I know the front should go down the road before the rear unless you are backing up.
Now that I have that out of the way my question has to do with the spindle.
I am replacing the King Pins (spindles) and bushings on my 19 T. When I took the first side off I was surprised to find a thin brass washer on the bottom of the bolt between axle and spindle.
I can't find the washers in any of the catalogs so I'm assuming that when someone rebuilt the front end they needed it because the bushings were not thick enough to fill the gap.
Can I possibly be right?
Yes, that's probably what someone had in mind. However, there is no real need to fill the gap. It serves no real purpose, though some think it must be done.
Yep. Hopefully the flanges on the new bushings will be thick enough to fill the space without a brass washer.
If they aren't (measure before pressing in the new bushings), you can put a washer under one of the bushing flanges before you press it into the spindle.
The washer serves no purpose as the gap doesn't hurt a thing. Unless you just want one there...
Maybe they took to much off while reaming the face of the bushing to fit into the axle, and made up for it with the washer.
A bit too late because I have started pressing the bushings back in. If there is a lot of room I may use the washer. If not I'll leave it off.
Well, to me it feels better without any chance for movement up and down in the spindles, so I added washers between the bottom bushing and the axle. Works just as fine
Jerry I disagree, you don't want any gap there because as you drive down the road and hit bumps the spindle will be moving up and down and slamming against the bushings with that gap there and prematurely wearing out the parts. I believe you should get your front end as tight as possible eliminating any chance of shimmy and vibration.
GM had a SS washer .005" thick that you could get at the parts dept. I somewhere have the number but right now have no idea where it is. They used it to take up end play under the small/big block chevy distributor gear. I have used them to take a little of the extra space. I remove more material from the bottom bushing than the top bushing.
This all makes sense.
It sounds as if I should make sure things fit without a big gap but don't need to be anal about it.
If the gap is too big I'll visit my local GM dealer.
Just finished my front end rebuild. This is what I did; used a vernier caliper and made an inside measurement of the axle and an outside measurement of the spindle bushings after installation. Split the difference on the oversize measurement of the spindle bushings and used that as a guide for face reaming the spindle bushings. Checked my work along the way and when I hit my correct measurement they went into the axle with no play and turned with a slight drag. For what its worth, hope this helps some more.
Not sure how big a bump it would take to allow the spindle to go down into the void, but if that were the case, I wouldn't want that to happen either. And yes, a tight spindle will help to eliminate shimmy, but it's not the fix for a car that shimmies. Anyway, no harm done to put a washer there.
I took the second side apart this weekend and found a another washer.
I was careful and found that it was on the top.
I didn't use a washer when I finished to first side.
I am now thinking that the washer allows brass to brass instead of brass to steel for the contact/sliding area.
It might make it easier to steer!
What are your thoughts?
What do the wear surfaces on the axle look like? Perhaps this is more of an attempt to deal with a worn out, not flat yoke surface than worn spindle bushings?
Bronze to steel is a better bearing condition than bronze to bronze.
That brass washer most likely used to take up the wear on the axle or spindle. That was a fairly common thing to do. You shouldn't have to use a 'make up' washer between the spindle and the axle surfaces.
I suggest that you do want a washer to fill in any gap. As someone has said, it all needs to be tight to help prevent shimmy. I write this from experience.
The washer should go at the bottom as all the vertical load - the weight of the car - is taken at the top.