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Thread: Changing Inner Tie Rods - Tool Of Choice?

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    VIP-Member puppet's Avatar
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    Vehicle : Insignia 1.8 SRi

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    Default Changing Inner Tie Rods - Tool Of Choice?

    Just had my Vectra (2002 1.8LS) MOT'd last week, and both inner tie rods on the steering were flagged as advisories. I know I don't actually need to do anything about them right now, however I thought I would just get them changed anyway.

    I now have the replacement rods, but was wondering if any of you guys had changed these yourself, and what tool you used to unscrew them off the end of the rack? Space is obviously fairly limited, and although I have seen reports of folk just using stilsons in some cases, I'd be interested to hear of any 1st hand experiences on this.

    Also, I see that you get tools specifically for this purpose, such as :

    http://www.toolsheduk.com/Q/1246/2/2...i-purpose.html

    Looks like it would certainly make life easier, but no point spending another £30-£40 if I don't need to.

    Any advice much appreciated.


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    Regular Member kentish_bloke's Avatar
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    i had an advisory a couple of years ago for 1 of my inner track rods, but nothing since, so mine must have healed itself, cool or what!

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    Regular Member platty's Avatar
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    Hi puppet, when I changed mine i used this http://www.halfords.com/webapp/wcs/s...egoryId_165469 Can't remember wich side I used, but one definatley fits.

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    Quote Originally Posted by platty View Post
    Hi puppet, when I changed mine i used this http://www.halfords.com/webapp/wcs/s...egoryId_165469 Can't remember wich side I used, but one definatley fits.
    Thanks for that platty. How was access with this? It looks like a fairly large spanner, was there enough room to comfortably get to the tie rods ok?

    Certainly would be a bit cheaper than the other "laser" tool that I had been looking at.

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    Regular Member platty's Avatar
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    I only had to do one side, (Drivers) but access is good, the spanner although quite large is pretty thin. You can always turn the steering wheel to get the tie rod into a easily accessible posistion.

    Good luck

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    Sounds reasonable, and would certainly be a cheaper option, which is always welcome!

    Sorry to be a pest, but out of interest, did you have the car up on a 4-poster or anything, or did you manage ok with the car just up on jacks etc?

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    Regular Member platty's Avatar
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    No lift is required, it's easily do-able using a jack and axle stands. It's a really easy job mate should only take about 20 mins a side. The hardest part I found was getting the inside clip for the gaiter on, ended up using a jubilee clip instead

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    Thanks again platty, sounds as if it hopefully shouldn't be too much hassle.

    Will probably go ahead and order up one of the Laser spanners, I see they can be had pretty cheap on ebay.

    If the clips on the gaitors are those damn metal band-it type things, I can see them being replaced with either a tywrap or a jubilee clip as you say!


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    Just a quick update.

    Bought the laser spanner from ebay, total of £13 delivered. It arrived this morning, so I rolled my sleeves up and got stuck in.

    Turns out it is exactly the tool for the job (Thanks for the heads up platty, much appreciated). The spanner is a 32mm / 36mm combination, and as it happens, the original tie rods on the rack had 36mm flats on them, and the replacement ones had 32mm flats. Hence, as I said, the spanner was absolutely perfect.

    Did the Drivers side first, and other than being a little tight to get to due to the pipes etc on/around the rack, it was no great hassle. Found it easiest to reach down from inside the engine bay and slacken/tighten the tie rod from there rather than trying to work in the wheel well.

    Passenger side was easier to get at due to the engine bay being less cluttered. Only took about 30mins per side to do.

    All in all, not too bad a job to do. Obviously I will still need to get the tracking checked properly though.

    Still a miniscule bit of play in the steering unfortunately, but as the outer track rod ends seemed fine, this must be in the rack itself. It's barely noticeable, so will just live with it.


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