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We had ordered a number of Old Man Emu parts to upgrade the Yota. They included:
Four OME long-travel Nitrocharger shocks
Two OME Dakkar front leaf-springs
Two OME Dakkar rear leaf-springs
Four greaseable spring pins
Four greaseable anti-inversion shackles
Twenty-four polyurethane suspension bushings
Four front U-bolts
Four rear U-bolts
Another thing we did before going to the Warehome was inspect all the parts received in the mail to make sure everything had arrived. Just like Santa, we checked our list twice, 'cause nothing is worse than giving the school bully a Red Ryder BB gun, or removing your daily driver's suspension and finding out you don't have the right parts to get it rolling again. Just think about how many times you get the wrong parts on your hamburger. That really sucks, and it doesn't even leave you stranded.
You should make sure you have all the tools needed for the entire project, plus another working vehicle at your disposal - unless you enjoy walking four miles to the nearest auto shop, or running to get there before they close the doors. During this project we needed the following tools and supplies:
Floor jack (two is better)
At least four jack stands
PB Blaster (or WD-40, JB-80, etc.)
Impact gun (optional, but very helpful)
Metric ratchets (long and short sockets)
Lug nut wrench
Grease gun (with proper adapter)
Plastic bags and labels for parts that must be reused
Shop towels and rags
Box for trash
PBR (or other payment for your buddies)
Once it was clear we were not diving into an empty swimming pool, we found a flat area on the asphalt, (conveniently in the middle of Fred's driveway), where we'd have room to work on the truck and safely place our jack stands. We positioned the jack stands as close to the spring perches as possible so they could be raised once the truck was lifted into the air. With the emergency brake applied, the floor jack was placed under the driver side spring and the FJ was lifted. The jack was then used under the differential on the other side to raise the truck enough to place the other jack stand at the same setting to make the truck level. The floor jack was then positioned under the diff to keep some weight off the springs and help keep the truck steady.
With our workspace ready, it was time to remove the wheels. Fred's impact gun made short work of the lug nuts, (which were stored in baggies), and the wheels were rolled out of our way. That gave us access to our first targets: the shocks.
Box wrenches made it easy to remove the once mighty nitrogen shocks that were probably installed around the time Back to the Future II was in movie theaters. We made sure to keep the mounting bolts out of the trash box because some would need to be used again. These were placed in bags with "front shock bolts" labels to help keep the curse words used to a minimum. A busted steering stabilizer shock was also tossed.
Next, we used the impact gun to remove the U-bolts from the bottoms of the leaf-springs.
Before we removed the leaf-springs, additional jack stands were placed under the axle tubes. Detaching the springs will release the axle from your truck, so make sure it is secure and that none of your body parts are in danger of being squashed if it slams to the ground. On our project truck, the sway bar, (which Fred hates), keeps the front axle from falling to the ground, but you should still keep your body out of the way at all times. Also, keep in mind that the leaf-springs are heavy, and will crash onto the asphalt when you pull out the bolts. After you remove all the old bushings, you will have a truck with NO front suspension. Good thing you checked your new kit for all the parts that are supposed to be included. Right?
Click here for videos of this install