Re-assembling rear suspension - Page 2 - Alfa Romeo Bulletin Board & Forums
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post #16 of 48 (permalink) Old 07-23-2019, 11:04 AM Thread Starter
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To add to my post above (sequence... did I get the sequence right?) then in theory I could also drop the car on to 4 jack stands mounted under the hubs which would then basically have the weight of the car on the points it should be, while still giving me room to work.and then torque all bolts.

-RL; 1991 Alfa Romeo 164S, 2014 Mercedes Benz E350 4Matic, 2010 Chevrolet Camaro SS, 2008 Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD, 1995 Volkswagen Golf (Race Car)
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post #17 of 48 (permalink) Old 07-23-2019, 11:15 AM
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When I replaced the rear trailing arms in my 91S, I installed them but not really tightening the forward bolts, and then set the rear hubs on blocks to load them into road height position, then tightened the forward bolts, thus reducing the movement stresses in the bushings. The rear long bolts I didn't worry about (lol, lazy).

However, I did slather the long bolts with plenty of anti-seize goop, still pristine from new.

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previously owned since 1964:

62 Morris MiniMinor 850, 67 Austin 1275 Cooper S (Downton 3/4 race), 64 Giulia Sprint GT (1st red one made), 72 Fiat 128 Sedan, 75 Alfetta Sedan, 78 Alfetta Sedan, 78 GTV, 81 GTV6, 86 GTV6
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post #18 of 48 (permalink) Old 07-23-2019, 11:26 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael Smith View Post
I say this is one of those mechanics myths.
Yeah it's the just the fabled Curse of Karl Benz when you do it wrong and the bushing fails prematurely. Maybe if you just cut the head off a live chicken or something it'll solve the problem.

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To add to my post above (sequence... did I get the sequence right?) then in theory I could also drop the car on to 4 jack stands mounted under the hubs which would then basically have the weight of the car on the points it should be, while still giving me room to work.and then torque all bolts.
Yeah wheels/tires don't have anything to do with it - just want the suspension weighted.

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post #19 of 48 (permalink) Old 07-23-2019, 11:47 AM Thread Starter
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Yeah wheels/tires don't have anything to do with it - just want the suspension weighted.
Right. What I'll really need to do is get the wheels and tires on it as I need to set my ride height as well (Coilovers). Once I get that squared away then i can torque these down.

-RL; 1991 Alfa Romeo 164S, 2014 Mercedes Benz E350 4Matic, 2010 Chevrolet Camaro SS, 2008 Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD, 1995 Volkswagen Golf (Race Car)
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post #20 of 48 (permalink) Old 07-23-2019, 12:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rogue Leader View Post
To add to my post above (sequence... did I get the sequence right?) then in theory I could also drop the car on to 4 jack stands mounted under the hubs which would then basically have the weight of the car on the points it should be, while still giving me room to work.and then torque all bolts.
Basically yes. as long as the suspension is at ride level and those forces on the suspension are in place. You could also loosen the rear front control arm at this time and re-set that as well. No other bushing on front needs to be set in this manner.

I will tell you, once I made this mistake. I installed new bushings on a car, did not set it at ride level but instead up in the air. Car sat 1" higher and wore the bushings within a few months. This was when I was much younger and ignorant to this.
Learned my lesson.
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post #21 of 48 (permalink) Old 07-23-2019, 12:32 PM Thread Starter
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Basically yes. as long as the suspension is at ride level and those forces on the suspension are in place. If you can put the rear wheels on to do this I would. You could also loosen the rear front control arm at this time and re-set that as well. No other bushing on front needs to be set in this manner.

I will tell you, once I made this mistake. I installed new bushings on a car, did not set it at ride level but instead up in the air. Car sat 1" higher and wore the bushings within a few months. This was when I was much younger and ignorant to this.
Learned my lesson.
I've never had a car that needed this, there was always play even when torquing down bushings. The resistance came from the shock/spring only.

Also while I'm down there I need to torque the ball joint nuts as well, those should be set fully loaded.
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post #22 of 48 (permalink) Old 07-23-2019, 01:29 PM
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Mostly European cars I have had to torque bushings down in this manner.


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post #23 of 48 (permalink) Old 07-23-2019, 03:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rogue Leader View Post
To add to my post above (sequence... did I get the sequence right?) then in theory I could also drop the car on to 4 jack stands mounted under the hubs which would then basically have the weight of the car on the points it should be, while still giving me room to work.and then torque all bolts.
Where exactly would you locate these stands under the hubs in a way not to endanger your safety? The front jacking points could surely be use at least. Would something like positioning the car with a brick under each wheel suffice to give enough clearance to access the bolts? Or mostly tighten the bolts then drive cautiously to a garage with four-post ramps to lift it and safely do it properly?

Don't forget about the positioning of the brake balancer arms - if the adjuster nuts (M5?) have been undone the position will need to be correctly reset; though don't ask me how.

Good luck with it all.
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post #24 of 48 (permalink) Old 07-23-2019, 03:46 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by richardbradford View Post
Where exactly would you locate these stands under the hubs in a way not to endanger your safety? The front jacking points could surely be use at least. Would something like positioning the car with a brick under each wheel suffice to give enough clearance to access the bolts? Or mostly tighten the bolts then drive cautiously to a garage with four-post ramps to lift it and safely do it properly?

Don't forget about the positioning of the brake balancer arms - if the adjuster nuts (M5?) have been undone the position will need to be correctly reset; though don't ask me how.

Good luck with it all.
So currently the car is on a set of Quickjacks

https://www.quickjack.com/

The car is about 2 feet in the air right now. I can easily place 4 jackstands at their highest safe points under each hub (under both rear strut bodies, and under the balljoints up front) and then lower the car down on to them just enough to load up the suspension and clear the bottom of the car. So they will still be there in a worst case scenario, just without load on them.

My backup is my friend works at the shop that does my inspections/alignments so I could drive it there (about a mjle) but i would have to pay them to torque the bolts. Thats a worst case though, I actually have Longacre toe plates, Camber and caster gauge and so on so I would rather be doing the alignment myself and just do the inspection there when done.

-RL; 1991 Alfa Romeo 164S, 2014 Mercedes Benz E350 4Matic, 2010 Chevrolet Camaro SS, 2008 Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD, 1995 Volkswagen Golf (Race Car)
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post #25 of 48 (permalink) Old 07-23-2019, 07:55 PM
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If the spacers fit over the ends of the inner steel sleeve of the bushing there is no need to load the suspension before torquing up the bolts. The diagram indicates this is how the spacers fit. Do they? Looking at the thread I linked you to it certainly looks that way. If that's not the purpose of these spacers it's hard to see why they are there at all.

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post #26 of 48 (permalink) Old 07-23-2019, 08:00 PM
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The spacers butt the ends of the inner sleeve.
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post #27 of 48 (permalink) Old 07-24-2019, 07:54 AM
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Michael, what I don't think you're taking into account is the fact that this is not a model car sitting on your desk. It's a 3000lb vehicle designed for speeds well in excess of 100 MPH. A metal sleeve sliding over a bolt with no lubrication beyond initial greasing is not a feasible bearing design for (at least) three reasons:

1) Going down the road at highway speeds the suspension is in constant motion. The friction would quickly overheat the surfaces.

2) When a bump is hit at these speeds there is a tremendous twisting force on the suspension members due to the force vectors involved - hitting a bump produces both an upward force on the wheel as well a backward force. This would cause the sleeve to bind on the bolt unpredictably.

3) Even if the first two were not true, a sleeve sliding on a bolt would wear out extremely quickly.

Therefore the metal sleeves of a rubber bushing MUST be held rigid on both the inner and outer sleeves. The rubber provides the range of motion necessary. This is a pretty universal suspension bushing design and it's well understood in an engineering sense. The rubber thickness and durometer are carefully chosen to accommodate the designed range of motion.

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post #28 of 48 (permalink) Old 07-24-2019, 09:53 AM
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Therefore the metal sleeves of a rubber bushing MUST be held rigid on both the inner and outer sleeves. The rubber provides the range of motion necessary. This is a pretty universal suspension bushing design and it's well understood in an engineering sense. The rubber thickness and durometer are carefully chosen to accommodate the designed range of motion.
Exactly! Exact reason why you cannot torque them down up in the air, they will be set or rigid in their positions. Place the car on the ground at ride level and you have twisting to the rubber occurring without anything happening, just sitting at ride level. This causes many issues from quickly wearing out the bushing by maxing it out when it encounters any motion, sometimes ride height change, alignment issues, handling issues and so on.
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post #29 of 48 (permalink) Old 07-24-2019, 04:09 PM
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My initial view resulted from the absence in the ARDONA shop manual of any reference to torquing the suspension bolts only after compressing the suspension to normal ride height. Perhaps this is because ARDONA presumes all mechanics would know to do this.

I have no vested interest in being right or wrong, only in understanding the suspension design and the repair process.

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post #30 of 48 (permalink) Old 07-24-2019, 05:12 PM
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Perhaps this is because ARDONA presumes all mechanics would know to do this.
This and along with most Italian manuals lacking information.


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