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King of Smart Gadgetry
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Hello all. I'm buttoning up Max from his engine drop and head install. It is a little cumbersome trying to work on him because I just graduated from a walker to crutches and the meds I'm on for nerve pain really mess with my balance, so I guess as long as I lay on the floor under the car I don't have as far to fall LOL....
In putting the rear suspension back together I have found the rear crossmember that connects acrossed the frame and has the swing arms that connect to each side of the De Dion axle to be a royal pain in the butt! I first tried to install it by bolting it to the frame and then I connected the swingarm on one side, but then I discovered that the swingarm on the remaining side was too short to reach it's hole in the De Dion. So I placed a floor jack on each side of the De Dion and loaded up the suspension so that there was NO unsprung weight, but it still appeared to be about a hole short.
So I loosened up the swingarm at both frame points and tried to shove it towards the short side and it was only about 1/4 hole off. So then I unbolted it completely from the frame and connected both swing arms and then tried bolting it back the the frame and it will allow me to start the bolt on one side, but the other side is ever so slightly off in that the bolt will not start straight in the hole.Nothing has changed on the geometry it was just removed and now re-installed. Has anyone else wrestled with this?

 

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2 Rear axle crossmember
3 Left bar link
6 Right bar link
7 Rivet
8 Heat protection
9 Screw
a Adjustment dimension, bar link to rear axle crossmember

The adjustment dimension should be 130mm if that's any help. :)
 

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MY08 cabrio MY09 cabrio Brabus MY15 ED
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It is a little cumbersome trying to work on him because I just graduated from a walker to crutches and the meds I'm on for nerve pain really mess with my balance, so I guess as long as I lay on the floor under the car I don't have as far to fall LOL....
DCO, thanks for sharing your albeit frustrating update - your tenacity toward this project amid your physical challenges makes me thankful for a backache!

Please keep sharing your progress as you have gone places few smart owners have the inclination or toolbox to go. :bigthumbup:
 

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I think I would start the bolts for the crossmember in the frame, start one link bolt, leaving them all loose, and set the links at normal ride height. I would use a long tube like a jack handle 4 feet long in one end of the axle tube to gain the leverage to move the axle tube laterally in order to line up the last bolt on the second link.
 

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Dude. I didn't even know that part even exists on a smart! You have been so beyond me that I just stopped saying anything on your threads. But thank you for all the sharing!!!! Wish I were nearer, I'd go over to help while my son is in school...
 

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I can't fault any of what Dreamcarowner has explained so far. He took out some of the suggestions that would have been suggested had he not gone into such detail. I've always found rear suspensions to be a p.i.t.b. because those trailing links flex. When they are removed for reinstallation, often times the installer has to use a lot of force to get bolt holes to line up. This is what cheater bars/torque bars/pipes are often for.

That's why I said "you're oh so close." It just seems to me that is the case here. Especially when you're dealing with nerve pain, crutches, disability issues.

Might need to get somebody to help you that can follow your barking orders, while they use their muscle. And Rustedwrench's suggestion of using a long cheater bar might definitely be what's called for here. :nerd:
 

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King of Smart Gadgetry
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Discussion Starter #9
I think I would start the bolts for the crossmember in the frame, start one link bolt, leaving them all loose, and set the links at normal ride height. I would use a long tube like a jack handle 4 feet long in one end of the axle tube to gain the leverage to move the axle tube laterally in order to line up the last bolt on the second link.
Thanks for all the suggestions everybody. I did what Rusted Wrench and Mister Smart LA suggested. After getting it back on the ground on it's tires I followed Rusted Wrenches suggestions for the proper sequence to bolt it up and then with a cheater pipe ala Mister Smart LA I was able to "tweak" the De Dion tube and I was able to get it bolted up on the second try. We won't talk about the first try because I almost cross threaded the bolt ! It is amazing how much that crossmember can "camber" that back tire. That De Dion "horseshoe" is pretty flimsy out on the ends of it, but the crossmember shores it all up to where it is rock solid. I got the oil changed. 3 quarts of Mobil 1 synthetic and half a quart Marvey Mystery Oil. I'll get the battery changed tommorrow and the tailgate back on it and I should be ready for the races.
 
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