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Discussion Starter #1
Hi,
Have posted on this topic before but had a few thoughts.

Need to change the rear shocks on a 1995 164 and the big issue is the 20cm (M10?) lower bolt on each shock. Have talked to Alfa specialists who talk of snapping these as a preferred method of getting them out - faster in pieces than one stuck lump.

Can I ask if anyone has had one of these snap/sheer unintentionally when trying to get them loose?

Thanks.
 

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No real rust issues here so not need but sometimes I have been temped to cut them out. I have new and good used if you need some. ;)
 

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I pounded them out in full length. Don't know why. I think I started with the thought that it would be easier and I would get them out in usable condition. Maybe some deep rooted masochist desire to inflict pain on myself.

Doing it again on a rusty northeast US car, I think I would cut them at the rear hub carrier to limit the length that would have to be punched through the holes in that casting. If I kept twisting them, I'm pretty sure they would have snapped. Punching them out mushroomed the ends.

All together, I spent around $75 on new rear hardware, I think. All the long bolts and many of the fat washers. Don't know if my hardware source would be of use to you though (belmetric.com).
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks, already got new bolts to go in.
Just wondering how best to get old ones out without damaging other suspension parts - especially the tiebar and its bushings. Where do these bolts seize the most?
 

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Soak them well in a penetrating oil. They should come out.
 

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Evaluate what you have there and think if you want to put it back in service for however long you plan to use the car.

Even if I got my bushings off, they probably should have been replaced. Several of the sleeves were stuck to the bolts. Some at the subframe and some at the struts.

If you have the time, soak it all and see what comes apart and what you want to reuse. See how pitted the sleeves and bolts look if you can get them apart.
 

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I recall getting screwed on the cost for new forward lateral arms. The solid ones. I don't know if there is a press in bushing you can find so you can keep the arms themselves.

For the rear adjustable lateral arms, I got a good price on the threaded rod ends with bushings for those. Just made sense to replace them.

For the longitudinal arms, the replacement bushings also weren't too expensive, and also made sense for me to replace. I did pay to have them pressed in though.
 

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I lived in the rusty east, New Brunswick, Canada for 17 years, so I'm pretty familiar with working on cars in the rust belt. There is NO comparison with working on one in a "normal" climate!
 

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Richard, I've been there. Patience, and lots of penetrating oil - try 50/50 ATF and lacquer thinner - are the key.

I soaked them well for a couple of days, a shot in the morning and again in the evening, and then try to rotate them back and forth. Even just a little bit each time will get them started. Once you get the bolts to turn they will tend to free up a little more each time. Leave the nut on loosely to protect the threads, try to move the bolt laterally by tapping, then turn it again.

More penetrant, and let it soak again. Once the bolt starts to move, tap it one way, try to rotate, then tap it the other way and repeat. Each time it moves and you turn it a little, you will make some progress.

Pretty soon , you will see some real movement, then move it laterally with hammer and wrench, it will free up and come out eventually.

I was able to save the original bolts and re-use them...I have a set of brand new spares I bought just in case though!

Needless to say, when you put them back in use lots of anti-seize to make things better next time. HTH
 

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Dennis...I've done all that plus! Also added heat, sometimes even that didn't work...What does work is to move where they don't use salt! I'm a happy camper now in the Pacific salt free North West!!!
 

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Out here in the West, lol, when I rebuilt the shocks on my 180k mile 91S, those bolts just slipped right out and back in. To be sure, when you replace them, use plenty of antiseize grease.
 

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This was on my 91B, which I bought in Milwaukee, with 100K miles already. It had seen plenty of salt and snow.

Now if the winter weather threatens...I put another log in the stove, and wait. That patience thing again!

Nobody took me up on the ATF and lacquer thinner penetrant....try it, it's the best one, and cheap.

But keep it away from your paint eh?
 

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I'm an ATF and acetone guy myself and generally don't fight rust. +one on the soaking of the fasteners for a bit prior to repair. Use of an impact does help. Not so much in the force it exerts but the sharp vibrating/hammering of the fastener which helps free things. I've had good experience using a lower air setting and proper 6 point socket(s) to vib the beejeez out of everything. Having done this on Rossa, I'd be very reluctant to approach it with the mindset of just going in and snapping them and being done with it. Ciao, chris
 

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With rust, Chris sometimes it's about the only thing that works. I've twisted off bolts that were less than half their original thickness. Pretty hard not to break it.
 

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I too could use an assortment of those bolts if anyone has extras to sell.

Just finished disassembling the rear suspension from my New Hampshire 164S, and after repeated soakings for 2 weeks, still had to resort to all of the methods mentioned above. Lost about 1/2 of the bolts, all at the wheel hubs/struts.

Also - still looking to buy a pair of clean (not too rusty) electronic rear struts.
 

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I understand R2. I'm saying I prefer to get a bolt out in one piece and then evaluate if I'll replace it or not. I'm not too interested in doing any residual damage to any of the surrounding areas either. Ciao, chris
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Hi,
Call me mad but had this idea: what about undoing the nut by one turn and driving the car (at town speeds) with it like that for a bit to see it this loosens it up? The nuts are nyloc so shouldn't come off further and driving loadings/vibrations could help free things up.

It's not something a garage could ever try but if it's your own car and you keep an eye on it...
 

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"mad" isn't really the word I'd use..... ciao, chris
 

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I haven't had many issues with seized bolts on the 164 but my brother lives by the sea and the salty air corrodes everything, welds alloy rims to hubs and let's not remember the seized caliper pins on his clio.
Due to these issues, we have a habit of smearing some copper grease on bolt shanks and threadlock on the threads. Even when using nyloc nuts, threadlock is useful as it keeps moisture out. I'd suggest you do the same.

As for dealing with frozen bolts, I don't use an impact as my compressor is cheap but stick welding a big nut on the bolt's head often works and is faster than drilling it out.
 
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