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Pinch bolt my arse, more like bastard bolt!

Discussion in 'A4/S4 forum(B5 Chassis)' started by AndyMac, Sep 10, 2008.

  1. AndyMac
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    AndyMac Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    [Sep 10, 2008]
    OK so after yesterdays disasters with my passenger side control arms (see control arm thread), the sun is shining and I'm at it again trying to replace the control arms on my B5 2.8 Quattro. I've resigned myself to the fact that the hub carrier has to come out and the bastard bolt drilled out. What a fcuking ridiculous design! That bolt could just be a split pin and it would do the same job - talk about over engineered!
    So I'm following the instructions on the tech article from AW but I'm stuck again. Nothing wants to come out easily. I have the axle bolt out, which was surprisingly easy, but I can't release the axle as there isn't enough room. It moves back & forth freely but there isn't the room for it to come out completely. I've released the top strut, but the bastard is pressing down on the lower front arm, which is making removal of the arm impossible. The TRE came out easily. I have the front upper arm free, where I drilled out part of the pinch bolt. I can't release the rear lower arm, it's rock solid like everything on the damn car. I had to slice off the top of the bolt as the nut just would not come all the way off, even though it was fine until it reached the top of the bolt.
    Just nothing is working. I've tried ball joint seperators, wedges, lump hammers everything I can think of. Yeah this was a great idea to save a few quid. 2 days and the new contol arms haven't moved from their box!
    Anyone got any bright ideas?
    Also the rear lower arm with the longest bolt in the world securing it to the subframe, how do you get it all the way out? I've released the subframe bracket to give me room, but the bolt goes on forever as you can see:
    [​IMG]
    Any help appreciated as I'm rapidly losing the will to live again.
    #1
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  3. AndyMac
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    AndyMac Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    [Sep 10, 2008]
    It's finally off, the last bit was quite easy as it turned out, I was just expecting it to be a complete bitch like the rest of it.
    #2
  4. AndyMac
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    AndyMac Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    [Sep 10, 2008]
    [​IMG]
    Here's what's left of the pinchbolt, after 3 hours of blow torch & whacking it with a lump hammer, it moved about 1mm. Just need to put it all back together again now!
    [​IMG]
    #3
  5. Caesium
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    Caesium My BM is fixed!

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    [Sep 10, 2008]
    sounds like you had a right mare, under control now?
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  6. AndyMac
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    AndyMac Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    [Sep 10, 2008]
    I'll let you know Chris. I'm sure it isn't usually as difficult as this, and the other side will certainly be easier (if I can face doing it). At least refit should be relatively straight forward (why on earth did I say that?).
    #5
  7. aragorn
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    aragorn "Stick a V8 in it!" Staff Member Moderator VCDS Map User

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    [Sep 10, 2008]
    one side of mine the pinch bolt came right out

    other side needed drilled out

    I was taking everything out anyway as i had to do the bearings in the front hubs and yes the refit does generally go pretty easily. Just dont tighten the control arm to subframe/bracket thing bolts up with the suspension at full droop or you'll wreck all the bushes. I stuck a jack under the leg and jacked it up until it started lifting the car before tightening them up.
    #6
  8. Issac Hunt
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    Issac Hunt Active Member

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    [Sep 10, 2008]
    This is one job I dont look forward to!
    #7
  9. AndyMac
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    AndyMac Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    [Sep 10, 2008]
    Good tip aragon, thanks. The Haynes manual suggests refitting the roadwheel before torqueing up the bolts, which would be interesting/impossible.
    #8
  10. AndyMac
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    AndyMac Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    [Sep 10, 2008]
    Anyone know the significance of the smooth sided nuts and the serrated sided nuts?
    I have 2 serrated nuts and 4 smooth ones all the same size. I have the same on the old nuts but didn't carefully catalogue which came from where.
    I think the serrated ones are for the top arms where they join the top of the strut as these don't move much?
    #9
  11. olds_kool
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    olds_kool Active Member VCDS Map User

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    [Sep 10, 2008]
    i coated everything with copper grease on re-assembly, just in case i had to undo again, which i did a year later to replace shocks, pulled pinch bolt out with fingertips second time around,
    first time around, the side i did first just needed a good few whacks with a big hammer, the other side was a nightmare, but that seems to always happen whenever i do something to the car!
    #10
  12. mwarrey
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    mwarrey Member

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    [Sep 10, 2008]
    I have changed the anti roll bar links and a lower bent arm. One thing I did notice is to get the car level i.e just dont jack up one side higher than the other, this will put things under tension and make removal\refitting a lot harder.
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  13. aragorn
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    aragorn "Stick a V8 in it!" Staff Member Moderator VCDS Map User

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    [Sep 10, 2008]
    the antiroll bar links especially are under tension if the cars at different heights from side to side, but then thats its job! If both sides are on stands and at full droop then it shouldnt be under tension.

    I'd imagine the nuts with serrated inners are to act as some form of locking device, can you see any marks on the subframe or top mount bracket where they were before? None of the bolts will move once they are tight, thats the entire purpose of them being there! All the pivoting is done in the bush itself, the bolts dont move!

    I also coated everything in copper grease including LOTS in and around the pinch bolt!

    Andy: You'll find that with a 4 post lift it would become rather easy to have the car sitting on its roadwheels before torquing the bolts, but when your working on the floor with some axle stands and a jack its just not possible!
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  14. AndyMac
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    AndyMac Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    [Sep 10, 2008]
    Finally got everything refitted tonight (at 11pm!)
    Took longer than it should as I foolishly connected the reverse "C" part before getting everything hooked up and there was no way I could get the rear lower in place. Took off the "C" and it was easy, so that wasted an hour. Someone really should explain the refit procedure as "refitting is just the reverse of removal" really pisses me off as it rarely is the same.
    So without that issue it should have taken about 3 hours to fit all the new stuff.
    I copper greased the bastard pinchbolt (the old one was bone dry and rusty once I got it out) and the TRE as recommended.
    Just the other side to do now!
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  15. AndyMac
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    AndyMac Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    [Sep 11, 2008]
    Would you believe it? The drivers side came out with a light tap! Result!!!!
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  16. AndyMac
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    AndyMac Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    [Sep 11, 2008]
    Well that's more like it, 4.5 hours to do the whole job on the drivers side, well chuffed.
    No way could I remove the longest bolt in the world from the rear lower arm, even with the subframe lowered it was very close to brake lines so I chopped it in half in the end, and fed the new one in from the other side. Thanks for everyones help and advice.
    My top tip - a sawn off centre punch is a very useful tool for tapping out the control arms.
    #15
  17. Siena
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    Siena Active Member

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    [Sep 11, 2008]
    Wow, Andy! Never thought I'd ever see you ruffled, you're usually calm, the voice of reason!

    Well, I've done quite a few, and once you do them regularly, it becomes a breeze.
    Glad you got it all sorted out though.
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  18. Adam-D
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    Adam-D Member

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    [Sep 13, 2008]
    the more i read about changine these the more i dont want to
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  19. Caesium
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    Caesium My BM is fixed!

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    [Sep 16, 2008]
    all these things are good to attempt as long as you go abou them in a logical way, interior trim however is another matter! At least with mechanical components there are not hidden fixings.
    #18

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