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Old 01-30-2012, 11:42 PM   #1
SMKS
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Default DIY tool for replacing VW rear axle bushings - PICS

I'm in the process of replacing the rear axle bushings on my girlfriend's 2000 VW Beetle. I made this post for another forum. I thought people here might enjoy seeing my cobbled-together DIY tool. It works really well and made replacing the bushings really easy.


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I’m in the process of replacing the rear axle bushings on my girlfriend’s 2000 Beetle. I thought I’d show the tool I used to press in the in the bushings. It appears it’s similar to some tools other members have cobbled together.


Here’s what you’ll need to build the tool:
- 4 blocks of 2x4. Mine are about 4-5” long.
- 1-3/4” hole saw. NOTE - this was the size I needed for Meyle bushings. If you use a different bushing, you may need a different size hole saw.
- ⅜” threaded rod. My local hardware store had foot long pieces.
- Bolts and washers for the threaded rod
- Wrenches to turn the bolts


To make the tool:
-Drill a ⅜” hole into two of the blocks
-Drill a hole in the other two blocks with the hole saw. My pieces of 2x4 were too thick for the saw to go all the way through. So, I drilled a small pilot hole then used the hole saw from each side to make it all the way through the block.

You’ll see that the central support of the bushing sticks out farther than the body on each side of the bushing. The holes allow the block to push on the body of the bushing.


Here’s how it will go together. The outside piece will be a solid block.


I pulled my rear axle because I couldn’t get the bushings in. If I had built this tool first, I probably wouldn’t have had to pull the axle. You could use thinner wood pieces, to make the tool smaller. That may make the tool more useable when the axle is still on the car.

Position the bushing and tool on the axle. You’ll need a solid block on the side pulling against the axle. The part pulling against the bushing will have a solid block and a hole block. Start tightening the bolt. I put the bushing in the freezer overnight and used lithium grease. The Meyle bushings are out of round. I used a file to grind a beveled edge on the end of the bushing to help guide it in. It might take several tries to get the bushing started without it popping out.


After a while, you won’t be able to press the bushing in any farther. That’s because the bushing support has gone far enough that it is now bumping against the solid block on the other side.


You can see the bushing has pressed in enough that the end is now even with the other side of the housing.


Add a block with a hole to that side. Try to position it so that the end of the bushing will go into the hole in the block.


Keep tightening the bolt. If you have it positioned properly, the end of the bushing will go into the hole. You can then tighten the bolt until the bushing is pressed in all the way.


Additional notes:
-I’m not too impressed with the Meyle bushings. These are part number 1J0501541C. I bought mine at NAPA, but you can get them at most of the online parts dealers. These don’t seem very heavy duty. The housing is plastic and mine were significantly out of round. If you looked at them from the end, they were an oval, not round. Other members have bought the Genuine VW part, which has been updated and is beefier. If I had to do it over again, I would have bought the VW part. It’s more expensive, but appears sturdier.
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Old 01-30-2012, 11:51 PM   #2
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Default Re: DIY tool for replacing VW rear axle bushings - PICS

That's pretty neat and cheap. Out of curiosity how did you get the original bushing out of the axle?
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Old 01-31-2012, 12:40 AM   #3
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Default Re: DIY tool for replacing VW rear axle bushings - PICS

I did the same thing with some steel scrap on my mk3 golf. The bushing is a little different, but I cut a slit in mine with a sawzall and knocked it out with a chisel.
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Old 01-31-2012, 09:26 AM   #4
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Default Re: DIY tool for replacing VW rear axle bushings - PICS

I drilled several holes in the rubber, then knocked out the center part with a hammer. Then I used chisels to hammer out the metal housing.

The new bushings have a plastic housing, so if I ever do this job again they should come out more easily.

Last edited by SMKS; 07-06-2014 at 01:13 AM.
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Old 01-31-2012, 09:33 AM   #5
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Default Re: DIY tool for replacing VW rear axle bushings - PICS

I did the same job a few years ago. Bushings go in a lot easier if you use a pneumatic impact.

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Old 01-31-2012, 11:15 AM   #6
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Default Re: DIY tool for replacing VW rear axle bushings - PICS

I'm about to start to rebuild the front end on my 96 Jetta, how long do the rear bushing last?
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Old 01-31-2012, 11:28 AM   #7
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Default Re: DIY tool for replacing VW rear axle bushings - PICS

Quote:
Originally Posted by 930dreamer View Post
I'm about to start to rebuild the front end on my 96 Jetta, how long do the rear bushing last?
I don't know if 96 has a similar rear setup. I think the Beetle and the MKIV cars have a very similar rear suspension, but I'm not sure about the MKIII.

My GF's Beetle has 110k miles. The axle bushings were loose, but not so bad that the axle was rattling. But, the rear tires were wearing more on the inside edge. Replacing these should help that problem.

VW Vortex has a good DIY for MKIV cars.
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Old 01-31-2012, 04:08 PM   #8
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Default Re: DIY tool for replacing VW rear axle bushings - PICS

I didn't realize there was any vw love on this site. One person speaks up and we all show up.
The mk3's are pretty much the same. It's the same process to change. I did my mk3 at 100k miles. I didn't realize how bad they were until the new ones were in. The old ones made it feel like the car had rear steering but that went away with the new ones.
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Old 01-31-2012, 05:13 PM   #9
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Default Re: DIY tool for replacing VW rear axle bushings - PICS

I use my ball joint press to do those. Good job on the design though, simple and effective.
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Old 01-31-2012, 06:06 PM   #10
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Default Re: DIY tool for replacing VW rear axle bushings - PICS

Quote:
Originally Posted by srmofo View Post
I use my ball joint press to do those. Good job on the design though, simple and effective.
Yea I would wager that most people just use a ball joint press. I use mine all the time for bushings.
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Old 01-31-2012, 07:05 PM   #11
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Default Re: DIY tool for replacing VW rear axle bushings - PICS

Quote:
Originally Posted by stephen9666 View Post
I drilled several holes in the rubber, then knocked out the center part with a hammer. Then I used chisels to hammer out the metal housing.
An even easier way to remove bushes is to use two pieces from your trusty
socket set and a vice if it's practical to do so... Use a large socket as a spacer
so the old bush has somewhere to go, and a small socket that's only just
small enough to fit inside the piece you are removing the bush from... I stole a
pic I found on the net to help me illustrate..... Then put all three in a line on a
vice and start winding.....

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Old 01-31-2012, 07:21 PM   #12
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Default Re: DIY tool for replacing VW rear axle bushings - PICS

Nice home made tool. I've done that job a few times but was lucky to have the factory Dealer tools
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Old 01-31-2012, 07:37 PM   #13
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Default Re: DIY tool for replacing VW rear axle bushings - PICS

I thought about that, but it's not practical in this situation. The bushing is about 3" in diameter and the axle weighs at least 75 lbs.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rico. View Post
An even easier way to remove bushes is to use two pieces from your trusty
socket set and a vice if it's practical to do so... Use a large socket as a spacer
so the old bush has somewhere to go, and a small socket that's only just
small enough to fit inside the piece you are removing the bush from... I stole a
pic I found on the net to help me illustrate..... Then put all three in a line on a
vice and start winding.....

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Old 01-31-2012, 07:44 PM   #14
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Default Re: DIY tool for replacing VW rear axle bushings - PICS

Quote:
Originally Posted by stephen9666 View Post
I thought about that, but it's not practical in this situation. The bushing is about 3" in diameter and the axle weighs at least 75 lbs.
Ahhh.... I figured as much. Clever solution you came up with.
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Old 02-01-2012, 09:25 AM   #15
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Default Re: DIY tool for replacing VW rear axle bushings - PICS

Just a heads up for you vw./audi guys. snap on is the distributor for their tools. it can be made by a german company, but snappy sells it stateside it appears. it is generally 1/2 price compared baum tools and other german tool sellers. i have ordered a few specialty tools off them already. i think they were all mantra made.

http://vw.snapon.com/Home.aspx
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Old 02-01-2012, 10:02 AM   #16
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Default Re: DIY tool for replacing VW rear axle bushings - PICS

Quote:
Originally Posted by mtkst19 View Post
Just a heads up for you vw./audi guys. snap on is the distributor for their tools. it can be made by a german company, but snappy sells it stateside it appears. it is generally 1/2 price compared baum tools and other german tool sellers. i have ordered a few specialty tools off them already. i think they were all mantra made.

http://vw.snapon.com/Home.aspx
Thanks for that link!

Most of the tools I glanced at on that page appeared to be Hazet. I'm guessing it's a mix of makers though.
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Old 02-01-2012, 10:19 AM   #17
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Default Re: DIY tool for replacing VW rear axle bushings - PICS

Just a side note for any of the Euro car people here.

I'm going to avoid Meyle parts in the future. The rear bushings I used weren't impressive and didn't have a country of origin on the package.

Also, before I started this project I ordered a Meyle bushing set for the front control arms. They arrived yesterday and they're all made in China.
I wouldn't have ordered them if I had known they would be made in China. It's my fault for not asking the company I bought them from. I got a good deal, so I'll be using them, but I'm not too pleased.

The country of origin was just a little sticker added to the packaging. Some of the stickers had already fallen off, so a couple of the parts were missing COO info. The Meyle label itself didn't have any COO info.

I'm guessing the rear axle bushings were also made in China, but the stickers fell off.

Last edited by SMKS; 02-02-2014 at 01:28 AM.
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Old 02-01-2012, 10:31 AM   #18
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Default Re: DIY tool for replacing VW rear axle bushings - PICS

Quote:
Originally Posted by stephen9666 View Post
Just a side note for any of the Euro car people here.

I'm going to avoid Meyle parts in the future. The rear bushings I used weren't impressive and didn't have a country of origin on the package.

Also, before I started this project I ordered a Meyle bushing set for the front control arms. They arrived yesterday and they're all made in China.
I wouldn't have ordered them if I had known they would be made in China. It's my fault for not asking the company I bought them from. I got a good deal, so I'll be using them, but I'm not too pleased.

The country of origin was just a little sticker added to the packaging. Some of the stickers had already fallen off, so a couple of the parts were missing COO info. The Meyle label itself didn't have any COO info.

I'm guessing the rear axle bushings were also made in China, but the stickers fell off.
There is a "Foreign Car Parts Store" about 40 miles from me. I worked there as a young man for about a year. You can get all kind of VW aircooled and other odd Foreign parts there. He stocks a lot of stuff which is nice.

I bought a CV Boot for my 2006 Jetta about a month ago. It was a Meyle branded item. The COO sticker on it was Thailand. The quality of the boot was no where near that of the factory boot. It didn't seem like a good fit either. It would have been a stretch to put it on and it was more of a conventional "rubbery" material than the "hard plastic" of the original boot. I opted to return the Meyle and buy one from the dealership. It was a little more than double the cost, but I was a lot happier with it.

My friend bought a couple brake light switches for his 2003 Mexican Beetle a couple months back. They were Meyle branded and had COO stickers of China. They have worked fine so far.

The stickers on both were on the box, not marked on the parts themselves.
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Old 02-01-2012, 11:17 AM   #19
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Default Re: DIY tool for replacing VW rear axle bushings - PICS

This is what I ended up doing with my Corrado rear axle. Pulling in the bushing with the threaded rod was twisting and breaking the rod. I had to use a friend's large press.



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Old 02-01-2012, 12:31 PM   #20
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Default Re: DIY tool for replacing VW rear axle bushings - PICS

meyle is actually a good mid range part choice. those bushings cost 12 as opposed to 38 at the dealer. i generally sell them for 24ish range each. i have used them on at least 15 cars w/o issues. the control arm bushings i have not done a whole lot of as most times i run into bent arms that we just replace whole assembly. i think i have done 3 total w/ their bushings. again, bushings are cheap-- cost under 6 each for front and rear a piece. list is 30 range. sell it for around half of list per bushing.

their brake rotors are actually good too. come coated like zimmermans. again, a good mid range choice that does not warp in a month or rust out like cheap rotors. i pair them w/ pagid or textar pads for my "base" cheap brake option.

meyle is a german company, yet they make stuff all over.

http://www.meyle.com/EN/Wulf-Gaertne...s/History.html
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