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Another Suspension Rebuild


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Decided to rebuild the front and rear suspension on my 73 Z.  Decided to splurge and buy the Koni Yellows, and Eibach progressive springs.  Going mostly rubber bushings instead of poly since it's mainly for pleasure driving.  Going to tackle the front first.

I wasn't planning on dropping the subframe, but couldn't remove the lower control arm bolts without hitting the rack.  Made a couple metal bars and used the anti-sway bar bracket bolt holes to support a piece of wood, which held the engine up resting on the oil pump.  Easier than dragging out my engine lift.

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Sand blasted the subframe and repainted.  I used poly bushings for the rack mounts.

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To remove the LCA bushings I drilled a couple holes through the rubber, then used a coping saw to saw around the rubber to remove.  Then cut inside of the outer bushing steel with a hacksaw as suggested in other threads.  To remove and install new bushings I used a 35 mm deep socket on the bottom, and a 1" socket on the top.  The 35 mm seems to support the welded in A-arm bushing good to support it without deforming the LCA.

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When I dropped the Koni's into the strut housing, I had a 6 mm gap instead the required 1-4 mm.  Called MSA and they quickly shipped a set of the gland nuts with the relief cut, which got it down to 3 mm.  I guess Nissan had a few different suppliers for the strut housings, which made them slightly different.

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Here's the only way I could figure out how to hold the strut while torquing the gland nuts.  Used an aluminum block with just enough pressure to keep it from turning.  

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Here's the assembled pair ready to go.

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Cleaned up the wheel wells with Simple Green and a brush.  Looks pretty good without the dirt and grime.  New ball joints and tie rod ends too.

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Ken

Edited by sfm6s524
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Looks Great! I would also replace all the rubber brake lines while you have the suspension apart. It really becomes a real pain in the butt when you put in all the work and re bleed the brake lines just to find a cracked hose. Been there once and will never make that mistake again

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Yep, definitely going to order brake stuff.

I had one knuckle arm bolt and threaded hole that was boogered up a bit, not too bad.  Didn't want to use a fast cutting tap and die and maybe make it worse, so I ordered this Lang Rethreader Kit off of Amazon, which surprisingly is made in the USA. 🇺🇸   It worked great!  Highly recommended to chase threads.  Used some anti-seize and reassembled.

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Posted (edited)

I was almost done plating the front end parts, and the power supply to my Caswell system gave out.  Knew I should have coughed up some $ for the Amazon warranty!  

Maybe I should just pay someone to have it done.   🤔

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Edited by sfm6s524
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You might consider doing the subframe LCA pivot mod while it's apart.  Since you are lowering the car with springs, you might have some undesirable bump steer.  You can move the pivot holes up 3/4" and out 1/4".  It's not hard to do once the subframe is out.  Just pop off the doubler washers (I used an air chisel) and then mark the holes and drill them.  Tack weld the doublers back into place in the new locations.

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You might consider doing the subframe LCA pivot mod while it's apart.

Yeah, I was thinking the same thing, once I got it bolted back into place, of course. I searched the site for more DIY info, with pictures, but no luck. I could go off your description, but pictures would be nice. Got a link?

Thanks


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1 minute ago, sfm6s524 said:


Yeah, I was thinking the same thing, once I got it bolted back into place, of course. I searched the site for more DIY info, with pictures, but no luck. I could go off your description, but pictures would be nice. Got a link?

Thanks


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I might have some pics of when I did one of my cars.  That was several laptops ago though, so I'm not sure where they might be.  I'll look.

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I found this post: https://www.classiczcars.com/forums/topic/48862-bump-steer-spacers-needed-for-1-drop/?do=findComment&comment=444347

I think I’ll hunt around for another subframe to modify. And I’d like to see what the camber comes out to with the new springs is before I start drilling holes to increase it. Anyone using the MSA bump steer spacers? I’m guessing the cheaper fixes aren’t a perfect solution, but maybe enough to make the bump steer less annoying.


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Waiting for some front brake parts to come in, moved to funnest part on the rear, the spindle pins.   Spent about an hour to remove just one pin using what I had laying around.  

Started with a 13/16" wrench around the pin OD and some washers to break it loose and start moving the pin in the right direction.  Definitely use thread anti seize on the threads.

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Scrounged whatever I had, washers, old throwout bearings, wrenches, to build the spacing needed to pull the pin about an 1/8" at a time.  Even used an old Mustang pitman arm as a spacer.  Eventually the pin started spinning after travelled about 1.25", then I used a drift to pound in out the rest of the way.

 

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I've got one more to go, hopefully as easy as this one.   From what I've read about these, I think I got lucky.

Edited by sfm6s524
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Got the front done today.  Bearings checked out okay, just repacked them and new seals on the rotors.  Rotors look bad in picture, but they're not grooved. I did notice the forward right tension rod rubber bushing had a split in it, and I hadn't even torqued it down yet! Supplier is going to send me a new one. Hopefully it was just a bad one and not a sign of near future issues.   

 Going to wait to tighten a few bolts after car is settled on the ground, LCA bolts, tension rod nuts.  Then adjust the toe-in so I can at least drive it to the alignment shop.  

Now onto the rear...

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Brake drums were froze onto the stub axle.  Luckily I had an old drum puller from an old stubborn Mustang.  Soaked hub concentric with Kroil, tightened the puller a bit, then rapped on the drum center with a mallet to break loose.

Now Im debating whether or not to replace the real axle bearings.  Off the car I'm worried I might not be able to get the axle nuts loose.  Bearings aren't bad, but they do make a tiny bit of noise on the bench.  Probably the original bearings, and likely pretty dry.  Looks like I also have a shorter wheel stud I need to replace.

I test fit the rear struts and the Koni gland nuts will work fine.

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Well, decided to change the rear hub bearings since I've got it tore down this far.  Had a 6 foot piece of 1.5" x 3" tubing that I drilled a couple 3/8" holes and notched for the 27mm socket.  Probably overkill.  I think a 2 x 6 piece of wood with four 3/8" hanger bolts and a hole for the socket would have worked too.  First, got the Dremel and removed the lip at each flat, and chiseled the lip away from the threads.

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This should hold it down.

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Ready to break them loose.  Lug nuts on the studs to protect the threads.

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Then used the press to remove the bearings.  Nut easily spins onto the hub shaft threads, I was a bit worried about that.  I'll be using the newer 43262-W1200 nuts.   Bearings are Nachi, maybe original, not sure.  I'll be ordering new Timkens, don't want to do this again for awhile!

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After a closer look at my right axle, it looks like the threads are squared off, damaged.

I guess I need to round up another axle.  

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Depends on how hard to plan to drive the car. 240 stub axles are not known for their strength anyway...

I don't really thrash my cars anymore. So I might try to doctor that one and run it.

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Stripped threads are not the common failure point for the 240Z axles.  It's the base of the threaded portion, the transition to the splines.

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So, use the newer self locking nuts, maybe some blue (or red) thread locker, and torque to 150 Ft/Lbs to start, and see how it "feels?"

Ken

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I would try to clean up the threads first. Maybe get a metric thread file. If I could get it to torque I would probably run it but I dont beat on my cars.

Zed is correct on the common failure point. My point being if you thrash on your car there are other concerns than the threads. Although I believe most of these failures are in high HP cars

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Well, I’m kinda sure the axle would be okay, as suggested. The only stress would be an occasional 270° freeway onramp at a brisk speed. But I did buy another for $50 from a local club member anyway. At least I won’t be worried about seeing my tire and wheel rolling past me on the highway.


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32 minutes ago, sfm6s524 said:

At least I won’t be worried about seeing my tire and wheel rolling past me on the highway.

Since the thread quality isn't an indicator of the quality of the potential failure point your worry level should be the same.  Your "new" used axle is just as likely to fail as your old used axle.

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