Click Here For Project Costs

AFCO produces a number of ways to effectively mount the steering shaft to a race car, but we didn't have any lying around the shop so we fabricated our own. Using our tubing bender from Low Buck Tools, we bent a section of tubing into a shallow arc, notched it and welded it to the cross-tube on the rollcage. To this we welded a piece of plate steel with a slot cut in the middle. The Woodward collapsible shaft bolts to this, and the slot provides us a measure of adjustability. As a rule of thumb, when mounting your steering wheel, you want the shaft pointing straight at the center of the driver's chest. To the shaft we bolted up a 15-inch aluminum steering wheel from QuickCar Racing Products.

From there we connected the dots with three-quarter-inch tubing and universal joints. We finished the project in one marathon (for us) six-hour session that wrapped up just after midnight one cold Saturday evening. It was the first time in a long time we had been able to finish a project without the fits and starts that have plagued us because of poor preparation or lacking all the necessary parts. We nearly broke our arms patting ourselves on the back-that is until Scott turned the steering wheel and found a kink we couldn't eliminate. We had an angle that was too sharp for the universal joint to handle, and no amount of adjusting would get rid of it.

Here's the problem. The kink isn't really all that bad. More annoying than anything, really. But at this point there's no dirt gunking up the works, the engine isn't in place weighing down the front end, and turning the steering wheel at the race shop is a world apart from cranking the car around a real racetrack. Even though the start of the season is bearing down on us like a used car salesman at the end of a slow month, the answer was painfully obvious: Take it apart and start over. The old saying that if something is worth doing, it's worth doing right may be true, but it's a lot easier to throw around when you are telling somebody else to get their act together. It will come as a big shock to our wives when they read this and learn we aren't perfect like we've been telling them all this time.

Manufacturers
Coleman Racing Products
Dept. CT05
N-1597 U.S. 41
Menominee, MI 49858
800/221-1851
www.colemanracing.com

Flaming River
Dept. CT05
800 Poertner Dr
Berea, OH 44017
800/648-8022
www.flamingriver.com

JR Motorsports
Dept. CT05
801 SW Ordnance Rd
Ankeny, IA 50021
515/963-8788

Low Buck Tools
Dept. CT05
4175 California Ave
Norco, CA 92860
800/735-7844
www.lowbucktools.com

P&J Products
Dept. CT05
988 Gordon Ln
Birmingham, MI 48009
888/647-1879
www.carskates.com

QuickCar Racing Products
Dept. CT05
44 Pearl Pentecost Rd
Winder, GA 30680
770/867-9500
www.quickcarracingproducts.com

Sears Craftsman
Dept. CT05
15825 Industrial Pkwy
Cleveland, OH 44135
800/377-7414
www.sears.com/craftsman

Stock Car Steel
Dept. CT05
8018 Performance Rd
Mooresville, NC 28115
704/664-3044
scsa@earthlink.com

Woodward Precision Power Steering
Dept. CT05
3592 Burd Rd
Casper, WY 82604
307/472-0550
www.woodwardsteering.com