|Eventually it happens to all Z32's. The silicon
bushings on the tension rods start leaking resulting in poor handling.
Usually pulling to one side during braking, or nose-diving in corners.
Replacing them with OEM tension rods will cure the problem temporarily,
but they will fall to the same fate eventually. The ultimate solution is
a set of adjustable tension rods. This gets rid of the bushing problem
by replacing it with a solid bushing & allows caster adjustments due
to the adjustable length. The only 'real' alignment adjustment on the front
of a stock Z is the toe-in.
This replacement was done on a '91 TT.
1. Jack up the front of the car & put it on jackstands observing all safety measures.
2. Remove the lower engine shielding (7 x 10mm), there is 1 bolt on the extreme left and right sides. (1.)
3. Read the rest of the procedure to see what bolts/nuts will be removed & spray them with a penetrating lubricant. I recommend 'Blaster' brand.
4. Remove the outer nuts on each tension rod (4 x 17mm) (2.)
5. Remove the front swaybar bushing retainer bolts (4 x 14mm) (3.). Remove the bushing brackets.
6. Remove the front tension rod bracket bolts (4 x 17mm) (4.).
7. Take out the whole assembly on each side (5.). Remove the pivot bolt (17mm bolt, 17mm nut on each) to get the tension rod out.
8. For adjustable tension rods: The adjustable tension rods allow for caster adjustments, which is not adjustable stock. These are the first generation SGP tension rods (6.). These are the second generation SGP tension rods (7.). Run the bolt through the stock rod into the adjustable. Run the shafts parallel and check the length of the adjustables against the old stock ones to get close to the correct length (8.). This will at least be good enough to get to the alignment shop for proper adjustment without chewing a month off the tire life. The bolts only go through the bracket one direction, the washers go on the outside, only the cones and the rod go inside the bracket (9.). Build up both sides. Torque pivot bolts to 80-100 ft-lbs, skip to step 10.
9. For OEM tension rods: Put new OEM tension rods in with the white paint dot toward the ground (10.). Torque pivot bolts to 80-100 ft-lbs.
10. Reinstall the tension rod brackets. Torque front tension rod bracket bolts to 80-94 ft-lbs. & front sway bar bushing retainer bolts to 29-36 ft-lbs.
11. Pull the front wheels forward to engage the studs into the lower control arm . Then torque the nuts on the studs (11.) to 80-94 ft-lbs for all but convertable, which requires 69-83 ft-lbs. torque.
12. Have the car aligned. There's a slight amount of play in the bracket holes, so things have moved around. If adjustables were installed, things have definitely been shifted. Also make sure to tighten the locknut(s) on the adjustables.
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