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Steering rebuild without removing the springs

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  • Steering: Steering rebuild without removing the springs

    I`ve ben driving my Avanti for a couple of years now that I rebuilt almost every component on it, but I put off rebuilding the front suspension until now. I`ve rebuilt quite a few front suspensions over the years and just really don`t enjoy the job, but I had put this job off as long as I could. The bushings were overdue for replacement so a couple of weeks ago I got started. I didn`t want to disassemble the king pins or outer pivots because they were in great shape due to the low mileage on the car. After I removed the wheels I put a jack under the bottom of the king pin, installed a spring compressor, unbolted the sway bar, and removed the upper A arm from the frame.

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    I was then able to rotate the arm outward for access to the bushings and using a bushing removal tool, I pressed them out.

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    I used the same tool to press the new bushings in place being careful to not rotate the inner shaft which would change the alignment.

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    I then removed the jack and removed the lower A arm.

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    I again used the bushing tool and replaced the bushings in the lower A arms. None of this is as easy as it sounds because everything was stuck, rusty or in the case of the bushing, deteriorated to the point that a BIG hammer and chisel were necessary. This also took place over a couple of weeks because I worked on it when I was in the mood.

    After finishing the rebuild, I installed a "new" used steering box I bought from Sals 54 here on the forum. The box on my car had been run without lube for a long time before I got the car and was very stiff. To remove the old one I removed the booster and master cylinder, starter and solenoid. It still took two days part time but it was worth it.

    The old steering box
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    The replacement
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    While I was at it, my original steering wheel was broken so I figured now was a good time to replace it also, so until I get around to fixing the old wheel I`ll use this one.

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    So now everything has been replaced and the car drives like a new one. It was a lot of work and wouldn`t have been as hard if I wasn`t 70, but it was all worth it.

  • #2
    Congrats on a difficult operation performed well.

    jack vines
    PackardV8

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    • #3
      Well done and thanks for posting. Bob

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      • #4
        That is one strange looking Hub on that Axle, is that some kind of Custom Wheel Adapter?
        StudeRich
        Second Generation Stude Driver,
        Proud '54 Starliner Owner

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        • #5
          Is that an OTC 'ball joint tool'? How does it 'pull' the bushings out? Or did you air hammer them out? Thanks...

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          • #6
            Yeah, neat tool, but how does it pull the old bushing out? I have used an air chisel on lowers with everything bolted up but uppers still need the personal touch. Ditto on age. any short cuts are welcome, my Grand Daughter isnt learning very fast!Thanks Doofus

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            • #7
              Thanks guys, I posted this because I know some of you haven`t seen this done before. The tool I used is one I bought on Ebay for about $60. It has adapters to remove and install the bushings and it did a pretty good job. I don`t know any other way to do this job unless the A arms were removed and that would have caused my a lot of extra work.
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              The wheel adapter is for my Knock off wheels.
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              • #8
                Interesting thread!...And it looks to me like you have a REALLY NICE Avanti there!

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                • #9
                  Thanks, I`ve rebuilt, replaced, or repaired just about every piece of this car since I bought it in 2012.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by StudeRich View Post
                    That is one strange looking Hub on that Axle, is that some kind of Custom Wheel Adapter?
                    Looks like a "true" knock off hub with a real spinner nut !!!

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                    • #11
                      That`s what it is.

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