Strut installation question - GM Forum - Buick, Cadillac, Chev, Olds, GMC & Pontiac chat


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Old 09-07-2007, 02:45 PM   #1
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Default Strut installation question

David & I are putting new struts on his 99. Last night we installed the right front & had no problem until it was time to torque the nut on top of the strut. The nut is the self locking type that has the last thread deformed. Once the nut gets to that deformed thread then the the nut stops tightening & the piston rod starts turning. We used the impact wrench & the nut went down about another 1/4". There is an allen hex in the end of the strut so I guess we could hold the nut with a box end wrench & put an allen bit on the torque wrench. I'm not sure if the allen bit (1/4" or 6mm) would be stong enough to torque to 44 ft lbs. Is there another way to stop the piston rod from turning so we know the nut is properly tightened?

BTW - Monroe has a nice rebate going on struts until 10/27/07. The rebate is for $60.00 for 4 struts, $40.00 for 2 shocks & 2 struts & $20 for 4 shocks. Good on Refex, Sensa-Trac, Rancho & Gas Magnums.
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Old 09-07-2007, 02:51 PM   #2
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I ended up buy a strut tool set at PepBoys, but prior to that, I used an allen wrench, with a good sized pipe on it to give some leverage. I also found that trying to get a good torque setting by turning the shaft, instead of the nut, was virtually impossible...so, I just cranked the nut down pretty well.
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Old 09-07-2007, 02:56 PM   #3
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Does the tool set have something to stop the rod from turning?
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Old 09-07-2007, 03:02 PM   #4
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Yeah. It has a large socket that has a hole in the center of it. Then a long hex piece that slips inside that socket that has various ends on it to fit different struts. OK - took a bit, but here'* a similar set.
http://www.autopart.com/TOOLS/TOOLSMAIN/tool/T_A450.htm
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Old 09-07-2007, 03:09 PM   #5
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I thought it might be a strap type wrench to hold the rod. Thanks Dick.
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Old 09-07-2007, 03:13 PM   #6
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Glad to help out, Mike. I've tried various incarnations of a strap wrench to hold it in the past, but was never able to get quite the grip that I needed.
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Old 09-07-2007, 03:17 PM   #7
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Not a great thing to do here.. But in the past I have grabbed a good towel and attached a Pair of Vice Grips to the top of the shaft... And then attacked it with an impact.. But at times due to the new lock nut that comes with the strut( At times I have found it almost impossible to install that nut ).... I have actually reused the Factory Strut nut..

To remove that nut when we replace the Struts we attach the larger Vice Grips to hold the shaft..

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Old 09-07-2007, 03:26 PM   #8
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So, let me get this straight. This is a thread about Strut Nuts, right? I knew it right away when I saw who had posted in it :P

Mike, I know better than to ask this question, but since you mentioned Reflex...
What did you get? SensaTracs?

Dick, how does the price on that kit you linked to compare to what you paid at Pep Boys? That looks like a decent set.
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Old 09-07-2007, 04:00 PM   #9
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Boy...how many nuts does it take to figure this one out? (Good thing we are gearheads instead of nut jobs)

Mike..I'm sorry to hear your pain. I've heard the tools work and take great effort. Personally...I am happy to help swap any non-N* motor with my mechanic buddy in trade for money and a free strut swap. I've heard too many horror stories about changing struts.
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Old 09-07-2007, 04:05 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BillBoost37
Boy...how many nuts does it take to figure this one out? (Good thing we are gearheads instead of nut jobs)

Mike..I'm sorry to hear your pain. I've heard the tools work and take great effort. Personally...I am happy to help swap any non-N* motor with my mechanic buddy in trade for money and a free strut swap. I've heard too many horror stories about changing struts.
I agree about the stories..

And if a Person has never done them before and wants to attempt it... Make sure you get someone who has done a lot of struts to help you/teach you how to do this.. If you are careful and pay attention to what you are doing you'll be fine.. Keep in mind the Pressure that are put on the spring to remove the spring from the strut can be dangerous... If you have no experience dealing with the struts or don't know anyone who does, Take it to a pro..

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