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Old 07-30-2019, 03:25 PM   #1
240-FAN
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Default Advice on doing front struts on '91 244

I plan on doing the front struts on my '91 244 here in a few weeks. I have a few questions:
1. My plan is to purchase the Bilstein B4s - any thoughts on those? The rear shocks are the B4s and I'm quite happy with them.

2. FCP doesn't sell the springs and I'm positive the springs on my car are original. Any recommendations on where I can buy replacement springs?

3. The strut mount/top hat - Volvo OE the only way to go? Or is there a better option out there?

4. Should I preemptively replace the inner and outer ball joints? Front end doesn't have any clunks or sounds coming from it.

5. Anything else I should replace while I'm there?

Thanks!
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Old 07-30-2019, 03:42 PM   #2
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1. They are decent shocks. Just make sure you get all the parts. We just had a thread where the gland nuts were left out of the package.

2. I bought 1229337 springs from FCP several times. They were scan tech brand which everyone hates. But they have worked fine for me for over ten years. The spring is the slightly stiffer 242GT spring. 14.5mm diameter wire.

3. The ones I bought to try on my next strut replacement are the deuchparts usa ones on ebay. They seem like they will be OK. But I have not used them yet. Whatever you buy. Also get the plates from user 15A for help supporting the rubber.

4. there is only one ball joint per side. If you don't know when they were last replaced and a bit of prying on them reveals play. Replace them. OEM is TRW but they are getting harder to find.

5. Dust boots on the strut. anti sway bar bushings and links. Check the front control arm bushings. Probably need to replace them, too.
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Old 07-30-2019, 03:56 PM   #3
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Don't hurt yourself. Working on springs is dangerous.
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Old 07-30-2019, 04:04 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dl242gt View Post
1. They are decent shocks. Just make sure you get all the parts. We just had a thread where the gland nuts were left out of the package.

2. I bought 1229337 springs from FCP several times. They were scan tech brand which everyone hates. But they have worked fine for me for over ten years. The spring is the slightly stiffer 242GT spring. 14.5mm diameter wire.

3. The ones I bought to try on my next strut replacement are the deuchparts usa ones on ebay. They seem like they will be OK. But I have not used them yet. Whatever you buy. Also get the plates from user 15A for help supporting the rubber.

4. there is only one ball joint per side. If you don't know when they were last replaced and a bit of prying on them reveals play. Replace them. OEM is TRW but they are getting harder to find.

5. Dust boots on the strut. anti sway bar bushings and links. Check the front control arm bushings. Probably need to replace them, too.
Good to note on points 1 and 2. For the sway bar bushings, I'll be installing the new ones from IPD as I'm upgrading to the turbo/23.5 mm sway bars.

#3 - I'll reach out to 15A and purchase the plates. Does anyone else here have used alternatives to the Volvo OEM ones (which are eye watering at $70 a pop ? The deuchparts usa ones seem reasonable but I would hate to have to take the front end apart again.
#4 - I was looking at Lemforder ones from FCP. Any thoughts on those?
#5 - I'll order the KYB set from FCP. I'm assuming the brand of boots wouldn't matter.
#6 - The control arm bushings are old and seem a little worn. Is there something that can be easily replaced or will it require a press?
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Old 07-30-2019, 04:09 PM   #5
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Don't hurt yourself. Working on springs is dangerous.
Yessir! I plan on renting 2 sets of spring compressors from the local parts store. Any other special tools I would need for the job?
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Old 07-30-2019, 04:27 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 240-FAN View Post
Yessir! I plan on renting 2 sets of spring compressors from the local parts store. Any other special tools I would need for the job?
Have an impact wrench with you for the top nut on the shock, I wasn't able to loosen them any other way.
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Old 07-30-2019, 05:07 PM   #7
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There are a number of special tools to make the job easier. The Volvo spring compressors are a little too short to completely unload the spring so there's a fixture for that.



There is also a pair of tools for removing the strut top nut. One holds the shaft and fits inside the other which turns the nut. It may not fit aftermarket struts however.

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Old 07-30-2019, 05:08 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 240-FAN View Post
I plan on doing the front struts on my '91 244 here in a few weeks. I have a few questions:
1. My plan is to purchase the Bilstein B4s - any thoughts on those? The rear shocks are the B4s and I'm quite happy with them.

2. FCP doesn't sell the springs and I'm positive the springs on my car are original. Any recommendations on where I can buy replacement springs?

3. The strut mount/top hat - Volvo OE the only way to go? Or is there a better option out there?

4. Should I preemptively replace the inner and outer ball joints? Front end doesn't have any clunks or sounds coming from it.

5. Anything else I should replace while I'm there?

Thanks!


I plan on using these when the time comes.
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Old 07-30-2019, 05:54 PM   #9
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The Lemforder ones should be ok according to what I've read here. But I've never tried them.
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Old 07-30-2019, 06:38 PM   #10
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Lemforder ball joints are an excellent choice. Have used on different cars and they hold up for a long time. Just as good as TRW but cheaper.

Good used strut mounts are the best option. Although some people report even using autozone brand duralast mounts hold up for a good while. I stock pile used oe strut mounts that I find in the junkyard.

Loosen the strut nut(impact wrench) while the strut assembly is still on the car. Just break it loose enough so when you compress spring, you won't have any issues removing nut.

Dust boots are reusable most of the time. I've used the kyb dust boots and they work fine.

Probably a good time to replace brake line hoses. Check the rubber hoses, they probably have never been replaced.

You only need to rent 1 spring compressor. It's not like you will be doing both at the same time. You can also buy the spring compressor for future use. Autozone sells the compressor as well or go to Harbor freight(probably cheaper).

Most people use poly bushings for the control arms. If you use rubber bushings, you will need a press but not recommended for a first timer. You can easily deform the control arm if you don't know what you're doing.

If the tie rods are worn(inner or outer), replace as needed. You will need do an alignment afterwards. Autozone sells the tool for about $20 but you can find good deals on ebay. Here's the tie rod tool that you will need to remove the inner tie rods.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Inner-Tie-R...f3e999c17c4e32

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Old 07-31-2019, 09:27 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dl242gt View Post
The Lemforder ones should be ok according to what I've read here. But I've never tried them.
Lemforder and TRW are the same now....ask me how I know
I'll proceed with replacing the inner and outer tie rods - might as well.
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Old 07-31-2019, 09:30 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by white855T View Post
Lemforder ball joints are an excellent choice. Have used on different cars and they hold up for a long time. Just as good as TRW but cheaper.

Good used strut mounts are the best option. Although some people report even using autozone brand duralast mounts hold up for a good while. I stock pile used oe strut mounts that I find in the junkyard.

Loosen the strut nut(impact wrench) while the strut assembly is still on the car. Just break it loose enough so when you compress spring, you won't have any issues removing nut.

Dust boots are reusable most of the time. I've used the kyb dust boots and they work fine.

Probably a good time to replace brake line hoses. Check the rubber hoses, they probably have never been replaced.

You only need to rent 1 spring compressor. It's not like you will be doing both at the same time. You can also buy the spring compressor for future use. Autozone sells the compressor as well or go to Harbor freight(probably cheaper).

Most people use poly bushings for the control arms. If you use rubber bushings, you will need a press but not recommended for a first timer. You can easily deform the control arm if you don't know what you're doing.

If the tie rods are worn(inner or outer), replace as needed. You will need do an alignment afterwards. Autozone sells the tool for about $20 but you can find good deals on ebay. Here's the tie rod tool that you will need to remove the inner tie rods.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Inner-Tie-R...f3e999c17c4e32

Thank you for the informative post. I'll keep the point about loosening the nut in mind when I get to the job.
Are the brake hoses relatively easy to replace?
For the control arm bushings, I guess I will use the SuperPro ones sold by FCP? Expensive little buggers....
However, there's a front and front rear kit listed. Do they all need to be replaced? How do I get the old bushings out?
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Old 07-31-2019, 10:30 AM   #13
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The flare nuts on the brake lines can get stuck to the lines, wiggle them back and fourth gently and use a good flare wrench and some WD 40 or the like. Press and hold the brake pedal down to keep the fluid from leaking out.
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Old 07-31-2019, 10:36 AM   #14
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I buy bushings from Ebay. Free shipping. They are $35. https://rover.ebay.com/rover/0/0/0?m...2F372662200244
If the rear bushings are cracked/torn then replace. Refer to this thread for removal.

http://forums.turbobricks.com/showthread.php?t=271105

Brake hard lines can be corroded and difficult to remove. You need 2 flare nut wrenches. One 11 mm and one 14 mm. I bought mine at lowes.
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Old 07-31-2019, 12:34 PM   #15
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I buy the superpro bushings from gsellstr on the board here. They will be shipped fast and those guys are great.
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Old 08-08-2019, 09:09 AM   #16
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Is it worthwhile to replace the ball joints as well? The ones on my car seem kinda old and a little tired.
In addition, what are the fasteners that I need for this job?

FCP shows Volvo Strut Mount Flange Screw - Genuine Volvo 982869 and Volvo Flange Lock Nut - Genuine Volvo 985660
. How many of these do I need? Any other part numbers that I should purchase?

I just did the sway bar upgrade to the turbo bars and the end links seem to be fine. However, what is the torque spec for the nuts on the end links with the urethane bushings from iPD installed?

Edit: Will this tie rod puller work? The other one linked by white855T seems to be sold out.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Inner-Tie-R...353e439717b064

Last edited by 240-FAN; 08-08-2019 at 09:16 AM..
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Old 08-12-2019, 09:42 AM   #17
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Parts are on order.
Couple of questions:
1. Do I need the ball joint removal tool?
2. Do I also need the following part numbers: 1273775, 1272231, 1272623, 963121, 986488?

https://www.volvopartswebstore.com/s...roduct=1109987

Last edited by 240-FAN; 08-12-2019 at 09:47 AM..
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Old 08-12-2019, 01:52 PM   #18
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Ball joints are usually easy to remove by slamming a big hammer against the control arm (not the stud).
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Old 08-12-2019, 01:58 PM   #19
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You shouldn't need the ball joint tool. The bj carrier bolts to the bottom of the strut housing. To replace the ball joint you need to remove the nut, place the carrier ears on a couple blocks of wood or in an open vice and hit the ball joint stud with a hammer until it pops out.

The first 2 part numbers are for the gland nuts. There are 2 different part numbers because the DeCarbon struts used a special nut. New struts come with the proper gland nut.

1272623 is a washer that holds the DeCarbon strut boot. You don't need it.

963121 is the nut at the top of the strut. The new strut comes with a new nut so you don't need it.

986488 is the washer under the aforementioned nut nut. It can be re-used.
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Old 08-12-2019, 02:02 PM   #20
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The inner tie rod tool you linked will work.
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Old 08-12-2019, 02:26 PM   #21
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Thank you very much gentlemen for your responses. I will be doing the work in early September. So I'm sure I'll have a few questions as I get closer to work time.
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Old 08-12-2019, 09:12 PM   #22
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Did I forget to mention that I have some of the tools available to rent?

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Old 08-20-2019, 09:46 AM   #23
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Did I forget to mention that I have some of the tools available to rent?

I'll PM you when I'm within a couple of weeks of working on the car. I might need some of the tools!
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Old 08-20-2019, 10:08 AM   #24
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Turns out the deuchparts usa parts off eBay are URO components

I will be getting the plates from 15A either this week or next depending on our schedules (found a local member yay!)

In all seriousness, are these usable parts and/orany better than the Meyle Made in Thailand stuff? I have always heard of URO parts being complete junk.
My car currently has OEM mounts that are cracked but are at least 170K miles old.

FWIW, I drive maybe 2-3K miles a year on this car and plan on upping that to 5K miles a year starting in 2020. But that's about it.
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Old 09-14-2019, 08:06 PM   #25
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I’ve been fighting getting the gland nut off for the past 5 hours to no avail. PB blaster, torch, massive breaker bar. NOTHING!!

I’m at the end of a road here. Any suggestions how to get it off?
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