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Old 07-28-2005, 09:51 AM   #1
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Default steering wheel & engine removal

Plowing bravely ahead with my restoration, I have a few questions. My steering wheel does not have the radio controls. Can I put one in that does? Is the proper wiring in place within the column?
Also - has anyone unbolted the subframe from the unibody, the upper struts from the unibody, rack from the intermediate shaft, and the needed wiring / hoses / cables etc. and raised the car while leaving the engine, tranny, subframe, front suspension on the ground, as one unit still attached to the subframe?

Thanks, Mike
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Old 07-28-2005, 10:06 AM   #2
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I know Randman1 has removed the subframe of the 97 he bought and mounted it to his 90. He dropped it out of the car as one whole unit like you are asking. Look got pictures in the rides section with the word frankenbonnie in it and there should be a couple pictures.

As for the steering wheel controls, I am not sure if the wiring is in the column already or not for them, but if it is, it'* an east add. If it'* not, you can look into how hard it would be to run one, or go get a column from the junkyard with them in it already.
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Old 07-28-2005, 10:29 AM   #3

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The thread you are looking for is below. We dropped the whole mess out the bottom. However without a lift this is a major pain. Searching "Franken" you can follow the current thread. We decided on the vehcile recieving the motor, subframe and steering rack taht we would pull the motor and trans as a single unit out the top. Then drop the subframe out the bottom. We learned on the 97 that the height you need to go up and trying to move it all as one mass once it is on the ground is tough due to the weight and size.

Luck was with us, because at the point we went to unbolt the subframe on the 90 one bolt would not come out. Not having to worry about the extra weight was a good thing. It was also manageable for Randy to put the subframe in by himself.

On the steering wheel, like mentioned the wiring is an unknown. I think you would need to pull the air bag off and look for the wiring. Also pull the radio out and check to ensure the wire is in the harness at that end as well.
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Old 07-28-2005, 12:11 PM   #4
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I considered buying one of these before. It'* still in the back of my head as an idea but I didn't buy one yet:

This would make dropping the drivetrain on any front wheel drive vehicle rather simple and safe. Many years ago, I had two Buick Centurys in the garage side-by-side to do a swap with minimial tools/lifting equipment. Both drivetrain assemblies were dropped to the floor, rolled over to the opposite car and bolted right up. This lift would have made things very simple.

The way we did the 97 donor car was with an engine hoist chained to the front bumper. Not exactly the thing to do if you are concerned with the body but an effective way nevertheless. As Bill described above, it was a bit easier to separate the motor/trans from the subframe and install them separately. subframe from the bottom and engine/trans from the top.
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