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Help with suspension pinch bolts!

Discussion in 'A4/A4 cabriolet/S4 forum(B6 chassis)' started by AlexGSi2000, Mar 11, 2013.

  1. AlexGSi2000
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    AlexGSi2000 Well-Known Member VCDS Map User

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    [Mar 11, 2013]
    Just wondering if anyone around the north west is familiar with the upper front suspension pinch bolts on the A4.
    Had a nightmare doing mine, managed to get one side done but the other seems seized in!
    If someone fancies having a cracking for me I'm willing to travel and provide lots of beer money!
    #1
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  3. mattyb6
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    mattyb6 Active Member

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    [Mar 11, 2013]
    Probably the best thing to do is remove the whole setup from the car
    So the hub, two top arms and strut are one piece and get It machined out. That's what I did.
    cost me £20 and took 20mins

    easier than trying yourself.
    remove the brakes, the undo arb, then bottom arms and steerin rack.
    then remove top 3 strut bolts. Heavy but then u can work on the pinch bolt on a workbench or a machinist can do it
    #2
  4. vr6gordy
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    vr6gordy Active Member

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    [Mar 11, 2013]
    as above much easyier this way
    #3
  5. Andie0
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    Andie0 Member

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    [Mar 11, 2013]
    What ya doing alex if your fitting coilovers it isnt nevcesary to remove pinch bolt you can do it with out?
    #4
  6. AlexGSi2000
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    AlexGSi2000 Well-Known Member VCDS Map User

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    [Mar 11, 2013]
    Replacing all the front suspension arms. The coil-overs are fitted but the front upper arm ball joints have lots of play.
    Made the worst mistake today - a garage told me it was seized and charged me £175 for the privilege - they didn't even change the tie rod ends as they said they were seized as-well..
    May just have to burn the midnight oil over the weekend.
    #5
  7. stu_m
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    stu_m Active Member VCDS Map User

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    [Mar 11, 2013]
    I use an impact gun to get them out but even then I have had them snap

    once they snap you have no option but to drill

    removing the full lot sounds like a good idea
    #6
  8. BRILLO
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    BRILLO Member

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    [Mar 11, 2013]
    Lots of heat.. Blowtorch or similar usually works to.
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  9. jayc94
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    jayc94 Member

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    [Mar 11, 2013]
    Mine were seized to the point of were i snapped the bolt and a breaker bar, Then i used heat and it came out after about 5 minutes. Heat then turn slightly and keep it fairly warm when you spin it back and forth to try loosen it off abit then use a hammer and punch to knock it out mate. worked for me :thumbsup:
    #8
  10. AlexGSi2000
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    AlexGSi2000 Well-Known Member VCDS Map User

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    [Mar 11, 2013]
    Thanks for the advice - will remove the upright tomorrow night.
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  11. Ollie-B
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    Ollie-B Rockin' Shnit

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    [Mar 11, 2013]
    Fitted my coilovers on saturday one of mine came out the other snapped.What i did was removed the top arms from the top and unbolted the top of the strut and bottom so i could get the bolts out then i had enough play to turn the whole lot almost 90 degress so the snapped head was facing me....... Big hammer and punch sorted the job out for me in quite quick time aswel. Just had to punch it through a few inches then grind the back off the bolt then punch a bit more, once it moves it flys out.
    #10
  12. Pabs
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    Pabs Active Member

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    [Mar 11, 2013]
    I used oxy acetylene it's the best way to get it hot enough, luckily my mate had a garage but you can get a mobile one for not a lot of money.
    #11
  13. spartacus 68
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    spartacus 68 Active Member

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    [Mar 11, 2013]
    Worked for me too. If you go down the Oxy Acetylene route - chances are the rubber boots on the upper control arms are going to be toast. Another way is to spray Duck Oil penetrating release on it a few days prior to removal... and if you have access to ramps get it to waist height - then whack it out. The mechanic at my work used both techniques, as I was stumped. He used a bolt that looked like it came from the Forth Rail Bridge as a suitable punch and hit it with a heavy lump hammer. Couple of decent blows and it shifted. Replace the pinch bolt as a matter of course and lube it with Copper Ease or a decent marine grease before tightening. :yes:
    #12
  14. crazy88
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    crazy88 Loving the anonymity

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    [Mar 12, 2013]
    We ended up with oxy acetylene on mine too, and yeah the top control arms died as a result. Never told the wife that bit ;)

    You can buy an extra spare pinch bolt and use that as to push the other one out as you know it's the right size.

    Taking the whole unit off sounds like a good plan though, we were knelt for hours on a cold cold day, it was nasty.
    #13
  15. AlexGSi2000
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    AlexGSi2000 Well-Known Member VCDS Map User

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    [Mar 12, 2013]
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  16. AlexGSi2000
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    AlexGSi2000 Well-Known Member VCDS Map User

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    [Mar 13, 2013]
    Well, what an absolute nightmare this bolt has been!

    Had to remove the upright in the end - took me about an hour of drilling to get through the bolt then tried using a punch to knock the rest of it out - this then plugged the hole and then snapped. :ohmy:
    In a nutshell, I messed it up a little - so now on the hunt for a 2nd hand upright without top arms.

    TPS have quoted over £300 for a new upright. Joy.
    #15
  17. vr6gordy
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    vr6gordy Active Member

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    [Mar 13, 2013]
    witch side is it you want i know a breakers that have 2 b6 a4's in there yard with uprights still on cars
    #16
  18. vr6gordy
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    vr6gordy Active Member

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  19. AlexGSi2000
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    AlexGSi2000 Well-Known Member VCDS Map User

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    [Mar 14, 2013]
    Thanks for the links, I spoke to a few breakers, all of which wanted to leave the top arms attached.
    They all wanted over the £100 mark, If I would have purchased a 2nd hand one then I may have found myself in a similar situation trying to remove a pinch bolt!

    I have decided to bite the bullet on this one and purchase a new upright - not really what I wanted to do but had to dig out the credit card. Managed to wangle a little discount so got it for under £300, needs must I guess.
    My missus is collecting the upright from TPS so should hopefully have it all done by tonight.

    Hope all the effort pays off, so far I have replaced all the suspension arms, tie rods, shocks & springs, anti-roll bar bushes.etc
    It best handle like a new car!

    Also, created this for a laugh;
    Audi A4 B6 Suspension Upright (2002-2004) | eBay
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2013
    #18
  20. crazy88
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    crazy88 Loving the anonymity

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    [Mar 14, 2013]
    I love your eBay advert, that is brilliant!!!

    Gutted it caused so much pain for you though, such a pain getting that bolt out. It also beat us on mine too, but we managed after 6 hours (for both). We hammered the old ones out with LOADS of heat and a replacement pinch bolt. Not a job that i'd look forward to doing again though.
    #19
  21. AlexGSi2000
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    AlexGSi2000 Well-Known Member VCDS Map User

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    [Mar 15, 2013]
    Well - she is back on the road, 3 days felt like a lifetime.

    I was kind of prepared for the fact it was going to be a PITA and may result in being without a car for a few days.

    Things bolted back up pretty quickly - a mate of mine changed the inner tie rod on the other side then alligned the front wheels using string....

    Went for a quick test - it feels like a new car now, nice and tight all the suspension knocks are gone - turned out to be a worn upper arm ball joint.

    Also calculated the total cost of parts/invoices over the past year - I have spent just over what I paid for the car a year ago :wacko:
    Defiantly a long term keeper this one.

    Note the copious amounts of copper grease on the picture below!

    [​IMG]
    #20

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