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Need LCA Help--Can't Clear Steering Rack to Get Cam Bolt Out!

Discussion in '1st Gen. Tacomas (1995-2004)' started by OG_Tacoma, Oct 12, 2020.

  1. Oct 12, 2020 at 12:19 PM
    #1
    OG_Tacoma

    OG_Tacoma [OP] Well-Known Member

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    Problem: I attempted to do an LCA bushing replacement job myself on my 04 4WD, but got stuck because I can't get the steering rack moved out of the way enough to get a good grip on the rear LCA cam bolt. Followed Timmy's vid: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kmaZNBp1gZM&feature=emb_logo

    I ran out of time this weekend and got a really busy work week coming up (work from home thankfully). Pics in the comments.

    1. How do I get the steering rack to move more without unhooking lines or damaging anything, at least enough so I can get that bolt cleared and out? Tips or tricks from the TW brain? Anyone in MD able to stop over and help? :rofl:

    2. Also, the long horizontal bolt that holds the steering rack to cross member (comes out of the back of the steering rack or towards the nose of the truck) seems too long to remove. The hat on the head of the bolt is hitting (front diff?). Any thoughts on what to do there?
     
  2. Oct 12, 2020 at 12:19 PM
    #2
    OG_Tacoma

    OG_Tacoma [OP] Well-Known Member

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    [RESERVED FOR PICS]



    FF422A08-0D1F-4DA7-AA36-F33EE2A6BB23.jpg
    A77D8048-8060-4F79-9A9D-DD0F2A8931F2.jpg

    927E650B-F40F-40E3-9B1F-C54BA7B34165.jpg
     
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  3. Oct 12, 2020 at 2:20 PM
    #3
    Sreppep

    Sreppep Well-Known Member

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    Did you unbolt the steering rack? That’s the only way you’re going to be able to get it to move. Also If you have a diff drop you need to remove it to pull that long bolt out.
     
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  4. Oct 12, 2020 at 2:40 PM
    #4
    High Noon

    High Noon Monkeys and footballs

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    Haven't watched the video so I don't know if Tim had the outer tierod unhooked or not but it would seem necessary to push the rack up.

    1. No need to unhook any lines. Just need to be a little more forceful.
    2. Um, strange. There should be plenty of room to get a socket on there and loosen it. All you need to do is loosen it unless you are replacing rack bushings. IIRC, I ran out of room getting that bolt all the way out with the ratchet.
     
  5. Oct 12, 2020 at 3:04 PM
    #5
    crazytacoman

    crazytacoman Well-Known Member

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    1. Don't unhook any lines. Just unbolt it like Timmy did. I did that and tied it up from the left and right side so that it would stay suspended up there. I think on the passenger side (right), I tied it around the frame.

    2. Not sure, I don't have a front diff, but that bolt was really long
     
  6. Oct 12, 2020 at 4:05 PM
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    ciaman96

    ciaman96 Member

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    I disconnected some of the mounting brackets for lines to the steering rack and was able to wiggle it just far enough on mine (stock 4x4) to get the bolt out.
     
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  7. Oct 12, 2020 at 4:07 PM
    #7
    High Noon

    High Noon Monkeys and footballs

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    Forgot about that.
     
  8. Oct 12, 2020 at 6:21 PM
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    OG_Tacoma

    OG_Tacoma [OP] Well-Known Member

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    Everything is unbolted off the LCA. Front cam bolt came loose no problem. Rear one is blocked by steering rack which is unbolted and loose too. So, yeah, steering rack is unbolted--long bolt has yet to come out, but you are right! I bet it's probably my diff drop that is causing the bolt to catch on the diff.



    Thanks, yeah, I got that long steering rack horizontal bolt loose, but it stops and hits the front diff when I try to pull it out. I think it might be because my diff drop (separate debate lol) has changed the angle of my diff such that the bolt now hits it when trying to pull it out.

    But good point--maybe I don't need to take the bolt all the way out if I can just pull/slide the steering rack off the bolt.




    Thanks! Sounds like I need to support the steering rack when I pull it back? Because it’ll drop, right?


    Thanks, good idea. Yeah, I should unbolt that PS mounting bracket to get more wiggle room.
     
  9. Oct 12, 2020 at 7:53 PM
    #9
    crazytacoman

    crazytacoman Well-Known Member

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    it will drop and be hanging by the lines, which could damage them
     
  10. Oct 12, 2020 at 7:58 PM
    #10
    Dalandser

    Dalandser ¡Me Gustan Las Taco-mas!

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    Just be gentle - high pressure lines are pretty burly. You could put something under it to keep it from completely resting on the lines or bungee it.
     
  11. Oct 16, 2020 at 8:39 AM
    #11
    OG_Tacoma

    OG_Tacoma [OP] Well-Known Member

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    UPDATE: Work tied me up this week, but finally got back on it yesterday. Unbolted the P/S line hanger from the frame, which gave me a huge range of motion to move the steering rack out of the way. Got the rear cam bolts out no problem and got the LCA out. Used Timmy’s bottle jack technique and got the old bushings out. Weirdly, I’m now stuck on the easiest part—getting the new Whiteline bushings in :rofl:
     
  12. Oct 16, 2020 at 8:40 AM
    #12
    OG_Tacoma

    OG_Tacoma [OP] Well-Known Member

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    I’m using Timmy’s technique of cup on back and channel lock pliers in front (no contact on bushings) to press the new bushings in. Went in part way...but won’t budge anymore. There’s still a little ways to go, so not sure why it’s not going in. I heated the LCA eye with MAAP but didn’t help a ton. Bushing is still not in all the way (vise is too hard to crank more).

    Ideas? Going to freeze the other bushing overnight and see if it’ll go in easier in the morning.

    Pics to follow...
     
  13. Oct 16, 2020 at 8:50 AM
    #13
    crazytacoman

    crazytacoman Well-Known Member

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    Get the bushing out and, if it doesn’t feel smooth, clean the inside of the lca with a dry sponge (one of the metal ones is preferred). Then lube the bushing well and insert.

    the way I did it was by renting a ball joint press from autozone, and using it to insert it. Worked easy
     
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  14. Oct 16, 2020 at 10:11 AM
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    OG_Tacoma

    OG_Tacoma [OP] Well-Known Member

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    Pics of vice setup

    81B28D01-FF66-47CF-BEF5-B5C96A22E1A4.jpg
    1D8A7FDA-E3A5-45EC-9A6A-032155DC806C.jpg
     
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  15. Oct 16, 2020 at 10:13 AM
    #15
    OG_Tacoma

    OG_Tacoma [OP] Well-Known Member

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    Yeah I cleaned out the LCA eye with steel wool first and wiped. I put a little anti seize on the outside of the Whiteline bushing housings. Vice stopped out and can’t get it in any further.

    I do have a BJ press tool, so could try that. But where did you contact the bushing? The metal inner sleeve just slides out.
     
  16. Oct 16, 2020 at 12:39 PM
    #16
    crazytacoman

    crazytacoman Well-Known Member

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    Looking at your pic. The bushing appears to be fully inserted.

    I contacted with the outer metal piece of the bushing, and the other side with one of the ball joint press cylinders. It wasn’t a perfect fit but I angled it in a way that I was able to insert the bushing with the press
     
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  17. Oct 16, 2020 at 2:25 PM
    #17
    OG_Tacoma

    OG_Tacoma [OP] Well-Known Member

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    Thanks, I appreciate all of your advice.

    It "feels" fully inserted lol. Vice doesn't want to push it in anymore and I've got no more muscle.

    The thing is, it looks different than Timmy's vid, which shows him (I think?) pushing the bushing all the way in until the outer lip of the bushing contacts the metal of the LCA. As you can see in my pic, I've got a good like 1/4" still:confused: :annoyed:
     
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  18. Oct 16, 2020 at 4:45 PM
    #18
    crazytacoman

    crazytacoman Well-Known Member

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    upload_2020-10-16_18-41-30.jpg

    It looks like it’s making contact in this pic though. One thing you could also try is using a med to long metal pipe to turn the small vice grip handle.

    also if you have the tools, hammering the metal part of he bushing in by placing a strong screw driver or other metal like object, and then hammering the end of it to push it in. Doing so in a star like pattern as you would with tightening lug nuts
     
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  19. Oct 16, 2020 at 5:41 PM
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    MNMLST

    MNMLST Well-Known Member

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    put a hunk of pipe on the vise handle.... it’ll go in, or you’ll bend the handle.

    (tip: a hi-lift jack post, some bolts, and some chunks of scrap angle bolted to a 6x6 and you can build a pretty good “lever” press)
     
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  20. Oct 17, 2020 at 5:55 AM
    #20
    OG_Tacoma

    OG_Tacoma [OP] Well-Known Member

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    Thanks guys, I wish I would've seen your replies sooner! I was in the garage late last night messing around with it. Turns out my arms (biceps) just weren't strong enough:rofl:

    Yeah, while messing around, I finally noticed my metal pipe laying under my bench and realized I should give it a shot--worked like a charm. Didn't get a pic, but it allowed me to muscle the last bit of bushing sleeve into the A-arm eye. I just hope I didn't damage the polyurethane in the one bushing by messing with it so much (first thing I did last night was try pressing OUT the stuck bushing in an attempt to try again--but no luck because my press/vice was just flexing the poly part of the bushing).

    One thing to keep in mind when replacing the Whitelines when they later become worn...unless you find a specialty tool that is a very specific size, I don't think it'll be easy to get the old Whitelines out of the A-arm because of the design of the bushing. Basically, you'd need a metal object the exact same size as bushing outer shell. Otherwise, you'll just be pressing on the poly part of the bushing, which flexes. I'll see if I can take a pic and add it here to illustrate.
     
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