Street Dreams

Drop Spindle Installation Instructions

Please read these instructions thoughroughly before attempting installation. For a typical Fiero, you will need a heavy hammer, a pair of pliers to remove cotter pins, and a metric tool set, specifically, wrenches and sockets in 15mm, 18mm, 19mm and 24mm sizes.

The spindles are shipped in a protective coating to prevent corrosion during manufacture and storage. When installing, it is suggested that it be removed with a paint remover. If painting, remove the coating and apply paint according to the paint manufacturer's directions.

Removal of original spindle:

Lifting the car:
For safety purposes, use a floor jack only for lifting and lowering the car, when working on the car it should be properly supported by a jack stand on each side. Place the jack stands as close as possible to the ball joint to retain the spring in its normal loaded position. Be sure that the spring loading is maintained on the jack stand, otherwise the ball joint may release with violent force.

Remove the wheel, wheel hub dust cover, cotter pin, adjusting nut and washer. Remove the caliper and wheel hub and bearing assembly from steering knuckle and spindle. Remove the brake rotor backing plate and the brake caliper mounting bracket.

Remove the steering linkage tie rod:.
Remove the tie rod retaining nut and remove the linkage. This can be done by putting a tie rod end splitter, also called a "pickle fork", in between the tie rod end and the spindle's tie rod mount boss. It should be driven with a hammer until it is loose. This method can damage the rubber boot, replacements are available at most auto parts stores. An alternate method is to use a heavy hammer and place solid hits on the end of the spindle's tie rod mount boss as shown in the picture below. It should come loose with about three hard hits.

Loosen the ball stud nuts and free the spindle by rapping with the hammer on the spindle bosses. When loose, remove ball stud nuts and remove the spindle. Suggested striking locations are shown in the pictures below. You can also back up the spindle bosses with the head of a sledge hammer while hitting the part with the other hammer. It is the jarring action that loosens the ball joints from the spindle / steering knuckle.

Re-assembly with new spindle:

It is recommended to inspect or replace and re-pack the wheel bearings with grease and replace the bearing seals at this time. Also, check all the ball joints and linkages for slop or rattle.

Reverse the above procedures and be sure to re-tighten all the fasteners to factory specifications. Be sure to reinstall all the cotter pins and spread out the ends like they were from the factory. This is a safety measure to make sure the nut does not loosen.

NOTE: The spindle bearing nut has a factory specification of 12 foot pounds maximum. If the nut is hard to start or turn, make sure that the clear protective coating is fully cleaned off, and try to restart the nut. Overtightening or starting the nut "kinked" will strip the threads on the spindle or the nut, so make sure that the nut starts "straight".

Steering alignment needs to be properly checked and adjusted if necessary, preferably by a professional or a person experienced in setting the alignment on Fieros.

The images shown above are for demonstration purposes only and are framed to minimize confusion, they are not exact representations of what appears on the car.

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