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Discussion Starter #1
I am considering doing this install myself to save a few bucks (excluding pressing the bushings out/in) though I've read that this is fairly difficult which makes me nervous about doing it. Am I being a big wuss about this? I don't have access to a lift though I have a decent set of tools, jack stands, FSM, etc. I've done the 60k maintanence, brakes, trans mount, etc, before which puts my experience level above a beginner but I'm no expert mechanic.

Also, I've heard that some riding time is needed afterwards to seat the coilovers before alignment and cornerbalance. Is this true?

Comments, experiences, and suggestions...?
 

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Sounds like my situation...I've done everything I can in the garage (engine & tranny mount included) but broke down & had True Line replace my front arms, partly because the labor quote was less than I expected. And I didn't want to do something stupid like rip the grease seals on the brand-new oem control arm$$, or having a bad/inexperienced machine shop/employee screw up the arms or whatever if I went with new bushings only.
TrueLine has maintenance pits. The car sits on the ground while they work so I believe the alignment is done right this way - with the bushings unstressed. I've had no problems in almost 1 year of daily driving, so no regrets.
But it could be a good experience & its always nice to know things were done right (or not,) right? The rear arms are supposed to be the hard ones.
Can't say that I know about settling the coilovers.
 

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The coilovers are almost stupid simple, we did mine in the driveway with just a jack and basic tools. My impression is also that it's better to let them settle before setting up the suspension. I drove it for something like a month, then we aligned and corner balanced it in one day ...one long day.

The control arms sound a little more complicated and I haven't done those.
 
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it can be done by your regular person but i severly stress these steps are taken. place match marks on your eccentric cams (the allignment adjusters) and place them back in the same position and go get an allignemnt right away. other than that its pretty much as easy and taking out all the bolts and using the shock and awe tactic (hammering the lower and upper control arms) to bust the ball joints free. make sure when you put it back together everything is properyly torqued as well.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Nick 95 6sp said:
The coilovers are almost stupid simple, we did mine in the driveway with just a jack and basic tools. My impression is also that it's better to let them settle before setting up the suspension. I drove it for something like a month, then we aligned and corner balanced it in one day ...one long day.

The control arms sound a little more complicated and I haven't done those.
That is what I have heard with the coilovers also. I'm looking to go with Tein SS. I don't want to drop the car more than 0.5-0.75in from stock height. Does anyone know what height correlates to the initial settings Tein suggests on the install directions?
 

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Mine are the Tein HA's. One of the guys helping me also had them on his car for quite a while already and I wanted about the 1"+ drop he had, so we just looked at the position of his spring perches and set mine close to that. Then when we dropped the car we made final adjustments with the wrench Tein supplied to get the ride height where I wanted it, it was very simple ...the other guy's was a singled hardtop so his weights were different. I don't know about the SS's spring rates/ride heights but it should be the same procedure, if somebody who has them can tell you the number of threads showing etc you can set it that way.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
So are you saying that you can adjust the height WITH the car on the ground? I always pictured having to set the height with the car jacked up, which would obviously require a lot more work if using jack stands and a floor jack.
 

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No, I'm not sure. You might be able to adjust with it on the ground, I sort of recall making final adjustments with it on the ground but that was many years ago and I'm not really sure. It seems to me now that it would be a bitch trying to cram your arm behind the wheel to turn the spring perch. But I do remember for sure jacking up the car just enough to take the weight off and then adjusting up and down ...without any jack stands or safety aids, just my floor jack.
 

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Installing the coilovers are cake, if you want to do your control arm bushings, you might want to set a weekend so you can get all the control arms out and ready to have the bushings pressed out. Make sure you have atleast a 40ton press, we had trouble getting mine out with a 30ton. I have 295s in the front and there is no way in hell I can make height changes when the car is on the ground, so its even more involved for me to change height.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
What kind of labor charges are expected to do the bushings?

I'd imagine the coilovers add little additional charge since removal of the suspension is a prerequesite to removing the arms. The more I think about it, I think I'm leaning towards taking the time and doing it myself. I can go with out a car for a week if needed. Plus, it's a good oppurtunity to use my new Craftsman 250 ft-lb torque wrench.
 

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I'd like some Acetal bushings..... what a solid ride that would be.

hmmmm.... time to make some chips?
 

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well i just got done doing the bushing all around and it took 3 weeks to do it all. I only had a couple of hours at a time to do anything but it was quite a pain in the ass if you have the money to have someone do it it might be worth the money, only if they have done it before cause i have heard that some places wont do the lower control arms cause the way that they are in there. I have one more thing to do to my ride and them i can drive it so i will let you know how the ride is if it is worth all the trouble. AND MAKE SURE YOU HAVE AT LEAST A 30 TON PRESS
 

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Discussion Starter #13
What is the "pain in the ass"? I am going to have a shop press the bushings in as I only have acess to a 10 ton press, nor do I want to screw anything up.
 

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"Pain in the ass" means that you need the right ball joint seperators or you'll tear up the ball joints and when that happens, its new control arms for you. Also you have to remove the front upper and lower easy if you take the upper and lower + the knuckle out as a whole then seperate it. The rears you have to take out the upper and lower, and you have to dissemble the rear parking brake, and then you can slide it off the half shafts. I did a write up on this if you search under my user name and posts you should be able to find it. If you have the time then yea its not bad, I did mine in like 3 days.
 

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well i was told that you take the rear axles out to get the top arms off and to get those off you have to take exhaust off and so on and so on . Its just a pain in the ass. I will give you one hint, mark the cam bolts with paint so you know where they go so when you get done it doesnt need to be realined i used a wax pen and it kind of got rubbed off so im close but not perfect. Good luck it really wasnt that hard its just very time consuming .
 

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^Naa, you don't have to take the axels out. I took one of my out cause I was pressing for time and it was stuck to the hub. You can unbolt the top arm and lower arm loosen that big nut and slide the entire assembly out, then you can sep the ball joints.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
ovey1 said:
well i was told that you take the rear axles out to get the top arms off and to get those off you have to take exhaust off and so on and so on.
The FSM does say to remove the drive shaft but only mentions that you have to remove the exhaust pipe supports and then support the exhaust in order to do so. Then again, the FSM says to remove the rear seat cushion and rear seat back o get at the bolts for the shock absorber. Is this true?


StickyRice - Thanks. I'll search for your write up.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Where did you get the ball joint puller? Does Autozone's tool loan program have the right type?
 

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Yea, autozone should have the one you need, make sure you get the ball joint service kit (I think thats what they call it), cause theres more variety in there. Don't ever use the pitch fork looking thing.
 

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Discussion Starter #20 (Edited)
StickyRice said:
Yea, autozone should have the one you need, make sure you get the ball joint service kit (I think thats what they call it), cause theres more variety in there. Don't ever use the pitch fork looking thing.
autozone ball joint separator

Is this what you are talking about? They have this tool listed for the separator and this for the ball joint press. Is this needed also?


Is there any other special service tools I am going to need other than a spring compressor?
 
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