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I recently purchased a 67 steering wheel, which arrived today. In retrospect, I made every rookie mistake there is to make when buying from a new-to-you seller, but that's a story for another time. The question now is, do I have something useable?

The wheel was described as having cracks in both the rim and the spokes but also as having been looked over by a restorer and declared a restoreable wheel. What do you all think? Restoreable or an object lesson in the need for due diligence...?









 

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Actually... Every 67 wheel cracks in time and yours has cracked in the right places. When the wood grain facia does not crack but instead shrinks and pulls away from the wheel then you have a challenge on your hands. Did you pay about $100? Then you did Ok. Our friend at Best In Show steering wheel restoration will reward you handsomely if you happen to have 69-69 cores to trade towards his services.



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Notice the separation between the black portion of the wheel and the wood-grain portion. This gap cannot be closed in the restoration process. The core you send us has to have a minimal amount of gaps like the one shown here (or preferably less) to be a good candidate for restoration.
 

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Thanks, Don! I was not expecting the spokes to be completely broken away from the rim. I paid $125.00 for the wheel, which I thought was fair considering it's complete with the center horn pad in decent shape.
 

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There is moderate pitting in spots, but it will be a good core to rechrome. All of the pads are there and in good shape. The whole assembly is mounted to the wheel, so I assume the hardware pieces are in place. I just have to figure out now how the whole thing comes apart!
 

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Bill,

I was surprised at the price of $125 shipped when I saw it, now I see why. Now, for whatever it is worth (and Don's "you did okay" or not), the two pictures that were shown (assuming there were no others, a reasonable assumption I think) were well short of what I would call "full disclosure".

Guess the real question here/now is would Jay (BIS) do this wheel, and would he do it for the regular price or would it be a lot more because of all the repairs required?

Sorry for your trouble.

Regards,

Bob
 

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Discussion Starter #7
The two pictures were the only ones and therein lies the tale of my rookie mistakes. I didn't ask for pictures of the back of the wheel or of the cracks (which is how they were described). I assumed (and we all know where that leads! :uhoh:) that the wheel probably looked like the 3 or 4 others I've bought over the years. I personally would not have used the word "cracked" to describe the complete separation of the spokes from the rim.

I requested that the seller let me pay for the wheel through PayPal and he did, but asked me to send the money as a gift. I assumed (there's that word again!) that he just wanted to save the fee and agreed to do it that way. It wasn't until I saw the wheel and became concerned that it might not be restoreable that I realized that I'd also left myself with no recourse if the wheel was junk.

Alls well that ends well, though, and the burden was on me to make sure I knew what I was getting. We've discussed that here before on behalf of others. If it costs more to restore, then so be it.

The good news is that I'll eventually end up with two restored '67 wheels. I didn't realize until I started looking for one that the '67 Cougar wheel was Cougar-specific and one year only. The Ford Parts Interchange manual shows that the '67 Mustang wheel had a different part number and interchanged with the Fairlane and full-size Fords, but the Cougar wheel was unique and didn't interchange with any other model.

BTW, the wheel that is on BBCat right now apparently doesn't have any cracks in it anywhere (at least I can't feel any when I run my hand around the back) and is not pulling away as in Don's picture. Some of the woodgrain pattern is actually still there and there's no pitting on the center horn section.
 
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