|Forum topic by MarkTheFiddler||posted 07-08-2015 04:21 AM||971 views||0 times favorited||14 replies|
07-08-2015 04:21 AM
I have spent the last 3 weekends working with my son on his 2002 Honda Civic si. Yep, I’m covering new ground here.
It started when my son was stranded and dismayed that his radiator was leaking. We pulled out the radiator and found the culprit. We ran to the auto parts store and my son was already giving up hope. He needed new struts in the worst way and now his money had to be spent on the radiator.
I bought him the radiator and struts. I thought would cheer him up. It actually worked for a very short while.
The radiator was going to take a week so my boy quickly takes off the driver side strut. We bought a few strut compressors and got the strut together after battling with never before moved Nuts and bolts. When we tried to mount the strut we discovered the strut was never going to fit. Something was majorly wrong!
We looked to see what it might be, The control arm front bushing was all kinds of worthless, the ball joint was just a hunk of tattered boot and rust, the steering linkage was worse.
We went ahead and ordered the parts and began working in earnest. Taking the first ball joint off took about 1,5 hours. Getting the new one in place took a special tool. Which tool a few hours of YouTube watching to find. And of course, the auto parts store was closed by then!
When we finally got the ball joint compressor. discovered I could not possibly use the tool by myself. I even tried to build a few jigs to remove the need for 2 more hands. two people and our toughest impact wrench. Long story – short. We didn’t get the ball joint in until the next Saturday.
I’ll just say that the ball joint was the easiest part of the entire job.
It took until this last Thursday to get the control arm front bushing replaced. The steering linkage was on the easyish side. We installed all the pieces loosely and discovered something very special. We still couldn’t fit the strut on.
I sat there stared at the suspension for perhaps 15 minutes. I noticed the inner axle boot was stretched out and twisted. When my son took off the old strut, he pulled the axle loose, the axle bearings were trapped in the boot. We had to cut the Honda boot clamp off and wondered if a human being has any chance of imstalling the weird clamp. If a person was doing is, they were using a tool I never heard of.
In relation to everything else, putting the axle back together was pretty simple. We got the driver side suspension back together very quickly and did a fair job on the alignment. However, my son said he wanted to start driving the car and leave the suspension to the passenger side for a few weeks.
I convinced him that we needed to keep going. The passenger side has thus far proven to be far more difficult than the driver side.
We rolled the dice and came up snake eyes. For instance, we could not remove the nut from the old strut after trying every leverage trick in the book and a good helping of PB blaster. I had to get out the grinder and get medieval on it. And yes, the axle came out on this side. And yes the ball joint is hanging on for dear life.
And so yesterday, I got the worst pain from diverticulosis in my entire life and had to stay away from any physical activities. Walking is one of them.
Let’s hope we finish this weekend. I want to be covered in sawdust instead of grime. I hope my recovery is swift and our luck improves. I’ve got a lot of wood waiting for me. ;)
-- Thanks for all the lessons!