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Steering Wheel repair


J Boyle
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My stock Avanti steering wheel is now a bit worse for wear.

Specifically, fair-sized cracks have developed where the metal spokes join the plastic rim.

I need something that will adhere the plastic back to the metal, then fill the cracks.

Do you think the wheel repair kits sold by Eastwood (and others) would do the trick since I need it to do more than just fill cracks?

Any recommendations?

Or if you know of a good repair firm that won't costy me an arm and a leg.

BTW: I guess I'd then paint the rim with the paint SI sells for the steering column.

Correct?

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I can't say anything about Eastwood's repair kit as I've no experience, but I have seen repairs by Gary's Steering Wheel Restoration in Carlisle, PA. Gary's I've seen their work and it is magnificent...you can't tell it's not a new steering wheel. They are not cheap but quality costs. As far as pricing, here's a copy and paste from their website...

All restorations take approximately 4 to 8 weeks to complete, and your satisfaction is guaranteed! Gary’s Steering Wheel Restoration has proudly produced show-quality steering wheel restorations for over 20 years.

Each wheel is evaluated and priced individually according to its condition. For a free estimate, send the wheel to us and we will call you with a price. If we agree to the estimate, then we can begin restoration. If not, Gary’s will return your wheel -- at no charge to you. A deposit is required prior to starting the restoration.

The typical price range of a color steering wheel is $350 to $1,200, with an average of $475, depending on the condition and types of cracks. For specialty wheels, some average costs are:

'64 - '67 Corvette wood grain, $275-350

Mopar wood grain, $400

Mopar Rim Blow, $400 (plus $190 w/ new switch)

GTO wood grain, $400

'56 - '62 Corvette, $425

Whether they've done an Avanti steering wheel is an open question but I doubt if it will cause them a problem. I guess you can try the Eastwood kit and if that does the job you're dollars ahead...if not, you're not out that much in comparison.

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A while back I put in a note "woodgrain steering wheel restoration" . If you search under "wheel" you'll see it. A firm named "Willy's" in Arvonia, VA did the repair....it's MAGNIFICENT. Call Steve at 804-380-8349 or Ian at 804-370-5139....the cost was VERY reasonable, in fact downright cheap !!

GOOD LUCK - Avanti Fred

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Try Shrock Brothers (Dave & Tom), North Western PA. They have been doing repro Studebaker parts for years and also do steering wheels. They are Studebaker people and do very nice work. They are the ones that do the Studebaker toys. They have done the '63 and '64 Avanti's in 1/72nd scale and in all the original colors. Email them at shrockbrothers@penn.com Stupak

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