[Vwdiesel] *HELP! Rabbit w/ a broken leg*

Sandy Cameron scameron at storm.ca
Mon Mar 3 18:24:18 PST 2008

At 01:40 PM 03/03/2008 -0500, you wrote:
>hey gang
>was just backing over a clump of snow and heard a sharp KLUNK!
>broke that lower cop/flange/platter thing that holds the spring up
>now riding low on pass side, and cup digging into back of tire,  
>scooping the sidewall out
>- need a short-term fix (pry spring over?) so I can drive locally w/o  
>blowing out tire

What has probably happened is, the flange has rusted out enough that it has
slipped down over the "bumps" pressed out on the walls of the shock. 
(A1s may have the seat welded to the shock tube, A2s , the seat sits on
"bumps" protruding from the shock tube. If the spring has demolished the
seat, and worked down over it, you must replace the shock. (both of them)
Replacing only one may increase the rabbit-like tendencies of the car,
hopping all over the road.

Jack up the back end (both sides) until both wheels are off the ground.
I suggest jacking where the axel bolts to the body. the wheels must hang free.
Set it on jack stands, you may need the jack to press the spring seat up the
shock tube for the "limp home" fix.

Smart thing to do is now remove the shock/spring assy, one bolt at the
bottom, a couple of nuts at the top, and pull it out and replace at least
the spring seat, but better still, get 2 new shocks for less than $100, and
replace both. New spring seats come with the shocks, as well as new nuts,
rubber bumpers, etc.

When the shocks are fully extended, ie, wheels hanging free, there is no
significant compression of the spring, so no compressor is required to do a
rear shock replacement.

(Unlike the front ones, which can kill you if you release them by removing
the restraining nut).

For a "limp home" fix, you could try jacking it up so the road wheels are
hanging limp, then try to push the spring seat back up above the dimples on
the outside of the shock tube.
This might require another jack and a suitable stick, whatever, use your

Never remove both shocks at the same time, or the axel may fall down far
enough to damage the brake lines.

With the shock fully extended, and the spring seat pushed up. install a
suitable muffler clamp at the location of the inverted dimples. Perhaps
straddle one of the dimples so it wont slide down when you lower it

Do not tighten the clamp enough to distort the shock tube, or the shock may
jam, and you will have "solid" suspension. On the other hand, the clamp is
carrying the weight of that corner of the car. Just tight enough not to slide

I have not done this, just imagined how it might work, and what I would do
at the side of the road to try and get home.


If it works, good on you, if not, replace the shocks.


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