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Changing rear struts without pulling the axle? 87 GL wagon

Suspension Maintenance Rear

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12 replies to this topic

#1 Brianmitchtay

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Posted 13 April 2018 - 09:12 PM

Hi Guys, I'm planning to replace my rear struts this coming weekend and much to my surprise and chagrin, the FSM says that in order to change the rear struts, you have to pull the rear axles, pull the driveshaft - err, prop shaft, then drop the entire crossmember and rear differential, just to remove the strut!

 

If I wasn't reading the manual I would have just thought it'd be possible to jack up the car, compress the spring, then undo the two upper mount bolts and the lower bolt, pull the strut, and replace. Bam.

 

A quick search doesn't bring anything up in the forums here. Although I'm now confident that lots of people have done this (and that one person is convinced the factory struts are so great they never need to be replaced). 

 

Any insights? It's a dual range 4wd if that matters. Hopefully they can be changed without having to get into the rear diff or driveline at all, it'd be nice to save a few hours on this one.



#2 el_freddo

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Posted 14 April 2018 - 01:17 AM

No need to do all that.

Jack the car, undo the two upper bolts and the lower bolt on the swing arm and remove the strut/shock and spring combo.

Removing the tyre can give you more room to work with - and will make aligning the lower mount easier as you're not having to lift as much weight to slide the bolt in the hole ;)

Cheers

Bennie

#3 jono

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Posted 14 April 2018 - 07:52 AM

Use spray lube before you start. Make sure bolts then run nice n clean through the threads before install new. I make sure top bolts threaded in by hand before struggle with lower. With ea82 I just remove wheel. That manual must be misprint!

#4 idosubaru

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Posted 14 April 2018 - 08:10 AM

It’s so easy the manual isn’t even needed. It is THREE BOLTS.

Although you didn’t say what vehicle - EA81 or EA82? I’m speaking of EA82s.

I can’t believe you’re seeing the manual correctly or looking at the proper section for struts onky. Sounds like you’re looking at another section that referneces removing the struts as part of a much larger job.

Is this an FSM or what?

#5 el_freddo

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Posted 14 April 2018 - 08:50 AM

Now you say that Ido, the process sounds like the process to remove the rear suspension subframe...

Cheers

Bennie

#6 Brianmitchtay

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Posted 14 April 2018 - 10:05 AM

I'll have to snap some photos of the Factory Service Manual that I'm looking at, technically the topic I'm looking at in the book is "Rear Suspension", but the end result is just pulling the strut, disassembling it, inspecting it, and reassembling. Maybe if I had any bushings that I wanted to change or if I was doing a full overhaul it would be necessary to pull the whole rear crossmember, but yeah, for just the rear strut it seemed like a lot of unnecessary work.

 

Thanks for confirming my suspicion, guys! I'll throw the FSM pictures up here shortly so you can see I'm not crazy.



#7 jono

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Posted 14 April 2018 - 05:14 PM

Or list chapter, page and hymn and we can refer to our own 'bibles'



#8 el_freddo

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Posted 14 April 2018 - 08:53 PM

Or list chapter, page and hymn and we can refer to our own 'bibles'


I don't have any :(

Bennie

#9 scoobiedubie

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Posted 20 April 2018 - 02:38 PM

It takes a press to insert the CV joint into the bearings, in my experience.  So you might want to remove the rear brake wheel assembly, work the CV joint into the bearing but stuff as much wheel bearing grease in there as you can first.  Then take that assembly and reattach to rear differential.



#10 jono

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Posted 20 April 2018 - 04:39 PM

It takes a press to insert the CV joint into the bearings, in my experience.  So you might want to remove the rear brake wheel assembly, work the CV joint into the bearing but stuff as much wheel bearing grease in there as you can first.  Then take that assembly and reattach to rear differential.

Technically, there is no CV joint in a rear axle shaft. The shafts have double offset joints better known as DOJ's. The front shafts have a DOJ as the inner, a constant velocity joint for outer so wheel can turn.

 

It takes a press to get the short stub axle about 10" long? no joints in this at all.

 

Job done Brian?



#11 el_freddo

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Posted 21 April 2018 - 07:00 PM

I've done several rear wheel bearings, no press used for the stub axle or bearing running surfaces.

Stub axle removal = a hard wood block and a mallet
Bearing running surfaces = 50mm towball and a mallet

Works a treat.

Cheers

Bennie

#12 djellum

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Posted 23 April 2018 - 12:17 AM

will a manual bearing race press get out the rears?  like the bolt driven ones you can rent?



#13 Brianmitchtay

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Posted 14 May 2018 - 02:23 PM

Job's all finished up guys, sorry for letting this sit. I don't have much of a routine schedule in my life so things like this tend to get away from me.

 

I ended up being able to just remove the 3 bolts and take out each strut pretty easily with an air tool. The hardest part was rebuilding the new strut assemblies because the old foam strut cushions (or as the FSM calls them "Helpers") had all but disintegrated so I had to drive 2 hours north to buy some new ones - not sure if they're totally necessary but I'm trying really hard to make this car last at all costs so I spent the $50.

 

If you're so lucky as to own your own FSM "Bible" you can find the section I was looking at in section 4-1, page 35. Or check out the pictures below. Turns out the section I was looking at was rear suspension assembly, not just rear strut. It has another section for "Rear Coil Spring" on page 37 and the step 1 of removal is just "Remove coil spring as a part of shock absorber ASSY" It really doesn't need more description than that I suppose.

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And I realize this is the front suspension blow apart diagram but maybe it'll help someone in the future.

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