Our project '49 Chevy saw the Chassis Engineering front suspension installed in our October issue, but we had no means to steer the car which made it kinda difficult to move around, especially as it doesn't live at our Tech Center between installation stories. However, a couple of calls to Flaming River and we had everything we needed from the steering rack up to the steering wheel, though we sourced the latter from Lecarra, opting for their Mk40 wheel in plain black, with a plain black horn button. While a V8 logo button is available, we were conscious of putting what is essentially a reduced diameter '40 Ford wheel in a Chevy and wanted to stay away from the V8 logo. Apart from the fact the Mk40 is a cool-looking wheel, we want the '49 to retain an early custom look inside and out (but not under!) once completed, and didn't want a half-wrapped wheel or anything too modern-looking. The Mk40 fits the bill perfectly.

Why a couple of calls to Flaming River? Because we mistakenly ordered a steering rack with a long input shaft, which is what you can see in the picture at the lower right, but once this was bolted in place, it was obvious the lower U-joint would not clear the crossmember, so we had to admit our mistake (that took some doing!) and go back to Flaming River for a rack with a short input shaft (part number FR1502-5) before we could continue. The rest of the install was smooth sailing, helped by sourcing all the components from a single manufacturer. Lecarra even supplied a Flaming River-specific adapter to bolt the steering wheel to the Flaming River Nostalgia column.

We bolted an old cylinder head to our dummy block and installed the driver side header, which is one of a pair of center-dump Sanderson headers, as it'd be easy to install the steering shafts without this in place, only to find the headers wouldn't fit later. Good thing we did too, as there was little room for error in routing the shafts. Chassis Engineering advised us at the start that the steering would need three U-joints and a support bearing, which was very useful advice, making the whole process rather painless!

SOURCE
Flaming River Industries
Berea
OH
8-00/-648-8022
flamingriver.com
Sanderson Headers
517 Railroad Ave.
South San Francisco
CA  94080
800-669-2430
www.sandersonheaders.com
Lecarra