While the body's away the mice will play...with subframes



Here's the rub. I spent all that time stripping the body for paint and repair and now it's gone. The garage is empty now, except for parts scattered everywhere. 

Engine over there, suspension over here, transmission over there, door cards, windshields, seats, header, driveshaft ahhhhhhhhhhhhh!!!!!!


I decided to tackle the front suspension. I was smart enough to have my welder neighbor fab up a front dolly for me that I bolted to the car with the suspension bolts before sending it out for paint, which left me everything that's attached to the front subframe lying on the garage floor. My son happened to have an engine stand, so I rented a hoist and lifted the engine onto the stand. Sounds easy now, but as with all these jobs, I research incessantly until the idiot savant in me understands how to do it, and then I take 3 times as long as anyone else to actually do the job, after 5 trips to the hardware store to get everything I need. I've learned to hate these guys who say "oh yeah, that's a piece of cake! 2 hours and a pair of pliers and you should have that job done no problem!" Yeah right. Their 'two days' usually takes me two weekends.


Anyway, I'm great at taking things apart! The front suspension was easy enough, although a lot of Bill Williams' thread came in handy. I'm especially OCD about labeling stuff because these jobs tend to get interrupted, so I took a lot of pictures too. Unfortunately, there are pictures on my phone, IPAD and laptop....can't seem to find any of them when I need them.


I spent a lot of time cleaning the subframe with an angle grinder and steel brushes. Of course I tackled the front engine mount reinforcement with the IE plate. Some say you should box this in, unlike what I did, but too late. What's done is done. I also found some rust that needed repair...off to my neighbor again, who cut it out and welded in a plate. Thanks Ronnie!


The ball joints were a bear IIRC. I literally had to cut the rusted bolt off with a dremel....those babies were on there! Reassembly of those were easy peasy. The rest of the bushings, not so much. Here I learned the physics and power of a threaded rod with bolts and washers at both ends. Wanna know the secret to getting these bushings in? Blue Dawn Liquid. That's the ticket! Works like charm! Make sure you know which end goes which way!


Blunt got a lot of my business with these subframes. Steve was instrumental in helping me choose the right parts I needed and even with helping me through installation when I got stuck. I can't say enough for Steve. He loves these cars and it shows. I ended up with ST sway bars, H&R Springs and HD Bilsteins. I don't know why I painted my struts yellow, but I kinda like them!

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Keep at it!  You're doing the fun parts.


By the way, I'd look very closely at those MTC brand upper strut bearings.  My experience with that brand hasn't been good (their 6 bolt guibo). 


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I completely understand where you're coming from with a day long repair turning into a weekend (or week). Keep up the good work!

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