Alex and the Extended City Frame - 08 Sport/Automatic Donor

ctuinstra

Well-Known Member
11/6/2018

With the new bolts and aluminum upper mount, the front fenders look to be just about perfect. With a washer between the fender and the mount and they will be positioned just right.

View attachment 5737

On another note, the tie rod ends continue to kick our butts! We have tried penetrating oil, 5# sledge, tie rod separator tools all to no avail. We have tried banging the top of the threaded rod end (so much it is now deformed) and even the end of the steering arm to try and force it out. I'm not sure what we did different than everyone else but these things are stuck hard. After accidentally cutting the rubber boot we now have to get a new one. So we are taking off the aluminum steering arm and will take it and the rod end to a shop with a 20ton press. Hopefully that will get the end separated. Here are several pictures - maybe someone can see something that we did wrong? Or ???
Where did you get the clamps for the rubber brake lines?
 

ctuinstra

Well-Known Member
Did you ever get them off? Usually a couple of hard swings on the end with a large hammer will deform it enough to pop it off. I had to take mine off but I didn't care about the aluminum because they were going to be replaced, I just wanted the ball joints. One was a bit of a pain. I also had better luck with something pulling on it while hitting it with a hammer.

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Bretter

Well-Known Member
Did you ever get them off? Usually a couple of hard swings on the end with a large hammer will deform it enough to pop it off. I had to take mine off but I didn't care about the aluminum because they were going to be replaced, I just wanted the ball joints. One was a bit of a pain. I also had better luck with something pulling on it while hitting it with a hammer.
Yes we tried that - it is hard to tell in the picture but that flat spot on the end is from us hitting it like the arrow shows. In the end, we took off that piece of aluminum and finally got it to come out by swinging it at the end of a long metal rod - not very elegant but it finally worked. So it appears that we are just not hitting it hard enough - will try better bracing and hitting the other side harder to see if we can get that one off.

Thanks!
 

SliderR1

Well-Known Member
Next time try freezing the tie rod end on both sides of the steering arm. I keep a can of that canned air keyboard cleaner in my shop - if you turn it upside down and spray you can freeze stuff really quick!
 

ctuinstra

Well-Known Member
Next time try freezing the tie rod end on both sides of the steering arm. I keep a can of that canned air keyboard cleaner in my shop - if you turn it upside down and spray you can freeze stuff really quick!
I was thinking the same thing such as heating the aluminum and then freezing the shaft. Might not hurt to put a slight film of anti-seize on them for future. Thanks for the idea, I’m gonna do that with this build.
 

Bretter

Well-Known Member
11/17/18 Rear Alignment

We did the alignment on the rear wheels today. It turned out to be a fairly lengthy job primarily because of having to pull off the struts several times to expand the bottom hole and get enough play to get the camber correct. We ended up with ~1.7deg of camber on both wheels and ~0.25deg of toe in. The alignment procedure from DF was a great help and we improvised a bit because of not having all of the components they had. The camber was done with an electronic angle finder just like the DF writeup. The toe in was done slightly differently described below.

We started with blocking the front tires and jacking the rear up enough to get the tires off. We did all of the alignment with the brake rotors bolted tight. Originally I bought 4 of the laser levels thinking that I could use the magnets to clamp them to the rotor and make the adjustments easy. As it turns out, the magnets were not there and the variation between laser levels was significant - i.e. up to a 3/8" difference at 4-6 feet away. So we ended up using a single laser level to do all of the measurements.

First, we hung a plumb string from each side of the frame at the same location and then put a tape measure down on the floor:
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After eyeballing the alignment to get the tires straight ahead, we used the laser level against each rotor and aligned it up on the 2 tape measures and made sure both were the same. This gave us both wheels pointing ahead with the same toe in compared to the frame:
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Then we measured the distance between the 2 sides and that gave us the front separation ~5' in front of the rotors:
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Next we turned the lasers around and measured the distance between the rear (~3' behind the rotor) measurements:
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Then the difference between the two tells the angle of toe in. For our particular arrangement where the front and back measurements were almost exactly 8' apart, a difference of 7/8" gave us almost right at 0.25deg of toe in. Essentially the same as the 1/8" difference mentioned in the DF alignment write up.

We have had the car up on jack stands for months now and finally getting it on the ground, it looks smaller and much faster! (and is easier to climb in and out of!)
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Next we align the front, bleed the brakes and test drive is on the near horizon!
 

ctuinstra

Well-Known Member
We thought the same thing the first time we go the car on the ground. We were so used to it being up in the air I couldn’t believe how low it looked at first.
 

ctuinstra

Well-Known Member
Did you do the adjustments with the car on the ground? It didn’t seem like it. It will make a huge difference. I was surprised how different it was just putting a driver in it.
 

Bretter

Well-Known Member
We did have the car on the ground for the camber adjustment. For the toe in, no - it was on the rear jack stands. We were thinking that the toe in shouldn't change that much between up and not - and whatever changes happened, then they would at least be equal. If that not a good assumption for toe in? What sort of changes did you see on toe in?
 

ctuinstra

Well-Known Member
Because the geometry, suspension compression can make major changes in all adjustments. When we did ours, we took it into to have it done and while it was in the computer, I climbed in it and watched it go way out of adjustment with me and a passenger.

Now if you say it was on jack stands, I assume you mean the suspension wasn’t hanging so that’s not so bad. I would suggest trying it with at least a driver in it.
 

Bretter

Well-Known Member
11/18/19

We managed to get the front aligned today as well. Using a similar procedure to the rear alignment and Chad's suggestion on weight, this time we had 2 people in the car for the actual measurements. We checked the measurements without people in the car and the angles were similar (within measurement error) except for the front spring tension/control arm height which we did with tires on and sitting on the ground. It makes sense that with more weight, the car will sit lower. We are getting very excited as we just have to get the brake fluid in and then double check everything for tightness no floating extensions (i.e. long seat belts, ambient temp sensor mounted etc.). Once that is done we will do our first test drive!
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ctuinstra

Well-Known Member
That is very exciting to be able to run it for the first time. Take your time. Double-check the coolant level and everything after a few minutes of running. We didn’t get enough in ours and it started to heat up and didn’t register with the sensor because there was no water on the sensor.
 

IDRVSLO

Well-Known Member
That is very exciting to be able to run it for the first time. Take your time. Double-check the coolant level and everything after a few minutes of running. We didn’t get enough in ours and it started to heat up and didn’t register with the sensor because there was no water on the sensor.
What the heck is the trick to this......Fill from the passenger side and then from the expansion tank?
 

ctuinstra

Well-Known Member
What the heck is the trick to this......Fill from the passenger side and then from the expansion tank?
Take the top hose off of the passenger side of the engine and fill it. Not so much that it spills as you put the hose on. I filled the radiator first also but the new radiators don’t have a cap. Keep the tank topped off.
 
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