First: those special bolts? I now call them Satan Bolts because they are obviously the result of some nefarious entity not of this Earth. Or Ford Motor Company's engineering department. (To-MAY-to, to-MAH-to.)
Being unable to locate Satan Bolts anywhere in a reasonable area--even using the Internet--I substituted hex cap bolts. They work just fine, fit without modification, and cost $0.69 each at the local Ace Hardware. Best of all, they are (gasp!) reusable. If I ever figure out how to remove the lock cylinder from the assembly, I won't have to buy more bolts to make the switch.
I put the column in, and turned the key, and the car started. I let it run and did my victory dance, which probably made some observers wonder if I was having some kind of seizure. I then got back into the car, turned the key the other way, and the engine stopped.
Not only that, but I was able to step on the clutch pedal without the brake light turning on. And the alternator light stayed off. And the car wouldn't crank unless I was stepping on the clutch pedal. Good, good, and good.
The car still lacks a steering wheel. I have other work that must be done before I take the title over to the currency exchange and sort out the paperwork. BUT...
...it is a big step forward.
And that is why I'm worried. I now live in fear of what will happen to frustrate my efforts. It seems too easy. ("Too easy" he says, even though it took eight hours to build a functional steering column out of two non-functional ones.)
Well, I'll just enjoy the little successes as they come along; and deal with the failures the same way. It's really all you can do, sometimes.