Torque specs needed for 03 Outback strut R&R

As stated; I may change the struts myself on my wife's 03 (Legacy) H6 Outback.(it has fairly low miles but one of the rear struts is leaking
oil.) I have some numbers but they appear to be for WRX. I think the mount plate bolts are likely the same at about 14.5 ft/lbs, but I also need the strut nut and the 2 bolts at the knuckle.
thanx in advance
Carl
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buehler?......buehler....?
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Hey Carl:
The following link will take you to the the Rear Suspension chapter of the 2003 factory service manual for the Outback.
http://dl.dropbox.com/u/33330380/2003%20Outback%20Rear%20Susp.zip
If you need anything else from that manual, just let me know.
Good luck,
AS
1 Lucky Texan wrote:

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AS, the RS-16 page is quite helpful!
If you have a link to FS-20 and FS-21 that should get me everything I need.
thanx!
Carl
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Here it is: http://dl.dropbox.com/u/33330380/2003%20Outback%20Front%20Suspension.zip
Good luck
AS
1 Lucky Texan wrote:

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awesome!
Thank you.
Carl
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Just finished the rear struts. The pages you supplied were a lot of help - thanx.
I had a slow start yesterday - had to visit 2 places for tools. Autozone lent me spring compressors but didn't have any tools suitable for the strut tops. Finally had to 'create' a tool with the help of a guy at ACE Hardware. We cut the 'L' off a 6mm hex key wrench. Then, I used a 1/2",to3/8" to 1/4" to 1/4sqr drive 6mm socket stack with the hex piece in it for the struts! It fit down thru a 17mm deep socket that I had some vice grips on. This was to disassemble, then reassemble and torque the top strut mount.
My local dealer (Bob Moore Subaru) had reported the left rear strut was leaking oil some months back and indeed it had oil on the top as well as not returning after being depressed. i guess that means it also lost it's nitrogen.
An impact wrench would have been very helpful. I think I could do it again in under 5 hours with handtools. An impact would probably knock an hour off. Maybe more. I may buy one before tackling the fronts. Or I may farm them out - though I like having an excuse for new tools! It was a challenge torqueing the bottom bolt back on. A real lift would be nice.
I must say - this was a little more challenging for me physically than I expected. My age is catching up with me.
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I broke down and bought an impact wrench.
HOLY ZOMBIE JESUS!
Why, oh why, did I not get one of these 35 years ago!
Anyway, buying it kinda forces me to do the front struts and the axle myself now. I had a short day today due to a dr's appt I had to take my wife to and another errand. Only got the oil changed, the bottom cover off, the strut off, springs compressed, and the new strut 'loosely' placed in the spring. Still have the other side AND its axle. If I get a long day tomorrow, I might just finish. But I might run out of steam. I feel like one huge bruise. lol!
BTW - the KYB struts I bought have a 19mm top nut instead of the 17mm stock. I wonder if that would alter the torque setting I should use?
Also, it seems I SHOULD torque the NUT on the camber bolt (top) but it seems I'm to torque the BOLT on the lower connection to the knuckle. I would have to remove the caliper to do that. Does anyone feel it would be a mistake to either turn the bolt around (if it will clear the caliper) so it's head is clear at the front. Or, is it OK to torque the nut on it? (there's clearance for a box-end wrench to 'back it up' during reassembly either way - just not for the torque wrench.)
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OK, if anyone searches though here for strut info, I'm gonna include this link;
http://www.subaruoutback.org/forums/81-wheels-tires-brakes-suspension/36263-2003-w-h6-baja-springs-kyb-struts-done.html
There's link there with some good info, the guy has some pics (though he is putting Baja springs in the rear) and I also placed a coupla pictures and some photos there with some advice that worked for me.
I think removing the struts with handtools is doable, but using the spring compressors - it's a real pain without the impact gun. If you MUST do this yourself - consider taking your struts to a shop and paying them to swap in the the new strut. I probably should have done that but, even buying a $150 impact from Lowes, I still saved plenty over shop labor charges.
Car's back on the road with 4 new struts and a new half axle. The first front strut may have it's top hat not exactly lined up. Dunno if it will self-correct or not but, didn't notice any issues on a test drive. I saved the side that got the new axle till last and that is where I took the pics shown at the link.
thanx again for all the support, info, advice.
1LT
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Probably work on the rear struts tomorrow - maybe do an oil change on the other car.
One other question on struts. Does everything go back together 'dry'? Or should any grease or other treatment be done anywhere? I know not to use any lube on nuts/bolts because it can change clamping/torque forces. Just wondering if springs and/or spring seats need any lube.
thanx everyone.
1LT
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Congrats on the impact wrench and the job done.
I always did this kind of work using hand tools for the strut replacement after having the assembly off the car. I once tried using the impact wrench to compress the spring, and it only lead to the spring compressor sliding and getting me into a bind with a bowed spring to one side.
Yes, these things normally go dry together. Most of the time, when needed, manufacturers include a rubber or plastic seat for the spring on the strut or upper mount. It is very important to locate the end of the spring properly on the strut mount and on the strut to avoid squeaks.
It is always important to protect the spring and repair any scratches to the paint/rubber coating on the spring itself, to prevent the spring from rusting and failing.
If the diameter of the strut rod thread changes (most likely not) then the torque could be adjusted, but because of the strut mounts, the rod will be most likely the same diamterand the torque remains the same.
Torque measurements are more precise if done on the nut, but for practical purposes, you should be fine if torquing on the bolt. I thought that the bolt securing the lower ball joint to the knucle was threaded on the knucle... do nor memeber a nut there and i could not see it well in the book. If it has a nut, there is not problem reversing it.
I saw, a couple of days ago, an impact wrench, 1/2" drive, Campbell Hausfeld at Walmart for around $25 bucks. The pneumatic rachet was 40 something... go figure.
Sorry for replying to your post this late.
AS
1 Lucky Texan wrote:

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I was able to alternate use of the impact and didn't seem to have a big problem with 'bending'. Perhaps because i bought a 'fairly inexpensive' electric wrench and the air-guns are faster/more powerful?
Still, due to occasional clearance problems, I did use the open/boxend wrench some on the compressors. And I used the torque wrench for all actual assembly - no impact..
Also, I did torque the nuts, top and bottom, on the lower strut. Just figured clamping force is clamping force. I did not try to turn the lower bolt around. No problem backing-up with the boxend wrench either. I felt like a huge walking cramped muscle for a day and half. But overall, things went OK. Not perfect, but I think well enough to be safe and practical. Still no reported squeaks or groans. car actually feels tight. Probably get alignment in the next few months (toe is not 'centered on the steering wheel - that was pre-existing and is not severe). No problems though marking and replacing the camber bolt. I also used the floor jack on the front to put a little upward pressure on the hub before final torquing. Kinda like the instructions mentioned for the rear struts. Using some vice grips helped me keep the top hat oriented on the spring. that helped a lot on the last strut. Wish i had done it on the first front strut.
again, I added some comments and pictures to this thread;http:// www.subaruoutback.org/forums/81-wheels-tires-brakes-suspension/36263-2003-w-h6-baja-springs-kyb-struts-done.html
Thanx for everyone's support.
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In my view of the posts, the link is truncated so, please try this one;
http://preview.tinyurl.com/3dsb3un
Carl
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Btw when in doubt haynes and other manuals of its ilk would list default torque settings per bolt size.
That's for the cases when AS does not come to the resque with the exact specs for the exact nuts
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I was able to find numbers at NASIOC but the discussion was for Impreza model - I just wanted to make sure they were the same for a Legacy OBW. They were.
I guess I've been spoiled by the internet. In the past, I always had a Petersen or Haynes manual for my cars.
The challenge is gonna be doing this with handtools. I don't have an impact wrench/gun. But I have a cheater bar so....we'll see. I've done half axles before.(on Honda and Mitsubishi) but never changed struts. It just so happens my wife's Outback needs a half-axle and has a rear strut that leaked its oil out. Though it is still low miles at 64K, 97% of those miles are local/secondary roads and short trips. And of course it still needs its sparkplugs changed. I may not get everything done this October - but I plan to get most of it done. (and I may get discouraged and farm it out lol!)
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Don't repair shops in your area have a surcharge for basket jobs? :^)
I had a knack for enriching MacTools & Snapon when I lived in the states. And then there is Craftsman@Sears for your basic needs :-]
Since you don't plan to expatriate yourself professional grade tools will likely outlast you though and your descendants will have to spend fewer $$s so craftsman do not look so attractive in that regard: i have (possibly unfounded) doubts about longevity of the hobbyist grade tools.
Would anyone who has a large toolbox in the garage comment which Craftsman tools are ok in the long run and where you'd better come up with $$$ for pro grade metal?
... and then there is some questionable implements at walmart :^)
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I don' tknow how Craftsman tools are nowadays, but I hope good. I fear not as good as they once were though. I got a Craftsman set when I got my first car in 1990/1991. I replaced the 1/4 inch drive about three years ago because I had bled one too many car's worth of brakes with it getting brake fluid into the pawl drive mechanism and probably wrenched on it a little too hard. The 1/4 inch drive just failed two weeks ago when I put oh-my-God amounts of force on it with a breaker bar used as a pry bar. It still worked if you pushed the lever in the correct position when you started applying torque. It would hold there until you took the force off, then go back to freewheeling. So useable, but not right. Both of them were easy exchanges at Sears. The only othe rbreak I had was a 7/16 socket. for that I didn't even have to wait in line. The guy saw me at the back of a holiday season line holding a socket, called me up, told me to go grab a new one, and once he compared them, sent me on my way.
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My first set of wrenches (and some other tools) after I moved out were bought at a pawnshop - all different brands, I think I still have every one.
I never mind paying top dollar for a tool IF I DECIDE IT'S NECESSARY. It often isn't.
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Now THAT's the service. I hope you are abusing 3/8th or 1/2th now instead of the poor 1/4th. 1/4 with a pry bar, eeesh.
I trashed a ($70? $50? I remember it was not cheap) craftsman torque wrench myself stupidly using it for untying some nut instead of swapping the socket onto a regular 1/4 drive wrench and keeping the precision tool for the precision work. Somehow I think snapon tool would not have survived my idiotic use as well.

You might laugh, I took a motorcycle mechanic correspondence course a decade ago :-] After that I became extremely picky tool wise. using 6 point sockets instead of the 12 pointers.
That and prolonged contact with an ex-promechanic coworker pulling his bmw opposite twin apart for a major rebuild and putting it back together, being mechanically inept at the time I was impressed. The guy did not have many good things to say about durability of craftsman tool. But that has to be taken in the heavy tool use (pro shop) context I guess.
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