<O>>I second Jeff's recommedation for Boge turbo-gas cartridges - I just
<O>>installed them & they're a real improvement.
<O>>I managed to remove the aforementioned cap, with the strut installed in
<O>>the car, by using a big pair of channel-locks and putting them between
<O>>the coils of the spring, having pushed the rubber boot up out of the way.
<O>>Wasn't too hard. Not having to take the strut out is a big win, IMHO.
<O>>The only other snag is holding the new strut to stop it rotating while
<O>>tightening the lock nut on top - you need some kind of big allen wrench
<O>>and a wrench for the nut, and they tend to get in each others way. Still not
<O>>convinced I got enough torque on there, but I keep checking it, and it seems
<O>>to be staying tight.
<O>Could you outline this procedure a little more closely? I'm getting ready
<O>to do them in my '85 GT, but keep putting it off because I can't afford to
<O>buy a spring compressor. Please tell me that this isn't some kind of a
<O>cruel joke! <grin>
<O>But you really can replace the strut inserts w/o removing the struts from
<O>the car? Please tell me more!
Well, first of all, i know nothing of audi GT's/4000 series based cars - I've only
worked on the big audis. Secondly, I strongly recommend you get at least the Haynes
manual for your car, if not the Bentley.
It's very hard to explain this stuff properly over email, without diagrams etc. but
basically, on my car ('88 5000CSTQ), the front strut cartridge is held in by:
a) a locknut on top of the thin, shiny rod part of the cartridge, accessible by opening
the hood and taking off a black plastic cover, and
b) a threaded metal cap which screws down over the main, thick, painted body of the
cartridge, attaching it to the strut/spring assembly. There is a special tool for
undoing this cap, making use of the hexagonal shape of the aperture in the cap, through
which the thin shiny rod part of the cartridge protrudes. The hexagonal tool slides down
inside the spring, from the top of the strut. However, you don't need the tool - as I said,
you can take the wheel off the car, look sideways through the coils of the spring - you'll
see a rubber boot - shove it up out of the way and you'll see the cartridge and the
retaining cap, whose diameter is about 3" maybe. Just get a good grip on it with a big
set of channel lock pliers or similar, and unscrew it completely. Take the lock nut off
the top of the strut, and the cartridge will just lift out along with the rubbery bump-stop thing that's on it.
Just put it all back together with the new cartridge in, tighten the (new) lock nut,
holding the cartridge with an allen key, I used an offset box-end wrench on the lock nut,
so I could get at the allen key "hole". You'll see what I mean. Retighten the cap with
your channel-lock pliers, put wheel back on (obviously), and you're done.
Hope this helps, and is applicable to your car.