Friday, 22 April 2011

Complete struts

 The component parts of a big saloon strut are not like some I have done before.The top mounts are not just a single unit that you place over the top of a compressed spring and fix with a single nut.The thrust washers and centre bush/sleeve need to be put together in the correct order to work correctly.
 The coil springs need a lot of compressing from their free length,I used three clamps on each to give more confidence.I also found on assembly that the clamps need to be a full coil in at each end or they will foul on the spring pans as you release the tension-guess how i know?
I also know that you cannot tighten the top nut down properly without a 15/16 deep ring spanner,not the ring end of a combination spanner.
After trying Halfrauds,screwfix,toolstation etc.I found a proper tool merchants who not only sold AF spanners but BSW too.£11-53 later I had the correct spanner in the back of the car.
Later I tried to tighten the nut up,sure that the 'endfloat' was due to the nut being loose.I then became concerned that I may have assembled something incorrectly and proceeded to strip it all back down.The moral of this part of the story is to check that the sleeve in the centre of the topmount is the same length as the top mount and coated thrust washers,you can't tighten the 'endfloat' away!
My problem here was assembling parts from four strut top mounts into two.After the learning curve of the first strut the second was a 20min piece of cake
 Install on the pi won't take long,remembering to watch out for the shims on two of the four lower bolts.The car should be about ready for the MOT it's due early in May,just a check of the handbrake adjustment after the Stag drums have bedded in.

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