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396 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
so, i got around to putting this in...

wow, was i off in terms of time! basically took all day faffing about and only got as far as full front dis-assembly + new upper wishbones installed...

i basically failed at the spring compressor stage... the ones i had were not suitable for one reason or another... the front coils are quite small in diameter and the damper is very close... one set of compressors fouled on the damper making centering impossible... the other was a double claw design kindly lent by shiny - would be PERFECT for the rear springs which are quite wide, but you can only hook one claw on the fronts which i thought was a bit unsafe and aborted... - will be taking the two original fronts to the local brake shop to use their proper hydro press to swap the mounting hardware over to the new stuff!

better be worth it!!

on the up side i found the whole endeavour fairly straight forward - i wont make a guide - plenty of great ones around... DTE was fecking useless! will say this tho... i heard here that peeps found local brake and suspension shops willing to do it for i think $350-400. my advice? cheap, leave it to them!

breaking top wishbone ball joint

steering arm ball joint broken:

coil assembly withdrawn

top mount and strut removed:

here tis, new arm substituted - some people say install everything then torque so arm is at right position for torquing... i say how the fark am i s'posed to fit a torque wrench in there?? i torqued it to a tad below 40nm (factory ref is 4.0-4.9daN) off the car with the arm positioned to where it should be:

top arm has been re-installed to line up the upright cast arm while everything is apart waiting for the new hardware...

should add, none of the stock bolts had any anti seize or even grease on them, all came out completely clean! :roll:

no wonder our British friends who endure cold and salt on their roads have so much trouble with them! for us tho, no need to cut drop links, it came out easy - all ball joint were solidly in tho, THANKS very much to SHINYCAR for again lending me his superb scissors style splitter, did the job PERFECTLY, AND it survived! ta muchly mate!

will say that the two bolts on the alloy fork are VERY tight still.... i wouldn't suggest doing this job unless you have a SERIOUS air wrench, i have a 1000lb-ft AIRCAT heavy duty impact wrench, and it did everything easily, but it did take a while to hammer on these bolts.... anything micky mouse (i.e. from supercrap auto, et al) will probably not work, and reading the trials and tribulations of others going at it with breaker bars and junk, mmm, not worth it me thinks... i'm tried enuff rite now, and barely half way thru!

that said, after doing one side, the other is a doddle!

funnily enough, now that i've seen it all, i think i would have been satisfied with the billie dampers only! with the old strut off, i compressed the piston and no resistance, then stop! resistence, *creak*, and a very slow return to its extended position...

although i suspected it, i didn't necessarily put down all the suspension issues to a bad damper, now i'm pretty sure that was responsible for all the wallowing and pitching my car suffered from... pretty sure stock springs would be ok, but may as well go the whole hog at this point and pray i don't have severe bottoming out issues...

yea would say, if you've raked up near 100k kms, and you're thinking about it - damper upgrade for sure!

---day 2---
and in a mad dash to the finish, job done!

rears straight forward but rounded a droplink! and needed to nip out and get a deep 22mm socket for the rears.... so i rekon if i didn't faff about with the front springs and the rounded drop link, i reckon i could have done it in one full day, or maybe 10-12 hrs max in total...

some pointers... the rear bilstein b6s come with a new nylock nut. do not use it... the stock 22mm nut is flat, if you try to use the raised nylock the top mounting disk fouls on it and you cannot tighten the rear damper to the rear strut mount. reuse the old one. other than that the rear springs are easy to mount, did it by hand..

i thought because of my eariler delays would take 3 days, but got it easily within daylight today (2nd day) and i also had to take a wheel off again as i messed up the washer placement (not a big deal, but i wanted it done right)... so all in all flew through it!

took her for a drive - all the wallowing was gone... turned out my rear dampers where CACTUS!! i took a video of it.. shagged. new drive turns in real quick, and feels good so far, no real harshness noted yet... i have speed humps near my parents place and tried it out... yep, the engine tray scraps a little unless u go REAL slow... maybe it's shagged and dropping somewhere, maybe it can be zip tied... not trying now, i'm stuffed...

all in all though, if i had known what i do now, i would have installed the stock springs for the stock look and convenience - all my problems were the shagged dampers it seems... that said, i have not had the occasion to drive the car in anger yet! so i'll reserve my judgement on the eibachs!

before the butchery:

went down to the local brakes plus, they kindly mounted my front coils for me:

rears installed, pretty straight forward:

but not after rounding the drop link hex bolt! oh wells, i'm on the waiting list for the eibach ARB kit!

and, what i've been racing towards over 2 days, the after shot:

damn! ideally i would reinstall the stock springs and see how i like it compared, but after this ordeal don't want to see another damn suspension component ever! (also, seem to have lost a front spring, maybe left it at the brakes plus joint that threw on the new springs, i'll go look tomoz)


video of the dead damper:

compared to a new one:

396 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
uhh, thanks for the links mate - not seen the first two before! quite good!

but yea, don't need them now... job is done! took me the regulation 2 days to do incl top wishbones...


11,604 Posts
Good work bud :thumbs:
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