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Alec

Sheared shock absorber piston rod

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One of the last things I need to do before I start putting the front suspension back together is to replace the shocks and rubber in the strut assembly. Unfortunately, I sheared the top of the strut where you grip onto it and keep it immobile while removing the larger nut. I've tried using vicegrips on the piston tube, but it still is able to rotate when I torque the 19mm nut.

 

It appears to have had blue loctite applied, and I tried using a soldering iron to melt/loosen it. Still no avail. What would you do next?  

 

I'm thinking about getting some V-Jaw Vice Grips to supplement the 7-inch vice grips that I've been using. Any ideas for alternatives or suggestions?

 

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How about a small pipe wrench?  You'll booger up the threads regardless, but once you have the nut started you can grind off the messed up threads and cut a screwdriver slot in the broken off rod end.  

 

Last ditch effort...Since you're not gonna re-use that strut insert anyway, if you can compress the road spring enough to work a grinding wheel or cutoff wheel (like on a Dremel tool) into the vicinity of the strut rod below the bearing, you can cut through it and  remove the cut off rod along with the strut bearing.  I don't think a hacksaw blade will make a dent in that chrome plated strut rod.

 

mike

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Do you have access to an air impact gun? I was taught to just zip that nut off/on with air rather than try to double wrench it.

If that isn't an option, Mike's suggestion of trying a pipe wrench is a good one. Might do a better job of grabbing the piston tube than vice grips.

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+1 on Mike's pipe wrench idea, but not a small one, get a huge one, and use it on the piston tube (as bento suggested) rather than the threads. This happened to me about a year ago, and that worked surprisingly well. I expected the pipe wrench wouldn't work well on that slick piston, but it did fine!

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(edited)

+1 on using an impact wrench.  If that isn't available and if you are replacing the strut insert, compress your spring, and cut the shaft off.

Edited by 732002Malaga

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Drill vertically down through the wall of the nut and then use a sharp cold chisel on it to split the nut.

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Use an air impact gun.  It is surprising easy to take off that nut.  BUT, do not use the air impact gun to put it back on.

 

Good luck.

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(edited)

Yes on pulsing the impact after compressing the spring.

 

If you're going to chuck the strut insert and if the impact doesn't work, a zip cut the nut down the side.  Looks like the strut mount rubber is starting to go, so don't worry about dinging it.

 

edit: oh yeah, hang on to that little wrench, it's a good one!

Edited by xferboy

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I've got a Ryobi electric impact/hammer gun i purchase JUST for suspension work. It's not as torqey as air tools, but hits hard enough to loosen/tighten these nuts without much fight, and usually without having any spin to the shaft.

 

If there's an extra stubborn one, I have a few sets of rubber strap wrenches that grip really well, and I'll use those to keep the strut rod from spinning.

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Thanks all, I'll pick up a pipe wrench and give it a go this weekend. Unfortunately I don't have access to an impact gun (unless somebody in the Providence area wants to lend me one!).

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Thanks all, I'll pick up a pipe wrench and give it a go this weekend. Unfortunately I don't have access to an impact gun (unless somebody in the Providence area wants to lend me one!).

 

Take the assembly to any auto shop and they will do it for you. Most of the time for free, may be for $10. 

 

As for the impacts, i decided to go electric since i was using it at the track and autocrosses a lot. Makes changing tires in the rain a lot faster :)  I love my Makita. It is not cheap, but 325 ft lb is sufficient for pretty much anything on our cars including the rear axle nut.

 

http://amzn.to/1psLKAu

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Take the assembly to any auto shop and they will do it for you. Most of the time for free, may be for $10.

As for the impacts, i decided to go electric since i was using it at the track and autocrosses a lot. Makes changing tires in the rain a lot faster :) I love my Makita. It is not cheap, but 325 ft lb is sufficient for pretty much anything on our cars including the rear axle nut.

http://amzn.to/1psLKAu

The Makita looks like a great option as an alternative. It seems like the overall cost would be about the same as a basic air setup too. Probably not in my immediate budget, but I will be on the lookout.

Sent from my Nexus 6P using Tapatalk

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The Makita looks like a great option as an alternative. It seems like the overall cost would be about the same as a basic air setup too. Probably not in my immediate budget, but I will be on the lookout.

Sent from my Nexus 6P using Tapatalk

 

I've used the Harbor Freight ones, for light use (not daily) they work fine on a budget.

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I have a corded harbor freight impact. For the garage but has been perfectly fine on odd auto jobs. Doesn't get much use though.

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