91 Dodge Caravan ignition switch replacement

...the ignition lock on my van has disintegrated. Basically, the sleeve
that goes into the barrel came out with the key, and a lot of pins and springs fell out too. It had been loose for a while (and causing some
electrical trouble too, I think) but now it's history. I've looked thru
the FAQs and still am in the dark. The van is a LONG tow from a garage (rural Quebec). SOOO - I briefly (once) was able to get the assembly to turn with a
flat-headed screwdriver but no longer. I can see a vaguely D-shaped hole at the bottom (where I stuck the screwdriver) but there is a (now-rounded) stub of metal in it that keeps me from getting a grip. My
questions, then: 1) any way to get the stub out? The van's a beater and I would be happy
to just use a screwdriver in future. 2) it looks like to disassemble the switch and lock, I must remove the shroud from the steering column, and to do THAT it looks like I must remove the steering wheel. Anybody know a diagram or instructions for doing this on the web? Thanks for any help - Ъ My email eddress is snipped-for-privacy@3web.net - remove shorts to get the
REAL address.
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On 25 Oct 2005 08:26:27 -0700, snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com wrote:

You can buy a new cylinder. The cover must come off because there is a button you need to press while the key is in to remove it. Instructions come with the cylinder.
beekeep
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Well...sounds a bit different than what I had happen, but hopefully what I can tell you may be of some help.
When mine went belly up - I turned the ignition and it would turn on, but instead of hitting the spring resistance and cranking the engine it just swiveled to a stop without cranking.
There are 2 parts - the lock cylinder (the round part the key slides into) and the ignition switch - the lock cylinder engages the ignition switch to make the car start, etc. I will email you off-list directly some scanned images of the directions that came with my new ignition switch - that will probably help you greatly. You'll need to remove the shroud around the steering column, then you'll need some of those security type torx bits - the ones with the hole in the middle. Mine died at work, and the bits I actually had gotten a while back and were sitting in a pile in the basement waiting to get to the toolbox in the van...so I had to have my wife bring them to me! Good ole Murphy at work! :-) Anyway, the directions step you through the proper procedure to remove the ignition switch (with lock cylinder intact) then how to remove the lock cylinder, then the correct re-assembly steps to make sure everything works - part of the system is to engage the steering column lock - be a little hard to drive if you can't turn the wheel! It's kinda tedious, but not too difficult. My problem was the collar at the end of the lock cylinder had broken off, so it couldn't engage the ignition switch far enough. If the ignition switch is ok and the lock cylinder out of the way, it's possible you might be able to use a screwdriver or something to turn the ignition switch. That's how someone almost stole my wife's Plymouth Acclaim a few years ago... Anyway...mine is now working properly again, just have another key on my keychain... :-( The local Dodge dealership could get one in and key it to mine, but that was more $$ that it was worth...
Good luck!
Wesley
- remove shorts to get the
REAL address.
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Thank you both, Wesley and Beekeep - this is useful stuff, particularly the instructions you mailed me, Wesley. It was really good of you to take the time and make the effort. Now I just gotta go out and shovel 25cm of fresh wet snow off the thing. In October, yet! Ъ
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