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Old 02-13-2019, 10:37 AM   #1
SevenFaux
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Join Date: Feb 2019
Location: Colorado Springs, CO
Posts: 2
Vehicle: 1995 Nissan D21 Hardbody, 4x4, 2.4L, Single Cab, Short Bed
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Default Hardbody Tension Rod Repair

I wanted to make a quick thread going over my repair for the lower control arm Tension Rod frame bracket for my 95' D21 4x4. As most of you know, if the Tension / Compression / Strut bushings on your truck have never been replaced you will likely need to do this repair.

This Thread was my main source of information, I just wanted to add some more info I found useful.

Parts list includes:

Four) LM67010 Bearing Races
Four) 1" Fender Washers (OD wider than bearing races)
One) Brass Bushing: 28mm OD, 20mm ID, 20mm Length
One) 3/4-10 x 2-1/2" Bolt
One) 3/4-10 Nut
Two) 3/4" Fender Washers (OD 2")
One) Moog K200163 Strut Rod Bushing Kit

I picked up the Bearing Races at RockAuto and everything else at ACE Hardware. You will also want a 22MM Deep Well Socket for the Tension Rod to Control Arm Bolts and a 24mm Box Wrench for the rear nut on Tension Rod as you can not get a socket in there (24mm Ratcheting Box Wrench if Possible, makes life easier)

The Bearing races and 1" Washers are used to make replacement bushing cups that will then be welded into place on the factory Tension rod frame bracket.



The rest of the supplies are used to hold the bushing cups aligned while welding and of course new bushings for when we put it back together.



Now the 1" Washers had an Inner Diameter of roughly 27mm which matches the factory bushing cup from Nissan, however I wanted to expand it to 28mm to give the rod slightly more room and so I could use that brass bushing to help align both cups exactly during welding. To do so I used my Dremel with a Tungsten Carbide Bit (Dremel 9903).



I worked in pairs by gluing two washers together then both to a piece of wood. From there I made slow continuous counter clockwise passes around the inside of the washers. I took just a tiny bit of material each pass to keep the inner diameter as round as possible until I could just barely fit the bushing inside them. Then I knocked them loose with a small hammer and used a wire brush attachment to clean them up.



I then removed both passenger and drivers side Tension rods. The rods themselves were thoroughly trashed from years of grinding against the frame bracket after the factory bushings had failed. We decided to temporally reuse the damaged Tension rods until new ones could be ordered from Nissan (PN: 54470-31G00). The factory collar and bushing washer were rusted on to the tension rod so I removed them using a cut off tool on an angle grinder and replaced them with the new ones provided in the Moog kit. You MUST do this; with the factory hardware rusted on there you will not be able to get the new bushings and Tension rod into place when reinstalling.



I then removed the remnants of the factory cups and prepped the surfaces for welding. The front was cleaned with a flap disk but to prep the back side we had to use sanding barrels and small wire cup brushes. Here is what they looked like before cleaning.



My friend then welded the Bearing races to the washers. For the rear cup you may need to flatten one edge of the cup depending on the outside diameter of the washers you used. This is due to fouling on the inside of the metal bracket. This can be done with a bench or angle grinder.



We then bolted the cups to either side of the factory bracket using the Brass Bushing to center the new cups in the frame hole and to each-other. Bolt together as shown with metal bracket in-between. The Brass Bushing placed inside the replacement cups is essential to maintain cup alignment.



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