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1958-64 LATE MODEL POWER STEERING 605 CONVERSION - PART 1

1958-64 LATE MODEL POWER STEERING 605 CONVERSION - PART 1


Many Late Great owners want to changetheir standard steering 1958-1964

Chevy to power steerin.gAlso, many with original power steering want to upgrade to late model power steering because they want to eliminate the leaky control valve and hydraulic cylinder.

We have a great conversion for your 1958-1964passenger cars.This conversioncan be done on cars with small blocks or big blocks. Cars with air conditioning can also be converted. It uses GM's "605" steering box, which has "the power" right in the box. The 605 power steering boxes were used on mid-sized GM cars produced inthe mid to late 1970's and throughout most of the 19BO's. (See Step # 17 for more information.)

The basic conversion requires a bracket for mounting the 605 to the frame We have a bracket cast out of a high strength alloy (Al-Mg 535), aluminum and magnesium alloy. One of the things that make our bracket the best you can purchase, is that you mount the bracket to the 605 using the original threaded holes of the 605. (All other brackets require drilling out the threads of the 605 mounting holes. When mounting the 605 to the bracket, the bolt heads are not against a flat surfaceand that can create problems.)

Our bracket kit (PIN 553005) allows you to bol-tona late model power steering box at a ve,y reasonable price.It comes with the mounting hardware required to install the 605 box. Late model technology is now available for your Late Great Chevy. For complete kits, they are available for either small block or big block cars. (Visit wwwLateGreatChevy.com for information on the complete kits.) This conversoi nrequires that the car have the standard steering linkage between the wheels. Specifically it must have a standard steering pitman arm, drag link, and idler arm.

T his installation takes some time and can be a bit difficult because there is not a lot of room for your hands and tools. That is why following the procedure outlined in this article will really help. The order of installing the various parts can be crucial. The photos were taken on an open frame so that you can see exactly how every thing goes together. You need to work slowly. Here are a couple of other suggestions which will help: Use taps and dies to clean all threads that will be used. Order or collect a)I of the parts before you start this conversion. You will not want to be in the middle of the project and be missing one small item. Read through the article and the list of parts before making up your parts order. The list also includes the water pump and harmonic balancer double groove pulleys that you might need. Most cars require double pulleys at the water pump and harmonic balancer. A/C cars will require a third track at the harmonic balancer.

Step I . If your car has air conditioning, loosen and remove the A/C belt. Loosen and remove the generator or alternator belt. Temporarily remove the alternator or generator from the bracket at the exhaust manifold. Since you just want the alternator or generator out of the way during the installation, you do not completely disconnect and remove.

Step 2. Using a 1/2" socket, remove the four 5/16-24 x 3/4" bolts and lock washers, which secure the fan and water pump pulley. Remove the fan and pulley. Using a 9/16" deep socket, remove the three 3/8-24 x 1" bolts and lock washers, which secure the crank (harmonic balancer) pulley. Remove the crank pulley.

Parts List
1955-57 Replacement Steering Column Firewall Bracket & Clamp
1958-64 Small Block 605 Power Steering Conversion Kit
1958-64 396/427/454ci Big Block 605 Power Steering Conversion Kit
955-72 Double Groove Crankshaft Pulley
1955-72 Small Block & 348/409ci Double Groove Water Pump Pulley
1955-72 Single Groove Harmonic Balancer Pulley
1955-68 Small Block Single Groove Short Water Pump Pulley
1955-72 Power Steering Pump Pulley
1960-72 Power Steering Pump & Bracket Stud
1958-1964 Chevy 605 Style Steering Box Mounting Bracket Kit upgarded steering box
1955-1956 Chevy Bel Air Steering Wheel 15" With Horn Ring custom upgrade over stock
1958-64 605 Or 500 Series Power Steering Box To Original Column Or ididit Conversion Shaft & U-Joint

Tools Needed:
Various 12-point Sockets
Ratchet (5/16" to 11/16")
Various 12-point Wrenches 5/16" to 11/16")
Various Line Wrenches
Various Taps or Thread Chasers (5/16"-24, 3/8"-16, 7/16"-14)
Pitman Arm Puller

Time Frame
4.5 Hours

Image #1-2: Step 3. For those with 1959-1964 cars, the next piece to remove is the lower (or intermediate) steering shaft. (For those of you with 1958 cars, skip to Step 4) The lower shaft is made so that you can remove the shaft without removing the steering box, but sometimes it can be difficult. Using a twelve­ point 7/16" deep socket remove the special bolt, which secures the lower end of the shaft (Photo 1). Use a large flat-blade screw driver to spread the clamp. A clamp at the upper end of the intermediate shaft must he loosened. Use 5/8" and 11/16" wrenches or sockets to remove the bolt, flat washer, and nut (Photo 2). Use a large flat-blade screwdriver to spread the clamp. Slide the cup and clamp assembly down the shaft until they reach the end of the milled down area of the shaft. (Notice where the awl is pointing in Photo 2.) Slide the shaft toward the firewall and off of the steering box. (The upper cup and clamp should slide far enough to allow the lowe r end to slide off of the steering box.) You may have to use a rubber hammer to drive the shaft off. Don' t get frustrated; if it does not come off just go to the next step.

Step 4. Use a large wrench or socket to remove the sector shaft nut and lock washer which secure the pitman arm. Using a pitman arm puller, remove the pitman arm from the steering box. (You probably may have to use a hammer to loosen the pitman arm from the steering box. As you tighten the bolt on the puller , hammer the end of the bolt once or twice.) Use a 9/16" socket to remove the three bolts, which secure the original steering box to the frame. Usually two of the bolts have large flat washers and the other bolt has a small flat washer. Carefully lower the steering box. If the intermediate shaft is still connected, tap it off with the hammer. Remove the original steering box completely out of the car.

Image #3: Step 5. Now the pump brackets will be installed. The brackets will be secured with two 3/8-16 x 1 ¼" bolts with lock washers (at the front left of the small block) and one 3/8-16 x 7/8" bolt with lock washer (at the forward location of the left side motor mount).

Image #4: The reproduction brackets mount the same way that the original brackets mount. As suggested in the introduction, clean the threads (3/8-16) of these locations with some kind of thread chaser or tap. Temporarily remove the forward top bolt of the left side motor mount. (Each motor mount is secured with three of these bolts.)

Image #5: Step 6. Position the two brackets and start to thread the two 1 '/," bolts and lock washers into the front of the block. The bolts go through the forward bracket, then through the rear bracket, and then into the block.

Image #6: Do not tighten at this time. Install the 7/8" bolt with lock washer through the rear hole in the rear pump bracket, through the motor mount, and then into the block. Now tighten all three bolts, which secure the pump brackets.

Image #7-8: Step 7. If your car has an original front sway bar, spacers are required to drop the sway bar about 1/8". A spacer will be installed at each frame rail between the sway bar bracket and the frame. From experience, here is a very good way of removing the two bolts securing each of the sway bar brackets. Use a 1/2" short socket on a 1/4" drive ratchet to hold the heads of the two 5/16-18 bolts. These are accessible through two large holes in the outside of the frame. Use 1/2" wrench or socket to remove the nut. After removing the two bolts, position the spacer and secure with the same two bolts. Repeat this procedure for the other side of the sway bar.

Image #9: Step 8. Since there is so little working space, it is best to install the hoses onto the pump before installing the pump into the pump brackets. The pressure line is installed into the female flare fitting at the lower rear of the pump. Tighten until it is just snug. (For those with original pumps, an adaptor fitting may be required to mate the pump and new hose. This fitting is available at many auto parts stores).

Image #10-11: Step 9. On many of the pumps available, the return line on the back of the pump points to the 9 o'clock position. For the pump to be used with these original-type pump brackets, the line needs to be pointing to the 8 o'clock position (See arrow in Photo 9). This can he accomplished with a large adjustable wrench, but must be done very carefully. You do not want to twist off the return line. The return hose must be shortened to 12" before installing it onto the pump. Place the measuring tape at the 90 degree bend and cut at 12" (Photo 10). Apply some grease onto the pump's return fitting. Position a small hose clamp onto the hose and slide the hose onto the pump's return fitting. (The 605 box fitting of the return hose should be pointing toward the front of the pump.) This hose clamp needs to be oriented as it is in Photo 11 so that you can get to the clamp once the pump is installed. Tighten the hose clamp.

Image #12: Step 10. Each of the pump brackets has an offset to accommodate the mounting studs on the back of original pumps. Original pumps used special studs (PIN 561350) at the upper and lower locations on the rear of the pump.

Image #13-14: The forward bracket has an offset at the rear slot and the rear bracket has one at the upper (belt adjusting) location. The replacement pumps do not have the special studs as a result; you must do one of two things to install the pump. The two choices are explained in the next step.

Image #15-16: Step 11. With two studs like original, the pump is very difficult to install. Using just one stud in the lower position makes the installation the easiest. So using one of the special studs is best. Use it in the lower rear position. The hardware required to finish the lower rear location is a flat washer, lock washer, and nut. If you do not use a stud in the lower rear position, two flat washers can be used to take up the space of the stud. The hardware required to finish the lower rear location is a 3/8-16 x 3/411 bolt, flat washer, and lock washer. (In Photo 16; the awl points to the location of the bracket.)

Image #17-18: Step 12. The upper rear location hardware is a 3/8-16 x 3/411 bolt and lock washer with two flat washers used as spacers between the pump and rear bracket (Photo #18). The lower forward location hardware is a 3/8-16 x l II bolt, flat washer, and lock washer (Photo 19).

Image #19-20: Step 13. Now that all of the pump hardware is ready, there is one other thing that you can do to prepare for the pump installation. Using a 3/8-16 tap, chase the threads of the two pump locations where the bolts will he installed. I have seen a few pumps where the holes were filled with dirt and grime even after being rebuilt. I could hardly install a bolt. When you are trying to install the pump in tight quarters, the last thing you want to do is work hard to install a bolt. (Apply a small amount of grease to the bolts just before installing them.) With the hoses pointed toward the rear of the car, position the pump and install the hardware (Photo 20). Notice the two washers that act as a spacer as pointed out with the arrow in Photo 21. Do not tighten any of the three locations until you have them all started. (Make all three locations snug, but do not tighten at this time.)

Step 14. Next, select the pulleys at the water pump and the harmonic balancer. (See detailed information in the second part to this article.) The alternator or generator uses GM's track #1 and the belt goes around the water pump, the harmonic balancer, and the alternator or generator. The A/C uses GM's track #2 and the belt goes around the water pump, the harmonic balancer, and the A/C compressor.

Congratulations on completing the first part of your Late Model Power Steering 605 Conversion. Look in an upcoming issue for Part II, continuing with Step 15, to complete your project.

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