What is the secret? - First Generation Forum

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What is the secret?
Saturday, April 12, 2014 1:43 PM
I started on the bird project today

I was able to remove everything up to the wheel bearing and the strut to spindle nuts. So what is the secret to getting the strut to spindle nuts to let go? I have a mini sledge and have been using that. The end of the bolt is 18mm on two sides and oval on the other two. I was hoping I could reuse them but am concerned that I will wreck them if I beat on them to much more.

I was initially thinking if I pulled the wheel bearing that I could avoid separating the spindle. Silly me... I may end up doing lower control arm/ball joint if this keeps going this way. The parts are old - I have never replaced them in 24 years and a freshening seems in order. Maybe driver side this year and passenger side next year.

Any tips?





Re: What is the secret?
Saturday, April 12, 2014 2:15 PM
The nuts are what has to come off. A lot of penetrating oil on the threads and a strong impact or a long breaker bar. Run the nut back on to drive the bolt out or you will destroy the threads. The shoulders on the bolt head are just to hold it tightening. If they are rusty you may have to cut them off. If you take the strut loose you will lose front end alignment. There will be a lot of rust inside. It is easier to pop the ball joint loose at the bottom and pull way out. I put struts on after axles. Should have done it all at once. I bought new bolt kits with adjuster cams to do the Fiero soon.


Re: What is the secret?
Saturday, April 12, 2014 3:49 PM
Oh, and the tie rod end.I am going on my memory that you were putting in an axle shaft assembly.


Re: What is the secret?
Saturday, April 12, 2014 6:22 PM
Homemade penetrating oil.
Use 1/2 ATF and 1/2 acetone. Soak it two to three nights and it should fall off.
If that doesn't work, use a little bernzomatic torch and paraffin wax.
Never had one or the other fail me !




~ Mike ~


Re: What is the secret?
Saturday, April 12, 2014 7:33 PM
You'll need to get something on the heads of those bolts and start turning them to get them to free up.

Turn with one hand and beat with the other - it is an effective combination.


Kano Aerokroil Penetrating Oil is some darn good stuff - but costs about $16 for a can. Goes a long way. Sold at Federated Stores or online

Everyone has their favorite solutions!



.




Re: What is the secret?
Saturday, April 12, 2014 9:15 PM
I like PB Blaster as a penetrant. So, I had a drink and thought about this... Philip reminded me that my Camaro likes the two BFH approach on each side of the lower ball joint. I did it and it let go, The lower ball joint is not leaking but it is really dried up. Gonna shop for a replacement or more likely a loaded control arm. I am in a position now to swap out the axle and replace the leaking seal. I might as well refresh the whole side while I am there...

I am not touching the tie rod end and I am reinstalling the upper nuts as the bolts never came loose. I am thinking I will not need an alignment as the tie rods are the main adjusting points.

So, we did make some progress tonight




Re: What is the secret?
Saturday, April 12, 2014 9:23 PM
Buy one of these and you will never have to work hard again.








On the inside my car looks like a fighter jet.
Re: What is the secret?
Saturday, April 12, 2014 11:26 PM
I will say the things suggest are enough.I know first hand on pulling a full trans and yeap the shafts had to come out,and struts.Removing the tie rods helps,too.I used a breaker bar and I like liquid wrench myself.I however had the time to lube all those parts a day before I yanked the trans out of a donor type ten and went back the next day also with my puller kit and slide hammer if needed.Long day and I too will be probably redoing my entire front end suspension once I get the money to buy everthing before I tackle that.



Re: What is the secret?
Tuesday, April 22, 2014 4:12 AM
Those strut bolts are getting hard to come by. I have a few extras I saved if you destroy one. Once you get them out coat the splined shaft in antisieze. I can tap mine out with a punch now that they are lubricated.



Re: What is the secret?
Wednesday, April 23, 2014 6:16 AM
Good Tip Josh.




Re: What is the secret?
Friday, May 23, 2014 4:31 AM
Control arm on its way - should be making some progress on the long weekend





Re: What is the secret?
Sunday, May 25, 2014 6:46 PM
Driver side axle and lower control arm off.



Seal out and a fresh one installed. Anyone have a tip for getting the new axle to seat properly?




Re: What is the secret?
Sunday, May 25, 2014 6:47 PM
Re: What is the secret?
Sunday, May 25, 2014 10:43 PM
Idk paul when I did my nephews accord I simply applied lots of wheel bearing grease on the shaft into the trans and it went right in.Once installed put hub back on end and ran the axle nut on,and just torqued it to spec.Which was 180ft lbs and then a mild test drive and no problems.I assume you mean how to maybe break in the new axle maybe if not I would just drive it as normal and make sure no binding or leaks from time to time.If it is not seated you will know pretty quick.Just a thought after a longgg day trucking.



Re: What is the secret?
Monday, May 26, 2014 6:01 AM
The easiest way I found to get the axle to seat is like Ron said grease it up. Also make sure that clip on the end of the splines has the opening facing down. It seems to pop in easier that way.



Re: What is the secret?
Monday, May 26, 2014 9:09 AM
Thanks guys.

I have the lca off until the new one arrives and I really wanted to get the axle seated and the hub put back on before then. Running out of holiday weekend garage time. The service manual talks about knocking it in, but this axle does not appear to have any tabs for that. I will pull, grease, and retry and let you know how it goes.




Re: What is the secret?
Monday, May 26, 2014 7:35 PM
Ron and Josh-

I greased the daylights out of it and POP! - in it went. Here is a pic of the progress. I still need my lca to button it up. I also have to work one of the nuts back on a damaged strut bolt (someone went a little crazy with the sledge).

Progress Report

The Sunbird is now rewarding me with a leak at the driver side rear wheel cylinder. I did the passenger side one a few years ago and thought I would be all smart and not do the driver side. Ugh.




Re: What is the secret?
Monday, May 26, 2014 10:12 PM
Glad the install went a ok for the most part.As for the brakes sunny is getting the FULL deal once I slate the time.The short new wheel bearings,new shoes,drums,wheel cylinders,hoses and NEW ebrake cables and the rear end will be Done!Oh forgot new spring kit both sides and also to install my rear sway bar with the new bushings too.I will eventually get this done probably summer my schedule is loco.



Re: What is the secret?
Monday, June 02, 2014 10:10 AM
Bad News - I got my LCA in the mail and it does not fit. The two ends with the busings are different sizes - amazing. Going through return authorization now...




Re: What is the secret?
Monday, June 02, 2014 10:23 AM
Paul94Z28 wrote:

Bad News - I got my LCA in the mail and it does not fit. The two ends with the busings are different sizes - amazing. Going through return authorization now...


Just to let you know first gens 82-86 I believe had 2 different size bushings for the control arms. 87 I believe was the change over year where gm went to the same bushings front and back. Not sure on the cutoff year. I know 88-94 used the same bushings front and rear so maybe your subframe was replaced or swapped.




On the inside my car looks like a fighter jet.
Re: What is the secret?
Monday, June 02, 2014 6:13 PM
Rob-

You are on to something...

I looked at Rock Auto and it looks like the two size bushings started in 85 and carry thru till 94. The Dorman #520-153/4 have the two size bushings. So, it appears 82-84 have the single size bushings. I would ask myself why this would change from 84-85 but I am sure there was a reason. It is thinking time...





Re: What is the secret?
Tuesday, June 03, 2014 11:15 AM
Unbelievable......

Well, there goes my future project idea out the window.

I was planning on taking the 2 LCA's off that 86 parts Sedan- replace the bushings & joints - install in the 86 Wagon- take the ones out of the 86 Wagon- replace the bushings & joints- swap those in the 84 Sunbird.

Now I'm beginning to also wonder what the secret is behind the all-in-one Strut assemblies. They make them for the Chevrolets but not the Pontiacs.

Well at least it is nice to find this out the easy way instead of the hard one!



.



Re: What is the secret?
Tuesday, June 03, 2014 12:04 PM
You can swap the subframe from any year Jbody, 82-94 and use the different control arms. They all bolt on the same. I also think all the control arms are interchangeable but I'm not positive. Also pontiacs and Chevys all use the same struts from 82-94 only difference is the upper strut mount was turned from 92-94 but it's still identical. Only part that changed was the strut bar bolt holes. Same with berettas. They used the Same struts. Honestly if I were you I would use the 86 on up control arms and get prothane bushings or the aluminum bushings sold on beretta.net. Makes a world of difference with 32mm front sway bar, strut bar, and subframe connector.




On the inside my car looks like a fighter jet.
Re: What is the secret?
Saturday, June 07, 2014 6:49 PM
Rob-

Agree with what you have above for 85-94 as opposed to 82-94. 82-84 is where I live and where I am having the problem. I guess I am going to look for a 85+ subframe parts and keep the lca I have. I have all of the mods you mentioned as mine came with the WS6 suspension from the factory - including the subframe connectors and I have a convertible and I added the strut tower brace. It does feel pretty tight now.

I am documenting all of these details that I am running into as I go from project to project. It seems like we should pool our knowledge in some sort of referenceable wiki so we don't have to keep reinventing the wheel.




Re: What is the secret?
Saturday, June 07, 2014 8:24 PM
Paul94Z28 wrote:

Rob-

Agree with what you have above for 85-94 as opposed to 82-94. 82-84 is where I live and where I am having the problem. I guess I am going to look for a 85+ subframe parts and keep the lca I have. I have all of the mods you mentioned as mine came with the WS6 suspension from the factory - including the subframe connectors and I have a convertible and I added the strut tower brace. It does feel pretty tight now.

I am documenting all of these details that I am running into as I go from project to project. It seems like we should pool our knowledge in some sort of referenceable wiki so we don't have to keep reinventing the wheel.


This has a lot of info.

Your text to link here...




On the inside my car looks like a fighter jet.
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