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MG MGA - Steering wheel

I'm having trouble removing steering wheel. No problem with nut holding it on but can't remove wheel after that. Don't want to hit it too hard and have used penetrating oil etc. Is there any problem with undoing retaining nut on universal joint and pulling wheel and inner shaft up together or will this be just as difficult?

Many thanks
P Parmenter


Does your car have the reach-adjustable column? Look for a chrome spiral flat spring and shaft clamp between the wheel and the dashboard. If you remove the pinch bolt from the clamp, the wheel and upper steering stub shaft should come out complete.

If this doesn't work, you can pull the full shaft by removing the upper u-joint pinch bolt. It's a tight fit- you may have to move your seat all the way back. I've done it both ways but it's been long enough that I can't remember the details. I am sure you have to remove the pinch bolts, not just loosen them. They engage a slot on the shaft so it doesn't fall apart if the nuts get loose.

If your car's steering is good, don't move the rack or the main column housing. The alignment is critical to light, friction-free steering. If you pull the whole shaft, consider replacing the felt bearings. After you've considered this, forget about it ;-) The replacement set I bought was too thick and I spend hours pounding the felt whith a hammer then trimming it back to fit. After all that work, the shaft movement was only slightly improved. Great exersize but low bang for the buck improving the car.

Have fun,
Bill Eastman

Hi Bill,
No, should have said - it's the non-adjustable type. There is nothing wrong with steering I just want to repaint the wheel. Maybe I'll try and do it in situ.

P Parmenter

Look in the back of your service manuel at the tools section. In there you will find a steering wheel puller. Look at it and then try to jury rig something similar in your garage. Should not be to tough. If not most tool or auto stores rent steering wheel pullers.
Gordon Harrison

Check this John Twist tip video:

Jim Ferguson

The video shows exactly the method I was going to suggest.
It has worked for me on my MGA. However, be careful not to break the chromed splines between the hub and the rim when pulling on the wheel. These are somewhat fragile, and are hard to fix if they break.
P. Tilbury


Just get Roy to come over to the garage and give you a hand - the two of you pulling on it should get it off:)

Rick Brown

Hello Rick, how's things? I've actually done it now, on the car. I don't think it would have come off even with the two of us pulling it and as I say I didn't want to hit it too hard. I think when the time comes that I really need to get it off I'll get a proper wheel puller from somewhere. Take care

P Parmenter

When I had to get the steering wheel off of my MGB, I just loosened the nut a couple turns and drove it around for a few weeks. That eventually loosened it on the splines. Of course, you want to keep an eye on the nut and make sure that it doesn't work its way off too far - you'd hate to have the steering wheel pull off in your hands while driving!
David Breneman

Hi Phil I was told that old trick they use in trade is to jack up the front wheels and let the steering hit the stops fairly hard both ways which loosens it most times,

g c pugh

This thread was discussed between 07/08/2008 and 09/08/2008

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