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Gear Indicator on Column is not reading right...!!

Discussion in '1973-1991 K5 Blazer | Truck | Suburban' started by Greg72, Nov 26, 2001.

  1. Greg72

    Greg72 "Might As Well..." Staff Member Super Moderator

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    OK....here's the deal, I've been reading the stupid Factory Service Manual for my '72 and I'm more confused than ever!!!

    When the truck is in PARK, the needle is about 1/2" to the left of the "P"....If I put the truck in Drive, the needle is pointing to "N", etc. By the time I get to L1, the needle is at "L2".....and that's as far as it will move.

    I've checked the archives and everyone says that the linkage rod needs to be lengthened when there's a body lift. The problem is that I have the linkage DISCONNECTED right now, and it the needle STILL won't work in the correct range in the selector window!!!!

    At the bottom of the steering column there is a lever that connects to the linkage, and a second notched bracket that has all the "detents" for Park, and L1 range. I have a feeling that I need to ROTATE one or the other to change the relationship between these two so that I can get that needle to line up right.

    There are two bandclamps on the bottom of the shift column, each is held in place with a total of 3 screws. The bottom-most clamp has an angled slot adjustment in it (which appears to be for setting some kind of preload) and the top clamp (closest to that "detent plate" has not slots for adjustment.

    Can someone help me figure this out from my description? I am going to go take a few pics and post them here so that you can see what I'm talking about.

    EDIT:

    Ok here is a link to those pics.... <a target="_blank" href=http://coloradok5.com/gallery/albun55/aaa?&amp;full=1>http://coloradok5.com/gallery/albun55/aaa?&amp;full=1</a>

    -Greg72

    '72 K5 Blazer - 427BB/TH350/NP205/6" Lift/35x12.50's
    <font color=blue>See it here: </font color=blue>&lt;a target="_blank" href=http://coloradok5.com/gallery/albun38&gt;http://coloradok5.com/gallery/albun38&lt;/a&gt;<P ID="edit"><FONT class="small">Edited by Greg72 on 11/26/01 02:57 PM.</FONT></P>
     
  2. mudrunner78

    mudrunner78 1/2 ton status

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    I don't know if its the same for a 72 but I know 78 chevys had a small cable and clip that moves the indicator, to adjust it you need to remove the cover from the top of the colum and the dash unscrew the clip holding the cable and mive it till the indicator lines up. but the shifter should still shift normally, just the indicator is wrong.
     
  3. HarryH3

    HarryH3 1 ton status Author

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    Hmm, I've never had a '72 dash apart. But on the later trucks there's a small cable attached to the pointer, just behind the dash, that moves the pointer. The pointer is spring loaded, which moves it the other way when the cable tension is released. Anyway, the end of the cable at the shifter can be adjusted to get the pointer corrected. Set it so that it's correct in Park and the other positions should also be lined up.

    <font color=black>HarryH3 - '75 K5</font color=black>
    <a target="_blank" href=http://www.angelfire.com/super/ThunderTruck>www.angelfire.com/super/ThunderTruck</a>
    It's a great day to be alive...
     
  4. hammer

    hammer 1/2 ton status

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    There is a little clip on the steering coloum with a piece of string or sumthing like it attached to the needle you just have to slide it over until it reads right. Only tried it on a car and broke the string so i just live with it not reading right on all my other auto veicles
     
  5. hammer

    hammer 1/2 ton status

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    d@mm 3 at the same time
     
  6. Greg72

    Greg72 "Might As Well..." Staff Member Super Moderator

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    Oh yes, thanks for reminding me MudRunner.....

    To clarify, I actually DO get all the gears like I'm supposed to.....this is purely a problem with the "indicator".



    -Greg72

    '72 K5 Blazer - 427BB/TH350/NP205/6" Lift/35x12.50's
    <font color=blue>See it here: </font color=blue><a target="_blank" href=http://coloradok5.com/gallery/albun38>http://coloradok5.com/gallery/albun38</a>
     
  7. ZZ4x4

    ZZ4x4 1/2 ton status

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    Is your indicator window positioned properly centered on top of column. I was thinking if the outer column tube had rotated to the side, the needle would not line up. Of course you can rotate it by loosening the strap outside of the firewall, and the one on the inside under the dash. I will look at mine tonight to see if anything else stands out. Good luck. JT
     
  8. Greg72

    Greg72 "Might As Well..." Staff Member Super Moderator

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    ZZ4x4,

    Yes the indicator window is "straight up" on the column.....

    You know the more I think about it, there really aren't ANY adjustments for the needle itself, unlike the later Blazers. That needle is directly connected to the gear selector

    ...the answer has to be at the other end of the steering column...If that "detent" clamp had oval holes instead of fixed ones, that seems like the place where this could all be adjusted?

    I'll keep looking and scratching my head on this side, if you guys will keep throwing me ideas....!! [​IMG]



    -Greg72

    '72 K5 Blazer - 427BB/TH350/NP205/6" Lift/35x12.50's
    <font color=blue>See it here: </font color=blue><a target="_blank" href=http://coloradok5.com/gallery/albun38>http://coloradok5.com/gallery/albun38</a>
     
  9. ZZ4x4

    ZZ4x4 1/2 ton status

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    Greg, I think you are right. I looked at my truck. The main difference between your photo and my column is that the bolt head in your adjustable slot is all the way to one side. Mine is more contered although still toward the side yours in on. It makes sense that this would affect the relationship between the detent flange and steering shaft. I say loosen it and try rotating the detent flange a bit. See ya. JT
     
  10. Greg72

    Greg72 "Might As Well..." Staff Member Super Moderator

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    ZZ4x4,

    Well I gave up and cut some "slots" in that middle set of screw holes....it gave me enough room to rotate the "detent plate" about 1/4" which translates into PERFECT alignment of the needle on the gear indicator.

    There is a bit of "slop" in the steering column (pulling back on the steering wheel and pushing it forward) there is a spring that appears to hold tension on this setup, but I think the spring is tired an old. Perhaps what I really need is a rebuilt steering column?



    -Greg72

    '72 K5 Blazer - 427BB/TH350/NP205/6" Lift/35x12.50's
    <font color=blue>See it here: </font color=blue><a target="_blank" href=http://coloradok5.com/gallery/albun38>http://coloradok5.com/gallery/albun38</a>
     
  11. Greg72

    Greg72 "Might As Well..." Staff Member Super Moderator

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    ANOTHER UPDATE:

    OK that bottom-most bracket with the "angled slots" appears to be used to set the tension of the entire steering column. If I slide that bracket ALL the way to one side, and sit in the driver's seat and pull on the steering wheel....it goes in &amp; out something like 1/4" and feels really wobbly.

    If I adjust that same bracket as far as I can the OTHER way, it tightens up the steering wheel so that there isn't much slop at all. Unfortunately, I think the spring that creates this "pre-load" is old and tired, and even at this setting it has more "wobble" than it should.

    I was thinking of trying to find a way to "shim" something behind that spring (it's sitting on a flat washer, so maybe just get a thicker washer?) to try to get a little more tension on the column. I have a feeling that will improve the gear selection "feel"......even though the indicator needle is now pointing correctly, there just isn't a really nice SOLID feeling as I select each gear on the column....still feels kinda wobbly, and non-positive. This is especially true between "N" and "D" which share the same notch on that detent plate. I am worried that if the truck was in Neutral, it could slip fairly easily down into Drive....there just isn't much spring pressure holding it in position.

    Hmmmmmmmmm [​IMG]



    -Greg72

    '72 K5 Blazer - 427BB/TH350/NP205/6" Lift/35x12.50's
    <font color=blue>See it here: </font color=blue><a target="_blank" href=http://coloradok5.com/gallery/albun38>http://coloradok5.com/gallery/albun38</a>
     
  12. LKJR

    LKJR 1/2 ton status

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    Greg, my old 72 truck was like this and I think my 71 blazer is kinda like that if I remember right, the truck I just took it off I think, but yours isn't the only one that is like that if you wanted to know. Both are pretty much stock. Good luck

    Like em big and topless
    Excuse me...Would you mind removing your import from under my chevy?
     
  13. Greg72

    Greg72 "Might As Well..." Staff Member Super Moderator

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    LKJR,

    What are you saying is similar....? The non-positive feel of the shift column? The fact that the needles on YOUR trucks didn't line up right?.....

    You kinda lost me with your last message..... [​IMG]



    -Greg72

    '72 K5 Blazer - 427BB/TH350/NP205/6" Lift/35x12.50's
    <font color=blue>See it here: </font color=blue><a target="_blank" href=http://coloradok5.com/gallery/albun38>http://coloradok5.com/gallery/albun38</a>
     
  14. LKJR

    LKJR 1/2 ton status

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    sorry I was pretty tired when I wrote that, the indicator not lining up right. Both those trucks are off, but I seem to remember the 72 truck being more off than this one is.....

    Like em big and topless
    Excuse me...Would you mind removing your import from under my chevy?
     

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