Dismantling rear subframe - questions

Hi all,

Bought an old rear subframe off ebay to dismantle, recover & rebush, new suspension and all that, then eventually and put on my car.  Question is, how do you remove the halfshafts from the differential?  The subframe is from a late 90’s mk1 1.8 I believe. I’ve searched around and see that they just pull off - but it just won’t budge! I’ve tried levering it out in the gap at the join but don’t want to damage the inner joints… anyone have any suggestions? Same goes for the other side, the hubs, anyone have a good method of dettaching these when it’s off the car?

I’ll also need some advice on the best way to protect the frame/wishbones - planning on getting it shot blasted then powder coating.  Or would it be better to apply zinc primer and just paint? 

I’m new to the heavy metal side of automotive tinkering, so any help would be appreciated!

Here’s a picture for reference, or your wall:



The inner joint will pop out of the diff. You need to use a pry bar between the diff casing and the driveshaft and give it a sharp shock to release the C clips that hold the shafts in. They can be tight. If the hub end of the shaft won’t budge with a few good hammer blows then they’ll need to be pressed out.

 Roadster Robbie is correct but on several occasions I have not been able to remove halfshaft from hub.Ihave 20ton press and I left some in to engineering shop with 40ton press and they could not even get them out as the threads on the end of the halfshaft wre starting to disintegrate form too much pressure.!!

 I think you may find a sharp hard jolt will be better than just force, In the old days I split many a joint like this and a short bar and a sideways whallop with a hammer on the bar is better than a long bar and lots of force :slight_smile:

I suspect there is something of a knack to it. With my car up on a ramp I tried everything and I couldn’t get either half-shaft to budget from the diff. Called over my mechanic mate for some assistance and he just pulled them both out by hand. Made me feel like a complete wimp I can tell you.

Cheers guys for the tips.  I got a pry bar and after a couple of whacks it popped out… on one side at least!

The other side I can’t get the lower wishbone bolt out.  Even with a large breaker bar and reasonable force… The nut is off but the bolt just won’t turn. Will keep trying to spray and if I don’t have any luck then perhaps remove the entire wishbone assembly… and take it somewhere.  Not sure what else to try!  I suspect it may be bent from an accident… perhaps…

I assume you are talking about the long bolt that secures the lower wishbone to the upright/hub? I’m going from memory here as it’s a while since I did mine but I believe you can get in with a grinder and cut the bolt in the middle then hammer out both halves. Mine were pretty well stuck but I sprayed them up with penetrating oil, left it for 24h and then beat the **** out of them with a big hammer and that knocked them out. Of course it totally deformed the bolt ends but I had intended to replace them anyway so no loss there.

Yep, that’s the one.  I’ll continue to spray it and try giving it a few more large whacks with a hammer! 


As someone asked (but since deleted their post) - I’m just able to turn the bolt perhaps 15-20 degrees back and forth… so bent bolt I guess?  I’ll just have to try to cut it out if this is the case…

That was me, I realised that my post added nothing to the topic. If the bolt only turns a bit, is it just seized into the bush sleeves so all you are doing is flexing the bush.