The steering column kit from Flaming River came complete with all the pieces needed for installation, and was a perfect complement to the rack-and-pinion unit covered in a previous article. Supplied complete with turn signal switch and horn wiring, this column is a virtual look-alike to the original, but with 21st century technology behind it.
In the engine bay the column and steering shaft have that "nearly original yet slightly high tech" look, perfect for the resto-mod look of the rest of the car. The Flaming River kit includes a steering column and steering shaft, as well as beefy U-joints. The only modification required with this kit is a slight notching of the driver's side horizontal ignition shielding for steering shaft clearance.
Here Gary Gardner installs the inside firewall finishing plate, a beautifully machined piece that, along with its counterpart on the engine side of the firewall, prevents the passage of wind and water while providing a support point for the lower end of the column.
With the instrument cluster off to Corvette Specialties of Maryland for overhaul (see sidebar), you can see the original dash wiring harness which, like those of most cars of this vintage, has seen its share of splices and repairs. The good folks at M&H Electric Fabricators provided all new harnesses to keep the volts where they belong. Corvette Specialties also supplied new speedometer and tach cable/casing assemblies to install while the cluster was out.
Our new M&H wiring harnesses were made with particular attention to important criteria like color coding, exact length, proper connectors, and wrapping just like original. Their attention to detail made installation straightforward and assured that all the electrons will be flowing properly for many years to come.
Here you can see that our new steering wheel from Corvette Central was a bit smaller in diameter than the OE wheel, but maintains the correct look while providing the proper amount of leverage to direct the R&P steering.