This may be regarded as a silly question, but it does not hurt to ask.
With all of the modifications available for a Healey, I have resisted them all
because I like to make the original parts work, where possible. -Unless they
represent a safety issue, or severely limit the usability of the car.
Having said that, I don't know when it happened, but I have become aware of
the risk represented by the construction and mounting of the steering column.
It may be that as you get older, you become aware of your own mortality, or it
may have been during the reinstallation of the steering column during
restoration.. (Installing the column, while the engine is out, gives you a
clear view of the fact that you have a 6 foot long solid steel pipe aimed at
your sternum, while driving.)
This appears to be a "clear and present danger", and the thought occurs to me
often enough when climbing into the car to make me ask the following:
Is there any evidence of this being a serious risk factor in head on
Beyond a lap and shoulder belt, is there a better means to be restrained from
colliding with the column?
Has anyone ever modified a column to make it more "impact friendly"?
-And yeah, yeah, I know, the best preventative action is to not HIT anything!!
-But that doesn't keep someone from hitting YOU.
I don't race the car, but Boston / R.I. is notorious for it's high speed stop
and go traffic. (Fact is, I had my life saved by my Saab 9000 CD turbo ten
years ago in a five car pileup on Rt 128. It had many impact absorbing
features that were all used to the utmost during the incident). It gives me
pause to think, when I have to stab the brakes while driving the Healey.
David W. Jones
'62 Mk II BT7 tricarb
Cumberland, RI USA
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