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We ship once a week or more depending on the workload in our custom car fabrication workshop. We are a small operation building cars as well as selling parts. Car builds take priority, we usually ship mid week and end of week.
Rack and Pinion Steering conversions - Custom one off steering racks converted
Steering racks shortened or widened to suit custom applications. Pivot points altered to suit your suspension geometry. Rack only or complete custom installations. Racks altered ~ Priced from.
Product Description
So you can't find an aftermarket rack conversion for your favourite custom car, then it will have to be a custom one off conversion.  Kustom Bitz is quite familiar altering both manual and power steering racks to get the pivot points working correctly with your existing front suspension geometry. Rear mount or front mount racks, it all can be done.  Kustom Bitz can alter the rack only to suit your measurements, or we can take on the complete conversion and fit it to the car including steering linkages, unis and steering column mods.

Typically we use local Ford or Holden racks and components, but we do work on Flaming River racks also.  There are quite a few variations in rack ends and rack lengths and you can only shorten them so far before you run out of enough lock to lock travel. A lot may be dependant on the availability of an appropriate tie rod with the correct taper to connect to your stub axle, or we may need to ream the taper out a bit if there is enough material left in the steering arm.  It's not always a straight forward solution, and in some instances not possible with out moving the engine higher to get clearance for the rack. So if you want a well thought out steering conversion then Kustom Bitz should be high on your list of people to talk to.

Should a rack conversion not be suitable we can do conventional steering box conversions too.

Kustom Bitz can also alter your steering column to keep the inside of your car looking fairly stock, even using the old manual column gear change as your automatic transmission gear selector.  Some example pics are shown here.

All custom rack conversions is done at an hourly rate. Price above is indicative for typical rack modifications if your requirements is fairly straight forward.  A complete evaluation, design and install, with custom made mounts, custom made adaptors, etc. and a brand new rack can be 2 to 5 times this amount depending on the work involved.

Individual conversions can can be provided with an independant engineers report at extra cost, and at the engineers standard rates.  Please note that the engineer will then assess the vehicle as a whole and is unlikely to issue an engineers report for just the steering if the rest of the car is non compliant to current modified vehicle rules.

Please read the following before you phone me

Frequently Asked Questions
Q.   I am just ringing to bleed your brains .... blah blah blah ...
A.   Please don't I am under the pump most days and have proper work to do. Get organised with useful facts and info, read the rest of the qestions and answers here, then ring me.

Q.   What rack should I use on my "xxxx" OR What rack would you use on my "xxxx".
A.   I Don't know we would have to asess it first to see whats suitable. In some cases nothing may be suitable for technical reasons.

Q. Do you have a kit to suit my "xxxx".
A. We do not do kits, we do properly evaluated conversions and installation.

Q. Can you install a steering rack conversion I have purchased from elsewhere?
A.  Yes no problem, glad to help.

Q. Tell me what rack I should use on my "xxxx"
A.   No.

Q.   Can you custom make me a rack.
A.   Generally we modify comonly available OEM or after market steering racks.  However we now can custom make a rack to pivot widths as narrow as 530mm in a power steering rack and down to 430mm or there abouts in the pivot points in a manual steering rack. I prefer to measure, supply and fit these racks so that they are right. Yes they are expensive and no you cannot return them, ever. Priced on application.

Q. Can you shorten a steering rack to suit a "xxxx"
A.   Probably not, it is difficult to shorten most late model racks becasue they have no meat where you need it. Also as you shorten them you run out of lock to lock travel which leads to a poor turning circle.  It would need a proper evaluation, there are other ways to achive narrow inner tie rod pivot points and that may be suitable.

Q.   I need more lock to lock travel, I have an after market IFS fitted to my car OR I have a steering rack conversion kit fitted to my car and it has a terrible turning circle and or bump steer.
A.   There is a technical trade off with some conversions and in most cases it will be turning circle and in really poor designs it will be bump steer.  I can't solve it over the phone I would have to look at it.

Q.   I have a lot of bump steer can you fix it.
A.   Yes, but not over the phone I would have to look at it.

Q. What does an evaluation cost.
A.   If you rock up to our door with the car, a quick look to see your problem costs nothing.  If we have to start pulling a rack apart to do a quick evaluation while you wait then we charge you for 1hr at our standard hourly rates. If we have to spend time sourcing a suitable solution there is a 3hr minimum charge. Or moving straight onto a proper evaluation to asess bump steer, what may be a suitable solution, work out pivot points etc. and source suitable parts will run into a few hours work at our standard hourly rates before we even get to the conversion phase.

Q. I am interstate and I can not get the car to you I just need you to make me a rack to my measurements.
A. Sorry can't help you.  The correct question is "I am interstate and I have found a rack that will work, the mounting is right, I have mounted it and the steering link is in the right spot with plenty of clearance and I have nutted out how to connect up the tie rod ends and the steering link. So I need to push the pivot points out a bit and I have an accurate measurment, and I might need adaptors made for the tie rod ends and I have done an accurate well thought out drawing with all critical dimensions" , ok then now I should be able to help you. It may well be that if you are that well thought out, a custom new rack, made to suit might be an alternative option too. 
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8:71 Supercharger install on 454ci powered '55 Chevy

by kustombitz on 30 May 2022
You would think a supercharger kit install would be pretty simple .... well no, is the short answer. A wise man once told me a 'kit' is not a solution.  And having worked on a few of these set ups now these words keep ringing in my head and I remember this old man who at the time I didn't think was that wise at all .... now I am older and I see.   In this install I had to port match the heads to the intake as there was a substantial lip into the head port because of the large intake manifold ports. If not corrected would have led to fuel puddling and fouled plugs and drivability problems that would have been hard to diagnose once assembled.  Also the distributor hole at the back of the manifold was off centre and way too big for a standard chevy dizzy and any aftermarket dizzy too. So I had to make a boss to take up the slack and provide a stable boss for the dizzy clamp to work properly.   To add to the woes, the engine assembler failed to pick up that it was a tall deck block and required a longer oil pump drive shaft .... that was hard to diagnose when a new engine loses oil pressure for no reason.   I got there in the end with modded accelerator links, better fuel line route, boost referenced carburettors and a proper harmonic balancer for a blower application.  The install was challenging on this one but the end result was a sweet running engine with monster amounts of torque to hall this heavy full size sedan around the hills .... and cool looks of course.  

41 Willys Coupe Gasser Chassis

by kustombitz on 30 May 2022
41 Willy Coupe chassis fabricated to original dimensions yet extra strength provided in the depth of the chassis and via tubular centre X member and many tubular cross members to take the weight and torque of a big block Ford drive line.  This chassis will have an original steel body fitted to it and the owner wants the whole car to resemble an early 60s drag car, right down to the rear radius rods that look like ladder bars, however it has to have nice street manners and pass ASRF construction guidelines for safe street rod engineering.  Now many may argue a leaf sprung front end and rear end is not the best handling street car and I would agree, but there are always trade offs for the look you want and the right combination of parts installed with the correct geometry can still yield a very nice driver with a really cool look.  When driven responsibly this 41 Willys will provide hours of enjoyment for the owner cruising around.   Chassis by Kustom Bitz [our custom designed rails], Engine Ford Hemi V8, T400 auto, 9" diff installed on leaf springs with diff housing floaters designed by Kustom Bitz for street use [so we have flexibility and suspension give], Super Bell front I beam with disc brakes cleverly mounted to parallel leaf springs without any mods to I beam and not relying on welded parts.   See our section on Hot Rod Chassis construction for more images of our various Willys Coupe chassis that Kustom Bitz has built.  

'67 Toyota Crown Ute - another air ride bagged project

by kustombitz on 01 Apr 2021
The Toyota Crown ute is progressing along, the body is fitting the modified original chassis and this is how it will look when it's dropped ... I think it has the right stance ... The framing you can see is holding the upper body together as the floor and lower sections are rusted away and have been cut out, then to be completely refabbed by us.  The frame allows us to lift the body on and off as we please during this stage.

1940 Ford Coupe chassis BBC 454 L80E 9" and air ride

by kustombitz on 01 Apr 2021
Kustom Bitz just completed a 35-41 chassis, stepped up at the rear and a reversed centre X member allow this chassis to sit 40mm off the deck. It runs a Rod Tech IFS, big block chevy and L80E auto, a 9 inch diff with floating hubs, all on modified original rails. Kustom Bitz has developed our own boxing plates that suit the original rails near on perfectly. Original Ford rails are curved from front to back there are no straight sections, so to get something that fits right we had to jig the chassis up and map them out.  This is what we do, when it just needs to be done right to make it a well engineered car.  This allowed us to make a nice transistion for a high step at the rear. We have designed in 6 inches of travel at the back, so this car can have a normal, almost stock ride height then dumped to the max when parked.

LS Engine swap and custom air bag IFS

by kustombitz on 19 Feb 2020
'67 Toyota Crown ute chassis build is going well. Got the LS engine and 6 speed manual box in place and we can use all the orginal serpentine pulleys, brackets etc. The narrow wheel track on the Toyota called for a tailored solution when it came to the front end.  These old Toyotas dont have service parts available any more so the front end had to be changed, so that made a brake upgrade alot easier too. We run R6 air bags from Air Ride sitting at a ride height of 6" for the air bag so got plenty of air volume in them for a good ride quality and a full length travel shock absorber so we get proper rebound tuning, along with a power steering rack.  So at the sill [belly of the car] we get a 5" ride hieght with a 4 inch drop, this thing will look great.

Double shear brackets - rear coil overs Hot Rod Chassis

by kustombitz on 30 May 2019
Recently in Victoria some engineers have called for the upper and lower mounts for the rear coil over shockers to be a double shear bracket.  The thoery is that the bolt has too much twisting force on it and it will break. Well thats why on Hot Rods we use a 5/8" grade 8 bolt in a single shear bracket application to over engineer it so it does not break. A typical OEM application uses a 1/2" bolt in a double shear bracket. However to please the engineer we have thought out a simple plate kit that can be welded in on the upper mounts as you see here to satisfy their requirements and should fit into most applications without too much effort or rework.  We have a lower mount bracket nutted out as well.

Diff bump stops custom made

by kustombitz on 08 Mar 2019
So many hot rod shops don't install proper bump stops.  In this instance we had to rebuild the shocker mounts on the diff as the rear end was bottoming out on the shocker travel becasue it had no properly designed bump stops in place. So the shock absorber mounting bracket was absorbing every bump when the suspension bottomed out, easy to see why both mounts broke. While we were repairing the diff I made a simple yet effective progressive bump stop that is held in place via the U bolts that hold the diff to the leaf springs. It turned out a very successful set up. This is yet another example how Kustom Bitz can sort out problems on your custom car or hot rod, its what we do.

Torana A9X custom made rear pan hard bar 9" Diff

by kustombitz on 08 Mar 2019
Back in the day Group C racing one of the tricks to get the Holden Torana to handle nice and be more predictable in corners was to fit a rear pan hard bar to give much better diff locating than the OEM triangulated 4 bars offered.  However the body, subframe and floor pan at the rear is no where near strong enoungh to concentrate the loads of pan hard bar in any one spot, so it has to be carefully planned and constructed, especially so in a street car like this that we cannot put a full roll cage in. You see in a race car I can place the roll cage in a position to pick up such loads placed on the pan hard bar brackets, but in this situaton we couldn't. The picture above is with the unit installed, keep in mind the car was just a shell so no weight was in it and the rear is sitting high. Once the full wieght of the car is on, it will sit fairly level.  It retains the original triangulated 4 bars however we run PU bushes in the bottom arms and ordinary rubber in the top arms. So the lower arms and pan hard bar do the locating and the top arms have some give so they don't bind with the pan hard bar.

Hot Rod 38 Plymouth custom panel fabrication

by kustombitz on 04 Dec 2018
We have put a lot of time and effort into this 38 Plymouth.  The whole rear lower panel and floor right through to under the seat has been completely hand fabricated and replaced.  The front and rear mud guards have been widened and the shape reworked for cleaner lines, the guard edge now follows the wheel's shape and shall feature a straight edge running clean up those ugly Plymouth bits but still retain some typically Plymouth features like the swage lines. We have basically just fattened it up and made it more curvey.

Our first wheels up Launch in Vintage Gas drag racing

by kustombitz on 27 Aug 2018
First pass for the day in Q1 in Vintage Gas [V/Gas] and we did our first wheels up launch in "Angas" and later in the day ran our best time so far with this combo with an 8.80s for the 1/8th mile track with an ET of 79mph.  The venue was Sunset Dragway which is just outside Mildura in country VIC. It was a 20deg sunny spring day with little wind, an all but perfect day for this time of year.  Great facilities at this venue for grass roots racers like us and they really looked after all of us racers, so its well worth the trip we had a blast. As far as our little 105e Anglia Gasser goes there is still heaps in it yet when a few tech issues get sorted out, but totally stoked at the moment. woo whooo .....

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