The stock '54 ford column, lowered to fit better because of the channeling job. The cutout above the column gives you an idea how high it was, stock. Notice I cut down the steering wheel to around 13" dia. I intend to redo the steering rim and center with TigerHair bondo, and build in a recessed area for the horn ring so it comes out a bit recessed into the rim of the wheel. All the original fabric-covered wiring was replaced with a trailer harness kit. The dash has also been extensively reworked, the speaker grille hole was filled, and the dash insert area replaced. Also visible in this pic is the valve assembly for the air ride bag controls. This was the quick and cheap way to get the suspension adjustable, I need nothing more than front-rear control.
A better shot of the dash assembly. The column was moved down a good 4 inches where the dash cutout is, it used to be right against/below the speedo cutout. I dropped it with a section of box tubing as a spacer/column mount. This picture also shows off the insert area that I filled a little better, and just barely visible at the top center is the filled speaker grille area. I know the wiring looks messy, this was just temporary to get it all working and drivable, I'm also planning to rewire the car with a nice neat harness.
Hard to tell there was ever a speaker in here. The formed filler is 20 Ga. sheet, tacked in flush with the MIG welder and ground. Very little filler will be needed here...
A shot directly from the side. Note where the steering box has been rotated up and back in this picture. The original mounting holes can barely be seen in the pic next to the box ears. The shift lever will be approximately located where the firewall grommet is, so I need to move the firewall back another 2 inches or so.
Rotating the column down and back means that the centerlink and everything attached goes forwards and up. Not a problem, I still have adequate space between the tie rod ends and the frame crossmember, and the crossmember is still the closest part to the oilpan. Those rotted lower control arm bushings have to go!
Passenger side firewall needing replacement. Note that the cowl support is also missing, I temporarily mounted a short length of copper tubing in it's place when doing the channeling job, as it was easiest to cut to length. I have to rebuild both cowl supports anyways, and will do so after the firewall is replaced.
The drivers side firewall. All of the old sheetmetal is going, the only reason for having it remain now is for pattern layout, or for where to put the holes to mount stuff like the gas pedal assembly and the brake parts. This will all be new metal from the upper curved part including new toeboards. The only part I want to keep is the trans tunnel area, as it defines where the trans goes and it was big enough for the TH-400 to fit.
More to come later...
The Kustomsledd Page 6
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