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Bulletin 10 - 27th November-11th December 2005

In Bulletin 5, I described how we had removed the steering box for inspection and that one bearing was found to be in need of replacement. Davie has now sourced that bearing, so this unit can now be overhauled and replaced.

The steering gear in our CX19 is of Albion manufacture and is of the worm and sector type. In operation it is also very heavy! Indeed the steering in the Glasgow Corporation CX37 Venturer which I have driven recently is also very heavy. However, the Albion Vehicle Preservation Trust's CX39 coach, which has an identical arrangement, is acceptable. The CX39 has 9.00 x 20 tyres on the front against 11.00s on the CX19 and the CX37. So the double deckers have a lot more rubber on the road and more weight on the front axle. However, I don't think that goes all the way to explaining the heavy steering in our CX19.

Anyway the strip down of the steering box didn't reveal much except that a bearing was in need of replacement and that the sector was not perfectly centred on the worm. The way to line up the sector with the worm is to fit shims between the flanges on either side of the housing and to remove one from each side occasionally to take up wear. However, at some point in the past all the shims have been removed from one side, while the other side has been left intact. This has resulted in a slight misalignment of the worm and sector. Redistribution of the shims allowed us to align the sector properly, allowing proper meshing with the worm.

With the steering box fully overhauled to our satisfaction it was then reinstalled in the bus. The front axle was jacked up to see if that had cured the heavy steering problem. Well, it hadn't! The steering was still heavy and we are going to have to look at all the joints and the king pins. But we'll leave that until we have the front of the bus safely supported on blocks for the next job - a brake overhaul. That will be after Christmas.

At the end of the steering column is an Albion worm and sector steering
box bolted to the front of the chassis. That's a Leyland steering wheel
on there. We're looking for a genuine Albion CX (or HD) steering wheel.
If you know where we can get one, please get in touch using the
form on the contact page.

Davie and John have the box removed and dismantled
in a couple of hours.

Its all in good condition except for a bearing.

John cleans the steering spindle and worm.

David begins the job of reassembly.

Shims are fitted between the flanges and the steering box housing.
The drop arm is replaced to check if everything is operating okay.

A new cork oil seal is fitted which David has brought with him from Australia.

Paul fits a new split pit retaining the drop arm.

On goes two coats of black Hammerite.

Davie replaces the box. It makes the job a lot easier when you can
get access through the engine bay!

 When the front axle is jacked up the steering is still heavy. John and
Davie discuss the ball pin joint at the bottom of the drop arm. This
and the other joints and king pins will have to be examined later.
That's a job for after Christmas.