Shock absorbers + track rod end - Civinfo
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post #1 of 29 (permalink) Old 23rd August 2019, 20:33 Thread Starter
 
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Shock absorbers + track rod end

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Last edited by civicbrahs; 24th August 2019 at 10:51.
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post #2 of 29 (permalink) Old 25th August 2019, 17:20 Thread Starter
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So my NS front shock has a bad leak according to the MOT + track rod end on both sides have dust covers deteriorated.
Anti roll bar linkages weren't flagged nor do they seem weak so I will keep them for now.

I ordered a pair of Sachs front shocks, and Meyle HD tie rod ends for both sides. However I'm wondering since the shock strut is coming off, is there a need for a new top mount/bearing + the rubber boot/bump stop parts? I have noticed knocking from the NS front when the car slows + sets off at slow speed. (assuming this is the shock absorber). But can't figure or tell if anything is up with the top mount.

Any ideas from someone who's recently changed the shocks?

Thanks
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post #3 of 29 (permalink) Old 27th August 2019, 11:03
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I'd check the knock isn't the Drop Link. I'm assuming here that you have the 8G? When I had mine and the Drop Links went the noise was a bit Crash, Bang and Wallop. Check the ARB too while you're on, an easy fix as well.
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post #4 of 29 (permalink) Old 27th August 2019, 12:19 Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by nturnb View Post
I'd check the knock isn't the Drop Link. I'm assuming here that you have the 8G? When I had mine and the Drop Links went the noise was a bit Crash, Bang and Wallop. Check the ARB too while you're on, an easy fix as well.
the 8g type r yeah. I examined the links, there seems no play and generally good condition. I'm inclined to believe its the right shock as it says it has a serious fluid leak.
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post #5 of 29 (permalink) Old 27th August 2019, 13:51
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Originally Posted by civicbrahs View Post
the 8g type r yeah. I examined the links, there seems no play and generally good condition. I'm inclined to believe its the right shock as it says it has a serious fluid leak.
May as well put new drop links on, usually if they're original they'll be seized solid and you'll have to cut them off anyway.
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post #6 of 29 (permalink) Old 27th August 2019, 20:04 Thread Starter
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May as well put new drop links on, usually if they're original they'll be seized solid and you'll have to cut them off anyway.
yeah ordered some meyle HD ones. Look heavy duty.

My SACHS absorbers are taking a millenium from Germany (got them for 68 each so not so bad). Meanwhile i'm wondering if replacing the mounts is necessary + the bump stop/dust covers?
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post #7 of 29 (permalink) Old 27th August 2019, 21:18
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I would change the top mounts at the same time otherwise you might need to change them soon after. I would buy the oem top mounts as aftermarket ones don't last that long.

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post #8 of 29 (permalink) Old 27th August 2019, 22:35 Thread Starter
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I would change the top mounts at the same time otherwise you might need to change them soon after. I would buy the oem top mounts as aftermarket ones don't last that long.

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i see thanks. It's about 37 for just the top mount on cox or 45 for the mount + bearing beneath. Works out 90 both sides which i'd rather not if they're not neccesary or if they can be cleaned and reused. I've not heard any knocking when turning the steering which I've heard is the way to know they're bad.

Anyone done the track rod ends before?
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post #9 of 29 (permalink) Old 28th August 2019, 08:56
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Originally Posted by civicbrahs View Post
i see thanks. It's about 37 for just the top mount on cox or 45 for the mount + bearing beneath. Works out 90 both sides which i'd rather not if they're not neccesary or if they can be cleaned and reused. I've not heard any knocking when turning the steering which I've heard is the way to know they're bad.

Anyone done the track rod ends before?
Ive done them and they're pretty easy as they just unscrew. You do however need to get the tracking done after.

As for the top mounts, make sure ou put them on the right way round otherwise they'll squeak and knock necessitating a replacement.

Good advice doing the top mounts as well, i say this as you've got to disassemble the entire shock anyway and it saves on labour.
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post #10 of 29 (permalink) Old 29th August 2019, 12:01
 
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Doing mine this weekend - drivers side shock is leaking a fair bit and I have a knocking that sounded like a worn bush - as if the rubber had gone and the metal was floating around and knocking a little. Only does it at lower speeds (20mph or so) and on roads with poor surfaces or concrete, but not at higher speeds. Thought it was the brake caliper at first, then the pads rattling, then moved onto suspecting bushes as it got worse. Pretty sure now that its more consistent that its the top mount bearing so I decided to replace front struts, bearing, dust cover and bump stop (a known source of knocks on FN2's). Also replacing all the nuts ad bolts for new.

I sourced the struts from GSF at about 85 each (Boge) and all the other parts came to about 180 from local main dealer with a dose of discount applied. If I find anything else as I change them over, I'll revisit those parts next week. Its done 91k on what looks to be original parts so its time for an overhaul. If I had more funds, I'd be doing the springs too, but I haven't so I wont.
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post #11 of 29 (permalink) Old 30th August 2019, 22:27
 
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So....... it took all afternoon and evening to get 1 shock off!! Drop link was the major issue - totally seized after a couple of turns and the center hex duly rounded off as it crumbled away with rust. Gave up on the top and went and bought 2 new ones which was a 70 mile round trip as there weren't any local and I needed them now!!! Take heed.

Got back and then decided to concentrate on removing the bottom bolt so that the new drop links can be fitted. Same thing happened - it just crumbled away and the bolt just spins the entire shaft. Had to drill the thing out which took ages as its not an easy position to get a drill into.

Now that it's off, I'll hopefully get the spring swapped over tomorrow but already having issues with getting the compressors to fit but had enough for today so it'll have to be done tomorrow. All new bolts to go back on so no such issues with reassembly once I get the new strut built up.

Apologies if this a thread hi-jack, but the aim is to help the OP and others thinking of doing this as to whether its easy or not, or if its worth the garage labour rates to just have it done for you!!!
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post #12 of 29 (permalink) Old 1st September 2019, 00:13
 
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So its done on one side! Replaced the bump stop and bearing, re-used top mount, spring and dust cover which I decide to cable tie on at the bottom to make sure it stays in place. Spent just 2 hours on it today and its done.

Also replaced drop link and bolts, all strut bolts - ie 3 at top, 1 on top of strut, 2 large bolts and nuts securing hub to strut. Re-used the bolt holding the brake line to the strut. Plastic clips were still good so retained them too.

On the old strut, removal of the top nut was a pain. Bought a 18mm spark plug socket (4 Machine Mart - it has a hex top on it for a spanner to grip) with 1/2 inch drive. Used a crappy 12v Clarke impact wrench that runs off the car battery to crack and move the nut before then using and allen key through the socket and an adjustable spanner to remove it (after taking the tension off with spring compressors - one having to be fitted upside down for clearance of the strut base).

On the new strut, I used the same socket and allen key and secured the top mount without using the impact wrench, but since it got to the base of the thread I would assume the spring tension on the top mount will keep it all taught and true. Anyway, I hope so as its back on the car now. Just need to torque the 3 top bolts and the 2 x chunky strut to hub bolts. The drop link I just did as tight as I could, and I added copper grease to all threads, contact surfaces and nuts without nylon locking.

Not yet tested - waiting to finish the job on Sunday with the other side before road testing!!!!
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post #13 of 29 (permalink) Old 1st September 2019, 23:56 Thread Starter
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Nice to read the processes involved.

I ordered SACHS absorbers from germany, 135 or so for a pair. Those are due in tomorrow. Meanwhiel I did the track rod ends. Won't lie I watched a lot of videos on how to do them as never done it. To make it confusing my new ones were 1cm longer than the factory Honda ones. So with some faffing about I got the new ones on, a bit further in than Honda ones but i'm sure i didn't get the lengths spot on. I'm sure tracking alignment corrects this right?

So track rod ends done, weirdly my car has 2 different types of anti roll bar links. 1 side has factory honda and other is a cheap brand. I got the cheap ones off with ease but the Hondas have seized. Going to maybe cut it off with a hacksaw maybe. Haven't bought replacements but thinking of MOOG in euro?

I didn't consider changing the bushes on mine, but I do have a knocking sound when moving off or stopping. Specifically from the driver side front so i'm assuming its the shock which has a bad leak. Also considered reusing my bump stop, rubbers and top mounts. To be honest for cost reasons, though i appreciate its better to get it done in 1 go.

I also lack the spring compress tool so have to go out to a garage to do the spring swaps, been offered 25 at the cheapest in my town. Rip off or about right for the job? I could get the clamps for 20-30 but i don't seem to have faith in them. Not only that without a impact wrench, I would be there for hours!

Anyway I have high hopes my car will drive beautifully once the tracking is done and shocks are in. Then next job is the PCV valve.
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post #14 of 29 (permalink) Old 2nd September 2019, 00:48
 
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Its either a chance to boost your kitty of tools, or its best done by a garage - I chose the former. Ended up buying an 18mm spark plug socket to do the top nut on the strut (you can feed an allen key down through it to the spindle to stop it spinning and use a spanner on the hex collar at the top of the socket), and a set of swan neck ring spanners for the same, but the spanners never got used. Still, I have them now! Over time I've built up a pretty good tool set by buying them as jobs needed doing. Once you have them, you've got a much easier choice and the potential to do more and more jobs yourself.

My impact wrench is cheapest of the cheap from Machine Mart - around 20 I think. I have Laser brand spring compressors and they have good strong purchase on the spring - no fears of them coming off as they were absolutely solid. I just had to use them what I consider to be upside down, ie the adjuster nut at the bottom if the strut is placed the right way up.

I did the other side of my car today and it took less than 3 hours all in, and I wasn't rushing at all. Could have been done faster but I wasn't in a hurry today. It was much easier now that I had the knack of getting the compressors onto the spring with clearance to tighten them, the knack of removing the nut holding the top mount in place on the strut, the knack of removing drop links off the arb and leaving them on the strut since I was replacing them with new, and now knowing the order of process. All new bolts and nuts, and it just went on very easily. No faff, no grief, job done. The old shock on one side had a smallish amount of play before it met resistance as it compressed and this was the source of the knock. The old top mounts were re-used but the bearings were new ones from Honda. They original ones were still OK as were the bump stops, but I'd bought them so on the new ones went. I kept the original dust covers, but they were a bit baggy around the base so I did use a zip tie around the base of each side to keep it in place.

Torqued it all up to the correct settings and....... Robert's your mothers brother.

The car drives so much better!!! I had no idea how badly worn the old shocks were until I drove it with the new ones on. I will now replace the rear ones too, but they are really easy to do. I've already had them off the check the resistance on them and they seem fine, but they were pretty shabby and I guess near to their end of life. They can be swapped out in less than an hour for the pair.
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post #15 of 29 (permalink) Old 2nd September 2019, 09:43 Thread Starter
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Does anyone know if track rod ends come in differing lengths for the same car? Mine are 1cm longer, (meyle hd ones). The numbers and everything match and the threads fit fine too.
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post #16 of 29 (permalink) Old 2nd September 2019, 10:30
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Does anyone know if track rod ends come in differing lengths for the same car? Mine are 1cm longer, (meyle hd ones). The numbers and everything match and the threads fit fine too.
They should be adjustable for length as you need to wind them.
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post #17 of 29 (permalink) Old 2nd September 2019, 11:22 Thread Starter
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They should be adjustable for length as you need to wind them.
I took my factory honda ones off, foolishly didn't measure it from a fixed point to the ball joint. I just counted the turns (13) and then stuck the new ones with 13 + 3-4 more turns to account for 1cm.

I guess it doesn't really matter how many times i spun the outer rods does it since the tracking will be done?
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post #18 of 29 (permalink) Old 2nd September 2019, 12:12
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Tracking should take care of it, just don't drive too fast.
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post #19 of 29 (permalink) Old 2nd September 2019, 19:58 Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by s3 akr View Post
Its either a chance to boost your kitty of tools, or its best done by a garage - I chose the former. Ended up buying an 18mm spark plug socket to do the top nut on the strut (you can feed an allen key down through it to the spindle to stop it spinning and use a spanner on the hex collar at the top of the socket), and a set of swan neck ring spanners for the same, but the spanners never got used. Still, I have them now! Over time I've built up a pretty good tool set by buying them as jobs needed doing. Once you have them, you've got a much easier choice and the potential to do more and more jobs yourself.

My impact wrench is cheapest of the cheap from Machine Mart - around 20 I think. I have Laser brand spring compressors and they have good strong purchase on the spring - no fears of them coming off as they were absolutely solid. I just had to use them what I consider to be upside down, ie the adjuster nut at the bottom if the strut is placed the right way up.

I did the other side of my car today and it took less than 3 hours all in, and I wasn't rushing at all. Could have been done faster but I wasn't in a hurry today. It was much easier now that I had the knack of getting the compressors onto the spring with clearance to tighten them, the knack of removing the nut holding the top mount in place on the strut, the knack of removing drop links off the arb and leaving them on the strut since I was replacing them with new, and now knowing the order of process. All new bolts and nuts, and it just went on very easily. No faff, no grief, job done. The old shock on one side had a smallish amount of play before it met resistance as it compressed and this was the source of the knock. The old top mounts were re-used but the bearings were new ones from Honda. They original ones were still OK as were the bump stops, but I'd bought them so on the new ones went. I kept the original dust covers, but they were a bit baggy around the base so I did use a zip tie around the base of each side to keep it in place.

Torqued it all up to the correct settings and....... Robert's your mothers brother.

The car drives so much better!!! I had no idea how badly worn the old shocks were until I drove it with the new ones on. I will now replace the rear ones too, but they are really easy to do. I've already had them off the check the resistance on them and they seem fine, but they were pretty shabby and I guess near to their end of life. They can be swapped out in less than an hour for the pair.
so started by disassembling the Passenger front suspension. Got all the bolts except for the lower strut bolt. It is so badly seized that 1-2 hrs of going at it with fluid and the like didn't work. Didn't try heat but i'd rather not. i'VE got the nut off but the bolt doesnt turn or anything. Tried hammering with the nut on it to no avail

Any suggestions?
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post #20 of 29 (permalink) Old 4th September 2019, 20:28 Thread Starter
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Ok struts are off. Those bolts needed breaking with some leg drive.

Now I'm not sure what to change on the strut. The boot seems un-affected, the bump stops have small cracks near the bottom but other wise pretty firm (they're the marroon ones). Top mount and bearings again I can't tell if they need changing. Cars on 90K and don't think suspension has ever been changed so I'll be doing the left and right sides for 90 (bearing + top mount) and leaving the bump stop. Or does anything think its important to do the bump stop?
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