Vintage Tech Advice March 2014 Tube
Bob Aliberto
March 8, 2014

Steering Tube Bearing

I am restoring a '67 Mustang fastback with manual steering and a fixed (non-tilt) column. The bearing at the top of the tube is in pretty rough shape, but it appears no one sells a replacement. Or at least I cannot find it. The bearing for the '65-'66 Mustang (C3DZ-3517-A) looks to be the same and, from what I have discovered, it has the correct dimensions. In fact, it seems to work for many Ford vehicles of the same era. Will this bearing work in my '67 Mustang? If not, what are my options without replacing the entire column?

Jerry Niemeyer
Superior, CO

The upper bearing in the steering column for a '67 Mustang fixed column is part number C4OZ-3517-A with an outside diameter of 15⁄16-inch. It was used in Fairlanes until '67; Mustangs used it in '67 only. It is not readily available.

The C3DZ bearing is an early Falcon-sourced part that was used on many other Ford vehicles, particularly trucks and Broncos. The listed outside diameter is 17⁄16-inch and fits '65-'66 Mustangs. The inner dimensions are the same as they both use the same inner sleeve.

The upper column bearing never sees high loads and lives in a protected environment, therefore it rarely requires replacement. Most often, they are just dry, so they respond well to cleaning and lubrication. I suggest you clean and lube your existing bearing to see how it feels when reinstalled. If it requires replacement, the larger '65-'66 bearing can be installed if you modify the '67 column opening. Perhaps you can also locate a good used Fairlane bearing.

Heater Hose Routing

This is so simple that I am embarrassed to ask. I have a 351 Cleveland engine. Many years ago when the underhood hoses went bad, I disconnected the coolant flow into the heater and looped the water pump hose to the intake. I saved the vacuum-operated water valve mechanism. Now I cannot remember which connection goes to which coolant flow, or which direction (in or out to heater) for the water valve. The intake pipes are side by side, not one over the other as in other Fords. I have all the tech manuals but none show a schematic or even a photo. Help!

Neil Hitz
Detroit, MI

The water valve is inserted in the hot water side of the heater, which is the hose connected to the intake manifold. The coolant is at its highest temperature at the intake thermostat area as it is about to enter the radiator to be cooled. The return from the heater goes to the water pump where it blends with the coolant about to enter the engine. Placement of the hoses on the heater itself is not critical. However, the hot water side is typically connected to the nipple located closer to the center of the vehicle.

Fluid Leak

I have an Emberglo '66 GT convertible that I just restored. I upgraded the brakes to a dual reservoir with power booster. When driving, a small amount of brake fluid seeps out over the lid, getting the master cylinder a little wet but not enough to require adding fluid. I have tried a new lid but can't stop the seeping. Do you have any suggestions about how to stop the leak?

Also, the power cylinders have been replaced for the convertible top. But when I try to raise it, the right side needs help to get it started. Then it works fine. The pump sounds good and I have bled all the air out of the system. Could it require an adjustment or would a new seal kit help? Or should I get a new pump?

Mike Burgess
Lucas, KY

A leaking master cylinder lid is actually quite common, usually caused by rust forming between the cast master cylinder and the rubber lid seal. With brake fluid's affinity for water, it attracts moisture that allows a rust film to develop between the rubber seal and master cylinder, which continues to develop, causing the seal between the two surfaces to be broken.

Scrape any rust off the master cylinder sealing surface until it is clean and flat. Inspect the rubber seal and the rust marks will be obvious. Often, the rust will stick to the seal and must be removed. Or, you may have to replace the seal if it is indented and pot-marked from the rust. Be certain that the top of the master cylinder is wiped dry of brake fluid before installing the lid as a layer of fluid will absorb moisture to create the rust again. The recent article about master cylinder cap identification (“How To: Identify Dual-Chamber Master Cylinder Caps,” December 2013) has photos of various lid gaskets that show the rust clearly.

The power top cylinders and pump are usually quite trouble-free except for an occasional leak. When one side becomes a problem, it is usually the cylinder itself. Since you have installed new cylinders, I would suspect that there is still air in the system. Continue to lower and raise the top with the pump and the air should work itself out. Aid the lazy side manually to prevent the top frame from binding during the process.

Let us hear from you. Send your '65-'73 Mustang questions to: Beyond Basics, c/o Bob Aliberto, P.O. Box 205, Salt Point, NY 12578. Send email to