I have tried three different two jaw pullers on the silly pittman arm and all of them slip off if I apply any torque at all. I was able to get a C-clamp on the smallest puller but even that slipped and failed. What works?
I am a great fan of PB Blaster penetrating oil.
Somebody will tell you to just tap it with a hammer and it will pop right off. I will laugh when I read it. I don't remember what I used last time, but I don't recall the job ever being easy.
Use a small ball joint fork to put tension on it, then tap the shaft with a hammer. Protect the threads with a nut.
That sound you hear is Steve Jelf laughing.......
Put a heavy weight (like a sledge hammer or heavier) against one side of the arm and hit it on the opposite side with another big hammer. Do this up high where it is around the end of the steering shaft. It should break loose after a whack or two.
Leave the nut on but loose and with a large drift (I use brass) and a 2lb. hand sledge, one or two good whacks on and it comes right off.
Your mileage may vary !
When I needed to remove my pitman arm, I dismounted the steering wheel, unscrewed the cap of the steering gear case and then used a 2-foot length of wooden dowel as a drift (same size as the dowel that runs the length of a coat closet). I put one end of the dowel against the threaded, lower end of the steering column shaft and whacked away at the other end of the dowel with a big hammer. When the steering column shaft went up into the steering column housing, the pitman arm fell off.
Now, If you drive the steering column shaft too far up, the little planetary gears in the steering gear case may pop out, so be prepared for that possibility. It's a simple matter to pop the little gears back in and shove the steering shaft back down from above.
Uh... Of course, if you use my method, you must first remove the cotter pin and castle nut from the bottom end of the steering column shaft. You probably realized that, but I figured it couldn't hurt to mention it.
Mike Walker's method works every time, same way used to remove tie rod ends and ball joints on modern vehicles. KB
This type puller works excellent.
Thanks for the advice, I am also working on this problem right now. Need to remove my engine to fix a cracked low speed drum. I figured I would install a new Pittman arm at the same time to tighten up the steering.
I've has the arm/shaft soaking in Aerokroil overnight so hopefully is will come off with a bit of persuasion. I did get the firewall/column assembly out of the car so at least its up on the bench where I can get at it.
Ken, what is that type of puller called? I just looked at the McMaster Carr website and didn't see anything like it.
here's a thought on the pittman arm replacement to tighten the steering... consider one of the shims you can get from Snyders or Macs, lots cheaper, and unless your pittman is really bad shape, they really work swell. Got one on my roadster and it's great. I did replace the bushings in the spindle arms where the tie rod connects though,and they're not expensive, easy to replace, and really tightens things up. Also check the king pins, might as well go all the way with it! Little over a hundred bucks will do it.
Unbolt the bracket from the frame, the 4 bolts holding the column to the firewall and the drag link. Then just slide it up and out of the way. Don't need to pull the pitman arm off.
I also use Mike Walker's method. When you reassemble with the new parts the surfaces should be free of oil and grease to avoid splitting the new pitman arm when tightening.
When I pulled the pitman arm on my coupe, I had to resort to heating it up with a torch. I could not get that thing off any other way!
My pitman arm just fell off when I unscrewed it.
I worked on getting the pittman arm off without success. This may end up being a job that needs an assistant . . .
Take a small torch, heat it almost red hot the shock it with water, tap it with a hammer comes off every time, Bob
Paul, it's called a tie-rod end puller.
Sorry for my posting on just moving the whole steering assembly out of the way, for some reason I was thinking engine pulling.
No worries Mark, it is easy to miss the direction of the thread. Thanks also to Ken for the info on that tool. I've decided to take the whole shootin match up to Larry at the Tin Shed and get the entire column taken to bits and inspected. I could keep futzing with it and would eventually get it off and the other bits removed but I would rather move ahead with this already long delayed project. I still have many other hunks of the project to work on . . .
I just got back from taking my firewall/steering column up to Larry at the Tin Shed. He will have everything ready for me Saturday and I can proceed to other matters.
One of the side benefits of taking my bits to Larry is that he ran his practiced eye over the pieces and saw that the column & levers were from a 1916 Model T. I knew my car is a bitsa but now I know just a little more about what it is made of. He also mentioned that the steel firewall for a low radiator car is hard to find. Too bad as mine looks like it was a shotgun target at some point in its life and could use some repair!
Vintage Paul, have bondo will fill dents . . .
Looks to be in good shape from the photo. I only see two extra holes, next to the big one above the steering column. Although the oblong one under where the bell crank goes on the passenger side is still a mystery. Mine has it too, too narrow for the speedo cable.
The damage is a forest of deep dents, most likely from shotgun pellets. In the photo above you can see some of them in the area above the electric bus mount. The body has them too and much worse. The back of the bucket area which is hidden by the turtle deck is full of some very deep ones. Who ever put the car together just bondoed the area and left it. I only found it when the upholstery came out a year ago!
I though I had this problem solved by taking the firewall/steering column assembly up to Larry Blair at the Tin Shed. Sure enough, Larry got the arm off and disassembled the column. The subsequent travails of building and installing the new column & the patched up firewall have been the subject of others posts so I'll leave them be right now.
Two weeks ago I got everything just about finished and went to install the triple gears and steering stub shaft only to find out the maker of the new steering shaft had bored the hole incorrectly. Of course, that damned pittman arm had already been installed and it was on TIGHT! I was right back in the same s**t soup again!
Two pullers were suggested on this thread so I ordered the cheapest one from Harbor Freight. It is item No. 1752 and proved to be EXACTLY the same as one of the pullers I already had on hand and had found to be too large to grab the arm. I'll donate it to a pal who works on old cars if he has any use for it. $10 bucks plus tax & shipping down the drain!
Ken Todd recommended another puller and the link he provided was to Auto Zone. I ordered this puller for pickup at the local store a few days latter. This one is costly, $40. plus tax but proved to be worth the money. It fit and looked like it might remove the arm IF it was strong enough. Here is a pic of the puller ready to do its work:
The puller takes a 3/4" wrench and I started to put some armstrong on it. I turned that wrench hard and the arm showed no sign of moving. I was just about to go back into the shop and get a hammer to help persuade the thing to come off when I heard a rattle. The arm had popped off and with no damage at all! Here is a pic:
Here is Ken's link to the puller that worked:
It is part no. 27175.
I still have to pry the key out of the shaft & tap it out so I can ship it back to the vendor but at least the hard job is done!
That puller might have worked ok but it's not as good or as expensive as those we used to manufacture at OTC. But then I can't even afford that stuff. Autozone works for me.
Is that long slot under the bell crank for an inside mixture control rod, just a guess.
Paul, glad it worked out for you.
BTW, w/the link I wasn't suggesting any particular brand, just showing it for reference.
Offhand I don't know what brand my puller is. I kinda suspect that it's OTC but I'd hafta go out to the shop to check.
The two hammer approach Steve outlined above has never failed me. It is a one man job that requires no heat, Kroil or pullers.
I learned this trick from my dad over 50 years ago, working on an old Caterpillar tractor with him.
I thought the same thing.
This is the wood firewall on my 19 hack.
it has two slots -one for the mixture control and the other for the choke.
The choke slot is not used because the vehicle does not have a starter and the choke rod goes out the front so the cranky guy can pull it.
Here is a pic of my firewall:
There is an extra little slot that is there. Any idea what it is for?
"The two hammer approach Steve outlined above has never failed me. It is a one man job that requires no heat, Kroil or pullers"
I was taught that also, (back in the 50's), it works well in a lot of situations but try that on a T when the car is all together and you're trying to get the piman arm off, there's no room.
The illustrated puller will work in that situation.
If you have the steering column out and on the floor or the bench, that's a different kettle of fish.
Ken, I'm with you on this. The steering column had just had its second powdercoat job (long story) and everything else was nicely painted. I don't wanna pull that column back out again!
This OEM 27175 tool got the arm off without taking off the paint or even mussing my hair.