Tie Rod Replacement

Spyw

Original poster
Member
Apr 23, 2012
45
I've had a set of tie rods getting acclimated to my garage for probably about a year. Now that I am fully confident that they have adjusted to their new environment, I think they're finally ready to be installed. That, and I noticed my wheels had an excessive amount of play in the outer TREs while I had them off the ground recently.

The problem I'm having, and the reason I didn't change them long ago, is that I can't get the jam nut loosened on the other TREs. I suspect this could have something to do with firestone torching the nut to adjust it for an alignment and then tightening it back up while still hot. Regardless of what happened, the outers are not going to be coming out of the inners.

The obvious route to me is to try and take the inners off with the outer still attached. Theoretically, that should be simple enough if I can get some sort of tool onto the flats on the inner and then get some sort of leverage on that tool. Any suggestions for the best tool? Open end wrench? Pipe wrench? Roadie-approved vice grips?
 

The_Roadie

Lifetime VIP Donor
Member
Nov 19, 2011
9,957
Portland, OR

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Spyw

Original poster
Member
Apr 23, 2012
45
Locking Chain Clamp

Might just be the ticket. :thumbsup:

The other problem I had was with the boots. When firestone did the alignment, they said they had to cut the boot clamps off to torch the nut. This was all fine and good, but the hose clamp they replaced it with eventually cut into the boot. Now the boot on both sides are damaged. The only damage is to the flat area on the boot where it gets clamped to the inner tie rod.

When I take the boots off to replace the tie rods, do you think there's any chance I can repair the boots? My thinking was to build up a new clamping surface onto the end of the boot with some layers of duct tape or something like that. I hate to use duct tape on a semi-permanent repair, but I'd hate spending $120 on new boots even more.
 

The_Roadie

Lifetime VIP Donor
Member
Nov 19, 2011
9,957
Portland, OR
There are some universal bellows out there. I tried a couple of different kinds, without success. Use a discount supplier for the OEM boots, and think about how they're saving you from a steering rack replacement project.
 

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