Project Power Steering: 1976 Ford F250 Highboy Part 1

For some time I have been collecting parts to convert my 1976 Ford F250 4×4 to integral power steering. Over Christmas 2023 I finally decided to take on the project and get it underway.

First of all, why? This truck originally came with the Garrison power assist steering. Though it works, it is starting to have its challenges. Namely, leaking, lose, and generally not awesome.

Parts I had been collecting
– Integral PS gearbox from a 1978/9 Ford F150 4×4
– Plate kit for this conversion. got it from eBay
– Various ball joints and pitman arms

1. Place front end on jack stands and remove front wheels
2. Drain radiator
3. Remove grill and core support
4. Remove all of the Garrison power assist steering stuff. Leaving the PS pump.
5. Determine placement of gearbox and mark areas to notch the frame and front cross member
6. Rough cut frame and cross member
7. Fit plates and trim frame / cross member as needed
8. Weld plates into place
9. Mount PS gearbox
10. Trim inner fender to clear PS gearbox
11. Modify steering shaft. In this case I had other shafts I could shorten and weld to fit
12. Connect pressure and return lines between PS pump and gearbox
13. I removed the PS pump belt and using a drill and a large easy-out, spun the pump when adding fluid while also turning the gearbox lock to lock
14. Check for leaks
15. Reassemble core support and grill

Photos of my conversion project.

Gallery of photos I had collected prior to starting the work. I do not claim ownership of these photos and do not know who the original owners are.

In Part 2 I will go over the pitman arm and building the drag link.