Alfa Romeo Forum banner

1 - 20 of 20 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,671 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I'm going to overhaul the suspension on my manual car and need something to press the bushes in to the trailing arms. My vice won't open enough to do it so I am thinking of something like this, held in the vice Suspension Tools - US PRO TOOLS - US PRO Professional Heavy Duty 11 Piece Universal Ball Joint Removal Installation Service Kit US0992

Does anybody have experience of this, or have other recommendations?

I don't want to get a hydraulic press as it will get used once or twice then just take up space in the garage.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,214 Posts
Looks interesting, I've only heard bad things about pushing out those Bushes, it's a nightmare apparently.

I think for the reason I mentioned it is one of the few suspension jobs I might 'sublet' to a proffesional, so I would be delighted to here how you get on if you take the plunge:)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,671 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
I've read mixed things about these, ranging from straightforward to nightmare due to the old ones being rusted in. I'm hoping that mine, having been changed within about 7 years ago, shouldn't be too solidly encrusted!

I have always had mine done by the pros before but I just fancy trying to do it myself this time. I will probably regret it; I generally do when the spanner slips off. Again. Or I get cramp whilst lying on my back and contorting round for the inaccessible bits..

There are some good threads on the Alfa bulletin board but they always recommend cheap hydraulic presses, they can buy them for about $80.

Other tips I have seen include freezing the new bushes, and heating the recipient arms before installation.

I'll definitely post my experiences and will probably buy this tool if no-one pops up to say "don't, it's rubbish".
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,884 Posts
I doubt that tool will work, otherwise everyone would be using it....and you could find threads about it here, or on on alfabb
The welds on these trailing arms can be damaged apparantly with too much force.....you press and press thinking things are moving and in fact you are doing damage......most people without a correct hydraulic press prefer to cut them out and replace with polybushes...and if you dont use the press correctly you will damage the arms and have to chuck them away!
some tips here
Trailing arm bushing replacement - Alfa Romeo Bulletin Board & Forums

Trailing arm bushing removal - Alfa Romeo Bulletin Board & Forums
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
50 Posts
On my 1991, last year, I replaced mine and unfortunately, they were original.

I ended up having to cut them out.

IMG_7261.jpg

To replace the bushings I used the same tool as above. Luckily for me, the local parts store has a "loan a tool' program that this is part of, so didn't cost me a thing. :p

Used some anti seize and worked out fine. Didnt freeze the bushings or heat the arms.

IMG_7270.jpg

Good luck.

Vin
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
50 Posts
Just as a further thought.

The only issue with that tool for pressing the bushings out, is you need a piece (looks like socket) that fits on the outer metal ring to push it out. Not that many choices in the kit.

It has to be almost perfect. Large enough to push on the metal ring and small enough to fit inside the trailing arm as it pushes the old bushing out.

If its too small, you end up pushing on the rubber and that gets you no where.

Cutting the bushings out was the hardest part of this job.

Good luck,

Vin
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,671 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Thanks Vin, it was your excellent thread on the BB that led me to look at this option. I was just wondering about the actual tool, whether it would be decent quality as it is relatively cheap.

I don't mind cutting the old ones out, I had to do that for the ARB bushes, but need something to push the new ones in.

Dom, the possible damage caused by a hydraulic press is another reason for me to use a purely mechanical option - I've never used a hydraulic one and would likely bend something if I tried it. Using my vice worked fine for the ARB bushes, I did it slowly so that I could see that they were going in exactly true.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
20 Posts
You have to be extremely careful with hydraulic presses. The tool you've seen is ideal - cut out the old once as above and make sure all o the force is located on the bush 'housing' not the arm. They are only brazed in and so can seperate easily.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,671 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
Thanks Albero, thats a useful tip about the housing as I didn't realise it was a separate piece.

I've got the bushes, I will order the tool and then just need to wait for some good weather - too cold to be lying on a concrete floor at the moment!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
231 Posts
Just had many bushes replaced on my 78 Alfetta GTV by Alex Jupe who works with these day and night....ven he taught me some new swear words as some were an absolute bu**er to remove.

Good Luck!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
480 Posts
It's not so hard to get any such rubber bushing out by brute force if you torch the rubber, cut a slot in the outer metal sleeve and then hammer the rest of it out. But, after spending many such hours buggering about with a complete overhaul of both the front and rear suspensions in my '68 spider (and two Jags, and a Mustang), I can say that the best £140 I ever spent was on a 20 tonne hydraulic press. Then, if you have the right size mandrill (hint: the new bushing is just the right size), it is a 5 minute job.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,671 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
I had wondered about using the new to push out the old but thought that if the old one was really stuck then the force might distort the new one. But it seems not, so a useful tip.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
480 Posts
You just have to be careful to press on the outer metal shell of the bush, not the inner part, otherwise you will strain the rubber joint. Also make sure you fully support the arm underneath. If you are replacing bushes with poly ones then you have to be more creative getting the old ones out if you don't have something the right size. But I wouldn't recommend poly bushes in the trailing arms.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,671 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
But I wouldn't recommend poly bushes in the trailing arms.
No, thats what I had concluded too. I spoke to Alfaholics and have got a set of parts from them:
Rear.
- heavy duty rubber trailing arm bushes
- poly conical bush for the T-bar.
Front.
- poly top arm bushes
- standard bottom wishbone bushes
- new bottom ball joints.

The track rod ends are all pretty new so I am hoping that changing the above will sharpen up the steering.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
78 Posts
ive never replaced the bushes on an alfa before but i had an old classic and i didnt have a vice so i used a g clamp. dont know if that would be any good for you but its a thought.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
480 Posts
No, thats what I had concluded too. I spoke to Alfaholics and have got a set of parts from them:
Rear.
- heavy duty rubber trailing arm bushes
- poly conical bush for the T-bar.
Front.
- poly top arm bushes
- standard bottom wishbone bushes
- new bottom ball joints.
I have installed the same bits from the same people :thumbs: I also have their suspension Kit B and Koni Sport shocks :D:D:D

You should also replace the thrust washers that fit between the chassis and the big upper bushes on the rear T-bar with poly (mine were missing entirely). The official instructions will tell you that you have to remove the T-bar and replace the main bushes at the same time. But with the poly thrust washers you just need to cut a slit in them and slide them in with the help of a touch of poly lube, no need to remove the T-bar at all.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,671 Posts
Discussion Starter #17
Thanks Cosmo. I will have a look at the washers. Did you glue the ends of the split back together or is that not needed?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
480 Posts
There's no need to worry about them coming out. They're tight in there and the split is not under any pressure to open up.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,671 Posts
Discussion Starter #19
Managed to change one bush today!

I have got the trailing arms off for refurbishment, They are getting a bit rusty so I'm going to re-paint them as well as change the bushes.

I managed to replace one of the bushes today, the smaller of the two. The tool I started this thread about worked really well to push the new bush in, it didn't take a huge effort, as Vin reported in his thread.
But getting the old one out took me ages!
The problem with this tool is that it is not big enough to accept a long enough receiver, the trailing arm AND the necessary socket or whatever to push the old one out. So, as others have done, I had to resort to the drill, hacksaw, cold chisel and lump hammer.

I will probably drop the arms into my local garage now and ask them to press the old bushes out.

I'm going to do the anti roll bar bushes as well and the tool should be fine for those as they are so much smaller; I will be able to get receiver, roll bar and "pusher" in OK.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,671 Posts
Discussion Starter #20
Update. Having re-looked at Vins excellent thread I realised that I hadn't cut through enough of the old bush before I hammered it out so thought I would try again.
The next one took me 45 minutes to get out. Then the last two took just 40 minutes to do both.
I tried a few different methods. To get the rubber out, the one that worked best for me was using the biggest drill that would fit between the core and the outer metal to drill multiple holes, then using a coping saw to cut between the holes.
Then a hack saw on the outer metal, a sharp flat bladed screwdriver to lever up one of the cut ends and tap it out with a screwdriver and mallet.
The new bushes were easy to press in with the tool (the longer, slimmer bushes) or just my vice. I used some copper anti-seize grease to lubricate and hopefully make the next change easier.

I did the ARB bushes too and they were easy with the tool although I probably could have used a vice and sockets.
 
1 - 20 of 20 Posts
Top