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Old 11-21-2017, 11:29 AM   #1
wakespeak

 
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Heat Gun to Remove Cradle Bushings?

Instead of a propane torch, what do you guys think of this?

Trying to avoid an open flame in the garage.
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Old 11-21-2017, 11:46 AM   #2
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might work, I've used some hi-end Heat Guns and they put out some BTUs
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Old 11-21-2017, 12:29 PM   #3
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Just speculating here, but when I replaced my bushings I used a MAPP torch and it still took a few minutes to get the rear-most ones out, so with how much material you're heating and how thick the material is (the subframe) I suspect a heat gun either wouldn't be hot enough, or if it is you'll be there for a long time - you might even want to have two guns, one in each hand to speed things up.
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Old 11-21-2017, 12:49 PM   #4
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Don't really see it working we used a torch to get them hot enough
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Old 11-21-2017, 02:03 PM   #5
wakespeak

 
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The heat guns can get to 1200F, but propane is about 3x that at 3600F. So not sure if it would just take longer with the heat gun, or wouldn't work at all. I have read that BMW recommends a heat gun for their bushing removals.
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Old 11-21-2017, 04:06 PM   #6
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Been there done that get a propane torch and be one and done not enough heat.
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Old 11-22-2017, 07:17 AM   #7
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Ya gotta MELT the plastic until it flows allowing the assy to pop out. Takes some serious heat to do this.
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Old 11-22-2017, 11:51 AM   #8
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I hear ya, but most plastic melts < 500F that I have seen. Anyone try the heat gun?
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Old 11-22-2017, 03:52 PM   #9
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I tried it and got tired of holding the heat gun and gun does 700+.
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Old 12-03-2017, 01:25 AM   #10
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Did the install today with Pegasus bushings. Also installed the z28 upper control arm bushings.

Goal was to remove the wiggle/lateral bouncing that occurs at the track in some turns, particularly under power when exiting high speed corners. I have the rest of the 1LE components installed, including the toe arms. The toe arms made a lot of difference as well.

Result: too soon for total conclusion until I get it to the track, but there is a noticeable difference around the local twisty roads. The car seems to go where I point it better with more immediacy. No NVH issues so far.

Install notes:

- Used $22 propane torch from Home Depot
- Used 4 jack stands to evenly raise the car
- Used a jack with a wood block under the diff to balance the cradle/move up/down, etc
- Removed the bolts completely to allow enough movement of the cradle
- Bushings would start to smoke then slide after about 3-5 mins of heating over the exposed side of the cradle. I used a six inch cut of a 2x4 on a jack to push up on the cradle to create compression against the car + the 1" socket between the bushing and unibody.
- Unbolted the rear sway bar at the cradle (4 bolts)
- Used a metal paint spackle blade to scrape out the plastic while the cradle still hot.
- Put the aluminum bushings in the freezer over night. The tops went in with light taps from a plastic mallet. The bottom would barely get seated in the rear. Front easier. In both cases tightening the cradle bolt would slowly press in the lower bushing.
- The z28 bushings were fiddly to get unbolted (did this before inserting the new bushings)
- Had to unbolt the lower shock bolt to allow the cradle to drop far enough
- Torqued the sway and lower shock bolts with the wheels back on and the car off the jack stands then on race ramps.

The bushings I removed had the same part numbers listed in the 1LE install doc, so probably any 2013+ Camaro SS has these bushings (I started with a regular SS). The rubber is extremely firm, so the solid bushings are for those that are looking for improving conditions such as at the track IMO. The z28 upper control arm bushings are likely a huge improvement on their own.
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Old 12-03-2017, 09:53 AM   #11
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I just did the Pegasus solid bushings and Z28 rear upper control arm rear bushings on Black Friday (kept me busy). This is my daily driver and the only NVH difference is a more pronounced thump when hitting a sharp bump like an expansion joint. Totally worth it to get rid of the slop in the back end, especially when the tires break loose.

I used MAPP gas and the old ones melted out within a couple of minutes each. The only thing worth noting is that the sway bar definitely needs to be out of the way to get the rear cradle bushings out.
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