EZ Power Steering in an early Series 2

Talk about the E-Type Series 2

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BobKTX
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#1 EZ Power Steering in an early Series 2

Post by BobKTX » Wed Oct 27, 2021 5:53 pm

This is a thread that I'm starting on the installation of the EX Power steering unit on my Series 2. IT follows the thread started by @GTJoey in the Series 1 forum.

For those of you that have followed along, Joey installed an EZ Power Steering unit in his car several weeks/months ago and raved about it. I had been considering it, but wasn’t going to pull the trigger until I heard from someone else about their experience with it, given its price tag. Additionally, after looking at the Series 1 and Series 2 units on both SNG’s website and EZ Power Steerings site, I was concerned about it working on my very early Series 2.

It seems that the early Series 2 had a different ignition switch installation location depending on if the car had factory air conditioning or not. For the Series 1.5 and early Series 2’s, if the car had factory AC, then the ignition switch was located on the same under dash panel as the AC control knob. If the car didn’t have factory AC, then the ignition switch was mounted on a bracket at the top of the steering column. After these early Series 2’s were made a change was made to add a steering wheel lock, which requires a steel barrel contraption bolted to the top of the column. My early S2 had factory AC that a previous owner removed. For some reason an aftermarket AC unit was installed, but in the meantime the car lost the mounting location on the factory air panel for the ignition.

It was at this point, the PO removed part of the old factory AC panel off with a hacksaw and used a small “L” bracket to mount it to the steering column and it looked bad. With the help of another US user I was finally after months of searching find a guy in the UK (@tinworm) who ultimately manufactured replicas of the elusive bracket that Jaguar used to hold the ignition switch to the column, for cars that didn’t have factory air.

When I saw the steering columns on SNG and EZ, I only saw a Series 2 column with the steel steering wheel lock barrel. The Series 1 column is very different in terms of how it mounts. I then emailed both SNG and EZ and told this same story. As it turned out, EZ was very familiar with the issue and had the ability to take a Series 2 column with the barrel lock fixture and “de-convert” it to a Series 1.5 version with the ignition bracket! After a few back and forth emails, they agree to build one for me and ship it to SNG for my purchase. The unit arrived today and I eagerly unboxed it hoping that it was correct…thankfully it is perfect. Here is the first picture of all the components, tomorrow I will start taking pictures of the current installation and begin removal of the current setup. Given that I’ve had my steering wheel and column out of the car twice before (once troubleshooting and then once again with all the needed repairs) I’m very comfortable in removing the old setup. It does not appear to be very difficult to install the new electric power steering setup. All it needs is a ground wire, constant power, and switched power; all easily accessible from behind the instrument panel. More to come…

Thanks Joey for such a glowing report on this product, I’ll provide my own review in a few days!




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1969 Series 2 FHC - Signal Red - Biscuit Interior
2018 F-Type - Carmen Red - Black Interior
1953 Chevy 5-window Pickup Truck - Jungle Green
2022 Ram 1500 Pickup Truck - Granite

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BobKTX
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#2 Re: EZ Power Steering in an early Series 2

Post by BobKTX » Wed Oct 27, 2021 5:55 pm

Despite my plan to start on this project today, last night around 6:30pm I couldn’t contain myself and I went out to the garage with the plan to just remove the steering wheel. An hour later, all of this was on my work bench

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As I mentioned, I’ve had all this off before dealing with 1) a turn signal assembly that had its wiring hacked up by a PO since the horn didn’t work and the turn signal indicators were wired wrong (by him), 2) a stripped upper steering column section (the telescoping piece) from the PO who over tightened the steering wheel nut and then decided to hold the steering wheel in place with 1/2 a roll of teflon tape, 3) replacing the column bushing (nylon) that had worn out and needed replaced which with the cause of the wobbly steering wheel that the PO thought tightening the top nut was the answer.

Today the plan is to pull the thick red wire directly from the terminal under the bonnet that the battery + terminal connects to for the various components of the car that are directly wired. This red wire already has a 40 amp inline fuse attached, this goes directly to the EZ wiring harness. I will also attach the device that goes between the speedometer cable and the speedometer, that way the unit can detect the speed you are going to provide little or no steering assist. Also, I will be attaching the brackets that attached to the EZ unit self to the back of the instrument panel and its underside where the original column was attached. The two small brackets at the back of the unit go on the underside and the the larger of the three brackets mounts to the upper two captive nuts that held the original bracket (the large bracket in the upper photo that had four attachment points on the back of the dash. Finally, the plan is to find a location to mount the brains of the system (its ECU)…more on that to come.

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Last edited by BobKTX on Wed Oct 27, 2021 9:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.
____________________________________________

1969 Series 2 FHC - Signal Red - Biscuit Interior
2018 F-Type - Carmen Red - Black Interior
1953 Chevy 5-window Pickup Truck - Jungle Green
2022 Ram 1500 Pickup Truck - Granite

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mgcjag
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#3 Re: EZ Power Steering in an early Series 2

Post by mgcjag » Wed Oct 27, 2021 6:04 pm

Hi Bob...great to get this sort of info on the forum.....Steve
Steve
69 S2 2+2 (just sold) & Building a C type replica, 1960 xk150fhc

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BobKTX
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#4 Re: EZ Power Steering in an early Series 2

Post by BobKTX » Sun Oct 31, 2021 8:39 pm

Yes, the EZ Power Steering unit is now completely installed in my 1969 Series 2 FHC. Overall, the task was not difficult at all, but there were a few fiddly aspects. I’ll post a few photos in the morning, it is way past time for my afternoon nap. Like every project I undertake on this car, it isn’t done until I’ve done it at least twice, this task was no exception. As I posted a few days ago, taking out the old steering column is a piece of cake, I had it all done in 30 minutes or less and I was taking photos along the way. Installing the new unit is just the reverse, with an extra step or two and some wiring to attend to.

The fiddly aspects were 1) the bracket for my ignition switch (so steering lock barrel) had been powder coated and the ignition barrel wouldn’t fit until I took out my Dremel and removed a smidge of the powder coating, 2) the two piece bracket that holds the black plastic shroud around the turn signal switch was just a shade too thick to fit behind the turn signal assembly as it should, the original one has a nub sticking out and it had to be ground down with my Dremel but it was made of slightly thinner metal and it worked out better than the provided one, 3) It takes a bit of fiddling to get the new column into place with the mister tubing, it can be done, but it takes a tweak or two to get it all to fit, and 4) because the column is beefier, the the snap in section of the black plastic turn signal shroud had to be Dremeled to make it have a slightly wider opening in the back to fit around the beefier column.

The EZ column itself has four mounting points, two are L-brackets that attach to the two lowest original captive nuts in the underside of the dash, towards the pedals. I loosely inserted those, they will attach to the side brackets of the column. The top bracket gets bolted into the two top captive nuts on the front of the instrument panel, which formerly held the factory bracket that had four attachment point. I ended up using the lower left captive nut and bolt for a grounding bolt. To make installation easier, I detached the top bracket from the column (its fairly heavy/solid) and mounted it first, buy removing the bolt that the column pivots on.


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Once the L-Brackets and the Top bracket were attached, I simply inserted the lower splined section of the EZ Power Steering unit into the universal joint, still attached to the lower steering column that protrudes through the firewall. This then allowed me to pivot the EZ unit upwards and insert the carriage bolts that hold the side brackets to the L-bracket and to insert the main bolt between the top bracket sides,

That all sounds straightforward and it is, except that the wiring harness from the turn signals need to be threaded from the column to the wiring harness itself which is right behind the top bracket mounting bolt and the back of the dash, along with the mister tubing. Its a tight fit and the first time I got it all in the place, the turn signals didn’t work as several of the damn bullet connectors came detached. Luckily, removing the top bolt and loosening the carriage bolts on the side brackets allows the unit to pivot downwards, I was then able to reconnect the turn signal wiring.

Other than installation, it was a joy to turn the key (didn’t start the car yet) and feel the steering able to turn the wheels (205/70/15’s on 6 inch wheels) with one finger. I then started the car and pulled out of my garage, which entails a quick 90 degree turn out of the garage, then a 90 degree turn the other direction to drive out of the property. I always get the first 90 degree turn done properly, but usually as I’m shifting from reverse into first gear, turning the wheel while letting the clutch out, I have occasionally driven over a small garden area, since the car is moving as the wheel is being turned…no big deal but with the power steering, I had the wheels already turned back from the original 90 degree to the right and was head out before I even put the car into first gear, without endangering the gardena area.

While I didn’t have time to take a long drive, I did go up and down our street with a cul de sac at each end to test the turning radius and effort. While I haven’t put the miles on it yet to call it transformative, I will say that it feels like a modern sports car is supposed to feel while steering, mind you I have a 2018 Jaguar F-Type too, and this steering felt comparable to it.

I still have some final touches to attend to in terms of locating and attaching the ECU, as well and dressing up the new wiring points, but all it all, I would call this install done and well work the time, effort, and money.
____________________________________________

1969 Series 2 FHC - Signal Red - Biscuit Interior
2018 F-Type - Carmen Red - Black Interior
1953 Chevy 5-window Pickup Truck - Jungle Green
2022 Ram 1500 Pickup Truck - Granite

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BobKTX
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#5 Re: EZ Power Steering in an early Series 2

Post by BobKTX » Sun Oct 31, 2021 8:40 pm

The EZ Power Steering unit installation in my Series 2 is now complete (or nearly so). I have bolted the unit in place, run all the necessary wiring (only three electrical contact (thick red wire to positive post from battery), ground wire, and a switched wire from fuse box), and I’ve dressed all the wiring. The final step was to fit the ECU. In my case, I chose to use industrial Velcro and cover the black plastic cover with it and attach it to the underside of the dash. It is totally out of the way and will be completely covered when I fabricate the under dash cover I’m creating (ditching the cardboard pieces).

Here are some finished pics.

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From the topside, it is completely unnoticeable that anything has changed, except when you turn the car on and realize that the steering wheel will turn at rest with no effort whatsoever. It is a joy to back out of the garage and make all the slow hard turns necessary to navigate out of the garage, my property, any my street. What an amazing difference!
____________________________________________

1969 Series 2 FHC - Signal Red - Biscuit Interior
2018 F-Type - Carmen Red - Black Interior
1953 Chevy 5-window Pickup Truck - Jungle Green
2022 Ram 1500 Pickup Truck - Granite

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BobKTX
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#6 Re: EZ Power Steering in an early Series 2

Post by BobKTX » Mon Nov 08, 2021 3:18 pm

As promised, I have a driving report after having installed the EZ Power Steering unit. Yesterday, the weather was beautiful and I had returned from a week of dealing with lawyers and court officials over my mothers estate and I was overdue from some pleasure driving to allow me to forget about all the hassle.

I started up the Jag in one turn of the key, thanks to the high torque starter and the 123 distributor, along with all the final tuning of the triple SU’s on my 1969 Series 2 Coupe. Yes, I know the triple SU’s aren’t standard, but there were already on the car when I bought it and if they hadn’t been, either 1) I wouldn’t have bought the car, or 2) I would have purchased the necessary parts to upgrade to the SU’s. No offense to the Stromberg lovers/owners, I just like the look and performance add-back of the triple SU’s.

I backed out of the garage and tooled out the driveway with little or no fuss about the multiple 90 degree turns necessary to exit my property. The EZ unit performed exactly like you would want it to given the tight turns at low speed. I then got out on to some local country roads and was able to get the car up to 50 - 60 mph in modest bursts. The steering was responsive without being mushy. As GT Joey likes to say, it did not drive like a 1972 Chrysler station wagon, the steering was not sloppy. In fact, given that its electric power assist is speed sensitive, there was no assistance provided (or needed) at any speed above 25 mph that I could discern.

During my drive, I came upon a country road intersection at rush hour. This poorly designed intersection has a set of poorly timed traffic lights and the cars can back up for 1/2 mile or more and only 4 or 5 get through at a time when the light changes. Rather than sit for 15-20 minutes for my turn, I decided to do a u-turn when the oncoming traffic permitted it. Prior to the EZ unit, this would have taken a bit of preparation and it would have required that I fade off to the right side of the road before inputting a full lock left turn to make the u-turn (sorry for the confusing turning to those folks that drive on the other side of the road…). With the EZ unit, I was able to make the full lock left u-turn without any preparation and in fact, it felt like I had over steered a bit as I had to take the full lock turn out quickly to go straight. It was a joy to make this kind of turn from a full stop.

When I got home and was thinking of the drive and fact that while at cruising speed, the steering wheel and column felt more solid than it did before the EZ unit was installed. I think this is true for a variety of reasons, not the least of which is how solid and well built the unit it. It does seem to play a role in insulating the steering wheel and the drive from road bumps, bump steering from minor pot holes and road irregularities. But I also realized that the reason I wasn’t totally blown away by the unit is that I have not clocked that many miles on my 1969 Jag as some folks have. As a result, I hadn’t had long history of dealing with non-power steering. In fact, the biggest compliment I can give the unit is that compared to my 2018 Jaguar F-Type, previous Porsches I’ve owned, and my wife’s Cadillac XT5, it drives almost exactly the same. It is an understated effect at driving speed and effortless without being sloppy at parking, creeping, turning speeds. It makes the 1969 Jag drive and handle like all the newest cars I’ve driven. Suffice to say, I’m more than happy with the result.
____________________________________________

1969 Series 2 FHC - Signal Red - Biscuit Interior
2018 F-Type - Carmen Red - Black Interior
1953 Chevy 5-window Pickup Truck - Jungle Green
2022 Ram 1500 Pickup Truck - Granite

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#7 Re: EZ Power Steering in an early Series 2

Post by Heuer » Mon Nov 08, 2021 3:33 pm

BobKTX wrote:
Mon Nov 08, 2021 3:18 pm
It makes the 1969 Jag drive and handle like all the newest cars I’ve driven.
:sad:
David Jones
S1 OTS OSB; S1 FHC ODB

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gtjoey
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#8 Re: EZ Power Steering in an early Series 2

Post by gtjoey » Tue Nov 09, 2021 10:15 am

Here is a strange side effect of the steering swap.......
YOUR DRIVING IT MORE!
DRIVING WITH LESS DRAMA!
Its great!, Bob report back at he next 1,000 miles....:)

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#9 Re: EZ Power Steering in an early Series 2

Post by markc555 » Fri Apr 22, 2022 11:04 am

Thank you Bob for the detailed information, pics and installation write up :thankyouyellow:

I'm sold on everything except the cost to do it. I'm (still) looking at alternative suppliers and lower cost options :geek:

Cheers

Mark
1969 S2 FHC (Opalescent Maroon) 1R26120

"The older I get, the faster I was"

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#10 Re: EZ Power Steering in an early Series 2

Post by chrisfell » Fri Apr 22, 2022 11:42 am

Mark. Google Lite Steer and follow your nose.
Chris '67 S1 2+2

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#11 Re: EZ Power Steering in an early Series 2

Post by gtjoey » Sat Apr 23, 2022 12:59 am

As I have said before.....if this unit was under 2 grand, 90 PERCENT of Etypes would have been converted.
With that said,the quality id the unit makes me wonder how they sell it so CHEAP!
Its that good!
Well good luck when you purchase your unit, DO NOT GET THE OLD MANUAL DIAL SWITCH. It defeats the purpose.
A friend put that cheaper unit non EZ in a MG , It wasnt the same.
GTJOEY1314
8,000 MILES IN 11 MONTHS!

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