Life at the end of the road

May 23, 2008

‘Calum’s road’ the great suspension destroyer

Filed under: daily doings, Land Rover — lifeattheendoftheroad @ 9:18 pm

It’s not been quite so nice today but we have had some much needed rain and whilst it was most welcome it was not forecast. When I say most welcome, personally I’d have been happier without it but the pigs enjoyed the cool and the damp and so did the garden. As we are heading for a couple of nice hot dry days I never bothered to take all my tools in under cover or bring the washing in as I figured it would all dry out nicely later, and it did. Unfortunately I have again spent most of the day working on the other love of my life, of course when I say other I mean other than wife, child, parents and pigs! Most of todays work centering around the front radius arms and ‘Poly bushes’

There’s bushes and there’s bushes

There is great debate among that sad bunch of people that are Land Rover enthusiasts ( and I include myself in that category ) about the pro’s and con’s of fitting polyurethane bushes instead of the standard rubber bushes to a Land Rovers suspension. Me I prefer the firmer ride and tighter feel of the ‘poly bush’ to the standard rubber type. The problem with the great debate is that people never compare like with like. Of course if you change clapped out rubber for new ‘Poly’ it’s going to feel better. By the same token if you keep fitting cheap ‘Britpart’ rubber or crap ‘Deflex’ poly they’re going to wear quicker whatever you fit. The genuine rubber will last as long as a genuine ‘Poly Bush’ if fitted correctly it will articulate  better and be more comfortable, however it will feel spongier  on the road. My driving and ‘Calum’s road’ are more suited to polyurethane bushes though I did once make the mistake of buying the inferior ‘Deflex’ ones. which only lasted a year!

These are the inferior ‘Deflex’ ones sat on a genuine ‘Polybush’ box, they are completely shot after only a year, the 5 left and center are the radius arm to axle (there’s 3 missing) and the 4 tubes are the metal inserts. All the inserts were loose in the bushes. The inserts themselves are much tinner walled than a genuine ‘Polybush’ so they crush when you tighten them up and the bush on the right which is a radius arm to chassis bush is split.

How to repair a ‘Polybush’

These are the genuine article and whilst they look pretty much like the ones above the only wear in them is on the lip that keeps the bush central and stops the radius arm moving and rubbing on the axle case. I had fully intended to replace them but bank holiday coming up an all that I’d probably not see them for a week so I came up with a cunning plan. Firstly I trimmed off the lip so I could push the bushes in the wrong way round with the outer faces now meeting in the center of the radius arm. I then cut 8 discs out of some 3mm plastic sheet I had lying around, the discs being the same size as the lip I’d just cut off. I then drilled a hole in the center the same size as the outside diameter of the metal insert and glued it with super glue onto the bush. The purpose of the glue being to hold the disc in place whilst the radius arm was fitted to the axle, once in place and the bolt tightened the metal insert would hold it securely.

My modification worked a treat and they slid in much easier with the plastic discs than I expected as they were now 6mm wider than before. I’ve still got a set of new ones on order but at least now I can get on with the rest of the work.

Then we’ll just have to see how long it stands up to ‘Calum’s road’ ! Whilst it’s a magnificent piece of work and a tribute to one mans determination it’s pretty hard on the suspension, though this is due mostly to poor maintainence by the council than by any faults in it’s construction. However it has systematically destroyed the suspension system on every vehicle I’ve owned, the ‘old girl’ standing up better than most.

No Lobsters, no crabs and a cold shoulder!

With me just about sick of being under my Landrover I went out with my boy fishing but we blanked! nothing, zilch. Looks like Jacks shoulder had stopped working as bait, mind you it was now 2 weeks old! still we cleared out the pots and put an extra one in the water and this time they were all baited up with fresh haddock frames ( the bits left over from filleting ) so who knows what’s in store for tomorrow!

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