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Lessons learned from fixing seized bushes

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Old 10-08-2017, 01:18 PM
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Default Lessons learned from fixing seized bushes

Hi All,

Been a member of the forum for a while and had an MY99 S2000 for about 7 years. I did try and post recently about an issue with my locking wheel nuts but it never appeared for some reason - anyway that’s all sorted and for another post. This is a run through of what I have done to fix the failed compliance bush and some stuff I learned doing it that I hadn't found when I searched the topic.

I have had the car off the road for a while, and after a bit of maintenance I put it in for its MOT last week - it failed - the compliance bushes were shot. I knew that the bushes were going to need doing at some point due to seizing, but I hadn't checked them for deterioration. The garage suggested they would just swap the arm out as it would be cheaper than replacing the bush, but I don’t think they had seen the price of a s2000 arm from Honda, in any case they never came back to me with a price - they probably realised it would need to be cut out and didn’t fancy it!


failed compliance bush

I did a bit of searching and found some replacement arms which were 'as new' on eBay for a good price (2 for less than the price of one from Honda). They could well be pattern parts but they look identical to the old ones other than the code on the underside of them, and they are perhaps slightly heavier although I didn’t specifically weigh them. I went down this route rather than replacing the bushes in my current arm as I don’t have the time or funds to do all the bushes, and I don’t have a press yet. It's something I will do, but for now I just want to get through the MOT.



new arm

I bought a reciprocating saw and some blades from amazon:
Amazon Amazon
Amazon Amazon

Ordered the bolts from Hendy - just needed the cam collar and adjusting bolt (the bits that seize) and new castle nuts and pins.Also ordered some eBay special drop links – I’ve learnt that with drop links, they almost always need to be cut off, especially if they are original.I also ordered a new ball joint splitter. I first tried to take everything apart but found that the draper no104 ball joint splitter I have, does not have an opening wide enough to fit over the top of the joint – it’s a 19mm opening whereas I think you need something like 22mm. Amazon let me down, so I ended up cutting the draper tool with the reciprocating saw – this worked well, and clearly the metal used on this tool is much softer than the compliance collar!



cut ball joint splitter
I used the saw to cut the compliance bush below the arm. I found that by taking my time with it, not using full speed, and using wd40 to keep the blade and bush cool, I didn’t break the blade or even blunt it. I used the same blade for both sides. I have seen that some people cut both above and below the arm, however I don’t think this is necessary as long as the bit of the bush below the cut can be separated from the collar – a lever in here did the job and then created enough room to drop the arm and bush below the locking nut at the top and out of the subframe.



half way through the bush
On to the camber bush, I found it very tight to get the saw into the gap between the subframe and the arm. I also think on this bush you would need to make 2 cuts. There is a lot of bolt sticking out once you remove the nut, so I used a big hammer on the end to try and ‘shock’ the bolt out of the bush. This didn’t work. So, before I resorted to cutting it out, I got my heat gun and a narrow nozzle to fit just over the end of the bolt. I left this on for a while and then removed it and hit the bolt again, I also sprayed some more wd-40 to try and get the bolt to contract quickly. This in conjunction with trying to spin the bolt back and forth got it to move – a few hits with the hammer loosened it and it came out without cutting! I highly recommend trying this if you are in a similar position as it was a lot easier than cutting – I guess the heat probably isn’t good for the bush but as I was removing the whole arm I didn’t mind about that. This technique worked for both sides.



the rusty seized bits!
Once the arm was out it was fairly straightforward to put the new arm in, although with the hub and damper in place it is a pretty tight fit. I also found that tightening the castle nut on the ball joint to the recommended torque didn’t take it up the threads enough to provide enough of a hole to put the cotter pin through and I had to tighten it up another half turn or so.


new arm in


Anyway, all done, MOT retest is on Thursday and assuming all goes well I will get the geometry done on the front – I expect the rear is seized and that job can wait for a little bit.

Last edited by lordys2000; 10-08-2017 at 01:24 PM. Reason: additional picture
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Old 10-08-2017, 02:08 PM
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Well done chap,a horrible job I will need to do one day
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Old 10-09-2017, 12:37 AM
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Good work!
Where abouts in Sussex are you? Could you be the owner that lives about a mile away from me..?
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Old 10-09-2017, 12:49 AM
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Originally Posted by S2Bray View Post
Good work!
Where abouts in Sussex are you? Could you be the owner that lives about a mile away from me..?
Cheers - I'm in Forest Row and was previously in East Grinstead. Seen a few S2000's around the area - where abouts are you?
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Old 10-09-2017, 01:50 AM
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So not my neighbour after all. I'm in Hurstpierpoint
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Old 10-09-2017, 03:21 AM
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The torque on the balljoint should be a range to allow you to go to min then tighten until you can pin it

i cut out my compliance bushes and all i'll say is if you have a good saw and good blades it aint that hard

And for completeness my local garage pressed mine out and new in for beer tokens

good work fella
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