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View Full Version : What the frack is an strut mount socket


Arockalypse
08-07-2005, 09:19 PM
Doing some prep for next weekend's spring installation by reading and re-reading the pertinent parts of my service manuals.

Note Step 2:

http://www.arockalypse.com/img/st.jpg

What is this "ST"? Never heard of it. Looks like it might be some kind of allan wrench? And what the hell do you think that dude is doing with his left hand? :scratch:

I'd hate to get the whole process going only to discover I need some special tool. Already went through that when draining the front diff (needed a giant sized 70 Torx)

rumatt
08-07-2005, 09:31 PM
You don't know what an ST is? :kekeke:







(I don't have a clue either, sorry)

Nick M3
08-07-2005, 09:49 PM
Special Tool.

And if it's a BMW, it's a 21mm impact socket with a hole in the side so you can get an allen wrench in there.

Arockalypse
08-07-2005, 11:18 PM
ST = Special Tool.

LOL! How rediculously obvious!

Thanks.

(Arockalypse = ST)

Nick M3
08-07-2005, 11:39 PM
ST = Special Tool.

LOL! How rediculously obvious!

Thanks.

(Arockalypse = ST)
Now you know what to change your user text to. ;)

Arockalypse
08-08-2005, 10:40 AM
Now you know what to change your user text to. ;)

It shall be done.

Arockalypse
08-08-2005, 01:03 PM
Ok, so you put a hex wrench in to keep the thing from turning while you remove the self locking nut with a wrench.

I don't get what's so "special" about that. Maybe I'm missing something, but an impact or pass though isn't THAT special, is it? A spring compressor might be classified as a special tool, but a wrench? :dunno:

http://www.arockalypse.com/img/special_tool.jpg

Plaz
08-08-2005, 01:34 PM
Ok, so you put a hex wrench in to keep the thing from turning while you remove the self locking nut with a wrench.

I don't get what's so "special" about that. Maybe I'm missing something, but an impact or pass though isn't THAT special, is it? A spring compressor might be classified as a special tool, but a wrench? :dunno:

http://www.scoobymods.com/forums/attachment.php?attachmentid=1866


Hard to tell from the illustration what's so special about it... My Bilsteins require a special wrench just to adjust their height, though, FWIW. In fact, there are separate wrenches for the fronts and for the rears.

blee
08-08-2005, 03:29 PM
Trust me, it can be a major pain, depending on the design. Some cars require a deep offset wrench to do the holding while you go to town with the allen wrench. Not so much fun, esp. when you realize that you have a heavy spring compressed by a pair of rented compressors staring at you in the face. Some struts are easier to service than others.

The best solution is really to find a place with a nice wall-mounted compressor and an air hookup. Compress spring, use deepwell impact socket (maybe a little PB Blaster), done. At home, the operation takes quite a bit longer.

John V
08-08-2005, 03:38 PM
Easiest solution, impact the top nut off.

Second easiest solution for struts with tubes that have an internal hex (allen key): Use a pair of vice grips on a standard 1/2" drive socket that fits the top nut. Then use a hex driver on the strut tube; screw it in to loosen the nut.

Konis are different.

The socket wrench shown in that last picture is a special wrench and I imagine it's fairly expensive. Never seen one in person, only in the Snap-On catalog.

JV

Pinecone
08-08-2005, 08:42 PM
Randy Forbes made one. He just milled a couple of flats on a long impact socket. You can then use a open end wrench on them and the allen wrench through the top.

So far, we have gotten by with using an impact wrench to remove and install them. Supposedly a BAD thing, but we haven't had any problems.

The HACK
08-08-2005, 08:52 PM
I don't get what's so "special" about that.

The special tool allow you to attach a torque wrench to the socket AND use a hex key to lock down the shaft of the strut tower, thus allowing you to actually torque that nut down to a specific torque setting.

The actual special tool has a cut-out like an oxygen sensor tool.

John V
08-09-2005, 08:50 AM
Randy Forbes made one. He just milled a couple of flats on a long impact socket. You can then use a open end wrench on them and the allen wrench through the top.

So far, we have gotten by with using an impact wrench to remove and install them. Supposedly a BAD thing, but we haven't had any problems.

Not a big deal with non-adjustable shocks and if you have a steady hand on the impact. I still wouldn't do it.

On top-adjustable Konis, a couple guys on bf.c have seen the tops of their Konis snap off after a few thousand miles. Both of them admitted to having impacted the top nut on. I would never impact a Koni on.

Arockalypse
08-09-2005, 11:11 AM
I'm only doing the springs for now. I plan on putting on the Koni's when they come out with the wagon specific inserts for my car. Supposedly that should be by the end of the month -- but most likely it will be longer. Meanwhile, I'll just stick with the OEM struts until I can get the right inserts.

I suppose my best option for removing the strut mount nut will be the socket + vice grips method.

I'll see if I can locate a pass-thru socket set though. I found sets online for about 30 clams.

Still, neither method will allow me to torque the thing back on with my torque wrench to the appropriate spec (41 ft-lb). I suppose I'll just guess. :dunno:

The HACK
08-09-2005, 02:33 PM
I'm only doing the springs for now. I plan on putting on the Koni's when they come out with the wagon specific inserts for my car. Supposedly that should be by the end of the month -- but most likely it will be longer. Meanwhile, I'll just stick with the OEM struts until I can get the right inserts.

I suppose my best option for removing the strut mount nut will be the socket + vice grips method.

I'll see if I can locate a pass-thru socket set though. I found sets online for about 30 clams.

Still, neither method will allow me to torque the thing back on with my torque wrench to the appropriate spec (41 ft-lb). I suppose I'll just guess. :dunno:

You can use the impact gun to take the nut off. It's putting it back on that will be tough.

You can either get the BMW special tool to torque that nut (there's a cut from the side of the socket to allow the insertion of a special hex key), or you can make your own using a spare socket, a spare nut, and a crow-foot. Weld the nut to the top of the socket, insert your hex key in through the hole, and use the crow-foot extension to torque your nut. Back your torque setting off by about 10% for proper torque rating.

Or, you can get a torque stix that's rated at 40 ft-lbs. The torque stix will limit the amount of torque applied through the impact wrench to ~40 ft-lbs, although I'm not sure if they make torque stix that low...I've only seen sets ranging from 60 ft-lbs to 120 ft-lbs in 10 ft-lbs intervals.

Pinecone
08-09-2005, 05:50 PM
I just use a small impact wrench that doesn't have too much oomph.

Arockalypse
08-17-2005, 12:52 PM
Well, I got the new springs on. Parts of the project were easy, and other parts were quite frustrating.

But, damn. I sure learned a lot.

Such is the benefit of being a clueless idiot.

Bananna, bananna, bananna!

Plaz
08-17-2005, 12:57 PM
Well, I got the new springs on. Parts of the project were easy, and other parts were quite frustrating.

But, damn. I sure learned a lot.

Such is the benefit of being a clueless idiot.

Bananna, bananna, bananna!


Cool! No knocking, rubbing, pulling, or missing limbs/digits?

Arockalypse
08-17-2005, 02:40 PM
Cool! No knocking, rubbing, pulling, or missing limbs/digits?

It does need an alignment now, which was anticipated. I've been reading up on DIY driveway alignments though... heh, heh.

But no. No rubbing or missing fingers. There were broken ratchets though!

I'm really having a blast with this stuff. Learning more than I ever thought I wanted to. And as you know, I have no life. So all this obsessing over my car fills a nice void. At least until I win me one of them pretty, shiny, NEW lives that are all the rage these days.

Plaz
08-17-2005, 03:21 PM
It does need an alignment now, which was anticipated. I've been reading up on DIY driveway alignments though... heh, heh.

But no. No rubbing or missing fingers. There were broken ratchets though!

I'm really having a blast with this stuff. Learning more than I ever thought I wanted to. And as you know, I have no life. So all this obsessing over my car fills a nice void. At least until I win me one of them pretty, shiny, NEW lives that are all the rage these days.

The new lives are overrated. They don't make 'em like they used to.

(My advice: have a pro do your alignment, maybe with a smidge of additional negative camber)

elbert
08-20-2005, 10:34 AM
Here's the special tool (zdmak sells them for $60).
http://forums.carmudgeons.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=52&stc=1

The socket wrench shown in that last picture is a special wrench and I imagine it's fairly expensive. Never seen one in person, only in the Snap-On catalog.
Although that pic does show a fancy shmancy snap-on, Gearwrench does sell a pass-through socket set. Don't know how good they are; sold by K-D, so imo it's a bit of a crapshoot.
http://forums.carmudgeons.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=53&stc=1

Arockalypse
08-20-2005, 10:45 AM
$60! Damn.

I ended up using the socket + vicegrips method. Was a bit difficult, but not impossible.

Thank you for the pic, by the way. I'm glad to see what the tool actually looks like.

lupinsea
10-05-2005, 04:44 PM
Although that pic does show a fancy shmancy snap-on, Gearwrench does sell a pass-through socket set. Don't know how good they are; sold by K-D, so imo it's a bit of a crapshoot.
http://forums.carmudgeons.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=53&stc=1
Those pass-through Gearwrench sets are awesome. I saw the full set in Sears last December for $40 and decided to pick it up. The full set has the special pass-through sockets in SAE and metric and the Gearwrench wrench, plus a full set of 3/8" standard sockets in SAE and metric, plus a hand driver (think a gearwrench screw driver) with various bits, plus a cool wobble extension that has two detents (push in to 1st detent for the wobble, push extention into 2nd detent for a rigid connection), on and there's the pass-through 3" extention, too. I figured the $40 was a good price for the whole thing.

On bad part, I can't see how you'd hook up a torque wrench.

I've had the standard combination Gearwrenches for years. They've held up extremely well considering I've used 5 lb. hand sledge hammers to "pound off" stuck bolts in the past. Based on my experience with those, I didn't hesitate when I saw these new pass-through wrenches.

Nick M3
10-05-2005, 05:01 PM
$60! Damn.

I ended up using the socket + vicegrips method. Was a bit difficult, but not impossible.

Thank you for the pic, by the way. I'm glad to see what the tool actually looks like.
The BMW special tool is $36, IIRC. 21mm.