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Radius Rod Bushings: replace without needing alignment
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epowell
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 28, 2017 11:43 am    Post subject: Radius Rod Bushings: replace without needing alignment Reply with quote

MidwestDrifter wrote:

For the radius rod bushings. Mark a position on the rod, and measure to the back of the rear most nut. Write down the measurement for each side, and make sure its the same when you are done.


QUESTION ABOUT RADIUS ROD BUSHINGS (how to replace them without requiring an alignment?):

It is time to replace the worn out front suspension bushings - that I bought last year.

My main concern is how to replace the RADIUS ROD bushings without disturbing the alignment. Midwest' instructions are not completely clear to me....

Does he mean simply scratch a vertical line/mark on the RR in the middle somewhere, and then measure from that line to the back of the rear-most nut? ...then when reassembling to make sure that that nut will return to exactly that distance? And how to pull the RR out of it's hole in order to replace the INNER bushing (without removing the Spring)
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Otherwise, I have bushings for the Swaybar (lower arm):
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...and Swaybar to body bushings:
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...and also Steering rack bushings:
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Can I assume that in replacing all these bushings (not including the RR bushings), that I can simply remove nuts and disassemble freely without worrying about alignments and such things? Do I just simply place there the new bushing... nothing more required (like grease... or?)

Finally I would like to completely remove this sway bar and clean off the rust and paint it.... is there any special considerations regarding removing that - - or simply take it off and put back on?
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 28, 2017 2:49 pm    Post subject: Re: Radius Rod Bushings: replace without needing alignment Reply with quote

getting an alignment is a good thing. may increase safety, reduce tire wear, improve handling. even if you put every nut back in the exact same spot, the rubber bits have changed, the last alignment may have been set to the old miss shaped rubber bits.


Id mark things to set parts back close to where they were, then upon getting the parts installed, finish the job with an alignement. maybe wheel balance too. what a differeance that can make.

good luck
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 28, 2017 3:06 pm    Post subject: Re: Radius Rod Bushings: replace without needing alignment Reply with quote

bluebus86 wrote:
getting an alignment is a good thing. may increase safety, reduce tire wear, improve handling. even if you put every nut back in the exact same spot, the rubber bits have changed, the last alignment may have been set to the old miss shaped rubber bits.


Id mark things to set parts back close to where they were, then upon getting the parts installed, finish the job with an alignement. maybe wheel balance too. what a differeance that can make.

good luck



X2. Totally agree. The "savings" in not getting alignment can be quickly reduced to well below zero when you burn up your tires, or worse, have an accident.
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 28, 2017 3:49 pm    Post subject: Re: Radius Rod Bushings: replace without needing alignment Reply with quote

Agree on getting an alignment after you do the work. It will save money on tires as stated.
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epowell
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 28, 2017 5:59 pm    Post subject: Re: Radius Rod Bushings: replace without needing alignment Reply with quote

Yeah, you guys are right about the alignment... and shop work is very cheap here in Czech > it would probably cost $20.

But now simply trying to figure out how to actually do the work. I have found some good threads here. I have the early LCA (stamped) so I guess the RR attaches to the LCA via 3 nuts rather than screwing in (I will check that tomorrow). Anyway, I think I will need to soak those nuts in weasel piss for at least a week before even hoping to remove them.
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 01, 2017 4:10 am    Post subject: Re: Radius Rod Bushings: replace without needing alignment Reply with quote

Add in another fan of alignment work after the job is done!

You might be able to keep the adjustment close on the radius arms by counting the threads exposed above the nut.
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 01, 2017 4:35 am    Post subject: Re: Radius Rod Bushings: replace without needing alignment Reply with quote

mellowslow wrote:
Add in another fan of alignment work after the job is done!

You might be able to keep the adjustment close on the radius arms by counting the threads exposed above the nut.


Thanks!

Yes I am now counting with for sure doing the alignment > therefore it make more sense now to dig in a bit deeper into this suspension job while I'm at it, since I will do the alignment anyway.

So I started a new comprehensive thread asking for help to assess what work really needs to be done and how to go about doing it... http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=673558
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 01, 2017 9:05 am    Post subject: Re: Radius Rod Bushings: replace without needing alignment Reply with quote

I have been swapping spring around and didn't want to get an alignment until I was all done and satisfied with a particular setup. I found I could get a decent alignment just by feel. It takes multiple adjustments, drive a little and adjust, look at it at various times on flat ground and adjust. You can feel the difference in corners and if it pulls or the steering wheel is straight. I'm not saying it is worth the trouble or that it is very exact, but if you can't get it aligned on a machine, you can get it pretty close by tweaking it until it feels perfect and looks straight to the eye. I have also kept an eye on tread wear to see if needs a little more adjustment. So far so good.

I'm still looking for a pair of 1985 front springs to try out if anyone has some they don't need.

Anyway, on those radius rod bushings, I would cut a wooden dowel so it just fits between 2 fixed points and then adjust it to that after the new bushings are in.
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 01, 2017 10:12 am    Post subject: Re: Radius Rod Bushings: replace without needing alignment Reply with quote

Definitely get an alignment after rebuilding the front end. I personally like to drive 50-100 miles and then get an alignment. I feel this gives the new components a chance to "settle in" as it were. If I have brand new tires I'll do an alignment immediately and then follow up with an alignment check after a few hundred miles. This may be cost prohibitive for some people though, unless you have a good relationship with a shop. I hate eating tires and on some of the stuff I work on tires can get very expensive, so checking and re-checking is worth it, imo.

As far as the work goes, be cautious of the coil spring. Though it can be done on a jack, it's what I would call a little sketchy. Better to buy/borrow the proper tool and be safe.

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 13, 2017 3:33 pm    Post subject: Re: Radius Rod Bushings: replace without needing alignment Reply with quote

Just reviving this thread.. Does anyone have any tricks on getting the outside bushing on when the rod is installed?
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 13, 2017 4:54 pm    Post subject: Re: Radius Rod Bushings: replace without needing alignment Reply with quote

Hogan- should be relatively simple. It may be stuck on there and torqued into place if you're trying to take it off while the wheel is not on the ground. Leaving the wheel on the ground (or jacking up the LCA) should align the rod so you can pop that sucker off
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 13, 2017 5:54 pm    Post subject: Re: Radius Rod Bushings: replace without needing alignment Reply with quote

Thanks for the reply

! I already have the old ones out.. I am just trying to get the outside one installed back on.. I have pretty much everything apart. I cant seem to get the little cup to fit through the frame.. here is a photo of the part that I mean
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 14, 2017 6:38 am    Post subject: Re: Radius Rod Bushings: replace without needing alignment Reply with quote

I installed the powerflexes, so that it was a bit easier, but I think if you get the rubber centered and tighten then but it would squish the bushing through the hole, no?
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 14, 2017 9:40 am    Post subject: Re: Radius Rod Bushings: replace without needing alignment Reply with quote

You need to remove the lower control arm bolt and remove the lower control arm from the mount first. This give you room to put the radius arm bushing on and then start the nut a few turn. Put the lower control arm back on and then the bolt. Tighten the radius arm nut. Tighten the control arm bolt after you lower the van to the ground.
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 14, 2017 6:48 pm    Post subject: Re: Radius Rod Bushings: replace without needing alignment Reply with quote

I'll give it a try.. thanks for the replies
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Mellow Yellow 74
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 29, 2018 8:59 pm    Post subject: Re: Radius Rod Bushings: replace without needing alignment Reply with quote

stevey88 wrote:
You need to remove the lower control arm bolt and remove the lower control arm from the mount first. This give you room to put the radius arm bushing on and then start the nut a few turn. Put the lower control arm back on and then the bolt. Tighten the radius arm nut. Tighten the control arm bolt after you lower the van to the ground.


Which bolt needs to be removed on the lower control arm to allow the inner radius rod bushing to be removed?
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 30, 2018 4:23 am    Post subject: Re: Radius Rod Bushings: replace without needing alignment Reply with quote

Mellow Yellow 74 wrote:
stevey88 wrote:
You need to remove the lower control arm bolt and remove the lower control arm from the mount first. This give you room to put the radius arm bushing on and then start the nut a few turn. Put the lower control arm back on and then the bolt. Tighten the radius arm nut. Tighten the control arm bolt after you lower the van to the ground.


Which bolt needs to be removed on the lower control arm to allow the inner radius rod bushing to be removed?


Its different depending on what style knucle you have. Is yours an 85? If so you may need to remove 3x nuts/bolts on your LCA.
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Mellow Yellow 74
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 30, 2018 6:56 pm    Post subject: Re: Radius Rod Bushings: replace without needing alignment Reply with quote

shagginwagon83 wrote:
Its different depending on what style knucle you have. Is yours an 85? If so you may need to remove 3x nuts/bolts on your LCA.


It is an 85 but has the later style cast lower control arm. The upper control arm is currently off so I am thinking I should be able to remove the lower control arm bushing bolt and the lower shock bolt and use a ratchet strap to pull the lower control arm back enough to get the inner radius rod bush off. Does this sound right?
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 30, 2018 10:49 pm    Post subject: Re: Radius Rod Bushings: replace without needing alignment Reply with quote

Mellow Yellow 74 wrote:
shagginwagon83 wrote:
Its different depending on what style knucle you have. Is yours an 85? If so you may need to remove 3x nuts/bolts on your LCA.


It is an 85 but has the later style cast lower control arm. The upper control arm is currently off so I am thinking I should be able to remove the lower control arm bushing bolt and the lower shock bolt and use a ratchet strap to pull the lower control arm back enough to get the inner radius rod bush off. Does this sound right?


Once the lower control arm bolt is removed and the lower control arm is dropped, you will have enough clearance to remove the radius arm with the bushings from the chassis. This is the bolt that needs to be remove to take and reinstall the bushings in case there is confusion.

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PostPosted: Mon Jul 02, 2018 11:41 pm    Post subject: Re: Radius Rod Bushings: replace without needing alignment Reply with quote

Thanks Steve, I ended up unscrewing the radius rod because I had already installed the lower control arm bushes and didn't want to undo them. The rods are on super tight but I managed to undo them using a 1-1/16" spanner and a piece of square tube as an extension.

I got the idea of using the imperial spanner instead of the 27mm from here: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=4D5WCIBmB7Y
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Last edited by Mellow Yellow 74 on Tue Jul 03, 2018 1:55 pm; edited 1 time in total
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