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Rear Spindle Spherical Bearing Review

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  • Rear Spindle Spherical Bearing Review

    I bought one of the preliminary test sets of Def's rear spindle spherical bearings (RSSB's for short) and was finally able to install and test them.

    I needed to get the old bushings out, and press the new bushings in. I'm lazy, and my spindles were already bolted up to the car, so I had to figure out a way to get everything off without too much fire or a press. The result was a couple sockets and a large bolt.

    Screwing around at work:

    "Mini-press" in action:

    Use a bunch of lube between washers to prevent things from heating up too much. Lube on the threads also helps a ton. It all makes torqing everything much easier.

    7/8" or 22mm socket in slip fit into the upright:

    Pressing the new RSSBs in was just a matter of reversing the socket order.

    For the lower shock mount, I needed to burn stuff, since I didn't have anything that'd fit over the shock bushing:

    The heat actually made the bearings nearly a slip fit, and that was somewhat of a concern for me. I ended up using 300deg metal epoxy on the bearings in addition to press fitting them in. I used a lot of heat on the mount itself, and was able to lightly tap the mount bearings in with a rubber mallet. When the spindle cooled, it was all nice and tight, with some added security from the epoxy.

    End result:

    These things work wonderfully. The stock bushings bind up a great deal, and will work against motion in any direction away from their set position. With them tightened (set) at normal ride height, they'd fight with the spring on compression, and against droop, "helping" to lift the inside wheel on turns. Now, with only the lower arm bushings left, there's virtually zero "spring" from the bushings, and very little resistance to suspension movement. This helps my tender springs to do their job a great amount more.

    For performance, it's tough to say, as I also swapped spring rates all around. There is noticeably more control in the car, and the rear seems to "bite" quite a bit more. Even Jenna, a novice driver, was able to notice the added stability in the rear end in comparison to previous times driving the car. My favorite feature is the replacement of the tweaked stock bushing for the shock mount. Making compression adjustments in the rear is now 10 times easier.

    In the end, I would highly recommend going to spherical bearings over bushings (especially stock ones >.<). They really free up the rear end suspension, allowing the dampers and springs to do what they're supposed to. In the end, that means more traction, as well as more precision in adjustments (where they aren't "dulled out" by bushing bind).
    Last edited by AceInHole; 08-19-2008, 06:59 AM.

  • #2
    When can we expect to order these, i was like #1 on the list after you haha...

    Good install/review post. interesting.
    "hexa-dodecahedron-triple-threaded-super-eleventy-way-adjustment-spec" dampers. -Def


    • #3
      I was told that a small run of control arm mount sets was already in the works, but shock side mounts would be done on a "time permitting" basis. I'm sure Def will post up availability as soon as he can.


      • #4
        Good pics - I like the RSSB terminology. Almost sounds like a Soviet ballistic missile acronym.

        A few more of the control arm RSSBs are coming soon, but life and 110 deg F garage temps have been keeping things fairly slow. It's only 85 here today(which must mean hell has frozen over since it's August in north TX and not over 100), so the lathe is getting a workout. Trust me guys, I haven't forgotten about you.

        Glad you like the change PJ. Hopefully it helps crush those pesky EVOs and M3s.
        '18 Chevrolet Volt - Electric fun hatch for DD duty!

        DefSport Koni Sleeve and Spring Perch Buy!!!


        • #5
          Where's this list, and how do you get on it?


          • #6

            Oh thats good to hear man. Well, lets get a list going then...

            List of those who want the whole set of def's sphericals:
            and put yourself on the list

            Me wants all this toooooo :P
            "hexa-dodecahedron-triple-threaded-super-eleventy-way-adjustment-spec" dampers. -Def


            • #7
              Nice write-up, PJ... and thanks for the great idea on how to press out the old and in the new RSSB's with the uprights on the car still .

              Def, no rush on my part... I won't be touching the suspension till November, so you can save me for last for all I care.


              • #8
                very very interesting. what is this "lets re engineer the 240sx forum". great write up PJ.

                Most PM answers: F 17X9 +22, R 17X9 +35


                • #9
                  What were these priced out at 60 a pair or 60 a piece? And you'd need 4 pairs for Z32 uprights right?


                  • #10
                    For the RSSBs you'll need 3 pairs of control arm bearings and 1 pair of shock mount bearings. The control arm RSSBs work out to $50 a piece ($100 a pair), and the shock mount bearings are $150 a pair.

                    That pricing is AFAIK.


                    • #11
                      Ace got a break on the shock mount bearings because they had some cosmetic "issues"(first set).

                      The price is $100/pair for the control arm RSSBs - you need 3.

                      $175/pair for the Z32 shock mount RSSBs - you need 1.

                      If some people are interested enough to put a deposit(like maybe $50) down on the Z32 shock mounts, I can have those available in about 40 days ready to go. Otherwise it will be a long time coming since I'm going to be working more than full time and going to grad school full time come Monday.

                      I just don't want to get a bunch of these things made then be stuck with 'em, and I've had bad experience in the past with people being interested until it's time to pay up when I did ECU tuning.
                      '18 Chevrolet Volt - Electric fun hatch for DD duty!

                      DefSport Koni Sleeve and Spring Perch Buy!!!


                      • #12
                        So can I order and get them all now?... or?... what's up?... I want my whole z32 upright sphericalized :P
                        "hexa-dodecahedron-triple-threaded-super-eleventy-way-adjustment-spec" dampers. -Def


                        • #13
                          No, I don't have any more shock mount bearings made up, and honestly, it's not worth my time to make the latest design by hand. It comes out to me making a few bucks an hour,

                          I almost got a decent run made at a machine shop, but decided to wait it out to get some more feedback and make a few design tweaks. This isn't a huge source of money for me, so I'd rather proceed slowly and make sure everything is spot on before making a few and helping people out. It sucks when you have more downtime due to issues with aftermarket parts as I'm sure we've all been there multiple times, so I've been cautious.

                          If there really is interest the latest design for the shock mount bearing is pretty pimp IMO. It uses both a snap ring and the sleeve itself to retain the bearing, as well as putting bearing mount on there for extra security.

                          I can have a run of say 10-15 pairs for the $175 price. Less than that and the price per set starts going up quite rapidly, so I might need to increase the price just so I don't lose money on this whole gig ya know.
                          '18 Chevrolet Volt - Electric fun hatch for DD duty!

                          DefSport Koni Sleeve and Spring Perch Buy!!!


                          • #14
                            I would be more than willing to put a deposit.

                            We might want to let the Z32 people know about this to see if a few of them would be interested, and maybe some of the S13/14 crowd too. That could get the number up so it will be more worth your time.


                            • #15
                              I'm all for that, but with me doing it things are getting borderline commercial/vendor status.

                              This is just something to do on the side to help people out so I don't see the value in becoming a supporting vendor of all these forums to give people access to this.

                              There has been some talk on Zilvia, but the average broke ass kid on there will talk big, but only puts up money for crap like $1500 FRP body kits.
                              '18 Chevrolet Volt - Electric fun hatch for DD duty!

                              DefSport Koni Sleeve and Spring Perch Buy!!!