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Front Suspension Removal  Rating:  Rating
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 Posted: 11-19-2005 06:06 pm
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John Kimbrough
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Am in the middle of replacing all the bushings in the front suspension.  Got everything apart on one side except for the lower suspension arm.  The bolt that attaches it to the crossmember seems rusted in place and I have not been able to remove it.  Am currently soaking it with penetrating oil and banging on it with a hammer.  Tried putting a lot of torque on the bolt, but it has not broken loose, only stretched the bushing.  Anyone have any tips on how to get the dang thing out.  Thanks, John.

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 Posted: 11-19-2005 08:16 pm
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John Kimbrough
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One other thing.  I noticed that the control rod had a slight bend in it.  Have not taken the other side of the suspension apart yet, so can't compare them.  Do they all come this way, or did mine get damaged along the way.  Picture below.  Any thought on whether or not the bend will affect my ability to have it aligned???

Thanks, John.

Attachment: P1010023.JPG (Downloaded 295 times)

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 Posted: 11-20-2005 02:02 am
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Gary Martin JH 15371
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John,

That slight bend on the control rod strut is standard. I thought the same thing when I removed mine earlier this summer. Both of mine were exactly as your picture shows. The slight bend is for tire clearance so I'm told. As for removing your stuck control arm bolt, keep soaking with oil is all I can recomend. It should come out eventually, but the bolt will probably be destroyed and should be replaced.

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 Posted: 11-20-2005 02:02 am
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Art DeKneef
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John,

The bend in the control arm is normal. I thought the same thing while rebuilding the front suspension on the 74. So I looked at the 73 and saw the bend again. Knew it was normal then.

As for getting the bolt off, I don't remember having too many problems taking everything apart. I did have an impact wrench to use that made removing some of the bolts easier.

Art

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 Posted: 11-20-2005 06:47 am
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Mark Rosenbaum
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If you can't get the arm loose fairly easily, use a Sawz-all or equivalent to cut through the bolt (and bushing ends) between each side of the arm and the chassis flange, then prise the arm free.  The center section of the bolt can then be discarded along with the old bushing.

The original bolts are Grade 5.  New hardware should be available from your local hardware store for three or four bucks a pair (Grade 8 hardware is nice but you don't need it).  I strongly suggest replacing the lower inner bolt on both sides of the car.  You can re-use the original nuts, if they seem good, but if you install replacements, make certain they are the same quality as your new bolts.  Do not use cheap Grade 2 hardware as it will fail with possibly lethal results.  Apply a thin layer of anti-sieze compound on all areas of metal-to-metal contact during reassembly so that future rusting will be minimal.

Art and Gary are correct, the castor arm is normally bent.  As long as both arms look to be about the same, there should be no alignment issues.

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 Posted: 11-20-2005 11:40 am
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John Kimbrough
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Thanks for all the great help and advice, as usual.  I will keep working on it.  John.

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 Posted: 11-20-2005 04:02 pm
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Jensen Healey
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Get some Kano Kroil penetrating oil. It's available online at http://www.kanolabs.com/

When I stripped my spare front suspension some bolts needed three applications and a sharp smack with a hammer but all finally succumbed to the Kroil.

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 Posted: 11-26-2005 12:26 pm
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John Kimbrough
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Another front suspension rebuild question.  Instructions and guidance indicates that torquing of the shock lower fixing bolt should be done after the shock and mounting bracket assembly is fixed to the lower suspension arm.  This seems impossible because the lower suspension arm encloses the bolt ends and there is no room to get a socket and torque wrench on it.  Did others who have rebuilt torque the shock lower fixing bolt before installing the shock/bracket assembly, or is there something I am missing?

By the way, the recalcitrant lower suspension arm bolt I mentioned in an earlier post still will not come out even with repeated applications of penetrating oil, hammering, and impact wrenching.  I was told that using a hydraulic spreader might work, but, following advice from the board, I have arranged to borrow a Sawzall from a friend. 

  Thanks, John.

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 Posted: 11-26-2005 02:48 pm
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Mark Rosenbaum
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John,
The obvious ways of doing the job are to torque the shock bolt before securing the bracket to the lower arm, or, once the bracket is in place, to either use a short 3/8" drive socket at the bolt head, or a crow's-foot wrench.  As I don't own any crow's-foot wrenches, I must have used one of the other methods.  Unfortunately, memory fails me as to which one it was.  (I do recall having checked the torque on every bolt in my car's front suspension at least three times, so presumably did not forget these.)

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 Posted: 11-26-2005 06:27 pm
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John Kimbrough
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Thanks, Mark.  Since I can't get a socket on the bolt or the nut, I will assume it needs to be torqued and installed as an assembly.  John.

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 Posted: 01-08-2006 07:53 pm
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John Kimbrough
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Finally finished the front suspension rebuild on my JH.  When the weather warms, I will need to have the front end aligned, but then it will be ready to go.  Thanks to many of you for your great support and advice.  Not sure I would have tackled the job without your encouragement. 

For those of you needing to rebuild, but not sure of your ability, as I was, I have provided a pretty detailed description, spreadsheet and about 60 pictures on my web site below.  Worked for me!

Any comments, upgrades appreciated, as always.  John.

http://home.comcast.net/~jrkengr2/html/front_supension_rebuild.html

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 Posted: 01-09-2006 04:10 am
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Mark Rosenbaum
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John,
Very nice photo essay.  Your approach was somewhat different than the one I took but obviously yours has worked for you.  And your shop looks to be well set up with lots of neat equipment and a lot of room.

A couple of minor points: some of the pictures had black text over a dark background, which I found rather difficult to read, and while the Torque Sheet page is present, the drawing is not.

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 Posted: 05-22-2006 12:02 pm
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John Kimbrough
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Thanks to excellent support and advice from many of you, 15375 is off the winter jack stands and back on the road.  What a difference new SuperPro bushings make.  All the rattles, squeeks and shakes that I thought were just part of aging (believe me I know about aging), are gone.  The front end is tight and quiet again.  Next I have to have the front end aligned. 

Now the question.  How in the heck has anyone been able to torque the rear nut on the right side control rod.  the end of it is so close to the engine that it is difficult getting a socket on it, much less a socket and a torque wrench.  Looks like I would have to unbolt and lift the engine to really get it torqued.  Did all you rebuilders out there just eyeball torque it with a large wrench, or am I missing something.  Perhaps the threaded end of the control rod on my JH comes through the frame further than yours.  Should I consider cutting the end of the control rod off so I can get a torque wrench on it??? 

More advice???  Thanks, John.

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 Posted: 05-22-2006 01:31 pm
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jcdean
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Try using a Crows Foot.  This will effictively lenghthen the arm of your lever and torque adjustments will have to be made, but there is a table for it and I'm looking for it as soon as I am done here and will attach it.

 

Joey


OK, no table.  Just a formula.

Tw = (Te x A) / B

A = Lever length of wrench

B = Lever length of wrench plus extension

Te = Required torque on bolt

Tw = Torque reading on wrench dial

You can do the math or bypass it entirely by simply placing the crows foot on at a 90^ angle.  This will add 0 effective lenth to the arm of the wrench and you can simply read directly off the dial.

 

Attached is the first picture of a Crows Foot set I found for explanation purposes.

http://www.justoffbase.co.uk/s.nl;jsessionid=ac112b6c1f43a2d870ff16cc45ac834d964401cf7b71.e3eTaxiMa38Te34OaN8LbhuPch50n6jAmljGr5XDqQLvpAe?sc=9&category=631&it=A&id=5221

Last edited on 05-22-2006 02:04 pm by jcdean

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 Posted: 05-22-2006 05:07 pm
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John Kimbrough
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Thanks, Joey, sounds like the proper solution.  Will look for a local set of crows feet.  John.

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