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cgsheen1

Spindle Pin (rant)

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Why...

BRAND NEW spindle pin from all appearances - can't get it out. Whomever installed this (these - other side was "replaced" as well):

A. OVERTIGHTENED the lock bolt

B. A little lubricant would have been nice or maybe some ANTI-SEIZE...

Now I'm going to have to saw these once perfectly good spindle pins and press the centers out... I can guarantee you that these pins will be mushroomed in the middle because the installer didn't position the pin properly and OVERTIGHTENED the lock pin! PLEASE stop doing that!!

I understand that not everyone knows the value of anti-seize but given the level of frustration the spindle pins usually deliver, it should be used whenever you're replacing them. The center section of the hub should also be checked and cleaned thoroughly before re-installing the spindle pin. If not anti-seize, a good coat of lithium grease should be applied and you should always be able to both move and rotate the pin after it's in place. Try to get the notch in the pin aligned correctly before installing the lock pin. Don't just use the lock pin to bully the spindle pin into position. The spindle pin is relatively soft metal and it's easier than you think to deform it in the notch area. If you overtighten the lock pin it will mushroom the spindle pin on one or both sides of the notch and even with anti-seize, you'll have trouble removing it.  There is NO reason to tighten the lock pin like most people seem to do. (For me, this is like the 99% overtightened fill and drain plugs on transmissions!). 

If you've aligned the spindle pin correctly you can push the lock pin in with your finger and just SNUG the nut on the bottom. THEN follow the FSM instructions and torque specs for the spindle pin nuts. DON'T torque the hell out of one side - especially without snugging up the nut on the other! If you do, you'll drag the spindle pin back tight to the lock pin and... MUSHROOM the spindle! Evenly cinch up the two opposing nuts on the spindle until you get them into proper torque range and finish up with your torque wrench (NOT an impact wrench...). 

If I ever find the guy that installed these, I'll kick him in the nuts.

<end rant>   <for now...>

20201017_125933[1].jpg

Edited by cgsheen1
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First I feel your pain. Tomorrow it will feel better. Have you tried a puller or are you just trying to whack it out?

Second, the amount of stick out on that spindle pin looks wrong to me. Is the other side equally too far in? (At the neck down part)? The neck down part is usually closer to the end of control arm. Or have you got it moved that far but can’t get it farther?

If you found it that way, then it was installed backwards, the lock slot in the middle is not in the middle.....

Edited by zKars

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If you decide to bash it, I would recommend having someone with a lathe drill out and tap a steel pipe or similar and put a counter sunk taper inside. Screw it down over all the threads then pound the "thread saver".

Work one side, then move to the other.  Don't try to move the spindle pin too far in one direction at once. Spray liquid wrench in the middle hole and also work it in from the ends as you move the pin back and forth.

 

Edited by 240260280

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3 hours ago, cgsheen1 said:

If I ever find the guy that installed these, I'll kick him in the nuts.

Agreed. I'll do the same.

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@zKars & @240260280 Far from my first rodeo. (And, that's as far as I got the pin to move without damaging it - at that point the threads began to give as you can see in the picture. No use going further as they have to be replaced now anyway, so I'll just cut them and press them out.) I guess this is my karma. I did bushings on my 260 before I ever got it back on the road - 12 years ago. My spindle pins pushed right out without much fuss thereby lulling me into a false sense of mechanical superiority... After that I did 8 or 10 pins in the shop that I pulled without destroying them - not all of them easy, but they all came out. I even once or twice bragged about my removal prowess and may have scoffed at those having difficulty.  😏

Then about 4 years ago I had my very first total fail. Couldn't get pins to budge no matter what. Even after I cut those pins up I couldn't get them out of the hub. I had to take them down to the mechanic at the end of our building who had a press beefy enough to push the pins out.  This pair will be the third fail since then - so the smirk is definitely off my face. Luckily now I'm in a shop where I have everything I need to cut and press these pins out but it's such a waste, and a royal PITA.

Without exception, the pins I've had difficulty with have been mushroomed at the locator notch - and there is no reason for it other than sloppy installation procedure. (Yes, I've seen pins with corrosion that hampered dis-assembly (but this is Arizona, not Maine...) - I can generally get those loose, unless they're also mushroomed.)

I'm still gonna look for this guy...

 

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I agree with the whole rant! I too have found that section of the pin deformed and it takes very little of that to make the pins really hard to get out. That little lock pin is really not designed to be driven in or torqued to silly values...

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I'd like to also kick the engineer in the nuts that had that diagram of the removal procedure sketched in the FSM. The one showing the pin being pulled out with two fingers. 

I ended up constructing a puller with the help of a local machine shop. 

 

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The engineer didn't do anything wrong with that pic. If that pin and hole it fits into are clean and well lubed and aren't deformed from mis-treatment... It will slip in and out with two fingers.

The problem is 1) They didn't lube it at the factory when they put it in the first time so many of them have rusted up, and 2) Many of the pins have been deformed by people working on the cars after they left the factory. Kicking up burrs on either the pin or the strut housing.

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Other than pin lubricant, and insuring the pin slides in easily before attempting the re-install, the secret is a way to rotate the pin easily back and forth while you gently push the lock pin into place. It only fits correctly with the pin rotated "just so" making it very tempting to use too much hammer to get that pin to seat. 

I use a pair of thin M12x1.25 nuts that I lock together back to back on one end of the pin. Then I can put a vise grip on one of them and wiggle/rotate to my hearts content with one hand as I push the lock pin home. I find the pin is never "loose" by any stretch so it takes a bit of force to rotate and push/pull so having a firm nut/pair and vice grip gives you the torque to move it to just the right spot.

Here is the result of the last pin pull last week. Yanked the threads right off of both ends of one pin, cut it off then used the air chisel on the middle bit. Popped right out.

After that, didn't bother with the other (both of my spindle pin threaded rods now have pin threads stuck in them, humph....) just cut and air chiseled.

Both pins where rusted solid into the steel bushings inside the stupid fancy poly bushings that were installed years ago without lube.... 

All the pin ends are still nicely bonded to the bushing tubes. All four.

The lock pin area was clean as a whistle.

pincut.JPG

pincu2t.JPG

Edited by zKars
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27 minutes ago, zKars said:

cut it off then used the air chisel on the middle bit. Popped right out.

In which direction did you push in order to make the stubs 'pop right out' - from the outside, pushing toward the inside?  or from the inside, pushing to the outside?

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After you cut through the spindle pin (both sides) to remove the control arm from the strut, you can only push (either end) on the cut off surface of the pin that still remains in the strut. I drill a little 3/16 hole in the center, then apply the tip of the pointy tool on the air chisel and pull trigger. 

(maybe I cut the end off of a chisel and ground a point on the shaft, can’t remember)....

 

B8298A20-F439-472C-8EC7-C86DE579E163.jpeg

Edited by zKars

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I found that spinning the pin in the bore loosened things up quite a bit.  I used a lug nut on the end of the pin and squirted lube in the lock pin hole and the the ends, then just spun it for a while.  If I was doing another I'd probably rig something up to spin and pull at the same time.  Moving the spindle pin back and forth in the bore also helps, probably distributes the rust away from the pinch points.

I also got caught by the pin being rusted in to the sleeve inside the rubber bushing.  I found the the rubber would pull the pin back after I pounded it in.  It was confusing for a while.  "I know I saw it move but there it is where it started"  WTF!".

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On 10/25/2020 at 1:35 PM, Zed Head said:

I found that spinning the pin in the bore loosened things up quite a bit.  I used a lug nut on the end of the pin and squirted lube in the lock pin hole and the the ends, then just spun it for a while.  If I was doing another I'd probably rig something up to spin and pull at the same time.  Moving the spindle pin back and forth in the bore also helps, probably distributes the rust away from the pinch points.

Yup. This is my preferred removal method. I've found that if I can get them to turn, I can get them out. Even if they don't spin freely, it I can get them turning at all I can tap them out while they're turning. I love that they're the same thread as a lug nut. I always use an old lug nut to protect the threads when I'm removing a spindle. Normally I'm locking two nuts together and using my impact wrench to see if I can get them to turn.

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