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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Re: Steering wheel epoxied onto shaft

km3h -

Not saying that you don't have an epoxy filled hub (possibly someone drilled before then re-filled it), but my wheel is molded out of a bakelite/plastic material with the hub completely molded around the steel cup within the wheel. It's this steel center that slides onto the steering shaft. With the pin attached steering wheels, the only way to see the top of the steering shaft is to drill down through the plastic in the hub center of the wheel, to the top of the steering shaft.

Your set-up will work as what I used includes likely the same components.

OTC 1122 Bearing Splitter (available at Graingers)
Craftsman Steering Wheel Puller 41833 (looks like what you have, I liked it mostly for the strength of the puller base)
4 - 1/2" bolts to reach the bearing splitter (the bolts included in the wheel puller are not long enough)

First, drive out the 1/4" roll pin with an appropriate pin punch. It will take several good blows to break the bond. The driver I had was only long enough to get it halfway through (fairly long pin). I used a 1/4" steel rod to drive it the rest of the way out. The pin I removed was pretty corroded for a good part of it's length, altho some of it "cleaned off" as it was driven out. See pics below -

Next, drill out the plastic in the center of the hub face, after you have carefully removed the center cap. Below is a view of the drilled hole which is probably 3/8" deep before you find the top of the steering shaft. I "hogged out the hole a little so I could also see the steel sleeve. If you look closely, you can see the corrosion and pitting in the sleeve of the removed wheel (sorry, the sleeve is a little blurry).

Lift the wheel as high as you can (it's likely dropped a little due to bushing wear) and install the bearing splitter with the flat face against the bottom of the wheel. Evenly adjust the splitter nuts to draw the two halves together to the point that you can start both bolts into the splitter faces. You want to draw them in as far as possible (with the sides of the bolts tight against the wheel hub), so the splitter edges can rest against the metal insert on the underside of the wheel. You won't be able to draw them together as far as you could with your oval Ford wheel, since the Case wheel hub is round, but there should still be plenty on contact area (see the view of the bottom of the removed wheel, along with the splitter/steel insert contact area).

The above steering wheel puller has one other advantage. The threaded rod is 1/2" diameter, which makes it a good choice to drive out the steering shaft (which is 5/8" diameter). My other pullers had threaded rods that were too large. One problem with the puller (for this job) is that the nice swivel base it had was too large, therefore I cut it off (hated to do this to a perfectly good tool). See below -

After that, assemble with the previously installed bearing splitter and bolts (see below). Looks very similar to what you used on your Ford wheel.

Make sure that the puller bolt will find the center of the steering shaft before continuing. If you didn't see the same amount of steering shaft face and wheel hub sleeve edge when looking down through the drilled hole in the wheel hub, it's likely been drilled off center and the drilled hole will only guide the threaded rod onto the top edge of the hub sleeve. You want to avoid damaging/scarring this sleeve as the fit is close to an "end to end" fit, with not much clearance between the sleeve and the shaft.

Tighten very tight with a 1/2" drive ratchet to make sure everything looks centered. Whack down on the top of the puller bolt a couple of times, retighten the puller. Repeat until it won't tighten anymore. Finally, don't expect it to release and pull off right away. I tightened the mutha out of that puller and I could easily still slide that 1/4" rod I used to help drive out the roll pin, completely throught the hub and shaft. Hadn't budged even a fraction of an inch!

I then sprayed liberal amounts of PB Blaster down in the top of the drilled hole and walked away. Did this two nights in a row, then broke out the impact driver on the third night. Set the driver to the lowest "1" setting to hammer the puller bolt a little. Increased it to "2" and I started to see the puller bolt start to walk a little. Stopped, then hit it again with the driver and the bolt slowly rotated, then sped up as it freed the wheel.

I did a quick visual inspection on the steel insert after removing the wheel and found it to be perfectly intact and the wheel undamaged.
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