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how do I remove center horn button and ring

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  • Steering: how do I remove center horn button and ring

    Friends, an earlier post may not have been submitted correctly. Sorry if this is redundant.
    I replaced the Pittman arm and assembly. Now the steering wheel is at 12&6 not 9&3. I was told to push in the center horn button hard and rotate counter clockwise. Im afraid to push and turn anymore as not to break this assembly. I need HELP please
    thanks,
    Mark

  • #2
    Use the cupped, center part of your palm and push down evenly over the horn button. (that is, if its just a horn button and not a chrome horn ring) And after pushing it firmly down, give it a counter clockwise turn. But only about 10-20 degrees. That is how its locked in place. If you have one of those rubber jar openers, they can help give you a better grip. Once the button is off, you have access to all the nuts bolts and screws which will allow you to get into all sorts of trouble.
    Note: I've used WD-40 and sprayed it behind the button on some applications because they can be a bit stubborn sometimes. You can always clean off the WD-40 afterwards. Which I recommend doing. Soap and water will clean it off nicely. I don't trust the WD-40 staying on there too long, cuz I'm never sure it won't cause discoloration, or eat at the plastic parts. If you use the WD-40, make sure its cleaned off the face of the horn button or you won't get the grip you need to remove it.
    Good luck
    sals54

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    • #3
      What car or truck ?

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      • #4
        I think that you may have your Pittman arm/steering assembly not indexed correctly in reference to the steering box's center. Moving the steering wheel will not properly correct this. I will assume that the steering wheel was properly located before you took things apart.
        Gary L.
        Wappinger, NY

        SDC member since 1968
        Studebaker enthusiast much longer

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        • #5
          to jackb. 1963 GT Hawk
          to studegary prior to disassembly, the car was on a drive on lift with wheels and steering wheel straight. Steering wheel locked in place. My mechanic has worked on numerous Studes and a mutual friend has an older commander and adivised during and after disassembly and assembly as he to rebuilt and changed worn parts.
          Bottom line, since the steering wheel has probably never been removed, Im sure 55 years of stuborness is a fair answer.
          thank you for your inquiries and to sals54, maybe we tried turning too far and the idea of a rubber lid jar opener is a great idea. Will keep you all informed.
          thanks as always for the help
          Mark

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          • #6
            On a '63 Hawk, I believe the horn button will be similar to this...


            If I remember correctly, these style horn buttons are held in place by an O ring on the back circumference of the horn button. That means careful prying the horn button up off the horn ring. Care must be taken with whatever tool you choose, and the force applied. As we know, old plastic tends to be pretty brittle and fragile. It is very easy to chip these when prying too hard in one place. Perhaps you could use a sharpened handle of an old plastic toothbrush to start the process.(flat chisel point)

            If you can pry the horn button enough to get a tiny gap, perhaps a small diameter of nylon string, (like fishing line) could be slipped in to assist in working the button out of the ring. If the gap is enough, construction nylon string would be good. If someone has used glue, it will be difficult. Good news is that if you end up ruining the button, they keep turning up at swap meets, and I think vendors have them. Let us know how it works out.
            John Clary
            Greer, SC

            SDC member since 1975

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            • #7
              Forget about "pushing and turning". That's how to remove the button on older Studes. Yours is just held on by a rubber o-ring as stated by jclary. However, you're trying to solve one problem by creating another one. If steering wheel was correct before pitman arm replacement then it's correct now. Leave steering wheel alone and install pitman arm correctly. Then get a proper wheel alignment and you're good to go.

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              • #8
                rbisacca, as shared before, the wheels were chocked straight and the steering wheel locked in place. after replacing the pitman arm and assembly the steering wheel was aligned 12&6 by itself..

                Jclary, I have sprayed and with the rubber jar opener have moved it a bit. Ill try fishing line to dislodge that o ring before prying the center piece out with the emblem. The plastic dome pops off easily. back to the car. thanks again
                mark

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                • #9
                  I am quite sure that Steering Wheel did not not move on it's splined shaft by itself, probably locked on there since it rolled out of the Factory.

                  That said, there is no way it could be rotated 90 Degrees except if the wheels were turned straight ahead AFTER the Pittman Arm was replaced incorrectly, causing the Steering Wheel to rotate.

                  Do I understand your situation correctly?

                  There ARE Alignment Marks on the Steering Wheel, the Steering Shaft at the wheel, the Sector Shaft and maybe the Pittman Arm to center the Sector on it's High spot in the gearbox.
                  StudeRich
                  Second Generation Stude Driver,
                  Proud '54 Starliner Owner

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                  • #10
                    If everything was "straight and locked in place" then how did the steering wheel become misaligned? Mechanical objects don't do anything by themselves. Your pitman arm is off probably by only 1 spline. If you're dead set to remove the horn button Shop Manual says to insert knife blade between button and wheel and pry up. Once you do this you will find that there is an index mark on the wheel and another on the shaft. When these are aligned the steering box is properly set. Do you really want to mess with this?

                    After all these years o-ring is probably stuck pretty good to wheel and plastic button has probably become brittle. Forget spraying anything it won't do any good. You're probably going to end up destroying your horn button. And then if you insist on removing the steering wheel do you have a steering wheel remover?

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                    • #11
                      Well, the idea of pushing and rotating wasn't the way. Removing the center plastic button was the way. Well, stuff broke prior, Dave Thibeault to my rescue by calling me around 6p tonight after reading an email. Parts are on their way. another lesson learned.
                      thank you all for the suggestions, observations, corrections, comments and obvious statements to a non mechanic Studebaker guy.
                      Mark

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                      • #12
                        Well we have to love your honesty when you say you are not a mechanic....best to leave the actual "wrenching" to a professional, less chance of damage to rare parts, and more chance of a positive outcome.
                        Originally posted by mch View Post
                        Well, the idea of pushing and rotating wasn't the way. Removing the center plastic button was the way. Well, stuff broke prior, Dave Thibeault to my rescue by calling me around 6p tonight after reading an email. Parts are on their way. another lesson learned.
                        thank you all for the suggestions, observations, corrections, comments and obvious statements to a non mechanic Studebaker guy.
                        Mark

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                        • #13
                          If your O ring is still in good shape, don't discard it. I bought a replacement one but could not use it as it was too thick.
                          sigpic

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                          • #14
                            If the end of the sector shaft has a master spline to engage the master spline of the pitman arm, how is it possible to get the pitman arm installed one or two splines off?

                            With a master spline arrangement, I can possibly see the pitman arm being installed after being rotated 180 degrees about the long axis of the arm, such that the side that would normally face the engine is flipped so that it is facing away from the engine instead. In this case, the master spline would still engage properly, but now there might be a problem with the pitman arm being too close to the frame if the arm is made with an offset bend, or the tapered shaft of the reach rod not engaging into the taper of the pitman arm.
                            Last edited by Mark L; 04-06-2019, 12:00 AM.
                            Mark L

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                            • #15
                              The bottom line seems to still apply here, if your mechanic misaligned the Steering Wheel to compensate for his error assembling the gearbox, this Car will drive Terrible!

                              After a year and a half, I hope you come back with the correct fix.
                              I don't think a new horn button will fix this.
                              StudeRich
                              Second Generation Stude Driver,
                              Proud '54 Starliner Owner

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