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Power steering ram rebuilding

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Old 08-25-2011, 07:18 PM
ChrisAdams ChrisAdams is offline
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Power steering ram rebuilding

This post is more just for information for anyone doing the rebuild on a Falcon, Ranchero Mustang, etc. ram.

When I got my 63 and a half V8 Ranchero I was delighted it had power steering.
Less delighted that it was dripping a little, but what the heck.
So when I got to the steering I saw it seemed to be leaking from one of the little short hoses that screw into the ram cylinder.
No problem, the hoses are cheap and everyone has them. I think I paid about 9 bucks at Rockauto for just the one. They are often sold it pairs but the second one looked new so...
Anyway. I replace the hose, but found another small drip from the ram itself.

So in testing, I had the steering turned hard left and whoops, now it's more of a trickle than a drip.
I checked into a rebuilt ram but decided to pull the ram and reseal it myself, as the shaft looked good.
Pulled it apart and noticed the inner seals were crumbling a little. May not be original from 63, but been in there a long time.
I ordered a kit, about 15 bucks. Pretty common kit, some places locally had it in stock.
Kit comes in. Has an extra metal washer.
In the diagram that comes with the kit, it shows the metal washer between the two inner seals.
Look it up on line. Sure enough, a metal washer between the two seals.
I put it together with the metal washer.
Can't fit the clip that holds the assembly in place.
Not possible to compress the seals, wiper, etc. that far.
The new retaining c-clip is much thinner that my original, so I (after MUCH work) manage to clip it in.
It lasts about ten minutes, then blows out.
Two days of messing with it, I have to come to the conclusion that the thick metal washer DOES NOT go in there.
With the metal washer, system can't be assembled. Without the metal washer, two minute job.
So I discarded the washer, put the thing back the way it had been when I first got it, two seals, no washer, other hardware and the original fat c-clip.
Everything works. Have driven the car 200 miles, lots of twisting on the steering. I pulled the dust cover back, not a drop of fluid.

I assume some of these cylinders had room for the metal washer, some didn't.
Anyway, works fine now.
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