Damn strut on my pickup! - BMW Luxury Touring Community
 
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post #1 of 24 Old Jul 19th, 2008, 5:45 pm Thread Starter
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Damn strut on my pickup!

I ordered some Bilsteins for my '07 F-150 because the handling was getting a leetle sloppy. Went out in the gearage today to install them. I jacked up the left front, pulled the tire and took the shock loose front to bottom.

Then I got to looking. The shock is inside the spring. I pulled the new shock out of the box and looked at it. It looks the same size. I raised and lowered the arm. The old shock just would not come out.

So I googled it. No love. Went to the F-150 sites and did a search. No love.

Went to Chiltons and for $20 signed up for their on line manual. Turns out the thang is a strut. I think (maybe the Bilstein will work as it had some fittings I've never seen for a shock before. I don't have a spring (coil, actually) compressor. Kicked around in the gearage trying to figure out a way to make one. I gave up.

It was a royal pain in the ass trying to get the bottom of the shock back on. Installed tire.

The back shocks were on in less than a 1/2 hour. I think, though I really hate the thought, that I'm going to take it somewhere and say, "Here, fix it".

Someone drink several beers for me.



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post #2 of 24 Old Jul 19th, 2008, 6:08 pm
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Re: Damn strut on my pickup!

Ran into the same thing on my Tundra. If you get yourself a strut compressor you can scruntch (it's in the manuals- look it up) the spring down enough to remove then replace the shock portion. Make sure you have the spring well secured in the compressor. If the spring slips out it does so violently and so awfully quick. I was impressed but uninjured. You'll also need to pay attention to the orientation of the spring brackets on the shock and the top "eye" of the shock. I'm still not sure of the best way to mark it. I ended up taking the strut assembly out of the front 4 times on the first one and only 2 times on the other side before I got everything oriented right. The more times you have to remove the strut to realign the spring the more beer you go through. Not so bad if you have an assistant to run and get more. Good luck. You'll need it.

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post #3 of 24 Old Jul 19th, 2008, 6:36 pm Thread Starter
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Re: Damn strut on my pickup!

I believe AutoZone rents the compressor. Those are some hefty coils.

Every take the spring off of a garage door. Yikes!!!!!



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post #4 of 24 Old Jul 19th, 2008, 6:46 pm
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Re: Damn strut on my pickup!

Don't feel too bad Grif. I took responsibility and secured my dad's (86 years old) 2001 Taurus last spring and just had the rear springs & struts replaced for a mere $800. That was after the brake pedal went to the floor. . . . drums, disks, calipers & pads on all fours were $795.

The car only has 41K on it and the local mechanic said it is common for the front springs to crack and take out the front tires as well. Perhaps it was Providence that the brakes went. Didn't realize the springs were broken.
Saw the parts and the multiple cracks in the springs. No recalls on front or rear springs/struts either.

No wonder the US auto industry is in the can.

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post #5 of 24 Old Jul 19th, 2008, 9:52 pm
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Re: Damn strut on my pickup!

Quote:
Originally Posted by PMitchell
Don't feel too bad Grif. I took responsibility and secured my dad's (86 years old) 2001 Taurus last spring and just had the rear springs & struts replaced for a mere $800. That was after the brake pedal went to the floor. . . . drums, disks, calipers & pads on all fours were $795.

The car only has 41K on it and the local mechanic said it is common for the front springs to crack and take out the front tires as well. Perhaps it was Providence that the brakes went. Didn't realize the springs were broken.
Saw the parts and the multiple cracks in the springs. No recalls on front or rear springs/struts either.

No wonder the US auto industry is in the can.
Complain about BMW's all you want but, I have a '92 Taurus that had broken front springs. Yep, in such a way that a little more give on the lower support shelf and the tire was pronged. Guess Ford didn't learn much between 92 and 01.

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post #6 of 24 Old Jul 19th, 2008, 10:00 pm
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Re: Damn strut on my pickup!

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Originally Posted by bowlesj
Complain about BMW's all you want but, I have a '92 Taurus that had broken front springs. Yep, in such a way that a little more give on the lower support shelf and the tire was pronged. Guess Ford didn't learn much between 92 and 01.

Cheers Paul
Thanks John, makes me feel a little better but there is still that dent in the bank account.

I didn't realize that the springs & struts were an integral unit. Can't do one w/o the other! I remember the days when shock replacements were a piece of cake and Monroe made a mint after the OEM's went south.

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post #7 of 24 Old Jul 19th, 2008, 10:28 pm
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Re: Damn strut on my pickup!

Griff,

That is really not a do-it-yourself job. And if you screw up with the spring compressor you can get really hurt! Get some of those $$$ from under the mattress and pay a professional. Once done it is a got idea to check the alignment.

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post #8 of 24 Old Jul 19th, 2008, 10:33 pm
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Re: Damn strut on my pickup!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wolfgang
$$$ from under the mattress and pay a professional. .
I think he means professional as in mechanic.

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post #9 of 24 Old Jul 19th, 2008, 10:39 pm
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Re: Damn strut on my pickup!

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I think he means professional as in mechanic.







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post #10 of 24 Old Jul 19th, 2008, 10:57 pm
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Re: Damn strut on my pickup!

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I think he means professional as in mechanic.
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post #11 of 24 Old Jul 19th, 2008, 11:32 pm
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Re: Damn strut on my pickup!

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Originally Posted by grifscoots
Every take the spring off of a garage door. Yikes!!!!!
Yea...I did mine. May have never been more nervous in my life.
Gotta be absolutely certain you are sure you know which way they are wound before releasing them.

I made Becky hang out in the garage with me just in case I screwed up and put a winding rod through my skull.

BTW...I know what you mean about having to take the truck in. For me that's kind of like a sign of defeat. I don't care about the money as much as I about not being able to fix the problem.


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post #12 of 24 Old Jul 20th, 2008, 1:45 am
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Re: Damn strut on my pickup!

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Originally Posted by Wolfgang
Griff,

That is really not a do-it-yourself job. And if you screw up with the spring compressor you can get really hurt! Get some of those $$$ from under the mattress and pay a professional. Once done it is a got idea to check the alignment.
Really. He came off the major $$ for the Blistein struts, may as well fork over the rest for a pro.
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post #13 of 24 Old Jul 20th, 2008, 7:52 am Thread Starter
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Re: Damn strut on my pickup!

Well, if there is anybody that I respect, as far as advice with cars, that would be Wolfgang. I reckon I will hang my head and take it in. I really don't want to get injured this close to CCR.

There's a Ford house about 12 miles away. Their service department is great, but I refuse to buy another truck from them. I don't like their sales tactics.



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post #14 of 24 Old Jul 20th, 2008, 9:35 am
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Re: Damn strut on my pickup!

Grif,
Some parts houses have compressors and can change the springs over. If you can't find one you could also go with a tool from HF. here's a link:

http://search.harborfreight.com/cpis...ssor&Submit=Go

Stay away from the "rod" type compressors and go with the one of the two better ones. The rod type are frightening when compressed. Also read that manual carefully about positioning the spring on the strut.

Good luck
Dan
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post #15 of 24 Old Jul 21st, 2008, 5:52 am
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Re: Damn strut on my pickup!

Quote:
Originally Posted by PMitchell
Don't feel too bad Grif. I took responsibility and secured my dad's (86 years old) 2001 Taurus last spring and just had the rear springs & struts replaced for a mere $800. That was after the brake pedal went to the floor. . . . drums, disks, calipers & pads on all fours were $795.

The car only has 41K on it and the local mechanic said it is common for the front springs to crack and take out the front tires as well. Perhaps it was Providence that the brakes went. Didn't realize the springs were broken.
Saw the parts and the multiple cracks in the springs. No recalls on front or rear springs/struts either.

No wonder the US auto industry is in the can.
Yes! That's why I'm so done with Ford's. Paid much more for a Toyota, BUT will never have that "special" 41k, $800 suspension repair again!

"Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety." (Some really OLD friggin' White dude who couldn't have possibly known what he was talking about!) WARNING: Official HATE speech!
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post #16 of 24 Old Jul 21st, 2008, 1:01 pm Thread Starter
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Re: Damn strut on my pickup!

$127 at the Meinecke down the street from my office and it's done. I washed my hands in sympathy.



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post #17 of 24 Old Jul 21st, 2008, 1:15 pm
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Re: Damn strut on my pickup!

I was gonna say get a spring compressor from HF. I did mine and the wifes.. It's not particularly difficult, you just need to be careful with that spring when it's compressed.....


but for 129 bucks.. Let someone else do it...

See Ya.


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post #18 of 24 Old Jul 21st, 2008, 2:31 pm
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Re: Damn strut on my pickup!

Quote:
Originally Posted by grifscoots
Well, if there is anybody that I respect, as far as advice with cars, that would be Wolfgang. I reckon I will hang my head and take it in. I really don't want to get injured this close to CCR.

There's a Ford house about 12 miles away. Their service department is great, but I refuse to buy another truck from them. I don't like their sales tactics.
Well, thanks! That was a very reasonable price you paid. I have seen the aftermath of a few springs that became un-compressed at the wrong time.
Glad you got it done. Does the truck handle like you hoped it would?

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post #19 of 24 Old Jul 21st, 2008, 4:24 pm Thread Starter
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Re: Damn strut on my pickup!

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Does the truck handle like you hoped it would?
Yes and so does my wife Damn cheap ass OEM shocks. The best was the so called Rancho shocks on my F-250 King Ranch 4x4. They were painted white with the red boot, but had the stock OEM shock part number on them. I thought they looked wimpy.



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post #20 of 24 Old Jul 21st, 2008, 5:10 pm
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Re: Damn strut on my pickup!

A Spring Compressor huh.......hmmmmmmmmm...that's another tool....right?

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post #21 of 24 Old Jul 21st, 2008, 5:57 pm
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Re: Damn strut on my pickup!

Quote:
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I believe AutoZone rents the compressor. Those are some hefty coils.
I did a strut insert replacement on my VW GTI a few years back. The auto parts store where I bought the strut inserts loaned me the spring compressor, no charge. Yep, there's a lot of force in those springs -- probably close to 1000lbs over an inch or two, they're holding up more than half the weight of your truck after all! But the compressor is easy to use, even for a computer guy like me.
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post #22 of 24 Old Jul 21st, 2008, 6:24 pm
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Re: Damn strut on my pickup!

Autozone spring compressor tool was every bit as stout as the spring and more. Big and beefy and compressed the springs without a wimper - would be nice to have an air driven wrench in my collect though. Only problem in replacing a LS400 Lexus is you need to damn near drop the real axles - sweat and grease reminds of my younger days!!

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post #23 of 24 Old Jul 21st, 2008, 9:40 pm
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Re: Damn strut on my pickup!

Quote:
Originally Posted by grifscoots
Yes and so does my wife ....
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lonewuff
A Spring Compressor huh.......hmmmmmmmmm...that's another tool....right?
I think he switched "tools" on us....

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post #24 of 24 Old Jul 21st, 2008, 9:42 pm
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Re: Damn strut on my pickup!

Struttin' your stuff again, eh Griff... attaboy!

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