Ford A

Grease in the steering gearbox

When the Model A was first manufactured,
the fill port for the steering gearbox was a
Zerk grease fitting, identical to all others on the car.
However, all owner's manuals and service bulletins issued at the time,
warned emphatically
that only 600W oil should be used as lubrication for the steering gearbox.
Grease is unable to function in the steering gearbox because the worm and sector,
like other gearing (for example, the transmission  and differential)
must be operated in an oil bath at all times,
due to high-pressure action of the mowing parts.
Grease is a non-fluid lubricant and a coating of it is quickly worn off the mating surfaces.
It's also a valueless lubricant in the steeringbox, since the worm action will
"bore a hole" through grease and leave load-bearing parts uncoated.
Ford engineers were aware of this problem
and soon realized that owners and service personnel were ignoring the warnings,
resulting in premature wear in steering boxes.
Their solution was to replace the grease fitting with a pipe plug,
and to issue more warnings.
It's been 60 years and nothing has changed.
Some Model A owners still believe it doesn't matter.
Consequently, it's rare today to find a steering box that's not warn