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Flaming River steering box

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by hot rod wille, Aug 10, 2007.

  1. hot rod wille
    Joined: Oct 27, 2005
    Posts: 695

    hot rod wille

    I've got a Flaming River Vega-style box in my 37 coupe. I have had to adjust it almost once a year. Am I crazy--or is this suppose to be normal? The original Vega box was in the car for something like 20 years and worked fine, but had a "casting flaw" on the housing--and started to crack.Anybody else have this problem?
  2. swimeasy
    Joined: Oct 17, 2006
    Posts: 1,067


    F.L.boxes have problems.
  3. I'm on my 4th Flaming River box in my 350/350 '36 Ford 5w. cpe.
    they develop excessive play after about 18 months time.
    People tell me they are too light duty for a car that heavy.
    I'm done with them!!!
    I'm changing over to a Saginaw 525 or maybe to a Maval Unisteer rack.
    I love the straight axle look and it rides good too, but I'm really tiring of these constant R & R's of sloppy steering boxes.
  4. George
    Joined: Jan 1, 2005
    Posts: 7,479


    A guy on the Power Tour had a new one break on him.

  5. continentaljohn
    Joined: Jul 24, 2002
    Posts: 5,058


    I have one in my cabriolet and it's sloppy as heck, what can one do about it? Just swap it out for another and eat the 300 clams for the Flaming River one????
  6. There's quite a long thread about this issue a page or two down if you do a search. Basically, they suck more than Rosie O'Donnel's amatuer porno.

    Damn, I think I made myself sick with that one...
  7. RatBone
    Joined: Sep 15, 2006
    Posts: 660


    You are crazy and they suck Willie!
  8. nexxussian
    Joined: Mar 14, 2007
    Posts: 3,240


    So the stock Vega box overhaul parts won't fit? Or are they not available?
  9. 37 BILL
    Joined: May 31, 2006
    Posts: 127

    37 BILL
    from Bristol CT

    Yes...they seem to have some you cant use stock vega internals....yes a 36 ford is too heavy for a vega box....this is why we (Borgeson, Mullins) stopped selling our reproduction box....did a recall....and only sell GM vega boxes now.....and we strongly recommend the 525 for cars over 2500 pounds....hope that helps....BC
  10. nexxussian
    Joined: Mar 14, 2007
    Posts: 3,240


  11. krylon32
    Joined: Jan 29, 2006
    Posts: 7,585

    Alliance Vendor
    from Nebraska

    I've sold a bunch of them and after returning some for repair and the customer feedback about leaks, adjustment problems, and pitman arm not always fitting properly, I stopped using them and went to the Canadian made Vega boxs and had no problems. Also we use a 525 on anything after 1934.
  12. ChevyGirlRox
    Joined: May 13, 2005
    Posts: 3,491

    from Ohio

    Like I said on the other post...
    Does Flaming River know there is a problem with these boxes? Are they offering refunds, exchanges or anything else?

    From a hot rodder fairly local to them they seem like good people who would want to make it right.
  13. FORD FAN
    Joined: Feb 17, 2003
    Posts: 220


    I bought a FR box for my wife's early Mustang. I'm sorry I did. The experienced guy who did the alignment had to try to tighten it up; to little avail. He said he thought I would end up returning it. Even with 3 deg. caster it still wanders. I'm very sure it's because of the box. The reason I changed the box originally was to switch to stock PS from manual and needed the PS ratio box.
  14. Petejoe
    Joined: Nov 27, 2002
    Posts: 11,153

    from Zoar, Ohio

    I too am having trouble maintaining adjustment on this Flaming river box.
    I have adjusted it three times within 4000 miles.
    I have sent them an email regarding this post.
    Hopefully they will respond to these problems.
    If they dont respond... I would advise everyone to go shopping elsewhere.
  15. Okay so my 35 tudor that I just got on the road with an original vega box should be upgraded to a Saginaw 525? Should I figure on some fabrication to make this swap or is it a fairly straightforward swap?
  16. continentaljohn
    Joined: Jul 24, 2002
    Posts: 5,058


    Tim the only diffrence is the size of the box 10-20% larger on the 525. Good strong box and were used on Jeeps CJ's from 1972 to 1981 so cheap easy to find and still plenty of OEM on the shelves. I feel a good original vega box would do fine BTMO..
  17. Petejoe
    Joined: Nov 27, 2002
    Posts: 11,153

    from Zoar, Ohio

    I received a response From Flaming River.
    I am impressed.

    Dear Rick,
    First of all, thank you for the information regarding the websites below,however, we do not respond to these sites.
    We do have a warranty in place for all of our products,and would hope that if a customer does believe that there is a problem with a product, that they would contact us,such as you have.
    Secondly, we apologize for the problems that you in particular seem to be having with our Vega box,and we will take care of it for you.
    If you would,when you have the time, please mark the box with a paint mark from the top of the box down along the case,sector shaft, and on the pitman arm once the car has been parked with the steering wheels straight,and then remove the box from the car leaving the pitman arm attached to the box.
    The reason for this, is that our Vice-President would like to not only see where the pitman arm is in relationship to the box,but also to bring it back here,and take a look at the internals of this particular box for you.
    When it is convenient for you,our Vice-President himself will pick the steering box up from you,and if a repair/replacement is necessary, we will do this.
    Please supply us with your full address where he can pick the box up,as we are in Berea,Ohio.
  18. jusjunk
    Joined: Dec 3, 2004
    Posts: 3,138

    from Michigan

    Thats nice but ill bet they lurked here before you got the email and also the reason behind the pitman arm deal and marking the box and shit is to see if you were smart enuff to have the box centered when you installed the pitman arm and also for any adjustments made.. I hope they do you good ...
  19. continentaljohn
    Joined: Jul 24, 2002
    Posts: 5,058


    It's good to hear they responded. It sounds like they may care about the products they sell and the folks that buy them??.. Well at least yours will be looked at. What about guys like me that have them boxes and live in a few states over. I don't think he'll be over and what about the box you had to take out? Because that it got so bad, you had to take it out because your wife wouldn't drive the rod or drive in it. Love to hear what he happens, the rodshop I got them from told me "Sorry "
    It's sad because the steering shafts they sell for early bronco (66-77) they seem to stand behind. If you have a problem with quality , no questions asked at the shop.
    Thanks, John
  20. ChevyGirlRox
    Joined: May 13, 2005
    Posts: 3,491

    from Ohio

    Petejoe- what email address did you send your email to? Why don't you post it so everyone else can jot them a note as well.

  21. If adjustment is fixing the problem that's one thing, but I wonder if you're having a worn steering shaft U-joint problem?

    The original U-joints on my 2 U-joint steering shaft on the 32 were from the Deuce Factory and only lasted 3-4 years.
    They developed a very small amount of play that I didn't think was too much, but there was exessive freeplay at the steering wheel.
    I sprung for a set of Borgeson U-joints that new, had no discernible play.
    End of problem.
    (And still no problems after about 36,000 miles including travel over some less than desirable roads.)

    The Deuce Factory is handling a different brand/style of U-joint nowadays so getting U-joints from them shouldn't be a problem.
    In fact, everyting I've ever bought from the DF has been good quality and bolts right on like it should.
    Good outfit to deal with as well.

    That said, the recommendation to use the 525 box sounds like a good one.

    Here's some pics of other Saginaw boxes.
    First pic - #122
    2nd - #525
    3rd - Vega #140 box for reference
    Long as I'm at it - #605 - power box
    5th - #800 - power box

    Note that the #122, #525, #605 and #800 all fit the same bolt pattern as the Vega #140 so that should make life easy for you.

    Along those same lines, here's a couple pics of an unknown to us Saginaw non-power box in an SBC engined 29 Model A.

    ID'd to an extent by the S shaped pitman arm.

    I'm not sure if the mounting pattern is the same as the above mentioned boxes, but looks to be either right on or close.

    We think it comes off a Camaro from perhaps the 80's or so.
    We found in on the shelf in a Needles, California junkyard.

    Be aware that there's a similar looking box that steers the reverse of what you need.
    We came close to buying that one, but realized it wouldn't work for us.
    Probably something to do with front and rear steer cars.

    It is a larger box and may work well for your 37.
    It's a moderately tight fit in the A, but not bad.
    Doesn't appear that headers will be a problem either.
  22. One last pic of the unknown steeering box.

    Attached Files:

  23. Petejoe
    Joined: Nov 27, 2002
    Posts: 11,153

    from Zoar, Ohio

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