1. Friction clutch mechanism for a steering column of a vehicle comprising:a sleeve positioned around a steering shaft of the steering column, the sleeve having a first end and a second end and a plurality of threads being positioned on the second end;
a lock collar positioned on the sleeve, the lock collar having an outer surface, a plurality of locking teeth positioned on the outer surface;
a friction washer positioned on the sleeve adjacent a second end of the lock collar;
a lock nut positioned on the plurality of threads on the second end of the sleeve, the lock nut disposed to engage a side of the friction washer that is not facing the lock collar, the lock nut engaging the friction washer to place a biasing force against the friction washer, the biasing force causing the friction washer to engage the lock collar with a predetermined force; and
an engagement device for engaging the locking teeth on the lock collar to prevent the lock collar from rotating until the biasing force placed on the lock collar by the friction washer is exceeded, and for disengaging the locking teeth.