Ooooops, wont be driving the car for a week or so.

Discussion in 'Suspension, Steering and Chassis' started by MileHighDart, Jul 30, 2018.

  1. MileHighDart

    MileHighDart FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

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    So just finishing up installing new lower control arms, adjustable strut rods, etc.

    Tightened the torsion bar adjusters with it in the air, suspension hanging, to approximately where they were before. Set the car back on the ground, rolled it forward and back a couple times to settle suspension. Measured my ride height and I was a little high on the passenger side. I raised the front end again, backed off the bolt, set it back on the ground.
    Rolled it front and back a couple times, and went to jounce the front end a couple times on each front corner to help settle the car. Jounced the drivers side, and BANG ! and the car drops about 6" !
    First thought was i'd somehow snapped a practically brand new torsion bar. But looked under the car and the adjuster bolt was hanging loose a couple inches below the control arm.
    Turns out the adjuster bolt ripped the threads right out of the nut. The adjusters are probably the only item in the front end that I haven't replaced recently. Somewhere in the past I'm sure somebody was cranking these up and down with all the weight sitting on the car, and trashed the threads. From what i've read you should always lift the front of the car to take the weight off the adjusters before trying to crank them up on down.

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    • 67Dart273

      67Dart273 Well-Known Member

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      To tell ya the truth, surprised those don't fail more often!!
       
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      • MileHighDart

        MileHighDart FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

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        Just ordered a new set from PST, I'm sure someone on here could help me out with some used ones, but I figured why replace a 50 year old failed part with another 50 year old part. New from PST $79.00 and free shipping.
         
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        • qkcuda

          qkcuda Well-Known Member

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          Crap, I fine tune the ride height on mine all the time with the weight on the wheels.
           
        • OL DODGE

          OL DODGE Well-Known Member

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          The REALLY fun ones to break are on the "F" bodies-Volare/Aspens -they are "L" shaped bars and the proximity of the adjuster and the snapping torsion bar can cause a person to soil themselves even if the suspension is unloaded at the time !!!!!
           
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          • MileHighDart

            MileHighDart FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

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            Yeah, have to admit I've done it too. I'm just glad it gave way while sitting in the garage and not cruising down the road at 60mph
             
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            • toolmanmike

              toolmanmike FABO Staff Staff Member FABO Gold Member

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              That's a lot of force on those threads. I always take the load off to adjust.
               
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              • mbaird

                mbaird mbaird FABO Gold Member

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                chances are that someone used an impact to adjust them in the past. Had it happen back in 87 to my 70 Charger at the Dodge dealership I worked for... and they had the nerve to charge me for the new part !
                 
              • 69conv

                69conv leaky gasket FABO Gold Member

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                I wonder if putting some antiseize on the threads would help? Couldn't hurt and might make the threads slide easier on the bolts.
                 
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                • 72bluNblu

                  72bluNblu FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

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                  I usually do, doesn't hurt anything. I usually take them apart and clean up the threads too when I do the rest of the suspension parts, that way I know if the threads are in decent shape or if someone before me screwed them up.

                  If you turn the adjusters with weight on the suspension you're basically using that bolt and the control arm as a screw jack to lift or lower your car...
                   
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                  • TrailBeast

                    TrailBeast Slightly Twisted Member

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                    I'll do them on the ground if I don't have to change it very much, but I always shoot them with a shot of WD beforehand. (On both sides of the nut just to make sure it gets into the threads before I move it)
                     
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                    • jos51700

                      jos51700 Well-Known Member

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                      And people spend money on drop spindles.
                      Dummies.
                       
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                      • AJ/FormS

                        AJ/FormS 367 FormS clone 3.09-1.92-1.40-1.09-.78od 3.55s

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                        That's what I have done, and they go up and down easy with all the weight on, and hundreds of times; OK dozens; Ok a couple of dozen; and that's my final offer..
                         
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                        • toolmanmike

                          toolmanmike FABO Staff Staff Member FABO Gold Member

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                          Yes, a little vienershlickem' would help.
                           
                        • AJ/FormS

                          AJ/FormS 367 FormS clone 3.09-1.92-1.40-1.09-.78od 3.55s

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                          Is that like ketchup or catsup or whatever that tomato-paste is called? Red sauce, my 4-year old grandson calls it; I need some red-sauce on my hotdog, he says.
                          I can't eat thatchit anymore.Bananas after about 2pm either.And easy on the Pineapple slices. And no pizza for supper. Things were easier in the previous decade.
                           
                        • daliant

                          daliant Befuddled

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                          Been there done that and got a bruise on my shoulder from the bumper slamming down on me when it popped. Just weld the hole up, drill it, tap it, slap it back in.
                           
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                          • Murray

                            Murray FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

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                            Be careful on the anti-seize. I only use it in extreme cases. That stuff is so slippery, you can easily over-tighten a threaded part and strip out the threads. Use regular grease.
                             
                          • 72bluNblu

                            72bluNblu FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

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                            There't nothing for the torsion bar adjuster to over-tighten against. Anti-seize shouldn't generally be used for parts that have a critical torque spec, like say, head bolts, unless you have a torque value specifically intended for using anti-seize. But on the adjusters there's no torque value, they shouldn't ever be bottomed out on the threads to be able to torque them at all.
                             
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                            • MRGTX

                              MRGTX Well-Known Member

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                              Well put but how does that force compare to those imparted by the spring resisting suspension travel against the adjuster when you hit a pothole?
                               
                            • MileHighDart

                              MileHighDart FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

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                              Too late, the new ones just arrived today, hopefully I’ll get things buttoned up tomorrow. Can’t wait to get the old passenger side adjuster off and see if it looks anything like the failed one.
                               
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                              • momarlon

                                momarlon New Member

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                                Another area to check (which has to be done with the front end in the air) is the shaft that goes through the k-member and supports the lower control arm. On my 73 Dart Sport, the forward side of the k-member, the hole was reamed out, allowing the shaft to move around in the hole. I later read that it was a common problem on A-bodies.
                                 
                              • MileHighDart

                                MileHighDart FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

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                                Just checked that when changing out my lower control arms. The holes look fine