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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
It's technically a Ranch wagon, but they should be the same.

There is (for lack of a better word) a cover part way down the steering column of an automatic (c6). It's the same color as the column.

There are 4 bolts holding it on. Those bolts have a head that does not work with any of my sockets (and I have many SAE and Metric). They do not have a hex head or a screw head. Cannot get on them with any type of wrench or pliers.

They appear to need some special socket to get them off.

Is it a special socket I need, and where can I get one?

TIA
 

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Wow, I went to check mine thinking it was going to be 5/16. It wasn't, it is larger than 1/4" and smaller than 9/32". It has to be SAE because of when it was made and a US car, but it is a strange size and since the bolt is recessed into the bracket you have to use a socket.

It must be a 17/64", but I have never seen one.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Wow, I went to check mine thinking it was going to be 5/16. It wasn't, it is larger than 1/4" and smaller than 9/32". It has to be SAE because of when it was made and a US car, but it is a strange size and since the bolt is recessed into the bracket you have to use a socket.

It must be a 17/64", but I have never seen one.
That's the same problem I ran into. The edges are not consistent with a typical bolt either, being many (a dozen or so) small ridges.

I find it very odd that in a car that Ford basically used standard bolts and screws to hold together that they would use such a strange bolt. I thought it might be a security device to keep someone from accessing the area easily to hot wire the car. But the same wires are easily accessible where they come out the column further down.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I got mine off with a 12 point 1/4" combo wrench and then bought a 12 point deep 1/4 socket for the install. Odd bolt for sure.
Thanks, I will give that a try. The car is still at the mechanics and I forgot to check on this when I was there today. I am sure they will have what you recommend, and then pick up my own.
 

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I dug through a bunch of Air Force surplus tools I got back in the 60s and found a 12 or 16 point 1/4" socket today. Fits perfect.

I guess they did this because of the torque requirement on the small bolt head and fear of rounding off a 6 or 8 point?
 

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At that time they were referred to as Ferry Heads. FORD didn't want you going in unless you had the tool and knew what you were doing. Safety factor.

A twelve point box end or socket (thin wall) of the correct size will get it.

:confused:

The head size theory is also correct as a six point hex head may may not allow a socket (unless thin wall) to be applied and apply correct torque value (although the cap screw was hardened).
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks for your input. I was able to borrow a 1/4 inch, 12 point that gripped it well enough to get them off. I couldn't buy one at Autozone, Advance Auto, Carquest, or NAPA. Next time I am near Sears, I will check them out. Sheesh.

Downer was after going all through that to get it off, all it does is hold the column in place. The column is solid underneith it. So it was kind of a waste of time. I guess if someone needs one (I got the top portion off too), I will have it.

It still strikes me as so odd to have these weird bolts that I have not seen anywhere else on the car. And really, there is not much they are protecting me from. You could easily take off other bolts that would kill you quicker on the road. Ah well.
 

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There are two metal brackets on the engine side of the firewall that bolt on to the studs from the boot and then clamp the metal outer tube of the column in place and center the steering shaft on that end with a couple of bolts. Expected a lower bearing when I had mine apart and there is none, so I assume that's how it all is supposed to work.

 

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Just a note-

Some applications did not use a lower bearing but a large nylon bushing to center the shaft and keep out weather and fumes. I am not at MY MPC or I would find out about this one.
 

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All mine had was a big piece of foam, MP schematic didn't seem to list one either. The Column I pulled out of a convert in case I needed spare parts also didn't have one.
 
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