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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I am a little farther along on my 98 rack transplant. finally got the PS lines
off, electrical connectors, tie rod ends, and was getting ready to drop the
rear subframe. got the jack stands positioned on the uni-body just
behind the subframe. Before dropping it, i thought i would take the two
large 24mm rack screws out of the bottom. from all i read on line, i would
not have to remove the cats. BUT, i have no direct line to get my impact
on the rack bolts. I am hoping wobble extensions might buy me more space
to get them off and i went to harbor freight tonight and bought a set of
1/2 extension wobbles. i had a long 24mm wrench, but the nuts did not
seem to budge with the leverage i could get under the car.


If anyone has done this before, how did you get the 24mm rack bolts off
without taking the cats off?

I am scared to death of touching the cats. this car has seen its better
days and i can about guarantee stuck manifold bolts and stripped screws
if i attempted to take the cats off. so i would like to avoid that at all
costs if i can.

The other question i have is the steering knuckle. from what i read, you
pull up the rubber cover just on top of the rack and take the screw off
and the rack will separate from the steering column. well, my bolt is 180 indexed
at the firewall so i cannot get to it unless i move the steering wheel off center.
the top of the assembly just slid into a square tubing part, why not just let it
slide out higher up or will this cause clearance issues?

all suggestions appreciated from those who have done this before.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Well, i have been taking pot shots at this car for awhile. Last issue was
getting the 24MM nuts of the rack. i thought swivel extensions would work.
Got some at harbor freight. It scared me to try to use the impact at that angle, so i did my breaker bar and gradually coaxed them off. They were well stuck on.

today i moved on to drop the rear sub-frame down. First issue was the sub-frame bolts are 18MM. I have no 18MM impact sockets. dam.
so i used my craftsman 1/2 non impact 18mm. Left side made one
crack sound and broke loose with my 2' harbor freight breaker bar.
so moved over to the right side. Of course it would deal me fits.
my air impact would not budge it. So i got my 2' breaker bar at kept at it.
I was flexing the breaker bar and was worried it would break and hit me
in the face and take me out. i pulled and pulled and it made a crack.
I pulled and pulled and it went crack again. continued this but it would not
break all the way loose. I thought for sure the bolt would break off in the
uni body and i would be totally screwed. I stayed at it, and eventually got
it loose enough to break it loose.

So now i ran out of light and have the sub-frame slightly lowered down.
I need to double check the hose connected to the rack hose holder,
then try to pull it out. i need to figure out how to pull it out of the subframe by my self . i can pull one side up, but i cannot seen to get both sides out of the sub-frame with me on the drivers side.

My question is how long are the sub-frame bolts? I remember from my 90 they seemed to be 3 to 4" long, but i don't want to screw them all the way out and not be able to get them back in.
 

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I don't remember what the length actually is, but they are a good length, about 4 inches. If you pull the bolts out you shouldn't have any issue getting them back in. You can let the rear of the sub-frame hang to give you as much clearance as possible. When it's time to re-fasten the sub-frame just jack it back into place and install your bolts.
 

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Yea the bolts are a good 3-4" long. Same bolts are used on the 86-07s.

Nice job cracking the steering rack nuts. I could not get them to budge on my own. I learned about how long cheaper bars make all the difference...

Did you shift up the dust boot and remove the bolt that connects the rack to the steering column?

And along the lines of what intimidator said, if you were to put your jack rear and center under the perpendicular beam the steering rack attaches to hold the subframe up, you can remove the two bolts and then slowly let the rack tip down. Just keep an eye on evap core and heater core connections into the firewall.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Yea the bolts are a good 3-4" long. Same bolts are used on the 86-07s.

Nice job cracking the steering rack nuts. I could not get them to budge on my own. I learned about how long cheaper bars make all the difference...

Did you shift up the dust boot and remove the bolt that connects the rack to the steering column?

And along the lines of what intimidator said, if you were to put your jack rear and center under the perpendicular beam the steering rack attaches to hold the subframe up, you can remove the two bolts and then slowly let the rack tip down. Just keep an eye on evap core and heater core connections into the firewall.
I crashed out today and did not get back to it yet. Yes, i did get the steering knuckle bolt off and pulled up the boot. The only thing i think
i have left is one 10MM bolt on the bracket that holds the hoses to the rack on the passenger side. Hopefully, it will be easier to get to with the rack loose.

that sub-frame bolt scared me that it was going to break. usually one snap or two and a bolt will break loose. Not this time. it was snap, snap snap....
When a 2' breaker bar flexes you should be scared.... ;)

thank god for harbor freight. if i had bought brand name tools that i did not have to do all this i might have just junked it.

i need to get a battery impact gun to replace the one i stole (err borrowed) from my bro in law. having a hard time deciding what to get.
i hate paying so much for a dewalt 59 with 300lb of torque, but i am still thinking about it. sears 210 lb c3 19v gun is on sale now for 119 with two battery's. when your in the junkyard you need all the power assist you can get.

I would also like to know what is so dam special about 18mm tools that
they are NOT included in many wrench or socket sets
 

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My Craftsman kit of ratchets and sockets had a regular 18, and my deep socket sets all lack an 18. Now I have one from ACE for subframes, and a 15mm deep for exhaust pipe nuts.

I wish i could float a nice battery impact...that would be great, make jobs so much easier and faster.
 
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