Front end rebuild... the beginning to the final chapter - Page 2
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Thread: Front end rebuild... the beginning to the final chapter

  1. #21
    OpelGT.com Übermoderator kwilford's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by oldopelguy
    And now, back to Thom's bolts, the candle trick would be my next move, if you're hoping to finish up this weekend..
    Good idea Stephen, that was going to to be my next suggestion. I have had amazing results with removing bolts that are hopelessly seized by heating them nearly red hot and then melting a candle into the seized area. I believe that the aromatic and paraffinic hydrocarbons in the candle get drawn up into the corrosion, almost like brass does in a brazing operation, and provide an internal lubricant to the rust. I have not run into a single bolt that has not released with the candle wax method since. Even the EGR fitting on the down pipe on my '75 SportWagon, which was corroded so badly even the remaining threads are half missing, released. I only discovered that trick AFTER I had re-built my front suspension. It sure would have made it easier that the cutting torch method.

    And do this from both ends of the bolt.

    After that, use Dave's method to try to release the bolts by turning them.

    HTH and good luck
    Last edited by kwilford; 06-19-2005 at 01:34 PM.
    Keith Wilford
    Finishing up a bare-metal, nut & bolt rotisserie restoration of my '71 Opel GT

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  3. #22
    Life Long Opeler Thom71GT's Avatar
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    What Im doing now

    I cut the bottom of the back pass side bolt off and am tediously drilling it out. What fun. Been doing it about an hour or so now and Im a little over half way through.

    Im not quite understanding the candle wax thing. What good does pouring wax over the top do? The wax is too thick to get down in the hole??

    Also, how does one cut the head of that bolt off with the sides of that A arm in the way? I have the bushings out and still cant get my cutter or dremel in there.
    Thom - Ich liebe mein GT

    I've had my 71 GT since I was 3 when my father brought it home, and I'll have it till the day I die!!!!

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    Moderator jordan's Avatar
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    Through capillarie action the melted wax is drawn down into the bolt/control arm interface, the superheated melted wax can become less viscous than water and it is also being forcefully drawn down due to the heat. It is amazing how well this trick works.
    1970 Opel GT 1.9
    1980 Moto Guzzi V50
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  6. #24
    Old Opeler GTJIM's Avatar
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    Heat & Eat!

    Tom,
    Just heat the bolt with a torch and get some small birthday cake candles.
    Touch the end of one of the candles to the very hot bolt so a small amount of the wax will melt and "wick" in to the area between the bolt and the a-arm bracket.
    GTJim
    Opel Owner since last Century!

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    J D Henry
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  7. #25
    OpelGT.com Übermoderator kwilford's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thom71GT
    I'm not quite understanding the candle wax thing. What good does pouring wax over the top do? The wax is too thick to get down in the hole??
    Also, how does one cut the head of that bolt off with the sides of that A arm in the way? I have the bushings out and still cant get my cutter or dremel in there.
    The trick is to heat the bolt up nearly red hot. That super-heats the wax, and you get a bit of smoke as the wax melts, and some wax fumes that suck up into the corroded area. I think the rapidly melting wax also tends to "quench" the bolt a bit, and "shocks" the corroded area a bit. But if you are already drilling it out from below, it might be to late to try to conventionally remove the bolt. Can you still get a wrench on its head?

    To get at the front perch bolt to cut off the head, I had to remove my steering rack (well, I already had it off to rebuild the clip). But the back bolt head is just a pain to get at, but you "should" be able to get a dremel at it. A cutting torch was my tool of choice, but you do have to be a bit careful.
    Keith Wilford
    Finishing up a bare-metal, nut & bolt rotisserie restoration of my '71 Opel GT

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    Thom, welcome to the "Bolt From Hell" club. Almost everyone that has done front suspension work has come across at least one. Aren't you lucky, you have two.

    Stephen is absolutely right-on about turning all those bolts, minimum once a year. And also about the anit-sieze compound and grease. The best, IMHO, is the same grease that comes with the poly bushings from OGTS. It is designed for use on boat trailer wheel bearings. If you've used it before, you'll know it is a bear to get off your hands, but apply liberally along the length of the bolts except for the threaded area, that's where the anti-sieze goes. Lotsa luck to you in getting the bolts out. On my UCA bolt it took heat, 20 ton hydraulic press, a 5 lb sledge hammer and 3 days, along with a lot of penetrating fluid. Maybe a carbide or titanium tipped drill bit would help in your case.




  9. #27
    Pending Member benncojr's Avatar
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    Thom,
    Prior to take the air cutting tool to it (I like that idea tho). How about trying get the one you have in basement a part. That one you will have to use the spring compressor on but that might be the way to go.
    Last edited by benncojr; 06-20-2005 at 10:33 AM.

  10. #28
    Life Long Opeler Thom71GT's Avatar
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    Good thought, but one problem. The crossmember on that one is damaged and I sure as heck wouldnt want to drive around on it. I am going to have to take it apart though becasue Im going to use parts from that one to rebuild mine. i.e. the tie rods are in MUCH better shape, the ball joints, etc...


    I took the lower A-Arm off the drivers side and now I have ALL of the pressure out of the spring, so when I take my cutter to it tonight there won't be any danger of TWAAAANNNNNGGGG. OUCH!!
    Thom - Ich liebe mein GT

    I've had my 71 GT since I was 3 when my father brought it home, and I'll have it till the day I die!!!!

  11. #29
    Life Long Opeler Thom71GT's Avatar
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    Why those bolts are EVIL

    Well, I learned today why those lovely BFH (Bolts from Hell) are so evil when trying to remove the front spring. Ever notice that it's usually the passenger side? Thats because when you drain the radiator and hang the hose down you let it drip right down on top of those bolts. You're supposed to put the hose through the hole in the front and let it drain down to the bottom of the belly pan, but almost no one does. I will from now on, I can tell you that. :o
    Thom - Ich liebe mein GT

    I've had my 71 GT since I was 3 when my father brought it home, and I'll have it till the day I die!!!!

  12. #30
    Life Long Opeler Thom71GT's Avatar
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    Well, the fun thing is I have a whole suspension in my basement off of another Gt that I bought. Im soaking those puppies right now. I will pretty much destroy that bracket when I cut it off and will need to replace it AND the lower control arm. I just HOPE and PRAY that I can get this other one off without having to destory it.

    Anyone ot there have a spare lower control arm for the pass side just sitting around in case I cant get this one off either?

    Perhaps Ill just grind the heads of the bolts off and try the candle wax thingy.
    Thom - Ich liebe mein GT

    I've had my 71 GT since I was 3 when my father brought it home, and I'll have it till the day I die!!!!

  13. #31
    Life Long Opeler Thom71GT's Avatar
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    Update

    Well, go figure. Ive soaked the front end bolts on the suspension I have in the basement now for a few days. I went down there tonight, put the spring compressor on it and BAM out they went!!! No problemo. Now I can take the lower control arm off and then destroy the one on my car and be good to go. Hee haw!!
    Last edited by Thom71GT; 06-22-2005 at 10:21 PM.
    Thom - Ich liebe mein GT

    I've had my 71 GT since I was 3 when my father brought it home, and I'll have it till the day I die!!!!

  14. #32
    Old Opeler GTJIM's Avatar
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    Ah! But.....

    Have you tried to remove the UPPER A-arms yet ??
    GTJim
    Opel Owner since last Century!

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    J D Henry
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  15. #33
    Life Long Opeler Thom71GT's Avatar
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    Not yet. Right now Im concentrating on the passengers side. Ive gotten out the "bolts from hell" and they were no problem. I've taken out one bolt (the front) for the inside lower control arm and am working on the outside bolt now. Its soaking. Its kind of difficult with the front end off of the car because one side of the bolt that I need to hold with a wrench is facing down to the ground and I have that huge spring compressor on there. So, it's not real easy to flip this thing around.

    One thing... I did try for a second to remove the bolts on the other side, the side you need, and I think they are going to give me a problem. I'll work on it some more tonight and keep you up to date. Ill also post a pic of it with the compressor on it, so you can get a good idea of what Im dealing with.
    Thom - Ich liebe mein GT

    I've had my 71 GT since I was 3 when my father brought it home, and I'll have it till the day I die!!!!

  16. #34
    Life Long Opeler Thom71GT's Avatar
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    Other Front end with Spring Compressor

    Ok, this is my spare front end in the basement with the spring compressor on it. I have ALL (YAY!!!) of the bolts out of the side I need and will now try to get them out of the other side. But,.... they seem less willing (BOO!!!!!)
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    Thom - Ich liebe mein GT

    I've had my 71 GT since I was 3 when my father brought it home, and I'll have it till the day I die!!!!

  17. #35
    Opeler krewzer's Avatar
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    ball joint numbers

    Are GT ball joints the same as Kadet 1.1 joints? AutopartsGiant has several part numbers for Moog, TRW, and AC Delco. I searched 1970 Opel GT and got 2 part #'s for lower and 2 for upper. However, their description for the application didn't match my search criteria.

    Any experience with parts other than OGTS offers? I need them fast, and if my local parts house can get them in one day, that would be preferable to half a week.

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  19. #37
    Life Long Opeler Thom71GT's Avatar
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    Buwaha Ha Ha

    DIE Bolts!!!!!
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    Thom - Ich liebe mein GT

    I've had my 71 GT since I was 3 when my father brought it home, and I'll have it till the day I die!!!!

  20. #38
    Old Opeler GTJIM's Avatar
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    Some Numbers ...

    All the upper ball joints are the same Opel part number - 310807

    However there are some differences with the lower ones:

    69-73 GT - 352814

    66-67 Kadett to Chasis No. 694058 - 352805 then 352806

    1967 1/2 Kadett - 352809

    68-70 Kadett - 352814 (same as GT)

    The earlier Kadett lower ones have smaller tapers but I believe that the ball joints will fit in the lower A-arm and the spindle can be reamed out for the larger taper, later style. Anyone confirm that?
    GTJim
    Opel Owner since last Century!

    Copyright © 2000-2009
    J D Henry
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  21. #39
    Life Long Opeler Thom71GT's Avatar
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    Tech tip - Removing Bushings!!!

    Gary,

    First off, I know you'll put this in the right forum. Sorry.

    This is for those who are replacing those old control arm bushings with the new poly ones. Or, heck even if your just replacing them with original rubber ones
    .... this should help.

    Anyway, I know that they tell you to basically burn out the old bushings, take an exacto knife and hack away and have fun. Well, I was doing just that when I took my drill with about a 1/4 inch bit on it and poked through the bushing. The rubber caught the bit and basically spun it all around the outside of the bushing loosening it from the sides of the casing wall. As I let it go and go, it slowly (but much faster than my other progress), removed it from the inside of the casing. After a minute or two, I took my needle nose plyers and pulled it right out.

    I then tried it on the other side, which was probably still 3/4th in tact and it did the same thing. SWEET!!!!!

    Hope this helps!!!
    Last edited by Thom71GT; 07-01-2005 at 10:52 PM.
    Thom - Ich liebe mein GT

    I've had my 71 GT since I was 3 when my father brought it home, and I'll have it till the day I die!!!!

  22. #40
    baz
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    boomerang opeler baz's Avatar
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    thom it gives me nightmares when folks say do this

    the times i've seen drills catch on rubber and plastics and whip round , took 1 guy to hospital to have 4 dislocated fingers put back in and the doc said he was lucky not to lose a finger
    An Eagle may fly high but a Weasel doesnt get sucked into a jet engine.

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