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914World.com _ 914World Garage _ help with removing front shock top nut (Koni)

Posted by: Stltri Sep 15 2020, 04:28 PM

Been trying to track down a clunk from the driver front end. Car is a 74 with Koni adjustable insert/shocks on all 4 corners. Looks like its coming from the shock on driver side at the top. Something is loose inside the shock tube and/or cover which duplicates what I hear/feel while driving. I checked everything else on the arms/rack/torsion bars/ball joint and everything tight (since I just also recently replaced all bushings etc). So I wanted to remove the shock to take a look but could not remove the nut after loosening it (while countering with a pipe wrench). I suspect the tab washer (which usually locks the nut and prevent it from spinning) broke. I have read that maybe a impact wrench (I have a cordless and corded impact but not air impact wrench) may spin it loose but may also damage the shock internals so I have not tried that route? Any other ideas on how to remove the nut?

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Posted by: bdstone914 Sep 15 2020, 04:46 PM

Grip the dished washer below the nut with some sliding jaw plyers to prevent it from turning and use and impact on the nut. It will come right off.

Posted by: Stltri Sep 15 2020, 05:17 PM

QUOTE(bdstone914 @ Sep 15 2020, 03:46 PM) *

Grip the dished washer below the nut with some sliding jaw plyers to prevent it from turning and use and impact on the nut. It will come right off.


Yes I used a pipe wrench initialy which enabled me to loosen the nut. But as I continued to loosen it I noticed the threaded rod spun with the nut even though the dished washer was held in place by pipe wrench. Maybe the tab of the dished washer broke?

Posted by: porschetub Sep 15 2020, 05:21 PM

Bruce nailed it smilie_pokal.gif ,most likely the locking tab is broken,had the same issue myself on one front strut,plan is to remove and weld the tab back on as I believe it could be tighter.
Make sure you try to undo the nut with full weight on the front of the car,good luck.

Posted by: mepstein Sep 15 2020, 05:24 PM

I use an impact wrench to remove. Takes two seconds and no shock damage. I was told to do it that way by a long time Porsche tech.

It’s not on super tight so any cordless should work fine.

Clunks are usually from the large strut top nut under the large dust cap/metal cylinder coming loose. A pipe wrench will tighten it down.

Posted by: Stltri Sep 15 2020, 06:23 PM

QUOTE(mepstein @ Sep 15 2020, 04:24 PM) *

I use an impact wrench to remove. Takes two seconds and no shock damage. I was told to do it that way by a long time Porsche tech.

It’s not on super tight so any cordless should work fine.

Clunks are usually from the large strut top nut under the large dust cap/metal cylinder coming loose. A pipe wrench will tighten it down.


I will try the impact wrench shortly but here's a quick video of what I was describing. The dished washer is actually stationary and the threaded rod of shock and nut are turning together.

Attached File  IMG_4943.MOV ( 958.25k ) Number of downloads: 51

Posted by: Stltri Sep 16 2020, 12:55 PM

QUOTE(Stltri @ Sep 15 2020, 05:23 PM) *

QUOTE(mepstein @ Sep 15 2020, 04:24 PM) *

I use an impact wrench to remove. Takes two seconds and no shock damage. I was told to do it that way by a long time Porsche tech.

It’s not on super tight so any cordless should work fine.

Clunks are usually from the large strut top nut under the large dust cap/metal cylinder coming loose. A pipe wrench will tighten it down.


I will try the impact wrench shortly but here's a quick video of what I was describing. The dished washer is actually stationary and the threaded rod of shock and nut are turning together.

Attached File  IMG_4943.MOV ( 958.25k ) Number of downloads: 51



Update on this. Did not need to use impact. Looks like the tab on the dished washer broke. Maybe I overtorqued it during install? I was able to coax whats left of tab to bite unto the rod groove to get nut off. Next problem Im having is getting the rod to go down from the mounts so I can inspect the shock inside strut tube. Tried pulling from below with front of car lifted but no luck. How do I push from above?

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Posted by: ClayPerrine Sep 16 2020, 01:00 PM

QUOTE(mepstein @ Sep 15 2020, 06:24 PM) *

Clunks are usually from the large strut top nut under the large dust cap/metal cylinder coming loose. A pipe wrench will tighten it down.


agree.gif

I had this happen on two different 914s. Put a small dab of locktite red on the threads of the strut top nut when reassembling.

Clay

Posted by: Stltri Sep 16 2020, 05:17 PM

QUOTE(ClayPerrine @ Sep 16 2020, 12:00 PM) *

QUOTE(mepstein @ Sep 15 2020, 06:24 PM) *

Clunks are usually from the large strut top nut under the large dust cap/metal cylinder coming loose. A pipe wrench will tighten it down.


agree.gif

I had this happen on two different 914s. Put a small dab of locktite red on the threads of the strut top nut when reassembling.

Clay


You both are correct. I got the rod down enough to peek at the gland nut under cap which is indeed loose and probably causing the clunk. However something is binding the shock rod to come down further. I may have to either remove the top strut mount and redo my alignment later or free up the arms from below. Any other ideas?

Posted by: mepstein Sep 16 2020, 05:32 PM

Lube the rod where it passes through the rubber.
( I can’t believe I just wrote that)
It could be bent.

I bent mine sliding into/over a traffic island.


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Posted by: bdstone914 Sep 16 2020, 05:52 PM

@http://www.914world.com/bbs2/index.php?showuser=18622

You do have the wheel off the ground correct?

Posted by: Stltri Sep 16 2020, 07:04 PM

QUOTE(mepstein @ Sep 16 2020, 04:32 PM) *

Lube the rod where it passes through the rubber.
( I can’t believe I just wrote that)
It could be bent.

I bent mine sliding into/over a traffic island.


Wow. That was quite an impact. But I haven’t hit anything. The only thing I can think of is I hammered on my arms quite a bit to get my old ball joints out of strut few months ago. But that’s mostly downward force but it may have caused some damage. Or at least the impact/vibrations may have loosened the gland nut.

Would freeing the tie rod end give me some wiggle room or do I remove the top hat? Or remove arms altogether?

Posted by: Stltri Sep 16 2020, 07:05 PM

QUOTE(bdstone914 @ Sep 16 2020, 04:52 PM) *

@http://www.914world.com/bbs2/index.php?showuser=18622

You do have the wheel off the ground correct?


Yes. Car is on a QuickJack. I also removed the wheel to take a peek at the shock cover since it’s partially down. Maybe I can put the wheels back on to give me some weight leverage?

Posted by: rhodyguy Sep 16 2020, 09:52 PM

Have you pulled the shaft free of the bushing? Pull on the cover and fully compress the strut. You'll have to reef on the Konis a bit. After compressed you can pull it down and out to clear the wheelwell. Throw a towel over the fender first so you can protect the lip. Putting it back in compress it, let it go and aim at the bushing.

Posted by: Stltri Sep 17 2020, 01:52 PM

QUOTE(rhodyguy @ Sep 16 2020, 08:52 PM) *

Have you pulled the shaft free of the bushing? Pull on the cover and fully compress the strut. You'll have to reef on the Konis a bit. After compressed you can pull it down and out to clear the wheelwell. Throw a towel over the fender first so you can protect the lip. Putting it back in compress it, let it go and aim at the bushing.


After much thought, had to improvise how to push that shock rod since pulling from under failed. Noticed that there was rust in the top hat where rod inserts probably caused it to bind. Will clean before reinstallation.
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Now I can see why gland nut was loose and causing the rattle/clunk I was hunting for (I hope). Anti-seize was applied to thread instead of locktite red, latter is what @http://www.914world.com/bbs2/index.php?showuser=1143 recommended. Is locktite what everybody uses?
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After lubricating the inside of the strut I replaced the shock and tightened the gland nut with a spanner wrench, no clunk now, but seems like theres still a gap? Should this be flush?
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Posted by: mepstein Sep 17 2020, 03:18 PM

There’s a 2-3mm gap with bilstein inserts so the gap you have might be normal. I checked with Bilstein tech dept and they said they get asked all the time but it’s designed to have a gap rather than bottom out and still be a little loose. I did t know about other brands but they might be similar design.

Posted by: Stltri Sep 17 2020, 05:42 PM

QUOTE(mepstein @ Sep 17 2020, 02:18 PM) *

There’s a 2-3mm gap with bilstein inserts so the gap you have might be normal. I checked with Bilstein tech dept and they said they get asked all the time but it’s designed to have a gap rather than bottom out and still be a little loose. I did t know about other brands but they might be similar design.


That makes sense. Thanks for everyone's help. Hopefully reassembly will be smoother. Now waiting for replacement hardware from Koni (tab washer, dished washer, nut). Thanks to Mason of Koni-NA.

Actually found a thread similar to my problems, not sure why I didn't find it earlier. @http://www.914world.com/bbs2/index.php?showuser=2104 had a great idea of cutting the cover by 1 1/2" to expose the gland nut when car is lifted but covers it when down on the ground. This allows quick inspection and tightening of the gland nut if needed. Anybody else done this?

http://www.914world.com/bbs2/index.php?showtopic=288552


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