Power conversion - Impala Tech
 
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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 07-28-2016, 01:12 PM Thread Starter
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Power conversion

Hi guys...new to this site as I've just sold my Chevelle and bought a '62 Impala SS. Car has manual brakes and steering..kind of unusual for an SS but it is what it is. Brakes are not an issue (found what I need for that project), however the PS appears to be a somewhat costly conversion. Looked at Eklers complete kit with the 600 pump and it runs around $700 and I think that's without pulleys. Any body have any thoughts on how to do it on a budget? What are the differences between using the original "ram" vs. a power box (in terms of handling and performance). On another note, I want to lower the car which I understand can be done either using lowering springs or spindles. Any thoughts on one vs. the other? Been told either way to consider changing the upper A arms or you can't get the alignment right. Thoughts on that?? Thanks so much. Looking forward to being on this site.
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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 07-28-2016, 03:11 PM
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Welcome to the Team RB!

Well, your options are do not parallel park the car (the only reason power steering exists in the first place), or buy a bigger steering wheel off of the same era medium duty truck (wrecker, dump truck or a school bus). The larger diameter steering wheel will allow you to turn the wheel at low speeds.

You can use the Saginaw 600 series power steering gear box with the pump with pulley and brackets required off of an old parts car. The hoses will need to be custom made most likely and that should be about it. You would reuse the stock manual pitman arm and matching idler arm.

If you want the original power assist with a slave cylinder they are remanufactured for Corvettes which continued to use that slave cylinder system from 1963 through 1982.The Corvette being originally just a 1953 with the frame shortened to a two seat configuration. Through 1968 most Corvette parts interchange with the 1958-'64 Chevy full size as the frame was just a shortened full size car.

Big Dave
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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 07-28-2016, 09:12 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Big Dave View Post
Welcome to the Team RB!

Well, your options are do not parallel park the car (the only reason power steering exists in the first place), or buy a bigger steering wheel off of the same era medium duty truck (wrecker, dump truck or a school bus). The larger diameter steering wheel will allow you to turn the wheel at low speeds.

You can use the Saginaw 600 series power steering gear box with the pump with pulley and brackets required off of an old parts car. The hoses will need to be custom made most likely and that should be about it. You would reuse the stock manual pitman arm and matching idler arm.

If you want the original power assist with a slave cylinder they are remanufactured for Corvettes which continued to use that slave cylinder system from 1963 through 1982.The Corvette being originally just a 1953 with the frame shortened to a two seat configuration. Through 1968 most Corvette parts interchange with the 1958-'64 Chevy full size as the frame was just a shortened full size car.

Big Dave


Thanks Big Dave! When you say to take the parts from a donor vehicle, does this limit me to a 58-64 full size Chevrolet or are there other applications that may work as well. Just trying to broaden my search! Thanks. Bob Winston
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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 07-28-2016, 09:29 PM
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If you want to go original, you can use some parts '58 to '64, but other parts will be more specific to a '62. Some parts you would need to get used, others new/reproduced or rebuilt. I'm not sure about any other interchanges, personally.

Bill

-Parting Out over 75 '58 to '73 Full Size Chevy Cars-

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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 07-28-2016, 11:53 PM
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In 1965 GM introduced the 600 series power steering gear box and used it (or a modified version of it such as the 800 series) on everything they made except the Corvette (that didn't get the Saginaw box until the fourth generation Corvettes came out in 1983).

The self contained power steering gear box saved the factory money in parts and labor compared to the 1953-'64 versions which had extra bracing on the frame, brackets and parts that were simplified and replaced with the new system.

There are many variations on the 600 series (as there are of the 800 or 500 series) based upon vehicle weight and performance specs. These include fast acting or variable ratio boxes to fit just about any application. Because a 600 was never installed (had been invented yet) on a 1962 it will require a special bracket to mount it and from what I have heard from reading this board modified steering components to preserve the steering radius and wheel track width. You have to convert the 600 from rear steer to front steer on your car (front steer cars have the tie rood in front of the front axle). So it isn't a bolt on swap.

Big Dave
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