New steering wheel rubs when turning - spacers? (1 Viewer)

Dec 30, 2020
Tampa, FL
I recently bought a Lexus-style wood replacement steering wheel for my ‘01 LC from the ebay seller in Taiwan. The wheel is awesome except for one thing. Something about the angle of the way it mounts is ever so slightly different than stock, and the back plastic trim doesn’t quite snug up to the wheel the way it does with OEM. So when you turn the wheel the plastic trim rubs up against the trim on the column.



I’ve corresponded with another eBay buyer of the same wheel who had the same issue and went about solving it by trimming the plastic. He confirmed for me that all he accomplished was hacking up good trim. It still rubs for him. So I’m not even thinking along that route.

I’m thinking of using a washer or two as spacers between the wheel and the column in order to bump it out a bit. I’m not looking to get any real height going. Just enough space to stop the rub. I’m hoping one of these does the job, but I got four just in case I need to start stacking them.


Use them a la how they’re stacked on the old wheel:


Anyone see any harm in doing this? It’s a simple enough concept to figure it’ll stop the rubbing, but I’m not sure if I could potentially be causing a problem that’s a whole lot worse? I figure 37 foot pounds of torque is going to hold the spacers good and tight. But I revert to the experts here!
Sep 2, 2010
Sarasota, Florida
I wouldn't use a spacer. As i understand it, the splines are tapered so you need to have it go to full depth in order to tighten properly.
On both aftermarket sreering wheels i have installed i had to trim the rubber on the steering wheel for the air bag and rear plastic trim to fit properly. The second one still had an issue with the trim rubbing just like yours. I solved it by shoving a wood framing shim in the crack at the bottom of the plastic trim to keep them separated while i globbed some hot glue on the tabs and steering wheel where they hold the trim in place. It worked very well. Believe it or not, hot glue sticks VERY well to the trim plastic. After the hot glue cools remove the shims and no more rubbimg.
Hope all that makes sense.....

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