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Steering Coupler Upgrade

on the 1979 300SD (W116)

by Doktor Bert


116 Steering Coupler $6.00 Upgrade

From time to time, I like to post things that many members of the forum will find helpful. Recently, I began to notice that the steering coupler on my 116.120 had started to loosen up and was clunking over bumps.

The cheapest I could find was around $70.00. As I began to look at the coupler, I saw little if any reason to keep it insulated in rubber. I decided to come up with a method to replace it with a solid assembly, do it with common hand tools and use only parts I could get at my local ACE hardware store. The result is a solid, sturdy steering coupler that requires no modifications

First, you drill out the mushroomed section of the two pins that hold the coupler together. Then, you simply drive out the two pins.

Once the rubber is picked out, you are ready to start the reassembly process.

I used (2) 1/4" aluminum cable button stops (ACE #5192901) to replace the missing rubber. I coated the OD with RTV before slipping them in place.

Next, I used (2) 1/4" ID x 3/8" OD bronze flange bushings (A Midwest Fastner part by size) which slipped into the other half of the coupler. I filed off about .030" of the bushing (opposite the flange) until it was flush with the coupler's surface.

I then used (2) 1/4" x 2.00" grade 8 bolts. I chose 1/4" because the hex is 11mm and it fits the other pieces without modification. I used (2) 1/4" flat washers and (2) 1/4" locking flange nuts to round out the parts list.

All of these were bought from my local ACE hardware store for a little over $5.00. The finsihed product is easy to install, easy to adjust for steering wheel centering and gives the car a very solid feel.

Best of all, anyone can do this in a driveway, with basic hand tools, a 3/8" drill and a sharp bit.

I hope you find this information helpful....Robert

Discuss this DIY here.

-Doktor Bert

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