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Old 4th February 2012, 18:26   #1
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Default Lowered the steering wheel tilt of my Maruti A-Star!

Many people complain about the steering wheel position in AStar to be on the higher side. While this may be okay for tall fellows or guys with long hands it was always not ideal for me. I wanted the wheel to be lower. When i was doing the ICE wiring of my car i had noticed that there were two nuts holding the steering column to the dashboard and behind it i could see a pivoting mechanism. Being tired of the steering wheel position today i finally decided to give it a shot and off i went to my friendly neighborhood garage.

There i told them what i wanted, but the guys were a bit apprehensive but i asked them to give it a try. So they unscrewed the two nuts and the column came down pivoting on that pivot mechanism i told you about. Then we took some plate washers inserted it between the sufficiently long bolts tightened it. Once the height was okay the washers were taken off then welded - to make it a unit, and then re inserted and tightened.

The end result is that steering wheel is now tilted by close to an inch and i can keep my hands on the wheel at a very relaxed position. My bro who was taller than me found it to be a bit tight initially but when seat pushed back it was comfortable for him as well.

People who find the AStar steering to be a little high set for comfort give this a try. If you didn't like it you can go back to stock I should've done this long back!

There are no how to do pics, but you can see the gap and the plate washers used. I used 5 on each side.
Attached Thumbnails
Lowered the steering wheel tilt of my Maruti A-Star!-img_20120204_173059.jpg  

Lowered the steering wheel tilt of my Maruti A-Star!-img_20120204_173111.jpg  

Lowered the steering wheel tilt of my Maruti A-Star!-img_20120204_173134.jpg  

Lowered the steering wheel tilt of my Maruti A-Star!-img_20120204_175123.jpg  

Lowered the steering wheel tilt of my Maruti A-Star!-img_20120204_175144.jpg  

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Old 6th February 2012, 19:34   #2
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Default Re: Lowered the steering wheel tilt of my Maruti A-Star!

Did a small change today as DIY, made the washer count from 5 to 4. Remembered to take some pics of the innards today.

The washers inserted into the bolt
Lowered the steering wheel tilt of my Maruti A-Star!-img_20120206_184316.jpg

The bolt from underside
Lowered the steering wheel tilt of my Maruti A-Star!-img_20120206_184346.jpg

The pivot mechanism
Lowered the steering wheel tilt of my Maruti A-Star!-img_20120206_184357.jpg

The washers - 4 on left 5 on right
Lowered the steering wheel tilt of my Maruti A-Star!-img_20120206_184727.jpg
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Old 6th February 2012, 19:53   #3
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Default Re: Lowered the steering wheel tilt of my Maruti A-Star!

Excellent DIY, but what was the reason for welding the washers together?
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Old 6th February 2012, 20:14   #4
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Default Re: Lowered the steering wheel tilt of my Maruti A-Star!

Quote:
Originally Posted by vikram_d View Post
Excellent DIY, but what was the reason for welding the washers together?
The first time it was done was not as DIY eventhough the idea was mine. The workshop who did it first spot welded the washers as it would be easier to slide it in and hold it in place as a single unit while lifting the wheel up. When i re did it this evening i just taped the washers together for the same ease of insertion. If not held together as a bunch it tends to slip out as the surface is not level.
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Old 6th February 2012, 21:07   #5
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Default Re: Lowered the steering wheel tilt of my Maruti A-Star!

Any Before and After comparison pictures so that the tilt obtained can be clearly seen.
Praises to your idea that changed the way you steer for a comfortable drive.
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Old 6th February 2012, 21:15   #6
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Default Re: Lowered the steering wheel tilt of my Maruti A-Star!

Great DIY. I wonder if the same thing can be done for other Maruti models.
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Old 6th February 2012, 22:21   #7
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Default Re: Lowered the steering wheel tilt of my Maruti A-Star!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sankar View Post
The first time it was done was not as DIY eventhough the idea was mine. The workshop who did it first spot welded the washers as it would be easier to slide it in and hold it in place as a single unit while lifting the wheel up. When i re did it this evening i just taped the washers together for the same ease of insertion. If not held together as a bunch it tends to slip out as the surface is not level.
Probably better to use some tape/glue in that case. Welding usually destroys the factory coating on the metal and causes ugly looking rust after a while.
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Old 6th February 2012, 22:25   #8
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Default Re: Lowered the steering wheel tilt of my Maruti A-Star!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mpower View Post
Probably better to use some tape/glue in that case. Welding usually destroys the factory coating on the metal and causes ugly looking rust after a while.
Or get a simple spacer turned, preferably in stainless steel.
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Old 6th February 2012, 23:51   #9
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Default Re: Lowered the steering wheel tilt of my Maruti A-Star!

Quote:
Originally Posted by rajeev k View Post
Any Before and After comparison pictures so that the tilt obtained can be clearly seen.
Praises to your idea that changed the way you steer for a comfortable drive.
No i didn't take any before pics. If an AStar owner could upload a pic of the stock setting from the same angle it would help.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dot View Post
Great DIY. I wonder if the same thing can be done for other Maruti models.
Yes this could be done for other cars from Maruti and other manufacturers too. Its easy to find out if it can be done, just have to remove the lower dashboard panel and inspect the mounting and linkage.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mpower View Post
Probably better to use some tape/glue in that case. Welding usually destroys the factory coating on the metal and causes ugly looking rust after a while.
Yes, the spot welded pair is already rusting. I taped the 4 washers together, coating is intact.

Quote:
Originally Posted by vikram_d View Post
Or get a simple spacer turned, preferably in stainless steel.
Best option. Once the thickness is determined with washers SS spacers can be used a long term solution. I might do it.

Last edited by Sankar : 6th February 2012 at 23:54.
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Old 7th February 2012, 09:30   #10
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Default Re: Lowered the steering wheel tilt of my Maruti A-Star!

Nice useful DIY, Sankar.

BTW, does your VXi not have driver-seat height adjustment ? For most people, it is the low-driverSeat & high-dashboard combo that's a major irritant with the A-Star and this is sorted out with the driver-seat height adjustment available in all models except LXi. In our A-Star_AT, I have never felt the steering to be an issue - maybe because driver seat is raised to maximum.
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Old 7th February 2012, 10:51   #11
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Default Re: Lowered the steering wheel tilt of my Maruti A-Star!

Quote:
Originally Posted by supremeBaleno View Post
Nice useful DIY, Sankar.

BTW, does your VXi not have driver-seat height adjustment ? For most people, it is the low-driverSeat & high-dashboard combo that's a major irritant with the A-Star and this is sorted out with the driver-seat height adjustment available in all models except LXi. In our A-Star_AT, I have never felt the steering to be an issue - maybe because driver seat is raised to maximum.
Driver's seat height adjustment feature was provided in later models. It wasn't available in any trim when i bought the car in March 2010. If drivers height adjustment was there then this DIY never would've been required.
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Old 7th February 2012, 11:44   #12
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Default Re: Lowered the steering wheel tilt of my Maruti A-Star!

Nice DIY now i am more than inclined to look at the Manza steering column if that can be pushed a little up, mine didnt come with tilt adjustment but the steering column seems to be the same as Elan.
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Old 7th February 2012, 14:44   #13
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Default Re: Lowered the steering wheel tilt of my Maruti A-Star!

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Originally Posted by motomaverick View Post
Nice DIY now i am more than inclined to look at the Manza steering column if that can be pushed a little up, mine didnt come with tilt adjustment but the steering column seems to be the same as Elan.
Pushing the wheel up may not be easy if there are no removable spacers or some other kind of adjustment. But if the steering wheel position is unsuitable for you it is worth finding out if someting can be done. A change even as minimal as some 2cm made a difference in my case. A correctly positioned wheel helps a lot in reducing driving fatigue.
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Old 7th February 2012, 14:44   #14
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Default Re: Lowered the steering wheel tilt of my Maruti A-Star!

Great find Sankar. The low steering will make the A-star even more Fun to Drive. Now find a way to lower that dash and let us know.

For the old Swift L & V variants, the steering rake is set to the middle by default. Made it much more appealing to drive. I wonder why MSIL didn't do it for the A-star.
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Old 7th February 2012, 17:37   #15
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Default Re: Lowered the steering wheel tilt of my Maruti A-Star!

Though its a great DIY exercise, is it a good practice to mend the factory settings? What if the steering fails to collapse in the event of an head on collision? Other than cosmetic modifications, doing any other component modification by yourself is inviting trouble on a long run (unless you are an expert and have the right tools and understand the mechanical tolerances). This is my view
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