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Bent strut rod...come and see!

K

kayak

Guest
Had my '76 in resto up on a lift to remove the tranny (leaky front pump seal) and I discovered this bent strut rod.

How do these things happen...and why always to me?

If the picture didn't come through, it's also posted at http://homepage.mac.com/kayak1

Anyhow, guess I'm cranking up the old checking account to get a new set of strut rods and bushings. Anyone have any suggestions on replacement?

My '76 will be a daily driver, so I'm leaning toward just good old stock replacement parts.
 
B

Black72

Guest
Struts

Kayak,
That's a shame about the bent strut - all I would suggest @ this point is to replace all bad parts w/quality stuff and then be sure to have your allignment checked. You may not notice much diff. in the way it drives, but aft it's fixed properly it will be correct. This stuff happens to all of us if we put enough miles on our cars. Not your fault, just your turn! Hang loose and remember you're ahead of the game by having a Corvette in your garage!
good luck,
Mark
 
D

Dave L.

Guest
prepare for one of the most un-fun things to do on a corvette.removing the lower shock mount from the spindle support.before you do anything,go buy some of that blaster penetrating oil and a three pound sledge hammer!spray that bad boy down and let it soak a couple days.then start :drink ing.
 
Joined
Mar 3, 2001
Messages
314
Location
Andover, MA USA
Corvette
1986 "Bright Red" Coupe
Prepare for some well smashed knucles removing the strut from the wheel spindle end. These things do not come apart easily! I ended up replacing the spindle end shock and strut mount by the time I was done with my 69'. In retrospect I would have just bought that part also to begin with. Good luck.
Personally, if the strut is ok otherwise, bushings etc., I would just leave it alone. My strut let go at one of the bushing ends because the bushing had play in it.
 

Jack

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 27, 2000
Messages
1,825
Location
Florence, SC (Timmonsville SC)
Corvette
71 War Bonnet Yellow VERT 71 BH Blue CPE (SOLD)
strut rod source

Kayak:
I agree with what the others say. Last spring I got a hand made pair of new steel strut rods complete with bushings installed (bushings are either very hard delrin or similar engineering plastic w/ steel inner sleeves). I got them from the fellow (Dick Jones) that makes them. They look very nice although I haven't installed yet. I paid less than $40 complete including shipping. Here's how to contact him if you care to. Hope this helps. JACK:gap

R. Jones
4367 Forestbrook Drive
Liverpool NY 13090
djonesvet1@aol.com
 

vigman

Motor head!!!!
Joined
Feb 13, 2001
Messages
3,471
Location
Valencia, CA,USA
Corvette
88 Convert ( SOLD ) /1973 coupe 4 speed/1964 Vert!
Bad. evil nasty...

But I do not think you did this. Less experienced alignment shops would BEAT this into position to get proper alignment ( when the bushings got old or the mechanic could not un do the bolt/nut that adjust's the camber of the rear end.

I have seen a few of these.. where there is no appearant reason for it, once you clean it off you will see the hammer marks ( or other nasty toolage)

If you just driving it.. no Auto X no rickey racer the stock assy is fine. An aftermarket unit will be stronger, better bushings, more adjustment over all.

Pick your posion ( or let your wallet decide )

Mike
 
G

Gunther

Guest
Hi KAYAK

My 68 big block convertible has both rods bent like yours.
I got told that this is a quick way of aligning the aft wheels as the excentric adjustment is suppost to be lousy.
My car is already driving at least for 10 years + like this without problems.
I bought new adjustable rods just in case something happens or the bi-yearly inspection would fail due to some smart inspector snagging them.
In one forum post, lots of members had or have this type of Bubba adjustment . Must have been standard at GM ?
Gunther
 

80convertible

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 26, 2001
Messages
416
Location
Asheville, NC
Corvette
1973 converted to 1980 custom convertible
I got bent strut rods too. Bubba tried to align your rear once and could not do so without bending the strut rods. Several things cause this including worn bushings, worn side yokes( thats what I have) among others. I would check your yokes to see if they have any play. I just ordered a set of race quality adjustable strut rods with heim joints from a forum member. They are slightly used but at a great price. I don't plan to rebuild the rear for awhile so having the adjustable strut rods will help align the rear until I can replace just about everything.

Regards,

Jim
 

69MyWay

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 3, 2001
Messages
4,364
Location
Auburndale, Florida
Corvette
1969 Killer Shark
Yep, this is a one way alignment technique preached and practiced in the church of Bubba! The longer you are around these cars, the more handy work you will find from our friend Bubba. It is actually a genius way to get the alignment done in a hurry without buying parts. That is about it.

I would suggest you go ahead at this point and get the adjustable links on the smart strut system from Vette Brakes and Products. Here is why. The whole thing including the differential strut mount has been redesigned. There is a major design flaw in the suspension system back there where the struts do not move in proper geometry with the axle shafts. Road racers fought with this for years until somebody finally figured it out. Now that breakthrough in racing technology can be yours for daily driving and future alignment needs.

Then again, if it ain't broke don't fix it. If the car drives fine with no excessive tire wear, don't sweat it.

I wrecked my 85 Vette (over a girl of all things) back in 89. Went out of control and slammed into a curb sliding across the bank front lawn and parking lot. I bent the heck out of my right rear aluminum strut. Being in college at the time on a major tight budget, I was able to come home and actually straighten the strut along with replacing two rims, tires, blah blah, blah. Since then the car got more hsp, and another 100,000 miles with no defects in that strut. In fact, that same strut is still on that car.

So, if you are careful, you might be able to just straighten it and get a fresh alignment with the proper cam bolts installed in the rear diff mount to set the alignment straight.


Good luck!
 
S

sac001

Guest
Kayak,

Don't sweat removing the lower shock mount. As suggested above, soak in some penetrating oil, knocker loose or something of the like, and be prepared for a fight, but you will win. Prepare by picking up either a pickle fork, or the screw on removal tool. I tried hammering on the end of the removal tool (that screws onto the threads) but had better success with the pickle fork.

Like mentioned above, you can go with either the adjustable strut rods, get a replacment original style, or try to straighten yours.

As far as the lower shock mounts go, when I pulled mine, the threads on both were pretty badly stripped and I wound up replacing them both. Easily available, and for an 80 they were $30 each used or $45 New (repro).

Good luck!

Steve :w
 
W

wolf_walker

Guest
Had the bent strut rods here too, and found another pair of bent one's in the spare parts pile if you can believe that. VB&P's adjustable replacements are wonderfull.
 

Dad

Well-known member
Joined
Nov 18, 2001
Messages
611
Location
West Unity OH
Corvette
15Gray/8sp 72Blk/Blk4Spd 64Red/Red/Wht4spd
I'm with 69myway on this one, if the alignment is on, or can be, don't sweat the bent strut rod. Unless it were show condition, cut, loose, no bushings, daily racer, or interfered with something in the suspension, leave it alone. I tend to be picky about alignments but not to this extent, like George Carlin says, “ Don’t sweat the petty stuff and don’t pet the sweaty stuff”.
 
G

Gunther

Guest
Hi Kayak
I just replaced both strut rods on my 68.
I felt somehow good after work and thought I need the fight.
I couldn't remove the shock mount brackets and I used the biggest puller I could install. I had to cut the strut rods open and grind the bushing away to be able to press out the shock mounts without damaging them.
See my thread on corvetteforum.com for pics.
I still didn't find out how to link pics to this forum and posting them directly seems not to be apreciated here.
The complete job took me 4 hrs for both rods and I installed adjustable rods.
Good luck
Gunther
 

69MyWay

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 3, 2001
Messages
4,364
Location
Auburndale, Florida
Corvette
1969 Killer Shark
Gunther,

You can post all the pics you like. Either use the browse button at the bottom of the screen when you are writing/replying to a thread to attach a file (50KB limit), or jus use the IMG button above the body of the message, and copy and paste your URL image to the file. (it is actually easier that Corvette Forum, because you don't have to guide your URL text inbetween those two brackets).

The only real concern around here has to do with signature pictures. In favor of faster loads for those with slower machines, we prefer to keep all the sig pics size down, and not set to automatic on posting.

I think those pics would be great to see how you did the strut rod job. There is nothing more frustrating than a bushing or bolt that won't come out.
 
G

Gunther

Guest
OK
May be I misunderstood this as the first pics of my car posted over on this forum got censured verbally . May be they where too big ?
Here are some pics of my strut rods and on one pic it shows how I cut the old strut rods off the shock mount . Of course, the bushings where the reason of the shock mount bracket pins being stuck and had to be ground away.
Gunther
strut_bend_rods_1.jpg

strut_bend_rods_2.jpg

strut_bend_rods_3.jpg
 

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