Author Topic: Steering box detailing  (Read 4595 times)

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Offline anghelrestorations

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Steering box detailing
« on: November 05, 2009, 08:17:19 pm »

Thought I would share some photos of the steering box I just finished....this started off as a typical crusty rusty steering box.  I bought the rebuild kit from Randy at www.stangersite.com and took apart the old steering box myself so I could detail it the way I wanted.  The box itself is phosphated and then lightly tumbled to re-create what I think would be the closest finish to the original cast.  Some parts of the box I took down the finish more, to duplicate the machined surfaces.  I know that most people wouldnt go to this detail, but figured while I had it it apart wanted to do it as correct as possible. 
Paint codes I will add next based on about 15 or so extra steering boxes I have accumulated, and last step would be to give everything a light oil protective coating with BoeShield. 








Marcus Anghel
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Offline Bob Gaines

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Re: Steering box detailing
« Reply #1 on: November 05, 2009, 09:03:00 pm »
Looks great so far . I for one apreciate your effort. Thanks for posting the pictures;D .Bob
Bob Gaines, Shelby enthusiast,Shelby collector , Shelby concours judge for SAAC ,MCA,Team Shelby

Offline anghelrestorations

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Re: Steering box detailing
« Reply #2 on: November 08, 2009, 12:47:33 pm »
Thanks Bob.  I am adding a picture of the box in the car now.

Marcus Anghel
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BRANDON BADEL

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Re: Steering box detailing
« Reply #3 on: November 08, 2009, 09:22:02 pm »
Marcus , Does the tag match the date code on the Box (8k)?

Offline anghelrestorations

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Re: Steering box detailing
« Reply #4 on: November 09, 2009, 12:06:39 am »
Brandon - the tag would not match the steering box because the box itself was cast with a date code and then at some point afterward the box is assembled.  In this instance the steering box is Oct 68 and the tag you see on top is Dec 68. 
Marcus Anghel
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Offline SCJSTU

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Re: Steering box detailing
« Reply #5 on: November 16, 2009, 10:38:12 am »
Marcus,
nice job...

how hard is it to rebuild?
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Offline anghelrestorations

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Re: Steering box detailing
« Reply #6 on: November 19, 2009, 06:40:14 pm »

Rebuild is not too bad actually if you have the right tools....that is key with any job like this.  I probably spent more time on the plating and refinishing of the pieces than the actual rebuild itself.  If you have the time and patience its worth it.  Otherwise you would be better sent out to be rebuilt. 
Marcus Anghel
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Offline caspian65

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Re: Steering box detailing
« Reply #7 on: December 07, 2009, 02:41:51 pm »
I have had the same results with phosphating.  I only keep the box in the solution for about 30 seconds though.  Take it out, let it soak in oil overnight and then scrub the surface with coarse steel wool. 

Some pics of a '65 box I did a couple months ago:

http://www.early-mustang.com/charles/K_vert/10_3_09/10_3_09%20010.jpg
http://www.early-mustang.com/charles/K_vert/10_3_09/10_3_09%20011.jpg

Unfortunately, Ford chose to black out the tops of the early boxes, so I had to "obliterate" the nice detail work of this one!
http://www.early-mustang.com/charles/K_vert/10_3_09/10_3_09%20012.jpg

Offline 69scj

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Re: Steering box detailing
« Reply #8 on: December 08, 2009, 07:11:27 pm »
What are you guys using as a phosphate dip?

Offline caspian65

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Re: Steering box detailing
« Reply #9 on: December 08, 2009, 10:32:45 pm »
Manganese Phosphate

Offline 69scj

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Re: Steering box detailing
« Reply #10 on: December 09, 2009, 09:50:19 am »
Where would one get this manganese phosphate?

Offline caspian65

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Offline 1969 428 Q

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Re: Steering box detailing
« Reply #12 on: December 09, 2009, 10:34:17 am »
Where would one get this manganese phosphate?
Do you have any before & after pics you could post? What process did you follow?
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Offline caspian65

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Re: Steering box detailing
« Reply #13 on: December 09, 2009, 10:45:45 am »
The phosphate solution from the link I posted has the instructions on the label.

As far as examples, I have some on the '65 K restoration blog that I'm doing:

http://65kresto.blogspot.com/

Click on the 'August' archive over the right, which will take you to the phosphate info and samples.

A step that I followed which I believe is important to getting the correct final (and lasting) finish is to soak the pieces in oil for 24 hours.  When I take pieces out of the phosphate solution, I rinse with water and use a toothbrush to remove any residue from the pot.  Then I use an air blower to dry them before dropping in an oil bucket.  I just use straight 30 wt engine oil.  Once they have soaked, you can clean them with something like dish-washing detergent on a toothbrush to clean any oily residue off.  This will not change the appearance at all, the oil soaking prevents the parts from getting that "dried" up appearance.  I usually don't clean them off until I'm ready to use them on a car.

Offline 69scj

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Re: Steering box detailing
« Reply #14 on: December 09, 2009, 12:09:17 pm »
Thanks for the info caspian, I've bought stuff from Midway befor for my shooting hobby. We have a local chem supply company, I'll check with them first. How does this mag phosphate compare to metal prep that you get from the bodyshop supply stores?

Offline caspian65

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Re: Steering box detailing
« Reply #15 on: December 09, 2009, 01:34:19 pm »
How does this mag phosphate compare to metal prep that you get from the bodyshop supply stores?

Not sure, would have to figure out what the other metal prep stuff is made of.  Other folks have gotten similar results by soaking parts instead of using the heated solution method.

Offline J_Speegle

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Re: Steering box detailing
« Reply #16 on: December 09, 2009, 07:46:46 pm »
............ How does this mag phosphate compare to metal prep that you get from the bodyshop supply stores?

Are you referring to products like Rust Mort?

This will change the color of bare cast iron (darken it) but the color IMHO is different from what I've gotten with the heated phosphate

Offline 69scj

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Re: Steering box detailing
« Reply #17 on: December 09, 2009, 08:41:36 pm »
How hot are you heating the phosphate and do you preheat the metal before dipping or not? I cant remember the name of the product Jeff, but I think its just called Metal Prep and its a DuPont product if my memory is correct, which is doubtfull. ;D

Offline caspian65

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Re: Steering box detailing
« Reply #18 on: December 09, 2009, 10:10:05 pm »
The solution is diluted according to the label.  Temperature is 180F.  I leave the parts in for 15 minutes.

Offline anghelrestorations

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Re: Steering box detailing
« Reply #19 on: December 10, 2009, 01:28:17 am »
Yes, Dupont Metal Prep is something completely different.  Not something I would use to achieve this type of finish.  The heated phosphate is the way to go...
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Offline Bob Gaines

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Re: Steering box detailing
« Reply #20 on: December 10, 2009, 10:35:47 pm »
It has been years since I used any but I believe the metal prep bottle reads it leaves a zinc phosphate finish but like was previously mention you will not achieve the look you are looking for. It produces a extremely light finish. A very light gray. Bob
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Offline caspian65

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Re: Steering box detailing
« Reply #21 on: December 10, 2009, 11:02:15 pm »
It produces a extremely light finish. A very light gray. Bob

Yes, exactly.  Zinc phosphate is very light when compared to Manganese phosphate.  Also, have found that the type of metal that is being coated makes a difference in the final appearance.

Offline b--r30

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Re: Steering box detailing
« Reply #22 on: December 11, 2009, 10:55:17 am »
I use a immersable bucket heater I got from the Farm and Home,and a 5 gal bucket with a good lid.I gal of zinc or manganese product makes 5 gal of solution.You can be creative with different containers(plastic) for odd size parts.Keep the temp and immersion time consistant if doing more than 1 part or the color will be different.Mix up the whole 5 gal up to start,just add water as it evaporates.Store with the lid on tight.As far as I know,these solutions last forever as mine are over 20 yrs old and still work great.

Offline Bob Gaines

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Re: Steering box detailing
« Reply #23 on: December 11, 2009, 11:04:22 am »
I use a immersable bucket heater I got from the Farm and Home,and a 5 gal bucket with a good lid.I gal of zinc or manganese product makes 5 gal of solution.You can be creative with different containers(plastic) for odd size parts.Keep the temp and immersion time consistant if doing more than 1 part or the color will be different.Mix up the whole 5 gal up to start,just add water as it evaporates.Store with the lid on tight.As far as I know,these solutions last forever as mine are over 20 yrs old and still work great.
How do plastic containers work at those high temperatures?
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Offline b--r30

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Re: Steering box detailing
« Reply #24 on: December 12, 2009, 10:36:18 am »
Bob,I have used waste baskets,tupperware,pvc sewer pipe with a cap on one end,long narrow window flower pots,bottom end of 15,30,and 55 gal drums to name a few.I heat the solution in the original bucket and pour it in the various containers,keep it hot with small stainless aquarium type heaters.Never had any problems.I am reluctant to use metal containers as the solution is corrosive.You might want to keep the temp on the low end of the recommendations.The immersion time might be a little longer but the results will be the same.

Offline blackjade

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Re: Steering box detailing
« Reply #25 on: December 13, 2009, 02:27:22 pm »
I tried to get to www.stangersite.com but keep getting redirected to a page that requires a login.

Anybody else getting that?

Offline caspian65

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Re: Steering box detailing
« Reply #26 on: December 13, 2009, 02:32:02 pm »

Offline griff

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Re: Steering box detailing
« Reply #27 on: December 13, 2009, 10:34:39 pm »
OT but , check out the Hone-O-Drive unit for the 9" rear. @ that link http://www.stangerssite.com/
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Offline blackjade

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Re: Steering box detailing
« Reply #28 on: December 14, 2009, 02:11:33 pm »
That link works great, thanks.

Before I buy the rebuild kit; what special tools are required? Might not be cost beneficial if I have to purchase a $100 frabbit.

Offline caspian65

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Re: Steering box detailing
« Reply #29 on: December 14, 2009, 02:32:13 pm »
If you're talking about rebuilding a steering box, the only special tool you need is a torque wrench that reads as low as 4-5 inch lbs.

Offline blackjade

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Re: Steering box detailing
« Reply #30 on: December 21, 2009, 09:51:49 am »
I am talking about the box rebuild, thanks.

Wondering what other pieces can be treated this way? Strut rods? Sway bar brackets?

Others?

Offline Bob Gaines

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Re: Steering box detailing
« Reply #31 on: December 21, 2009, 11:23:12 am »
I am talking about the box rebuild, thanks.

Wondering what other pieces can be treated this way? Strut rods? Sway bar brackets?

Others?
If you are talking about finishes the specific items you mentioned are bare steel from the factory and although the plating will add corrosion protection it will give a different finish from the way it was originally. There are many other items that were the phosphate and oil finish that can be replicated with the discussed process however . Bob
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Offline J_Speegle

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Re: Steering box detailing
« Reply #32 on: December 21, 2009, 06:34:50 pm »
Yes there are others as Bob mentioned but at least one (the strut rods) that you listed were originally was heat treated (quenched in oil). IMHO that is a different finished look from zinc phosphate so this process would not be the best choice

Bottom line is that you will not find one size (or finish) to fit all needs and that is what makes a car that is correctly restored with all its different finishes, tones and tints stand out when compared to a mono-tone incorrectly restored car in these areas