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Old 11-17-2007, 02:19 PM   #1
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bushings!

My subframe bushings were shot, and the collars weren't cutting it anymore, since I had the subframe down I decided to do the rear control arm bushings at the same time. This car sees some autox and eventually id like to try out an HPDE but it's no track car, so adjustable/solid arms was not what I was looking for. I went with nismo subframe bushings and energy suspension polyurethane control arm bushings.

Dropping the subframe, in hindsight I should have left the diff in and used that to drop it from, would have been easier but 2 jacks manage to do it.



The subframe is pretty light without the diff in there =]



Turns out the front 2 bushings were practically ripped in half




Unfortunately I do most of the work by myself so taking pictures while cutting out bushings was not my first thought, but basically: drilled out the rubber around the inner shell, didn't burn any rubber out, then you just cut the outer shell to relieve the tension and tap it out.



I had planned on powder coating everything, but in the end I was short on time, and really just wanted to drive the car so I said fuck it, the rust wasn't that bad on the subframe.

The arms/uprights



You could always use a press right? Torrin 10-ton mini press $250 shipped from northern tool with extended warranty.



A 7/8" socket fits perfectly in the arms, so thats what I used to press them out, then just use a large socket to catch the bushing.




It's very important that you align everything properly when doing this, if you are not careful it's possible to shatter a socket under enough load(so I've read), it was easy to tell when something wasn't going to budge, so I just stopped and re centered the socket.

Viola!



The A arms were impossible to press out, they have a collar that prevents you from pressing them straight on, so I had to burn/cut them out.
The camber/toe arms were the easiest to do since its a straight shot through top to bottom. The uprights took careful positioning and some creative thinking.

When installing the new bushings be sure to clean out the arms and use a bit of the supplied grease on the inside of the arm, the outside of the bushing, and the inside of the bushing, as well as the new sleeve that goes inside the bushing. Unfortunately that shit is like glue, so I didn't get a lot of pictures.






All done!



I ran out of battery so I don't have any of the subframe bushings/installation, but it's possible to press ALL of these bushings in using this press and some creativity. A larger (and more expensive) press would probably be easier to use.

The best advice i can give when pressing the new bushings is patience and a flat head screw driver, squeezing these bushings into the arms was frustrating, the grease easily gets dirt on it, which you don't want, and the ends of the bushings are quite large and don't seem like they will want to fit.

Before installing the subframe I bolted everything to it, installed the diff/axles, and torqued everything down. It seemed much easier to install it as one piece then doing everything under the car. I had a friend help guide the subframe into position under the car and it installed in about 10 minutes.

Total time spent was probably ~15 hours of work as pressing the bushings out/in is time consuming.

Driving impressions (after getting an alignment): the rear feels solid but not harsh, theres virtually no more noise from the rear (some from the aluminum driveshaft) and the bushings don't make any noise at all. Theres a bit more vibration, especially during decel, but nothing worth complaining about. There probably won't be any more autox this season as its getting quite cold in NY but im certain I will be happy with the results.

On a side note, some of you may not know the Moog S14 front ball joints fit perfectly in the rear A arms, and I used the press for that as well. After pressing the subframe bushings, control arm bushings and ball joints, it's certainly seems worth the price for DIY'ers.
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Old 11-17-2007, 02:22 PM   #2
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Old 11-17-2007, 03:37 PM   #3
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baaalllin! nice writeup
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Old 11-17-2007, 03:41 PM   #4
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that press is awesome!!! i want one. i have the same exact bushing set for the entire rear for my s13 but i will be doing this in the spring. nice writeup. did you use like a sawzall to cut the metal sleeve out?
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Old 11-17-2007, 04:13 PM   #5
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That's awesome.

I should be doing this soon.

Probably after I pick up another daily so I won't have to rush things.

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Old 11-17-2007, 04:27 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by unicoladron View Post
that press is awesome!!! i want one. i have the same exact bushing set for the entire rear for my s13 but i will be doing this in the spring. nice writeup. did you use like a sawzall to cut the metal sleeve out?
yeah, just be careful with a the sawzall as it can cut the sleeves pretty fast, hacksaw is probably safer but slower obviously
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Old 11-17-2007, 06:42 PM   #7
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did you reinstall the collar spacers after changing the subframe bushings?

i'm about to dive headfirst into this bushing game, seems like a bitch, but it will be worth it in the end.
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Old 11-17-2007, 06:47 PM   #8
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Old 11-17-2007, 07:01 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bushido View Post
did you reinstall the collar spacers after changing the subframe bushings?

i'm about to dive headfirst into this bushing game, seems like a bitch, but it will be worth it in the end.
I had the specialty Z subframe spacers, they are only meant to take up slack in old worn out bushings so they won't even work with these.
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Old 11-17-2007, 10:55 PM   #10
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I did my rear lowers and my spindles with a vice with the help of a friend. I used a socket to help line it up straight.
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Old 11-17-2007, 11:04 PM   #11
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great write up. I should be doing this in the near future
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Old 11-18-2007, 11:09 AM   #12
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I am interested in hearing about how much of a difference these make...

I have replaced every single control arm or suspension piece on my car with pillow ball stuff, but nontheless, the spindle bushings and control arm bushings are still stock.

My car is damn stiff, and I don't feel any compliance....I would like to know how much of a difference you guys feel due to the NEW BUSHINGS alone...

PS I already have subframe collars....they are amazing of course
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Old 11-18-2007, 11:48 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jspaeth View Post
I am interested in hearing about how much of a difference these make...

I have replaced every single control arm or suspension piece on my car with pillow ball stuff, but nontheless, the spindle bushings and control arm bushings are still stock.

My car is damn stiff, and I don't feel any compliance....I would like to know how much of a difference you guys feel due to the NEW BUSHINGS alone...

PS I already have subframe collars....they are amazing of course
I can only speak from daily driving right now, they are not too harsh for daily IMO, it feels fine, its stiff but it's not kidney-fucking stiff. PM Nikeboy355 on here, he has full rear and possibly front ES bushings, and he just recently ran button willow again, he can give you an idea of how they feel on the track.
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Old 11-18-2007, 08:40 PM   #14
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Nice writeup! I am actually about to do this tuesday. I have my subframe out and some of the bushings out. I have already put in my subframe alluminum bushings. I cant wait to get this done and have the damn subframe back on the car I will deff be using your thread to help me out if needed thanks!!
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Old 11-19-2007, 11:19 AM   #15
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Nice!!!! Iknow what you mean about the aluminum drveshaft though... sure does make the rear end louder under decel.
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Old 11-19-2007, 11:26 AM   #16
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nice. Great Write up. I gotta get my solid aluminum bushings in.
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Old 11-19-2007, 11:35 AM   #17
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I did the nismo rear subframe bushings also.... pain in the ass but well worth it.... I wanted to avoid going solid on the bushings since a DD my s13... nismo ones workout perfect
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Old 11-19-2007, 03:21 PM   #18
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yeah, just be careful with a the sawzall as it can cut the sleeves pretty fast, hacksaw is probably safer but slower obviously
ugh, worst 2 hours of my life haha. hack saw takes forever! I only ended up using the bushings for the spindles in the rear, the subframe collars were a joke and i ended up going with aluminum.

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Old 11-19-2007, 03:28 PM   #19
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nice! i have all the bushing installed except for the rear arm's, so you just made it easy for me
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Old 11-19-2007, 03:37 PM   #20
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Nice thread! And nice press that will definitely come in handy for future projects.

In december I'll be doing a similar project... Picking up a new used s13 subframe, going solid bushings, poly bushings on the uprights (already have brand new ball joints), multi link, z32 ebrake/hubs/calipers. Everything I've read is not making me look forward to getting the old bushings out... Shouldn't be too bad doing it at my fabricator's shop though.... Any other tips/advice?
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Old 11-19-2007, 03:58 PM   #21
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Nice thread! And nice press that will definitely come in handy for future projects.

In december I'll be doing a similar project... Picking up a new used s13 subframe, going solid bushings, poly bushings on the uprights (already have brand new ball joints), multi link, z32 ebrake/hubs/calipers. Everything I've read is not making me look forward to getting the old bushings out... Shouldn't be too bad doing it at my fabricator's shop though.... Any other tips/advice?
For getting the old bushings out (assuming you have a press) it's really just a matter of thinking of ways to position each bushing in the upright vertically to press them out, the arms are pretty straight forward. The A arms, there is no way around it, you have to burn/cut them out, it sucks but it's gotta be done, you will see why when you look at the bushing.

As long as you have patience and take your time pressing the new bushings in is easier then getting them out as it doesn't take as much force, you could use a vice to hold them in place with a large enough press, and just use a flat head to help coax the large bushing ends in. Patience, time, and a clean work area (for when the greased up bushings fall while trying to press them in). Good luck, and take some pics
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Old 11-19-2007, 04:27 PM   #22
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Thank you ^. Yeah I have a press at the shop, torch, sawzall.. Sounds like the arsenal of choice. Will post pics when I do mine, I can't wait
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Old 11-19-2007, 04:34 PM   #23
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Nice job!
Have done it before on my first hatch and about to start doing it on my new (to me) S14. Only I'm starting with the front. Got the Master Bushing set from ES but it doesn't come with the all the bushings needed... ... good thing I have accumulated random extra poly ones over the years.
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Old 11-19-2007, 05:35 PM   #24
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Nice job!
Have done it before on my first hatch and about to start doing it on my new (to me) S14. Only I'm starting with the front. Got the Master Bushing set from ES but it doesn't come with the all the bushings needed... ... good thing I have accumulated random extra poly ones over the years.
Interesting, whats the part # on the kit for the front that you got? what bushings was it missing? I know some kits are specifically lower/upper only but most shops don't tell you that.
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Old 11-19-2007, 05:44 PM   #25
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where did you guys get your ES kits?
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Old 11-19-2007, 06:00 PM   #26
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where did you guys get your ES kits?
Autozone!!! lol
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Old 11-19-2007, 07:06 PM   #27
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Originally Posted by statik View Post
Interesting, whats the part # on the kit for the front that you got? what bushings was it missing? I know some kits are specifically lower/upper only but most shops don't tell you that.
The one from Courtesy Nissan, $127 shipped was the lowest of the bunch - that and Phase2 just completely ignored me. Came with with the TC rod, LCA and front/rear swaybar bushings. Noticed the S13 sets are complete but also more $$$. Nothing for the arms but like I've said I got some Whiteline and Powertrix poly bushings lying around so I'm all good. Also, I've noticed you did aswell, I'm getting Moog balljoints and tie rod ends. Leaving the powerbar for the future.

edit:
7-18103G Energy Suspension Master Bushing Set - 1995 to 1998
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Old 11-19-2007, 07:57 PM   #28
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where do i order from if i want every single bushing in the back including the uprights? (for s13)
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Old 11-19-2007, 08:08 PM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CoasTek240 View Post
where did you guys get your ES kits?
I honestly don't remember, i saw a post on zilvia maybe 8 months ago listing it at a stupid low price and i jumped on it, just been sitting on them for awhile.

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Originally Posted by ManoNegra View Post
The one from Courtesy Nissan, $127 shipped was the lowest of the bunch - that and Phase2 just completely ignored me. Came with with the TC rod, LCA and front/rear swaybar bushings. Noticed the S13 sets are complete but also more $$$. Nothing for the arms but like I've said I got some Whiteline and Powertrix poly bushings lying around so I'm all good. Also, I've noticed you did aswell, I'm getting Moog balljoints and tie rod ends. Leaving the powerbar for the future.

edit:
7-18103G Energy Suspension Master Bushing Set - 1995 to 1998
Ah ok you got the master bushing set, I got only the rear set for ~$50 awhile back, I plan on doing the fronts later on during winter when I tear the motor apart.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jim1234664 View Post
where do i order from if i want every single bushing in the back including the uprights? (for s13)
Courtesy sells a lot of ES stuff

http://www.courtesyparts.com/energys...ion/240SX.html
http://www.courtesyparts.com/Merchan..._Code=7-18106G
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Old 11-20-2007, 01:20 AM   #30
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ok can i get the maaster bushing set for my s13? or am i forced to buy the Hyper-flex complete package?
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