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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hello All,

I did a search, and could not find a step by step procedure.

I think that it will also be very similiar for earlier models, but please check yours.

Firstly, I would like to thank the many various threads and posts by BB members that I used to study from.

Also, I would like to thank papajam, a Mentor in every sense of the word, who always takes my calls and walked me through this change.

Next, while I did take a lot of pictures during the change, there were a few steps that I did miss or thought of a better way of doing the step later. So if you see the same picture, once to take bolts out and later the same picture to put the bolts back in, you are seeing the same picture, but the step is correct.

Some of the non usual tools that you may or may not have but will need for this project:

24mm socket
22mm socket
24mm wrench
22mm wrench
27mm wrench
pickle fork
Lots of sandwich baggies to keep nuts, bolts washers and the like together
Sharpie to write on those baggies
And if your like me, I like to wear gloves, so lots of gloves.
Charged up camera

If I have missed something, please let me know and I will correct it.

I am not a mechanic, but like most of us that have Alfa's, am learning and hopefully, this will help someone take the job on.

Let's start!

Vin
 

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Discussion Starter #2 (Edited)
PSA!!!

Below you will see that I placed the jackstands on wood pieces. Please note that the wood is screwed together and that it has been mentioned that this may not be the safest method to raise the car. That it might be possible that the wood blocks have a chance of slipping against each other should accidental sideways force be placed on the car. see post 129 of this thread.

Please work safely.

Raise car and put on jacks. No comments from the peanut gallery please, but this system makes me feel safe under the car for long periods of time, when there is a lot of pulling and pushing going on. :p
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Remove tires.
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I used the threaded rod technique found here on the BB to lower the springs safely. I used 3/8" threaded rod, 9/16" nuts and shoulder bolt. I don't know who gave me the idea of the shoulder bolt, but it was on this BB, so thanks to that person. You will see where teh shoulder bolt comes in.
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Using 17mm socket and 17mm wrench, remove rear, front corner spring pan bolt.
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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
Replace bolt with threaded rod. Double nut the top with washer and use shoulder bolt and washer underneath. Thanks to GV27, "shoulder bolts" are properly called "coupling nuts" or "sleeve nuts". Or I've gotten them at Ace Hardware by describing them as "tall" hex nuts
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The shoulder bolt, aka coupling nuts, sleeve nuts or tall hex nuts, comes in handy underneath to deal with the shape of the spring pan and also helps with removal and replacent of the pan. Makes it easier to grab with the wrench.
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Remove the bolt kitty corner. The rear front bolt.
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Replace that bolt with the threaded rod and nuts.
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Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
Remove 17mm nut from top of sway bar end link.
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Using 22mm socket and 19mm wrench, remove nut securing sway bar end link to sway bar.
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Here is something I wish I had done. Make a mark of some kind noting the position of the sway bar rubber bushing.

Using 14mm socket, remove bolts securing sway bar to body.

Remove sway bar.
12a.jpg

Back to the spring pan. Remove the last bolt from the spring pan.

I bought 2 ratcheting wrenches, 9/16" for this part. Well worth the $15. There is a lot of turing to get that pan down safely.

Slowly and evenly, lower down the spring pan using the shoulder bolts to safely remove the spring.
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Discussion Starter #5
Birth of the Front Spring!:D
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Spring pan showing thin metal that protects rubber from sping, rubber and under those is a 10mm shim.
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Here is the lower wishbone assembly. Ignore the swaybar. I said, I would do things differently, and getting that swaybar out of the sooner is better.
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Using 17mm socket, remove nut holding shock and remove shock from lower wishbone.
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Discussion Starter #6
Using 19mm socket, remove nut from lower ball joint.
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Using your best BFH ( I initially tried with this hard plastic hammer for fear of ruining something, only for the hammer to be destroyed :p) whack here and the ball joint will pop up.
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Using 17mm socket and 17mm wrench (you will have to twist and turn the wrench to get on the bolt if working from under the car) remove 4 bolts attaching dogbone to body.
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Birth of the lower wishbone! I read somewhere on the BB that at times it looks a bit Medevil, and this picture reminded me of that.:D
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Discussion Starter #7
Using 17mm socket and 17mm wrench, remove bolt securing Control arm to upper wishbone.
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Using 6mm hex, remove nuts securing Control arm to body.
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Birth of the Control arm.
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Remove cotter pin from upper ball joint bolt.
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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
Using 17mm socket remove nut from upper ball joint.
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There's my hammer! Whack this area and watch the ball joint pop up.
30.jpg

I decided not to remove the steering knuckle, calipers and disc's. It's up to you. So, I used a 9" rubber bungie to keep the assembly suspended and not put pressure on the flexible rubber brake line.
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Speaking of brake lines, its a great time to inspect yours. Look what I found!:eek: So I replaced both the front and the rear flexible brake lines, but thats another thread.:p
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Discussion Starter #9
Up to this point, the Driver and Passenger are the same steps, but to remove the upper wishbone from the body is a little different. Not much, but a little.

Driver side. Remove air hoses and upper half of air filter box.
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Using 13mm socket, remove 3 bolts securing bottom half of air filter box.
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Remove air filter box.
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For S4 owners that have Power Steering there are some hoses and lines that get in the way. We need to move the heat shield out of the way to get at that big bolt.

Using 17mm socket on the bolt.
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Discussion Starter #10 (Edited)
On the inside of the wheel well you will find the nut. I worked alone so I couldnt hold both the wrench and the socket at the same time so I used my favourite third arm, locking vice wrench to hold the nut while I loosend the bolt from the inside.
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Once the nut is removed, you will not be able to remove the shield as the bolt is too long, but you can push the shield out of the way enough to get at the bolt and nut.
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Remove fluid from power steering resevoir and remove clamp holding resevoir to body. Move the resevoir, still attached to bottom hose out of the way.
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Using 19mm socket, remove the banjo bolt.
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Discussion Starter #11
Move hoses out of the way.
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On Driver side, I used 22mm socket on the bolt and 24mm wrench on the bolt. Remove bolt.
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Birth of the upper wishbone.
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Onto the Passenger side. As with most things on the passenger side, the bolt is buried under the intake manifold.

So, remove the hoses, wires and such related to the intake manifold and remove the manifold.

Now for this side, I used the 24mm socket on bolt and 22mm wrench on the bolt. It was easier for me. Remove the bolt and the upper wishbone.
45.jpg
 

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Discussion Starter #12
All suspension parts are now removed. I did the rest of the dis assembly on the bench.
46.jpg

Remove end caps. I grabbed them with pliers, twisted them back and forth and upwards until they came off. This one was really stuck, so I used the pliers and my favourite hammer to pop it off.
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Inside I found this grey grease. Looks old to me, could be from factory?
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Clean up the grease and bend back the lock washer tab.
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Discussion Starter #13
Using 24mm socket remove nut.
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Remove lock tab washer.
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Remove 2nd washer.
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Remove arm, foam washer (if it still exists, mine were missing or dissolving) and large washer. Do this for both arms of the lower wishbone.
52a.jpg
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Using 19mm socket and 19mm wrench, remove long bolt that shock attaches to.
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Using 17mm wrench and 19mm socket, remove bolt going through lower ball joint.
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Birth of the lower ball joint and large rubber resting pad (don't know what else to call it).
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Now for the steering tie rods.

Remove cotter pins from inner and outer tie rods. One of my cotter pins actually broke on me. I used impact wrench to get it off.
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Discussion Starter #15 (Edited)
Using 17mm socket remove nuts. I went from the top using loooooong extensions.
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I tried to remove the tie rods using the hammer technique, but was only damaging the holding area. Since I wasn't re using the tie rods, I used a pickle fork.
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Birth of tie rod.
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Now all parts, suspension and steering are off, so if you are going to paint them, now is the time. I used my parts cleaner, AKA laundry tub to get as much of the grease and crud off as I could.

Oh boy, did the wife have a fit when she saw this!:D

Some extra scrubbing got the tub back to normal.:D
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Discussion Starter #16
Place tie rod in a vise with heads facing down. Measure centre to centre and make note.
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Using 19mm wrench, loosen locking nut.
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Remove tie rod. This is what happens when you don't use anit seize!
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For all parts that have threads, I put anti seize on the threads prior to re assembly.

Apply anti seize on new tie rod ends.
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Discussion Starter #17 (Edited)
Replace new tie rods and re measure to match, centre to centre original measurement.
65.jpg

Using 19mm wrench, tighten the locking nut.

Follow the same procedure for the passenger side and centre tie rods. Passenger side should be 5mm shorter than the driver side.
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Time to re assemble lower wishbone.

I had a local shop press out and press in the lower a arm castor bushings as well as replace the upper wishbone rubber bushing with a lower a arm castor bushing. If doing yourself or a shop make sure the green retaining spring faces inward.

The large washer demands some attention. You can see that one side of the washer is chamfered. The end of the dogbone also has a bevel. These two are designed to mate with each other.
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Attach large washer mating the two.
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Discussion Starter #18 (Edited)
Insert new foam washer.
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Push on lower a arm. Note the green retaining spring faces inward.
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Replace 2nd washer.
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Replace lock tab washer.
73.jpg
 

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Discussion Starter #19
With most nuts I have seen on Alfa's one side has a built in washer.
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Using 24mm socket, tighten nut. 59 - 66.4 ft lbs.
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Bend lock tab.
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Take the arm and move it around. The new castor has grease inside that needs to be disbursed around. At first it will be stiff, then it will ease up as the grease moves around.
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Discussion Starter #20 (Edited)
Add grease, just like we found it.
79.jpg

Insert end cap.
79a.jpg

Attach other arm in the same procedure.

You need to pay attention to the arms. Note that only one of the arms has this scallop. It goes on the rear of the assembly.
79b.jpg

When assembling, make sure the scalloped arm goes on the same side as the shock long bolt. If you get this wrong, you will be taking them off again as the tie rod ends will hit them. Want to know how I know? ;)
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