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1966 Rag joint replacement

Discussion in '1955 - 1966 Classic Ford Thunderbird' started by Mikey78, Oct 3, 2019.

  1. Hey guys,

    So I need a new Rag Joint on my 66 Tbird. I've never worked on removing one before. What's the "easiest" or most common way of doing it? Does the steering gear box need removal? Thanks.
    CM II likes this.
  2. What is a Rag joint
  3. It's sometimes referred to as a steering coupler. Does that ring a bell? It sits above the steering gear box on the shaft. It keeps vibrations down on the steering wheel amongst other things. When they go bad or tear they cause play in the steering wheel.
  4. Thanks, I did not know. I have seen them on vehicles.
    Mikey78 likes this.
  5. Rag joint is the old school name for them as mentioned steering coupler is the correct name. I have done many of them. I just did mine on the 63. To answer your question is the best way is to remove the bolts on the steering box that bolt to frame. This will allow for some play. Also i removed the drivers side spring hinge and that gave me more room to get to the bolts. This is a PITA job and will require a lot of time and be prepared to drop some nuts and bolts. You will also need to be able to turn the steering to access the nuts and bolts to make it easier to install. Also loosen up the coupler collars and slid back. Good luck!!!
    Mikey78 likes this.
  6. You removed the driver's side spring hinge ? Meaning the hood hinge? Does your 63 have a brake booster? Thanks.
  7. Sorry i removed just the spring (spring only) and that allowed me to get my hand and tools in there better. Also i do have a brake booster
    Mikey78 likes this.
  8. Ok got it thanks. I'll try that.
  9. Ok guys I need help. I may be having a brain fart again. I bought a new Rag joint but it's not like the original.

    The new one does not have a 2nd clamp on the side that connects to the steering shaft. It only has the steering gear box clamp. Do I have to cut off the rivet heads from the old one and re-use it for the steering shaft?

    Secondly the new Rag joint has "Arms" for lack of a better word. I know they are there to be as a back up Incase the rag joint rips or goes out on you. The 66 TBird does not have a place for those to slide into. As you can see the old Rag joint/Steering coupler had riveted heads on it. No "Arms" sticking out like the new one. IMG_20191011_203811467.jpg IMG_20191011_203655469.jpg
  10. Is this the wrong year? It looks like this is for a 69 and later Ford with power steering. I'm having trouble finding a new one for my 66 Tbird does anyone know where I can get a Correct Replacement? Thanks.
  11. Hey guys,

    When I took off my old Rag joint I had to tap it off the gear box end. I'm assuming it's the same when putting on the new one? It needs some tapping to get it on? It won't just slide on like the steering shaft end.

    Does removing the splash guard/Inner fender wall really make a difference with making it easier to put it back on? Thanks.
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2019

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