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1978 Mark Steering Issues

Bill,
My stepfather owned a 1978 Lincoln Mark V ...sadly he passed away last year and I have been trying to get it running since he passed.

With a lot of patience we managed to get it roadworthy again and it is quite the car only 44,007 kms (approx. 27.5000 miles) The only problem I am still trying to resolve is the excessive play in the steering wheel. At present, there is approx. an inch of play in the wheel and I'm pretty sure that's more than what it should be. I know there is an adjustment screw on the top of the steering box but I'm thinking this is more for fine tuning vs. the amount of play I am experiencing.

As an experience pro can you offer me any suggestions? I've checked the underneath of the car and the steering components appear to be fine ...is there a chance this could be a steering column problem? Or, should I try adjusting the steering box first to see if I can get the play out?

Any insight you can offer would be greatly appreciated ...best regards.

Sincerely,

M.J.

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M.J. -

Nice to hear that you are keeping that Mark in the family. If you are seeing excess steering play do NOT adjust the steering gear box first. Instead do a complete examination of the steering components first. If you are not confident in doing this correctly yourself with the help of a friend do take the car to a trusted front end shop. This examination will include the very popular flexible Coupler or "rag joint" that is located between the steering box and the steering column shaft. This coupler is well known to fail and is relatively inexpensive to replace. The steering box will also be inspected carefully for excess play of its interior components as well as all of the other steering connectors between the box and the wheels. The total sum of all of the looseness will give you the amount of play that you are concerned with. From the sound of your post I think that the above mentioned coupler would be my first guess as the culprit.

Sincerely,

Bill