Classic Performance Products (CPP) Steering Box Installation 1965 Coupe - Vintage Mustang Forums
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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 04-17-2018, 08:41 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2015
Posts: 49
Classic Performance Products (CPP) Steering Box Installation 1965 Coupe

I know there are a few threads already addressing this issue but I thought I'd add an updated one with an overview of my experience. I apologize in advance for the lengthy post but I want to provide as much info as possible.

I just finished the install of my CPP power steering box this weekend on my 1965 289, C code coupe. My car is a driver quality car in above average condition but not show quality. I went to this setup from a 16:1 manual box. I'll try to add some pics this weekend if I get some time. I am a shade tree mechanic with above average skills and lots of tools, but no expert by any means. Unfortunately, I don't have a lift so jacks and stands had to do. I will say that this is definitely a weekend project. I was not in any hurry so I just took my time.

These are the parts I bought and where acquired. IIRC, everything ran me about $600 (without the pump). I'll add part numbers and actual totals as I find the packages I already tossed out. I am in PA and the parts came from CA. I feel the shipping time was reasonable for the distance. I think no more than a week for any of the parts.:

1.) CPP steering box - 400 Series; part CP5005MU
2.) Rag joint - I actually found an older CPP version on eBay of the one they sell now. The only difference was that the side on mine that the shaft goes into was round, as opposed to the double D they use now. I just used a roll pin and welded it for good measure. Saved me about $25. I actually had an extra 19:1 steering box so I just cut the shaft off of that to use for my conversion. That allowed me to cut the other shaft on the 16:1 box I had in the car that I had replaced previously which made removal a lot easier. (If anyone has removed these boxes/columns as one piece, you know how difficult and labor intensive it can be.)
3.) Pitman arm - you have to use their modified arm. Can't remember why right now. Maybe the size of the box's output shaft and slightly different angle?
4.) Column installation kit - this is like a 3 or 4 piece kit that comes altogether as one and helps to hold the base of the column in place at the interior floorboard/firewall. You need this because you have to cut your existing column shorter.
5.) PS pump - They sell a Saginaw style pump to go with the box. I had an original Eaton pump and rebuilt it and that is what I am currently using until I get a Saginaw style. Both the Eaton and Ford style original pumps should work. HOWEVER, they will not put out the 1200 psi pressure that CPP recommends for these boxes. I think they'll put out somewhere in the neighborhood of 800-1000. I noticed the difference on my first (and only because of our crappy PA weather) test drive. It feels like power steering but probably not quite as boosted as it should.
6.) PS lines - I bought some PTFE and AN fittings from Summit Racing and made my own hoses.

NOTE: CPP sells most, if not all, of this stuff together in a kit as well.

I have read others say this is not a "plug and play". They are correct. However, if you can do some minor mods, it's really not an issue. Would definitely help to have 2 sets of hands. CPP provides comprehensive, easy to follow instructions that were pretty spot on minus the clearance mods. There was a fair amount of test fitting and resolving clearance issues. I removed and installed from under the car because I did not want to mess with the new power brake setup I've already installed. I, like others, had to dimple the shock tower to clear the back (actually the portion closest to the front of the car) of the box. It looks like the back of the box had been cut/shaved square by CPP so maybe they had tried to modify the newer versions of these to eliminate the shock tower issue. Regardless, I still had to dimple it. I have Patriot mid length headers on my car and had to completely remove the driver's header (again, from below and at both the head and the collector) but had to lift the header up into the engine compartment and zip tie it up to get the box up in there. Had to do it in that order too or things wouldn't fit. Header up loosely then box up and in. I had to cut a small part of the ends of my upper control arm bolts on the driver's side to pull the headers up more. you may not have to do all that. Had to dimple one of the primary tubes for clearance on the box as well. I mocked the box and pump in place and figured out the orientation and length of hose and fittings. (NOTE: I just spoke to CPP today re: the proper PS fluid to be used. Because of the Eaton pump, Ford demands you use Type F (formerly Type A) but CPP says you should use a GM rated fluid like the basic Prestone and whatnot. So I will be flushing the Type F out of mine this weekend. CPP said that if you return a damaged box and it would have resulted from using Type F, it would void the warranty. Fair enough. Another reason for me to switch pumps eventually.) Then, for ease, I connected both hoses to the pump before putting it up in place for the final time. Cutting the shaft and the column are pretty straight forward and are spelled out clearly in the instructions. Once installed, get the box centered up and install the pitman arm then continue with the column, wheel and lower column holder/installation kit. I had to remove my steering wheel and reposition it to straighten the orientation after the test drive but other than that, the car still feels like its aligned. I'll still have it checked. I'm sure there are some other things I left out.

Overall, I am pleased with it. Very responsive and, even with the Eaton pump, still has a good deal of power assist. Could definitely parallel park without a problem. I can't compare it to the Borgeson as I've never felt that system, but its probably similar. I think some of the CPP literature says the box is 2.75 turns lock to lock but it is actually right around 3. I would not want anything more responsive. I am running 70 series 14 inch tires but will be upgrading to wider tires soon as well. I have seen some folks in older threads remark about CPP poor customer service. I will say, from my experience, that I've called CPP probably 6-8 times between January and now before and after purchasing and never had a bad experience. Spoke with different people and they all were courteous, knowledgeable and helpful and didn't seem to mind if I was asking lots of questions. I have no affiliation with CPP. Just want to give them an honest review. Maybe they have improved on their customer service? Not sure. I can just tell you what I experienced. Anyway, again, my overall impression is good about the product and the company. I'll try to give some updates on longevity as I start to drive it more if it ever stops snowing in PA!

Thanks for reading my long-winded post.
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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 04-17-2018, 08:52 PM
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Good write up! Please do follow up as time goes on.

I live in Wyoming county but work in NJ during the week. My wife was telling me how crappy it was today


One thing great about getting older. A life in prison sentence is less of a deterrence

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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 04-17-2018, 09:00 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2015
Posts: 49
My apologies. Been a long day. I meant to say that I installed the hoses onto the BOX before putting it up and in, not the PUMP. I did this because it was so tight up there, I didn't want to risk not getting the hoses installed properly on the box.
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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 05-10-2018, 08:52 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2015
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UPDATE: Have driven the car with the original pump for about 60 miles. Not bad but I think the feel of the power assist could be better. I didn't want to pay the $250+ for the pump/bracket/pulley assembly that's sold through various vendors. Tried to get one from a junkyard and just couldn't find anything that would work that wasn't dented, damaged or rusted. The toughest thing is to find out what year and vehicle the new Borgeson (or similar) was designed after. There are many variations of the saginaw that could work. So, after hours of searching RockAuto and elsewhere, here is the solution/combination I came up with. You may find other combinations/parts that work as well. Cost me about $141 all in:

Pump: RockAuto; Used a 1979 Camaro with a 350 engine for the search. Went with a Lares part # 2151. This pump is one of several available for that listing and this pump is also listed for a bunch of other GM vehicles around that year. Went with Lares (vs Cardone and others) just based on reviews. Lares is a US company out of MN. The one main difference in these pumps is that this one has the 2 mounting bolts on the back that you need for the bracket, as opposed to 1. Cost was $30.79 + $15 core which I won't get back because I don't have an old saginaw to send back. Total for me was $55 with shipping.

Bracket: CJ Pony Parts; part # PSPB6. Cost me around $65 free shipping.

Cap: Advance Auto; Dorman cap part # 82581. $3.99

Pulley: Advance Auto; Dorman/Driveworks part # 300-122. $17.39 The pump came with the bolt/nut/washer assembly to install the pulley. I just had to add a larger diameter washer to sit against the pulley head and lube the shaft with a little WD40 and was able to get the pulley fully seated with little effort. The pump shaft diameter is 3/4 inch (.75) and the pulley ID is like .748 or something. Fit on very well. I installed the bracket first and used that to hold the pump assembly in my vise to work the pulley on.

I did not take the studs out of the pump to use the hardware that came with the bracket as the instruction in the bracket state. Figured I wouldn't mess with the studs/o-rings since they were already seated well at the factory. I installed the bracket over the studs and used the outer nuts to hold. I figure if there is a space issue sitting out to far, I can alter the spacers that came with the bracket.

I will be doing the pump swap on Saturday so I'll try to update and get some more photos.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Pump_Front.jpg (6.9 KB, 23 views)
File Type: jpg Pump_Rear_Bracket.jpg (10.4 KB, 26 views)
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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 12-20-2018, 07:48 AM
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Join Date: May 2005
Location: Charlotte NC
Posts: 1,636
Does this box return to center?
What is the pressure and volume requirements of the pump?

1969 coupe
372 Cleveland, 4 speed, 9" T.50 Trac Lock axle, Toploader, Global west suspension, Big Lincoln Trans Am Brakes front, Eldorado caliper/ MK VII disk rear.
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