13/11/2004 12:00 Front Suspension [Wheels, Brakes And Suspension]
There was a time when we had planned to swap the front suspension modules over from the old Kombi body to the new one. This seemed like a good idea at the time (for lots of reasons) but after some more time and careful consideration we decided to stay with the one we had (for lots of reasons).
Thus I had to put all the bolts back in; quite straight forward and no problems here.
The next task was to fit the shocks (taken from the old Kombi) with the new bushes that I had bought. Once again, quite straight forward; smear on the goo that came with them and push and bolt everything into place.
Then I had to fit the sway bar as the new Kombi didn't have one. I'm assuming that these things don't really wear out and I've just fitted everything as it was when I removed it.
Finally I repacked the front wheel bearings. The photos [enroute] show the process in detail. The tapered rollers are captured so there is (thankfully!) no imminent danger of losing them all over the ground. Petrol and kero proved suitable solvents for the cleanup and once all the grease is off they look nice and shiny! Ooooooohhhhh...
Then they get packed with grease. I've been told that it's not sufficient to just smear it all in there and assume that the action of the tapered rollers will move it about. You need to cup the grease in the palm of your hand and whack the bearing ring into the grease, working the rollers back and forwards until there is grease everywhere, and then you fill the cavity with grease and pack everything back into place.
I was uncertain as to how much tension to put on the locking nut. I've kinda done it by feel, as in it's tight, but not too tight and I can still spin the axel but there's no side play. I'm happy to drive it for a few kms then check and tighten these if needed.
Finally I'd like to mention the speedo cable. This is a very elegant and simple arrangement and involves a sheathed cable that inserts through a hole in the back of the axle, right through the middle and out the other side, right in the middle of the hub. There is a cap that goes over the bearing to keep the grease in and this cap has a square hole in it. The speedo cable is designed to go through this hole and be fastened with a clip. In this was the cable is rotated with the wheel and the speed faithfully displayed.