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Installing a steering wheel
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TjdTaylor
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 27, 2012 3:58 pm    Post subject: Installing a steering wheel Reply with quote

When installing a custom steering wheel (sutch as an ebay one) what do i need to look out for? Are al of the wheel adapters for it generic? Do i need to watch for clearance anywhere?
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I can't see myself cutting up my super beetle . Maybe a oval or 61 or so with the small windows
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cletus_zuber
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 27, 2012 4:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes you need a VW specific adapter/spacer. a Grant wheel for instance without the adapter will leave you with about 1mm clearance between wheel and blinker switch.
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baccaruda
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 27, 2012 5:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

1973 Super here.

I bought the walnut wood Grant wheel with the VW install kit and it was surprisingly easy/intuitive to replace.
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Veedubaya
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 27, 2012 5:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Cletus. Thanks for that advice..
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Chris Vellat
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 27, 2012 6:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've seen several, they vary wildly. Some look like they might stop a stray bullet, others bend with eye-sight, and there's several bolt-patterns. The horn contact rings and turn-cancelling is also something to keep in mind.

The stock wheel is around 400mm outside-to-outside - the commonly available customs ones are 330-360mm wheels.

The splines/nut changed from early style to late in `74 - later cars may be directly fitted with many other WCVW steerings wheels. Dish varies from design to design, but hub adapters, spacers, and disconnects all have a part in lever clearance.

Something to also keep in mind...I believe `72+ OEM wheels are collapsing...in addition to the column.
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TjdTaylor
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 10, 2012 8:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Chris Vellat wrote:
I've seen several, they vary wildly. Some look like they might stop a stray bullet, others bend with eye-sight, and there's several bolt-patterns. The horn contact rings and turn-cancelling is also something to keep in mind.

The stock wheel is around 400mm outside-to-outside - the commonly available customs ones are 330-360mm wheels.

The splines/nut changed from early style to late in `74 - later cars may be directly fitted with many other WCVW steerings wheels. Dish varies from design to design, but hub adapters, spacers, and disconnects all have a part in lever clearance.

Something to also keep in mind...I believe `72+ OEM wheels are collapsing...in addition to the column.


what do you mean by collapsing?
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I can't see myself cutting up my super beetle . Maybe a oval or 61 or so with the small windows
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Chris Vellat
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 11, 2012 5:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The opposite of expanding...looks just like expanded steel.

Found this off of Google images - over on the Pelican forums:

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.
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71superAS
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 11, 2012 5:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Slightly unrelated, but how does it work to install different generation Beetle wheels in other years? ie. my 71 has a 1972 'horn pad' wheel installed, but I want a 71 thumb ring wheel.

Is this a crazy process or just pull and replace?
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Chris Vellat
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 11, 2012 6:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

71superAS wrote:
Slightly unrelated, but how does it work to install different generation Beetle wheels in other years? ie. my 71 has a 1972 'horn pad' wheel installed, but I want a 71 thumb ring wheel.

Is this a crazy process or just pull and replace?


For you it should be straight-forward...It will of course be less safe without the collapsible portion. Sad
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Joel
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 11, 2012 6:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

71superAS wrote:
Slightly unrelated, but how does it work to install different generation Beetle wheels in other years? ie. my 71 has a 1972 'horn pad' wheel installed, but I want a 71 thumb ring wheel.

Is this a crazy process or just pull and replace?


Your 71 would have had the old 2 spoke wheel anyway, 72 was the first year of the new safety 4 spoke wheel.

The shaft splines are the same from 60 to mid 73 so all the wheels are interchangeable between then, but the 72-73 had the column stalk type wiper switch which interferes with the old 2 spoke wheels.

VW uses the same splines on all cars after mid 73 so air cooled, watercooled and even Porsche and Audi are interchangeable if they clear the wiper stalk.

As Chris mentioned the collapsable section was introduced for safety so the steering wheels stopped smashing peoples chests in during accidents and the new flat spoke horn pad was to stop your face being split open by the horn ring as well.
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 11, 2012 6:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Joel wrote:
...VW uses the same splines on all cars after mid 73 so air cooled, watercooled and even Porsche and Audi are interchangeable if they clear the wiper stalk...


I think around the late `80's VW actually changed the steering wheel splines, but not those of the column Rolling Eyes A factory spline adapter was used - my WCVW friend told me they're a pain to get off the column.
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71superAS
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 12, 2012 11:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Joel wrote:
71superAS wrote:
Slightly unrelated, but how does it work to install different generation Beetle wheels in other years? ie. my 71 has a 1972 'horn pad' wheel installed, but I want a 71 thumb ring wheel.

Is this a crazy process or just pull and replace?


Your 71 would have had the old 2 spoke wheel anyway, 72 was the first year of the new safety 4 spoke wheel.

The shaft splines are the same from 60 to mid 73 so all the wheels are interchangeable between then, but the 72-73 had the column stalk type wiper switch which interferes with the old 2 spoke wheels.

VW uses the same splines on all cars after mid 73 so air cooled, watercooled and even Porsche and Audi are interchangeable if they clear the wiper stalk.

As Chris mentioned the collapsable section was introduced for safety so the steering wheels stopped smashing peoples chests in during accidents and the new flat spoke horn pad was to stop your face being split open by the horn ring as well.



So you are saying I would need a new wiper switch? It has the 72 steering wheel installed now, but I want to put in a 71 wheel. I didn't realize the switch assemblies were different between the 2 years. I thought 71-72 was all the same minus the ugly steering wheel.
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 12, 2012 12:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This is the same kit I bought with my Grant wheel. I used every part and the whole process was surprisingly easy.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/1960-1973-VOLKSWAGEN-STEER...3a6a4a5b4f
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TjdTaylor
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 12, 2012 12:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

i have a 74. Ohwell i bought a momo adapter made for the car anyways. Also bought a quick release hub so stealing the car will be harder Twisted Evil

*EDIT* GOING to buy. When i get money. Already have em in my ebay shopping cart.
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I can't see myself cutting up my super beetle . Maybe a oval or 61 or so with the small windows
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Joel
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 12, 2012 2:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

71superAS wrote:
Joel wrote:
71superAS wrote:
Slightly unrelated, but how does it work to install different generation Beetle wheels in other years? ie. my 71 has a 1972 'horn pad' wheel installed, but I want a 71 thumb ring wheel.

Is this a crazy process or just pull and replace?


Your 71 would have had the old 2 spoke wheel anyway, 72 was the first year of the new safety 4 spoke wheel.

The shaft splines are the same from 60 to mid 73 so all the wheels are interchangeable between then, but the 72-73 had the column stalk type wiper switch which interferes with the old 2 spoke wheels.

VW uses the same splines on all cars after mid 73 so air cooled, watercooled and even Porsche and Audi are interchangeable if they clear the wiper stalk.

As Chris mentioned the collapsable section was introduced for safety so the steering wheels stopped smashing peoples chests in during accidents and the new flat spoke horn pad was to stop your face being split open by the horn ring as well.



So you are saying I would need a new wiper switch? It has the 72 steering wheel installed now, but I want to put in a 71 wheel. I didn't realize the switch assemblies were different between the 2 years. I thought 71-72 was all the same minus the ugly steering wheel.


Nope not at all.
The only time there is a problem is if you try and put the old wheel on a 72 or 73 as the wiper stalk is in the way.
Your 71 has it on the dash and the 2 spoke wheel is the way the good Dr Ferdinand intended.
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 12, 2012 6:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

But, for those that want to add an earlier steering wheel (`61-`71 or close) to an early-spline "modular wiring harness car" AKA column-mounted wipers (`72-`74) you may bend the switches enough (with heat) to fit.
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 12, 2012 6:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

my only recommendation, is that if you buy a Grant wheel, buy a Grant adapter. same for any other brand.

i just got my new Grant wheel in. same model i had in a CJ5. was happy with it, and felt like i needed another one. the adapter should be in next week, and it goes in. Smile
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 15, 2012 12:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

b1pig wrote:
my only recommendation, is that if you buy a Grant wheel, buy a Grant adapter. same for any other brand....


Why? It's just a round thing with some holes...There's a few common patterns, many quality hubs have several. The Grant products that have passed through my hands have not impressed me

Played with one of those spline adapters I mentioned earlier on a friend's `92 Passat GL 16V wagon today.
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 15, 2012 2:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

just a suggestion. like i said.

i'm not afraid to play with something to make it fit, but generally speaking, if its the same brand, and meant for the same product line, it will be a nearly idiot-proof install. my suggestion is to prevent the potential for headaches.

i had a grant wheel and adapter on a old jeep. i did the install and i was very satisfied with it.
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 15, 2012 2:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Summit Racing has a good selection of Grant wheels, spacer, and adapters. I needed the spacer to get more clearance between wheel rim and turn signal lever. FYI, I found a Grant wheel with a deep dish to it that, along with the spacer, gives me more knee room. Also did not like the wood rim wheel. It's just not as comfortable as the wheel with rim made of the usual rigid foam.
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