' stuff, abit tricky but it looks great, ive tried to colour code it to the leather (walnut) not a easy colour to match up!! but it looks loads better. All in all, im chuffed with my efforts today.
 

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asimpsonlowe said:
Job done......it looks great and when i find out how to add a photo ill post a piccy....ive also replaced the carpet behind the seats with some 'better' stuff, abit tricky but it looks great, ive tried to colour code it to the leather (walnut) not a easy colour to match up!! but it looks loads better. All in all, im chuffed with my efforts today.

Andi... we need PICS !!!!



(when u reply.... look at "Additional Options"....Manage Attachements" ... "browse"... "upload" .... job done)
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
[email protected],

Its dark now and my camera wont pick up any detail, so i'll have a'go at some piccys tomorrow, following your instructions.......i will hopefully get some on here???? fingers crossed!! But, alas, im a happy bunny tonight, just had to take the hood down and go for a ong spin, purley to make sure the steering wheel was straight you understand, pleasure had absolutely nothing to do with it :eyes:
 

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Well guys the timing of this post was impecable (spelling?)

I too got a new wood/leather steering wheel off Ebay, & the seller was only 10 miles away so saved on postage :twak2: not that I'm tight you understand.

The old wheel came off easy, but I had to read the instructions for a third time before I realised which connector to remove for the airbag :confused: so the battery had been dis-connected about an hour before the airbag came off

Thanx to everyone here, jobs a good on; look see

before



after



SteveN
 
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