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Fitting rear Superpro bushes  Rating:  Rating
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 Posted: 09-21-2013 11:56 am
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Jim Picot
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Having sandblasted, weld-repaired and painted the rear suspensions upper and lower trailing arms, time came this weekend to fit the new Superpro polyurethane suspension bushes to the six pivot points.

But how? The new bushes differ from the old rubber bushes in having a lip or flange on each end (like a cotton reel), presumably to keep the bush in place once it's installed. But there is no way the bush can be compressed sufficiently to fit into the housing in the first place. The original rubber bushes don't have this lip, so would slide straight in.

I've read one report where the owner ended up cutting the metal housing out of the arms, but this doesn't seem right - I've no desire to risk destroying these hard to obtain parts, especially now they've been cleaned, repaired and painted.

So, any ideas? How have members done this in the past? I've emailed Superpro but haven't had an answer yet (only yesterday though), I'l call them next week. But meanwhile, if anyone has some ideas or comments, I'd greatly appreciate them!

Jim, Melbourne
JH 18024

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 Posted: 09-21-2013 01:29 pm
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subwoofer
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First of all, the outer shell of the old bushing must be removed, but I guess you already did that.

What I did to install them was to lightly grease the outer surface with the supplied grease, then place the parts in a vise. Apply some pressure and get one side of the flange into the hole, then I just kept turning till it popped in. But I remember being nervous the first time.

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Joachim.

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 Posted: 09-21-2013 02:16 pm
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Jensen Healey
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Make sure the bolts slide easily through the crush tubes. I had to drill for clearance on the Delta Motorsports poly bushings.

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 Posted: 09-21-2013 02:24 pm
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subwoofer
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And on the subject of crush tubes. They must be inserted AFTER the cotton reel is in place.

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Joachim

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 Posted: 09-21-2013 07:06 pm
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Brett Gibson JH5 20497
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Sounds like you didnt remove the metal outer ring of the old bushings.

Brett

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 Posted: 09-21-2013 10:11 pm
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Jim Picot
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Hi Brett,

No I didn't - just the old rubber bush. Replacement rubber bushes don't have an outer shell either.

So you are supposed to remove the outer shell as well? How do you do this? Do you replace it? What with?

Jim

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 Posted: 09-21-2013 10:50 pm
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subwoofer
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No replacement, the cotton reel shape keeps it in place.

There are really two ways to get the shells out; hydraulic press or hacksaw. Choose whatever you are more comfortable with, it is quite possible to destroy the arms regardless of approach.

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Joachim

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 Posted: 09-21-2013 11:16 pm
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Jim Picot
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OK....I thought they were an integral part of the arm assembly - mine are very well fixed into the housing and I assumed were welded in. So they are only a press fit?

I can use either method (I have a 2OT hydraulic press) , I guess I'll try both and see which works best. Any tips?

Should you paint the housings once the shells are removed, or leave them as bare metal?

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 Posted: 09-22-2013 02:53 am
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Dakota123
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Press fit plus corrosion, may as well be welded.  20T press may work.  I cut them in 4 or six places and beat them silly with a cold chisel and/or bronze punch as appropriate.  Still a tough row to hoe. Paint is probably of limited value bit I can't imagine it would hurt.  Make sure the bushings are lubed well and don't tighten the bolts until you have weight on the suspension.  Otherwise the bushings will stick, twist and give a preload.

Last edited on 09-22-2013 02:54 am by Dakota123

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 Posted: 09-22-2013 04:35 am
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Jensen Healey
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Extra lube is easily obtained so don't skimp. The squeaking of poly bushings is REALLY annoying.
I used silicone grease from Ace Hardware on my daughter's Volvo bushings. The thicker stuff can be found at
http://www.Summitracing.com

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 Posted: 09-22-2013 12:59 pm
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Jim Picot
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Thinking about it, I don't know if the press is the best way to go - the surrounding pressed metal is very flimsy and easily bent, and I'd need something the precise dimension of the housing to push it out - without damaging the rest of the arm.

I think I'll try the hacksaw first, and get lots of penetrating oil inside. Unfortunately the POR-15 will make it hard to get the oil in from the outside of the housing, but if I cut some narrow strips out, I can get it in that way. Looks like it will take a week or two longer than planned.

FYI while I had the suspension arms out, I decided to sandblast and paint the rear axle (more POR-15), and renew all the rear brake components. Not easily done - 9" Lockheeds are now obsolete, and none of your main specialists (Robey, Appleyard & Delta) carry the parts. But I managed to scrape them together from various sources. The hardest bits to find were the three springs per side - until I found that Triumph Stags (and TR7s too, I think) use 9" Lockheed drums. The two main springs are identical, the cross-lever spring is the same length, but with an extra two turns so I expect the handbrake to be slightly stiffer to operate.  So the brakes are all-new, apart from the shoes themselves which were virtually new already. So everything looks a treat, and will match the new arms, springs and dampers.

Thanks for you help guys, I'll let you know how it all gets on.

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 Posted: 09-22-2013 02:38 pm
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Brett Gibson JH5 20497
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Jim, your right the best way to remove the outer shell is to jacksaw thru the shell in at least one or two places then tap them loose, if you have a wire brush on a drill clean the rust up lube them up and your home free. The press is nice but to much potential for damage.

Brett

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 Posted: 09-27-2013 08:36 pm
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roland11a
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Removing the outer bush sleeve is easy i've done loads on different cars. Take the blade out of a hacksaw and pass it through the bush. I always burn the old rubber out with a blow lamp. Put the blade back so the frame of the hacksaw is on the outside. Carefully cut two slots in the bush 1/4" apart taking care not to cut into the metal of the arm. then with a thin cold chisel take out the thin strip. This will allow the bush to collapse and it will easily knock out. a few shallow cuts into the arm won't do any harm. Hope this helps

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 Posted: 09-28-2013 07:26 am
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Jim Picot
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Actually the bushes came out quite easily after cutting with the hacksaw - none were corroded in. I was a bit zealous on the first one and cut into the steel pressing beneath (all  the way through at one end!), but some artful strokes of the MIG followed by a file fixed that quickly enough.

However...after removing the bushes at the axle end of the lower arms, I encountered another problem. Corrosion has severely attacked the pressing beneath. One is possibly salvageable, the hole is about the size of a 5 cent piece and the metal surrounding it is rather thin. But the other is missing nearly 50% of the metal, and the remainder is mostly very thin. Some artful surgery with the MIG might work, but it will mean cutting away the top of the arm for access to the back, and re-welding it with a backing piece (I can use the old bushing!) - but it would be a difficult job.

I think it would be better if I can find some new lower arms...does anyone have any ideas, or better yet, some good arms?? I assume these aren't available new, are they readily available second hand?

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 Posted: 09-29-2013 03:11 am
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Art DeKneef
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They should be available second hand. I'm not sure about availability over there though. Delta might have some. I think the problem would be shipping and time to ship.

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 Posted: 10-05-2013 02:34 am
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Jim Picot
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After putting up a separate post to try to find some new arms on Saturday night (Australian time), I had no less then 4 offers by Sunday morning! I decided to buy a pair from Tony Marshall in the UK, as courier shipping is a bit cheaper from there. They were shipped by FedEx on Monday and arrived on Thursday morning! They were complete (including original rubber bushes) and in excellent condition. Straight, no rust apart from very light surface corrosion, in far better condition than my old ones. Friday afternoon, and I had the old bushes and the housings out and ready for the sandblaster.

The whole process took about an hour for all 4 bushes. Having practised on my old arms, I had the technique worked out. Drill out the rubber bushes (as many holes as possible with as large a drill as will fit), then use a jigsaw to separate the rubber attached to the centre crush tube from the surrounding rubber. Use a driver (a piece of 20 mm round bar) to knock out the crush tube. The rubber on the outside generally just came free from the metal, but there some places where it was stuck fast.

Using roland11a's suggestion, two cuts with a hacksaw, although I saw no need to burn out the remaining rubber. They were also a little wider apart at about 11-12 mm, as my smallest cold chisel is 10 mm. I also didn't go all the way through, as when you start to drive the strip out with the chisel, it peels back and tears the remaining metal away. So no need to risk cutting into the pressing beneath. Once the strip is removed, all tension has gone from the bush and a couple of light blows with the chisel knocked the housing out completely.

Off to the sandblaster on Monday, and hopefully I can paint them on the weekend. Then it's back on track, install the new Superpro bushes and I can start to re-assemble the rear suspension and get the car back on its wheels! That will be nice after way too many months on jackstands.

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 Posted: 11-25-2014 03:27 am
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Eric
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Tackling rear springs and bushings this weekend. If I'm interpreting this correctly, the original bushings have a metal covering, which itself lies within the metal cylindrical case welded to the control arms..like rings of an onion? So if Im understanding correctly (a big if), one needs to remove that INNER metal covering of the original bush. Then the replacement bush is placed into the metal housing that is integral to the control arms. Ive got to take a closer look at my car, but my initial impression is that im looking at rubber on my control arms with no metal casing whatsoever.

Eric

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 Posted: 11-25-2014 02:04 pm
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Brett Gibson JH5 20497
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Eric, your correct the original bushings came with an outer metal ring that the "rubber" bushing was molded to and the whole thing was pressed into the suspension arms. the replacement bushings dont have this outer ring and it needs to be removed when the old bushing is removed, the best way in my opinion is to gently cut the ring with a hack saw and it will just pop out, trying to press it out if not properly supported could distort the arm.

Brett

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 Posted: 11-25-2014 06:35 pm
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Eric
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Thanks Brett. Is it the same process for the upper control arms? One of the bushings on the upper arm looks to be of a different type.
Thanks again!
Eric

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 Posted: 11-26-2014 01:52 pm
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Brett Gibson JH5 20497
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yes the uppers are just a smaller version.

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