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Old 6 Days Ago   #16
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Re: Dropping the rear axle

Top job!

On a scale of 1 to 10, how much of a ball ache was it?

(Asking for a friend...)
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Old 5 Days Ago   #17
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Re: Dropping the rear axle

Quote Originally Posted by gar074 View Post
On a scale of 1 to 10, how much of a ball ache was it?

(Asking for a friend...)
As an enthusiastic but inexperienced mechanic I found it quite straightforward, I just followed the guide in the service manual. The only exception being that I removed the springs and shocks before dropping the axle as I wanted to reduce the weight that was dropping as much as possible. I held the arms up with some ancient climbing rope as you can see in the diagram.

I had two main areas of concern:
  • I'd be undoing nuts and bolts that hadn't been undone for a while and might, otherwise, never need undoing. I was concerned that I'd end up snapping bolts and have the world of pain that come with that. So far the only one that has snapped was the exhaust clamp and who cares about that. However, the possible next part of the process will be to remove the arms from the axle and the bolts there look like they might give trouble. I can't start those yet as my 22mm socket doesn't really get fully onto the nut so I'm going to get hold of a deeper one and then we'll see how that goes.
  • There is one specialist tool that mounts on a trolley jack and clamps to the axle to hold it steady when being lowered. I ummed and ahhed whether to try to make something similar but in the end just put something soft under the hubs so they didn't slam into the floor and used a trolley jack with a large block of wood on top of it and lowered away. The whole assembly is understandably heavy but I was able to lift the whole thing single handed on to the bench although another pair of hands would have been helpful.
I'm currently working out how to remove the clips from the axle that hold the brake lines, just want to be careful not to break them.

The obvious point is that I haven't put the whole thing back on yet so there may well be problems ahead but I'm pleased with how it has gone so far and I think the clean up process will be easier now that it is at a more comfortable working height for me. There is also the benefit that I can have a very good look at the underside of the back end.

The next painful part will be working out how many parts I need to get ordered. Shocks and springs were already on the list but I'll definitely do the flexible brake pipes too as they look horrible. The danger of this sort of job is the temptation to go a bit further than you intended. I have thought that if I wanted to get the arms powder coated I'd need to remove the hub and then I might as well replace the hub bearings and remove the ABS sensor (which I've seen the guide for and which worries me as I thing I could easily break) and so it goes on.

I've taken a lot of photos throughout the process and thought I might write up a guide but at the moment that guide would mostly say "Do what the service manual says" but we'll see as I go through the rest of the process
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Re: Dropping the rear axle

22mm deep socket delivered and the arms are now off the axle and, happily, the nuts and bolts came out intact. They are tough to undo, firstly immobilising the axle and arm while you're trying to turn the nut is tricky and secondly they were incredibly tight/rusted and it took a good heave with a 2' breaker bar to get them moving.

Just need to decide whether to take the hubs off now or not, the disc guards are hard to remove with the hubs on as none of the holes in the hub exactly line up with the allen key bolt that holds the guard on - problem for another day.
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Old 1 Day Ago   #19
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Re: Dropping the rear axle

Quote Originally Posted by Wiltshire Chris View Post
22mm deep socket delivered and the arms are now off the axle and, happily, the nuts and bolts came out intact. They are tough to undo, firstly immobilising the axle and arm while you're trying to turn the nut is tricky and secondly they were incredibly tight/rusted and it took a good heave with a 2' breaker bar to get them moving.

Just need to decide whether to take the hubs off now or not, the disc guards are hard to remove with the hubs on as none of the holes in the hub exactly line up with the allen key bolt that holds the guard on - problem for another day.
Good job.

Have undersealed the rear including the rear arches that where to be over coated and two coats of under seal sprayed on where the factory have missed. Just waiting on the two pack paint for the rear axle for me.

If you need a link for new upper and lower rubber spring mounts, let mw know. Happy to share we’re I got mine that are identical to the perished original I had.
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Re: Dropping the rear axle

Thanks and pleased to hear that yours is getting there.
Quote Originally Posted by FiatFleetFamily View Post
Happy to share we’re I got mine that are identical to the perished original I had
Yes please.
Quote Originally Posted by FiatFleetFamily View Post
just waiting on the two pack paint for the rear axle for me
What paint did you go for? I've been reading (probably too much) about powder coating not being very chip resistant and thinking that I may go for two-pack with a brush instead.
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Old 1 Day Ago   #21
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Re: Dropping the rear axle

Don't know if you are intending to change the bearings in the swing arms whilst you have them off but would suggest that you do and much easier than in position on the car.
The (full) kits are not expensive and the bearings can fail.
One did on me and I only knew there was a problem when the suspension clicked/knocked and it was difficult to track the cause.

Good job so far.
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Re: Dropping the rear axle

Quote Originally Posted by turining View Post
Don't know if you are intending to change the bearings in the swing arms whilst you have them off but would suggest that you do and much easier than in position on the car. The (full) kits are not expensive and the bearings can fail. One did on me and I only knew there was a problem when the suspension clicked/knocked and it was difficult to track the cause.
Do you mean the bearings where the swing arm meets the axle or the hub bearings? I'd pretty much made up my mind to do the hub ones but hadn't thought about the other ones. If it is the latter, is this the sort of kit you meant:
https://www.autodoc.co.uk/dakatec/15728846

Were they tricky to fit, in particular did you need a press to get the old ones out and the new ones in?

Ideally I want this to be my one and only visit to the rear axle so it might as well all get done!
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Old 13 Hours Ago   #23
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Re: Dropping the rear axle

Yes they're the kits I mean.
I just drifted out the old bearings and if I remember correctly pressed in the new ones using the old bolt - it's quite clear what to do when you get to it. Definitely didn't have a hydraulic press as don't have one and the drill press not big enough.
My only concern was that I may have pushed one of the bearings in too far, if I did it doesn't seem to have hurt. Seals again just press in.
Clean everything out well and pack the "spacer" tube with the grease which I suppose is their attempt to keep water out. Mine obviously didn't work as several of the bearings were rusted and one broken - hence the knocking I was getting.

Trust this helps.

After all the work you've done it should be a doddle.

Info.
The bearings (marked 567178 & DCI) are specials and I cannot find them to purchase separately. Had to buy another kit as I chipped a bearing (could have been trying to drift it in - naughty ).
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