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Discussion Starter #21
Front brakes and rotors installed today, and I drilled out and trimmed the rear spindles...nothing earth shattering.

On the other hand, I felt like I was going to shatter the earth trying to hammer the rear wheel studs into the rear hubs. I know the manual says to use a nut and washer to pull them into the hub, but it just felt like I didn't have the dexterity or leverage. After getting just one stud no more than a quarter-inch into the hub after probably 200 hammer hits, I came to this forum for advice because there had to be a better way.

I read EdwardB's 20th Anniversary thread, where he kinda had the same trouble and he used an air impact driver...unfortunately, I don't have one. However, what I was able to do was put the hub in the vise and clamp down on the stronger metal which bolts to the spindle, not the finished part of the hub. I then inserted a screwdriver into one of the stud holes and mounting holes at the same time, which effectively isolated the hub and prevented it from turning. I was then able to use a 24" torque wrench, which is quickly becoming my new best friend, to draw the studs into the hub with a nut and washer. When I got to the last stud, I was able to delicately hold the hub in the vise so it remained isolated and didn't turn. IRS is next...
 

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Looking great so far George, welcome to the fun. Keep posting, your picture quality is very nice and we'll keep watch as you go.

Mike
 

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A couple of recommendations for when you do the rears;
- use a couple more washers,
- get a standard lug nut in 1/2-20 and thread it onto the lug backwards so the flat end is against the washers. The lugnut is longer so there are more threads engaged.
https://www.summitracing.com/parts/rnb-611-154/overview/
I always have a few on hand and, if I can't wind the nut off the stud w/ my fingers that one goes in the trash and I start w/ another new one.
- slather everything a/ synthetic wheel bearing grease. If you don't have a grease gun might as well buy one now. You know, so you can report 'what I bought this weekend'. I like to use synthetic grease because we are using plastic bushings in a lot of the suspension and I am comfortable that synthetic won't attack the plastic so I don't have to worry about which type plastic it is.
One more, I don't know if you have an Ace or True Value hardware store handy but my experience is I'd much rather buy nuts bolts etc from them as they generally have more unusual stuff and I think the quality is higher. And then there is the best hardware store on this earth, McMaster-Carr. Find them on the web. An example; I looked up threaded rod. They have 40 varieties. And another 12 similar products.
https://www.mcmaster.com/threaded-rods
Even if you don't buy from them they are a great resource for info. And they ship quickly. Most are 2 days but my record is a little over 23 hours from my order on the website to at my front door.
 

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I'll echo what CraigS says about more washers. I had to replace one of my rear studs. Used three washers, a thin smear of grease between them, a reversed lug nut, and my ratchet with half a jack handle slipped over the end. It was easy peasy.


John
 

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Discussion Starter #25
If you don't have a grease gun might as well buy one now. You know, so you can report 'what I bought this weekend'.
Wow, you must be a mind reader...I actually made not one, not two, but three trips to the big box stores on Sunday. The first was to Home Depot to buy, among other things, a grease gun! The second was to Lowes to buy a 5/8" bit to drill out the rear spindles (thought I had one, but my largest was 1/2") and the third to Lowes again for the nuts and washers to draw the studs into the rear hubs. Luckily HD is less than ten minutes away and Lowes is about five minutes away...and there is an Ace about two minutes away, which I will check out next time.

Thanks for the advice, guys...I should have asked sooner because when I was done, the one washer I was using looked more like a mini-frisbee than a washer.
 

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Discussion Starter #27
After traveling and attending to life's usual responsibilities for the past two weeks, I was finally able to start the center section and rear suspension. What I bought today: a nice 3-ton jack. Overkill, I know...but with Harbor Freight's leftover black Friday sale, it was cheaper than comparable 1.5 or 2 ton jacks. After assembling the IRS lower control and toe adjustment arms, I had a nice bowl of Wheaties for breakfast and tackled the center section.

First things first: chasing the front mounting holes with a 5/8" drill bit is a royal pain...it seemed like I couldn't get anywhere for more than a half second without the bit catching and twisting either the drill, my wrist, or the center section. So I first used a 1/2" bit and rounded the holes' edges by pivoting the bit clockwise and counterclockwise while the drill bit was spinning. I'm sure there is a technical term for this, which you'd think I know with all of the home construction I've done., but I don't. Then, using the 5/8" bit, I sprayed some lithium grease in the hole and and put the drill in reverse. By using it in reverse with the aid of the lithium grease, I was able to put all my weight on the drill without the bit binding or catching, and the hole gradually widened to 5/8". Each hole took me about five minutes with a few applications of grease. Once I was all the way through, I used the 5/8" bit to round the holes in that clockwise/counterclockwise pivoting motion to give me just the slightest bit more wiggle room for the bolts.

My 75-year old dad and I then started the center section, which felt like a giant boulder after a little while. After first unsuccessfully trying to install the center section like the manual shows, we tried something different. First, we placed the mid-portion of the center section on the jack and used a skateboard from my youth to support the nose/pinion housing or whatever the smaller round section is called that attaches to the driveshaft. This basically enabled us to have the center section off the ground, with the jack and skateboard acting like a big dolly. We pushed the jack/skateboard/center section under the chassis as forward as we could, and I picked up the nose/pinion housing and rested it on a chassis crossmember. My dad then jacked up the center section while I kept it steady, gradually moving it forward and allowing the chassis and jack to support the center section's weight. In almost no time at all, I was able to line up the rear bolts and then the front by ever so slightly raising or lowering the jack.

All in all, and once I figured out the best way to do it, the center section wasn't as difficult as I thought it would be. Looking forward to the remainder of the IRS sections now that the giant bolder is installed...

IMG_2970.jpg
IMG_2971.jpg
IMG_2972.jpg
 

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Looking great!
 

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I recently bought the Pittsburgh low clearance jack. Very nice compared to my old HF floor jack that still works after 20 years or so...

Nice work getting the center section up and mounted, looking at other builds, that always seems to be a challenge.

Sent from my Nexus 6P using Tapatalk
 

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Discussion Starter #30
Man, 29 days since my last post...more traveling and the usual holiday madness made it tough to get in the garage in December. But luckily, I didn't have to buy anything this weekend! After getting the center section in just less than a month ago, I was able to install the IRS and brakes without any problems. The IRS actually isn't very difficult at all, just a little bit more work with the upper control arms, lowers, tie-rods, CV axles, etc. I used some webbing to hold the CV axles horizontal, which made it easier to install them into the knuckles and hubs since I usually work alone.

The 13" rear brakes were pretty straight forward as well, but each caliper bracket is a series of a five or six plates that join together to make a bracket assembly. I found it easier to simply look at the photo in the instruction manual to assemble the plate system, versus trying to read the directions, especially since the right side was a mirror of the left.

One question for those who have installed these brakes: the instruction manual makes no mention of installing chatter clips in the same manner as the front brakes. The clips are included with the pads, but there is nothing in the manual about their installation. Any idea/reason/opinion why the clips are omitted?

Thanks,
George
 

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Discussion Starter #31
E-brake cables installed this weekend, as well as the brackets for the rear brake flex lines and the flex lines themselves. I'm pretty certain FFR mixed up the packaging of the banjo bolts that go on the standard front brakes and the rear 13" brakes. The front brakes use a finer thread pattern, while the rears are more of a course thread. Unless I repacked everything wrong after inventory, the finer thread banjo bolts were packed with the rear brakes and the courser thread bolts were with the fronts. Pedal box next...
 

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Discussion Starter #32
Pedal box assembled. Since I'm at that point where things are going to start being installed in the engine compartment, and because I want those visible panels to be powder coated just like the F-panels, I decided to cleco, fit, prep, and drill all engine compartment panels. They will be going to the powder coat guy tomorrow, and once everything comes back I can start the master cylinders.
 

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Thanks for starting a build thread, I am one of those who will read through this (as i have many others) and convince myself that it is something I can and should do (alright the should part doesn't take much convincing). Keep up the good work!
 
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