More on the front hubs.

September 11th, 2011

This weekend I finished cleaning and painting the front hub parts. First though I pootled along to Bunnings and bought some wood so I could make my old door workbench a little more permanent. I made up some simple wooden trestles to rest the door on. A slight miscalculation on the number of nailplates needed meant to trip down the road to Placemakers, where nobody gets a bargain, to get some more and I was done. The door/bench works well now. Perfect for laying out whatever bits I happen to be in the middle of rebuilding.

IMG_0693_1 Trestle/door table.

I also put the chassis up on axle stands so now I can whack my shins on it instead of my ankles.

I spent a lot of Saturday with a wire brush cleaning up the different parts of the hubs. The stub axles have two bushes pushed into them that rotate over the king pin which is fixed into the front axle. I needed to remove these bushes. One way is with a drift and a hammer but a better way is to make up some kind of puller. I hunted about and found some bits and made up this from a long eye bolt I had. A piece of threaded rod would work too.

IMG_0712_1 Stub axle bush puller.

I welded up the eye of the bolt and then found a suitable scrap of steed to machine up a small metal spacer. This spacer is just fractionally smaller in diameter than the bushes. It slides over the bolt and is just slightly longer than the bushes, about 30mm long.

IMG_0713_1 IMG_0714_1 Bearing puller.

To remove the bottom bearing, which has a top hat so it only fits in one way, you use the puller as shown above. The large flat washer goes over the end near the nut. Tightening the nut will pull the eye of the bolt inwards pushing on the spacer which in turn pushes on the bush. The bush will slide out of the housing.

IMG_0715_1 IMG_0705_1 Using the puller.

I found with a couple of bushes I was able to push them out by hand using a spanner and holding the stub axle in the other hand. The trick about using an eye bolt and not threaded rod is for the tighter bushes you can put the eye in a vice to hold everything firmly while tightening the nut. To remove the top bush you simply reverse the puller and push the top bush down into the middle.

To insert the new one I should be able to use the same device (with a spacer) to be able to push the bushes home.

After removing the bushes I wire brushed the stub axles. All the metal was sprayed with rust killer/metal prep then I gave them a good wash in water and simple green and used a red Scotchbrite pad to clean them up.  Bare steel like that will flash rust literally before your eyes. I dried everything by sitting them in front of my 1000 watt halogen spotlights. I strung a line across the garage and used wire to hang all the parts. Just before painting I rub everything over with steel wool to remove any flash rust.

IMG_0721_1 Parts ready for paint.

Again I used RustNot paint on everything but the brake drums. On these I used VHT high temp drum paint (do A7 drums get that hot?). To save having to plastic line the garage again I took all the parts outside to paint them. I find sometimes it is easier to get a nice, thin coat outside in a slight breeze. You do have to watch where the over spray goes though! I found my nice, recently painted garage covered in black over spray but a bit of turpentine on a rag took care of that.

IMG_0722_1 Painted parts.

The observant among you might notice I cleverly hung the string line right in front of the door.

Don’t do that.

I have about $700 worth of parts on order from the Austin club which should allow me to start reassembling the front end once they arrive. I do need to sort out shrinking the front axle eyes somehow. One thing I did do however was check that they axle wasn’t twisted. To do this you need two 1/2 inch steel rods. You insert them into the axle and sight along them to look for any misalignment. I used some old shafts from dead printers. I find dead printers are an excellent source of steel stock from the steel shafts inside them. I happened to have two the right diameter to use in my steel scraps box. Wooden cloths pegs stopped them falling through the axle.

IMG_0717_1 Checking front axle.



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