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Thread: Can Suspension Spring U Bolts Come Loose All By Themselves?

  1. #16
    Engineer phoenixdave's Avatar
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    Default Re: Can Suspension Spring U Bolts Come Loose All By Themselves?

    Quote Originally Posted by Adama View Post
    Honestly if i found some one losening something under my landy after driving over them a couple of times im sure the crabs in the local river would be eating well that evening. IMHO you don't have a problem with the landy, if people are seriously breaking your **** that much, you need to relocate to some were else in the uk were this kinda behaviour just does not exist even if that means you have to have a hair cut??????

    As to the nuts lacking there locking nylon bit, have never ever ever seen thoes come out on there own, there not just pushed in but the nuts riveted over them. there real pigs to remove if you try to get em out because say its a sunday and you need just a plane nut! Sounds like who ever fitted the bolts took em out to make them easier to do up. IMHO i would be giving your ex garage a bloody good miss too ****ty short cuts like that kill people.

    As to stealing a axle? IMHO possible but bloody unlikely, even with the U bolts off you sure as hell are not takeing it out from under there as the break drum backing plates won't fit through the gap :-)
    The easiest way to remove the nylon bit from a nyloc nut is to remove the (seized) nut from the u bolt with the hot spanner. Although it is possible to re-use the nut afterwards it wouldn't lock so perhaps that is why your nuts worked loose. David
    1982 ex-mil 109 2 1/4 petrol on lpg series III, 'Phoenix'

    1983 2 1/4 diesel 88" series III, 'Willy', currently in bits.

  2. #17
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    Default Re: Can Suspension Spring U Bolts Come Loose All By Themselves?

    I've had them come loose. I'm pretty sure they were tight when I got it but perhaps not really tight. I was under the rear doing the exhaust and noticed one brake pipe protector was at an angle,, U bolts were very loose. Did them up tight and now check them every 6 months or so. Theres a lot of reverse loading and flexing on the springs so I can understand why the tension would come off the studs. Doesn't explain why they are properly loose but mine was about 1 turn undone. If a wheel is out of balance it could potentially cause the axle to "gyrate" in circular motion and work the nut off, no way of knowing whether this is possible without testing it. Other posiblitly is that the rust in the springs between the leaves expands it and stretches the u bolts, then if it gets used the spring flexes and breaks down the rust effectively making the spring a lot thinner so you get a gap without the nuts moving, seems more likely.
    Landrover Series, turning a journey into a recovery

  3. #18
    Disco 1 TDi specialist zollaf's Avatar
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    Default Re: Can Suspension Spring U Bolts Come Loose All By Themselves?

    and with no nylon in the nut, they will come undone. simples. new nuts and forget about it. someone hasnt tried to steal your axle, just a simple matter of your nuts being loose.
    currently between landrovers, just a scabby old audi with 359,000 miles under it.

  4. #19
    Engineer Neil's Avatar
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    Default Re: Can Suspension Spring U Bolts Come Loose All By Themselves?

    people tend to forget that Nyloc nuts are intended to be a 1 use item. a bit like split pins, circlips, spring washers and other similar devices

    1984 One_Ten CSW with 4.2 V8 Bliss!
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  5. #20
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    Default Re: Can Suspension Spring U Bolts Come Loose All By Themselves?

    i have observed the severe difference in thickness between original land rover U bolts, and new metric britpart ones. by that i mean the shank of the bolt and the major diameter of the actual threads are smaller.

    in terms of fasteners and metallurgy that doesn't necessarily equate that the thinner one = weaker. however, i have personally stripped threads on britpart U bolts before reaching the target torque from the manual. the only reason i bought them is because they sell axle kits, i.e 3 U bolts and one with square shoulder. and i mean, how can even britpart get an industry standardised high tensile bolt wrong ??? (i'm being ironic)
    Drives: 1982 series 3 88" station wagon

  6. #21

    Default Re: Can Suspension Spring U Bolts Come Loose All By Themselves?

    Quote Originally Posted by Neil View Post
    people tend to forget that Nyloc nuts are intended to be a 1 use item. a bit like split pins, circlips, spring washers and other similar devices
    Yes, that is true.
    I can only suppose the workshop undid them several times because the plastic doesn't fall out when the nuts are still done up!


    regarding the thickness of the U bolts, I recall about 25 years ago when I replaced half of a series chassis (rear) that the original U bolts nearly filled the spring bottom plate holes completely.
    In comparison the newer ones are about half the cross-sectional area of the old ones.
    I thought the heavier built military spec Ubolts were longer so did not fit?
    If I'm wrong can anyone direct me to a supplier?
    I'd much prefer having bigger U bolts.

  7. #22
    Moderator DarrenH's Avatar
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    Default Re: Can Suspension Spring U Bolts Come Loose All By Themselves?

    Quote Originally Posted by Series 1, 2 & 3 View Post
    regarding the thickness of the U bolts, I recall about 25 years ago when I replaced half of a series chassis (rear) that the original U bolts nearly filled the spring bottom plate holes completely.
    In comparison the newer ones are about half the cross-sectional area of the old ones.
    yeah :/ i know there shouldn't be any sheer stresses on the bolts, but being a snug fit in the bottom plate has got to be a deterrent from things shifting around, right ?
    Drives: 1982 series 3 88" station wagon

  8. #23

    Default Re: Can Suspension Spring U Bolts Come Loose All By Themselves?

    Quote Originally Posted by Series 1, 2 & 3 View Post
    Yes, that is true.
    I can only suppose the workshop undid them several times because the plastic doesn't fall out when the nuts are still done up!


    regarding the thickness of the U bolts, I recall about 25 years ago when I replaced half of a series chassis (rear) that the original U bolts nearly filled the spring bottom plate holes completely.
    In comparison the newer ones are about half the cross-sectional area of the old ones.
    I thought the heavier built military spec Ubolts were longer so did not fit?
    If I'm wrong can anyone direct me to a supplier?
    I'd much prefer having bigger U bolts.
    Give GB Springs a call. They supplied mine when I bought my paras. They certainly weren't any smaller than the original ones I took out. Not sure if they sell separately but worth asking.

  9. #24
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    Default Re: Can Suspension Spring U Bolts Come Loose All By Themselves?

    As the spring is bending repeatedly it makes sense for the u bolts to be well into thier elastic zone once the nuts are tight so that the spring is always firmly clamped. This would mean the nuts need to be tightened enough to put a holding streatch into the u bolts. This will be a torque related to the stress required and therefore u bolt cross sectional area. Where I'm going is thinking if there are two different sections there should be two different torques. The LR thick orginals will be a high quality steel and require and take a decent torque but later ones with a thinner section could be over stressed by the same torque and permanently streach so loosing their elastic clamping and loosing their hold.
    Landrover Series, turning a journey into a recovery

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