Rear Shock Nut Removal - Mustang Evolution

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Old 12-19-2015, 03:32 PM   #1
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Question Rear Shock Nut Removal

I am having a bit of trouble removing the rear shock nut in the trunk area. I have a Shelby Rear Strut Brace I have tried to install twice without success. The first time it was 3 hours of frustration and a day of being sore from trying to use hand tools with nothing to show for it. I watched a couple of on-line install videos for rear shocks installs and saw the trick of using an impact wrench. Today, armed with the Impact wrench loaded with the 15mm deep socket, I got the nut all the way to the top. With nothing to hold on to, the shock shaft just spun when I used the hand wrench to finish the removal. I was thinking "Now what do I do?"

Keep in mind the only cars I worked on in the past are Slot Cars and Model Cars outside of simple stuff. I'm pretty proud of myself I have installed the Ford Boss Front Strut brace, Interior Boss alcantara boots and wheel, V-6 Engine dress up cover, front wheel mud flaps and the clutch pedal extender so far. But this has me stumped.

So I figured I would ask the sages of Mustang DIY Wisdom what would they do?
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Old 12-19-2015, 04:11 PM   #2
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What you can do is get a piece of rubber, wrap it around the shock rod near the top inside the wheel well, then clamp a pair of vise grips onto that. The rubber will provide grip, and keep you from marring the surface of the rod. Rotate the rod until the vise grips are in contact with the inner fender well, then remove the nut. I have had to do this a few times with some of my older Koni's due to the threads on the nut getting damaged.
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Old 12-19-2015, 04:33 PM   #3
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This is a 15minute job. You need to hold the thread with a vise grip and then use a 13mm (or 15mm I forgot) to spin the nut off. If you took an impact to that without even holding the threaded part, you probably did some damage.
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Old 12-19-2015, 04:53 PM   #4
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I would not put the vise grips on the threads, just because it is easy to damage the threads with the tool.
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Old 12-19-2015, 04:59 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jande063 View Post
I would not put the vise grips on the threads, just because it is easy to damage the threads with the tool.

^^^Yeah my bad I meant to say the nonthreaded** part. There's a little nib to grab on to.
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Old 12-19-2015, 06:01 PM   #6
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When i replaced mine on my 09 i used a small like 8- 9 mm on the top of the shock thread to hold it from spinning not sure if that was the wrench size but that how i did it
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Old 12-19-2015, 06:15 PM   #7
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Why did you stop the impact wrench before the nut was fully off the shaft? Unless there is some damage to the threads or the shaft/nut is corroded, the impact wrench should easily remove the nut. No need to use a hand wrench for the last few turns. If the impact wrench will not remove it then you can use jande063's suggestion.
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Old 12-20-2015, 05:34 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jek57 View Post
When i replaced mine on my 09 i used a small like 8- 9 mm on the top of the shock thread to hold it from spinning not sure if that was the wrench size but that how i did it
+1 here except I think the shaft top hex fitting is 5mm. This is the way to do it otherwise you'll be
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Old 12-20-2015, 02:15 PM   #9
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And how much torque holds the top nut on? In other cars I've worked on it's pretty low and the nut easily comes off with hand tools.
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Old 12-20-2015, 03:10 PM   #10
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Thank you for all of your suggestions.
I expected the Impact wrench to remove it all of the way. I suspect I damaged the threads when I follow the directions from Shelby by holding the shock with a crecent wrench while using my 15mm wrench to remove the nut. So when the shock started to spin, I used the crescent wrench to hold the shock while I was able to get the nut to the top, but no further due to the fact I had nothing to hold on to. So I threaded it back down to the recomended 30 ft-lbs. (which is why I was so frustrated in trying to remove it. I'm guessing it was torqued down much more than that in the past)

Jande063 suggestion sounds do-able. I expect if I tried the other side, the one I haven't touched, it will come right off.
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Old 12-20-2015, 03:32 PM   #11
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Yes, jande063's suggestion should work and the other side should come right off with the impact wrench. By the way, I would use the impact wrench to remove nut on the first one also. Just make sure that the vice grip is in contact with the surface that will be holding it in position before you start removing the nut.
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Old 12-20-2015, 04:48 PM   #12
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There is typically a place on the shock absorber to put a wrench, or a socket, on to prevent the shock from spinning while removing the upper nuts. Sometimes there is a hex fitting directly underneath the bushings on the top of the shock that you will have to access from beneath the car. There is also, usually, a place on the very top of the threaded part to use a socket or a small wrench to hold the shock while removing the nuts.
Specialty Shock Absorber sockets are available for shocks that have an oval fitting on the top of the threaded part.

Lubricate it real good with some penetrating oil and keep trying. You will eventually be triumphant against that pesky shock absorber nut!

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Old 12-21-2015, 11:43 AM   #13
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Specialty Shock Absorber sockets are available for shocks that have an oval fitting on the top of the threaded part.
Can you recommend one? I tried looking on Amazon and don't know which one would work. Sounds like a handy tool to have in the tool box.
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Old 12-21-2015, 01:14 PM   #14
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Can you recommend one? I tried looking on Amazon and don't know which one would work. Sounds like a handy tool to have in the tool box.
I purchased these 30+ years ago off of a Mac tool truck. They were the most popular sizes at that time.
If you ever need a "specialty" tool to make a particular job easier, it is very likely that those guys that drive around selling tools to automotive repair shops (Snap-on, Matco, Mac, etc.) have what you are looking for. That's what they specialize in... Making a mechanics job easier and saving time.
Tools bought from those trucks are never inexpensive though.

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Old 12-21-2015, 02:09 PM   #15
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Lol, I had this same problem with my Mach 1. I even broke the top of the shock tip off when I tightened mine down. I had to order another one because I tried to tighten the nut on the shock when it had paint on the threads. I would either thread a nut on the shock outside of the car to clean off the threads or wire brush them or both. Then I would install with lubricant like what was mentioned by others here. Seems like impact tools always have better luck zipping them on and off without holding them. If you know someone with one, I'd borrow it because it will make your install easier.
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