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Old 03-29-2019, 10:11 PM
sixt9rsx33 sixt9rsx33 is offline
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Default My Rag Joint Failed


I wanted to give all a heads up that the rag joint in my 69 Chevelle just ripped and the steering failed. Thank God I was in my driveway. I told Lares to replace the rag joint when my box was rebuilt but I donít think it was. I think they just put new studs in the rag that mate up to the flange. I should had inspected it very closely. I put on a repro from NPD. Far from correct but had to do this because the car was blocking my driveway. Just want those with questionable rag joints to replace them. I had been driving the car down the interstate at speeds and zipping down city roads with 100 year old oak trees just off the curb. I am glad this thing crapped out in my driveway!
I put the rag back together but you can see where it ripped. The repro has polyurethane for the rag instead of the regular rubber.

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Old 03-29-2019, 10:21 PM
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Lee Stewart Lee Stewart is online now
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Go buy a Lottery ticket right away. Cash in on your good luck!
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Old 03-30-2019, 12:56 AM
Stihl Stihl is offline
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Wow! You are blessed. There was no unusual feel prior to failing?
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Old 03-30-2019, 01:12 AM
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About 36 years ago I put my '67 SS Chevelle in a ditch because of the same failure. I was running about 80 when it happened. I had to put a new quarter panel on it.
1969 Camaro RS/SS396 (427) 4 speed

Last edited by big gear head; 03-30-2019 at 01:14 AM.
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Old 03-30-2019, 01:20 AM
Billohio Billohio is offline
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can these be rebuilt? I would guess nos thats 50 years old might be suspect too
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Old 03-30-2019, 01:31 AM
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Wow. Glad youíre ok!
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Old 03-30-2019, 02:38 AM
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John Brown John Brown is online now
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Originally Posted by Billohio View Post
can these be rebuilt? I would guess nos thats 50 years old might be suspect too

There are kits to repair them in many auto parts stores, but have heard some brands don't have the exact same hole pattern. No idea on the quality either.
John Brown

This isn't rocket surgery.....
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Old 03-30-2019, 02:44 AM
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Ryan1969Chevelle Ryan1969Chevelle is offline
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I have all the parts the rebuild one and an extra to rebuild.

I thought the steering shaft and rag joint had overlap so if the rag ripped the pins would still turn the steering box? (Hard to explain)

Ryan W31

1969 Beaumont 350 Auto White Sold
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Old 03-30-2019, 02:47 AM
SuperNovaSS SuperNovaSS is online now
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I’m glad you and the car are OK. I thought the same thing Ryan.

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Old 03-30-2019, 04:52 AM
70post 70post is offline
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There are notches in the belled-out end of the intermediate shaft that should "catch" the two big rivets that are part of the rag joint. Still.....you don't want to have to rely on that if you have a questionable old rag joint.

Quite frankly, I would get rid of that poly disc.....it has no fiber or steel reinforcement in it from what I've seen...just a piece of polyurethane.

Also - at some point, GM added a stamped metal "cross brace" piece to the assembly (my '70 cars have the brace). It goes on under the two bolts. Better than no brace but it's still stressing both bolt locations of the rag joint material. Can't tell exactly from your pic but I swear I see the steel brace that I mention and it looks torn in two.

I deal with alot of these and have noticed slight stress cracks starting in the steel braces in a specific location. I can post pics if need be.
Patton Glade
70Post Restorations
Austin, TX

Last edited by 70post; 03-30-2019 at 04:57 AM.
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