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serious topic on the 5 lug conversion-- i need opinions (must read)

 
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Old 08-29-2008, 05:07 PM
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serious topic on the 5 lug conversion-- i need opinions (must read)

Hey guys.

As most of you know by now I'm the nut looking like crazy for a 5 lug conversion.

Well of course now that I've already purchased or at least sourced all the parts I'm going to purchase i came across a thread on 'another forum' detailing some pretty horrific outcomes from a 5 lug conversion.

So its got me on edge as to whether or not I want to do this any more. I would really appreciate it if you could read what that Op posted, which I'm giong to quote below and give me some constructive critisim.

I need to know what I can do to prevent something like this from happening to me, details on what to look for, and what things to check for safely.

Right off the bat, he discusses seating the ball joints in something, I'm not mechanically inclined enough to really understand what he's saying there.

He discusses a castle nut that was rusty, and some cotter pins, I dont know where these are located so can someone help me figure out where those are for me to inspect them? How do I inspect em' once I locate em?

If anyone has pictures, diagrams, willing to explain etc... what to do to protect myself/friends/family from this kinda issue or other issues I'd REALLY appreciate it:

Quote:
Originally Posted by 5luglude
last week, wednesday nitte to be exact, i was driving with my wife in the car on the freeway at about 80mph, around 9pm, in the slow lane (passing slow drivers in the other two lanes to the left, when all of a sudden i heard a quieter (quieter than something really bad about to take place) popping noise from the front, but since i had just changed my brake pads on the legend calipers, i figured it was the caliper and pads getting comfortable/seated, so thought nothing of it, but still intended to check it at the next offramp.

about 5 seconds later, we hit a small bump in the freeway, and all of a sudden, the wheel jerked hard left, left front wheel and tire shot off the car, the front left went 6 inches down to the pavemnt, and we started to slide uncontrollably towards a very large and fast-approaching concrete divider. i tried braking, but that only threw the car more into the slide since the right side was braking, and the left side had no wheel.

we sideswiped 2 cars before slamming into the wall at about 70mph, at which point sice there was no room between the wall and the far left lane, we were T-boned by another car that couldnt get out of the way in time, and the cars starting spinning, hitting the barrier with ever rotation, coming to a rest on its side against the wall. we were airlifted to a nearby hospital, and i spent three days in the hospital with a shattered right leg and broken ribs, and my wife was much more seriously injured (wasnt wearing seatblet) and just got home from the hospital yesterday, after spending time in surgery and critial condition. out living room is a makeshift hospital room right now.

i went to the yard where the car was towed to find out what happened, and came across this: the front left lower balljoints castle nut had been severed where the cotter pins go in, so once we hit that small bump the rebound caused the entire spindle to jump the lower arm, breaking the hub (therefore sending the wheel flying) and us on our way to the wall. i had done a 5 lug swap 5 months prior, but a shop had checked the torque, so the only thing that i could imagine happening here is that the bolt was rusty, and it just snapped. im not sure if the larger lengend calipers had anything to do with this, but seeing as how they are connected to the spindle, i highly doubt it. anyone have any theories on why it the balljoint bolt (from right at the intersection of holes for the cotter pins) could have snapped? im thinking about suing honda, as they have a criss-cross design for the cotter pin insertion points, and they surely has to weaken the bolt, with much of its thickness occupied by, essentially, no metal. i can understand one cotter pin hole, but four holes around the diameter of the bolt? doesnt sound safe, but hey, who was i to think it would be a problem? it seems to have worked for so long... other than theories for why this may have happened, anyone know if there was a recall on lower front balljoints? i have (had) a 4th gen, so i wouldnt know about 5th gen recalls. id look it up, but im all doped out on painkillers and lazy.

its been a bad week, but i am finding another prelude and starting from scratch. just traded in the wifes civic for a mitsubishi montero 4x4, it weights 6,000lbs and its a monster of an SUV. i just drove it today and am scared to drive at this point.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by 5luglude
i would definetely recommend checking every last castle nut- should be what, 12? in all, with a torque wrench to make sure its not overtightened. thats my only theory, is that overtightening could cause the castle nut to snap- and right at the weakest place- the crosshair drillings through the bolt. see, with the bottom half of the balljoints bolt sticking out under the arm, under enormous or even moderate rebound "uplift", and without that castle nut, the bottom end of your spindle has nothing to hold itself. the steering arm snapped in a millisecond, but i wouldnt expect that to hold something like the spindle in its place after the castle nut/retaining bolt is gone, though it would make sense to tighten the castle nuts as hard as possible, im thinking that may have been my demise as it puts strain on the cstl. nut every time the shocks rebound. better to have them loose..R than overtightene..D, thats why the cotter pins are there. i think theres no alot of pressure coming down from the spindle on the lower castle nuts, but there can be alot of pressure rising up during rebound. i dunno. its got me baffled.

with this in mind, i wouldnt recommend having anyone but a professional shop who will stand behind their work do a 5-lug conversion, even though its easy as hell, one mistake or even no mistakes can lead to big consequences, as i have learned.

i would at least have each balljoint front a spindle that you dont know where its been to be load-bearing tested... i think i encountered a rusty bolt that had been sitting in at a part-out too long. if not the load-bearing test, at least have all your old balljoints pressed out from the 4 lug spindle and put into the 5 lug, as id imagine that youd want the daily-used balljoints rather than maybe 2 year old, rusted balljoint bolts protecting your life.

take it from a guy who just got (castle) nut slapped by the all-too-metaphorical 2-year-old (rusty) balls(joint)

i dont even know if that last line made sense. what the hell kinda painkillers did they give me????
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Old 08-29-2008, 09:08 PM
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Re: serious topic on the 5 lug conversion-- i need opinions (must read)

i saw that thread too on H-T, and i'm pretty sure the concensus was it was just a freak accident and had nothing to do with the 5 lug conversion.
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Old 08-29-2008, 11:41 PM
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Re: serious topic on the 5 lug conversion-- i need opinions (must read)

got a link to it? i'm gonna search for it too.

i didn't read it there, i read it on another forum and they just chastized him more for screwing some guy out of a purchase.
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Old 08-29-2008, 11:54 PM
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Re: serious topic on the 5 lug conversion-- i need opinions (must read)

While he's put a lot of thought into it, but I don't think the 5-lug hub had anything to do with it. It sounds to me like that would've happened regardless, just one of those things. Which doesn't help you at all does it?
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Old 08-30-2008, 12:49 PM
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Re: serious topic on the 5 lug conversion-- i need opinions (must read)

I have seen alot of 5 lug conversions and they never seemed to go as bad as he described...each car is in it's own condition so it's hard to base it on someone's personal experience.

the castle nut and cotter pins he is talking about are right behind the rotors on the very bottom. There is a castle nut and cotter pin that you have to take out and in most cases (mine included) they are HORRIFICALLY difficult to get out bc they are rusted to sh!t and just in overall bad shape, but again, personal experiences can't speak for your car - it's all about what you want to do and how you get it done!
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Old 08-30-2008, 01:00 PM
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Re: serious topic on the 5 lug conversion-- i need opinions (must read)

dude no offense but if u dont know what a castle nut is, u prob shouldn't attempt it

do some research

but IMO the 5-lug conversion didnt cause it, could of happened with the 4-lug
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Old 08-30-2008, 02:24 PM
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Re: serious topic on the 5 lug conversion-- i need opinions (must read)

Quote:
Originally Posted by EvilBird View Post
dude no offense but if u dont know what a castle nut is, u prob shouldn't attempt it

do some research
he is doing research... hence the thread he has made

Thats one crazy story.... but im glad to hear he hasn't given up on preludes!
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Old 08-30-2008, 04:42 PM
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Re: serious topic on the 5 lug conversion-- i need opinions (must read)

exactly, i've been doing nothing but research and learning on this stuff for the last 2-3 weeks. and i still have at least another week before i start taking **** apart.

i may not know what a castle nut is in term of its name but i've seen it before i just haven't had any formal training that would include correct terminology.

but now that i know what it is when working on it I can try to inspect it properly and see what condition mine is in.
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Old 08-30-2008, 04:48 PM
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Re: serious topic on the 5 lug conversion-- i need opinions (must read)

what do the bolts cost and where can i get them from if i decided to replace mine with brand new ones?
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Old 09-01-2008, 11:39 AM
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Re: serious topic on the 5 lug conversion-- i need opinions (must read)

see that story wasn't about the 5 lug swap..... it was the fact that the shop forgot to torque down the lug nuts or they over torqued the lugnust and they broke........i have done it and i have had no problems with it........
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Old 09-16-2008, 06:59 PM
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Re: serious topic on the 5 lug conversion-- i need opinions (must read)

Quote:
Originally Posted by EvilBird View Post
dude no offense but if u dont know what a castle nut is, u prob shouldn't attempt it

do some research

but IMO the 5-lug conversion didnt cause it, could of happened with the 4-lug

definition of castle nut not required. works just like any other nut. righty tighty lefty loosy. yea :bathbaby:
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Old 09-16-2008, 07:11 PM
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Re: serious topic on the 5 lug conversion-- i need opinions (must read)

yea

also thats one of the biggest points to this whole project for me.

Learning.

I love this kinda **** but I dont have anyone nor have i ever had anyone to teach me a damn thing.

So i'm reading and learning and working and learning as I go.

I've learned a whole hell of a lot in the last few weeks. and I'm proud to say that not only do I know what a castle nut is now, but I also now know what the cotter pins do as well of a whole host of other suspension components.

They say the only way to learn is to roll your sleeves up and get dirty and tahts what i'm doing.

So for those of you who can apprecaite that and have patience with my questions I thank you. I'm sure someone some day will be searching around with teh same questions i'm asking and will have a whole slew of new informatin at thier finger tips that was not readily available before to the noob at heart (and at practice)

Those of you who dont have so much patience, well i invite you to look at other threads on Pz.com its in my noob experience that theres plenty of **** to read and learn about on here for prelude enthusiasts of all experience levels.

:)
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Old 09-17-2008, 12:57 PM
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Re: serious topic on the 5 lug conversion-- i need opinions (must read)

My wheel falling off doing 50 was/had to have been a freak accident too. I was alot more lucky though, the wheel got lodged up under the fender and the rotor rammed itself into the rim gouging it, and i safely pulled, skidded off to the side of the road. I could not come to an explanation as to why the lug nuts would just loosen up all of a sudden. And its not like i forgot to torque them down because the last time i had the tire off was about 4 months before the accident. either it was a freak accident, someone was about to steal my rims got spooked, or someone is trying to kill me a loosened them. But i know where that guy is coming from, i was paranoid of every little bump or rattle on the highway for atleast 2 months.
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Old 09-17-2008, 01:13 PM
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Re: serious topic on the 5 lug conversion-- i need opinions (must read)

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Originally Posted by 93[BB4]Prelude View Post
My wheel falling off doing 50 was/had to have been a freak accident too. I was alot more lucky though, the wheel got lodged up under the fender and the rotor rammed itself into the rim gouging it, and i safely pulled, skidded off to the side of the road. I could not come to an explanation as to why the lug nuts would just loosen up all of a sudden. And its not like i forgot to torque them down because the last time i had the tire off was about 4 months before the accident. either it was a freak accident, someone was about to steal my rims got spooked, or someone is trying to kill me a loosened them. But i know where that guy is coming from, i was paranoid of every little bump or rattle on the highway for atleast 2 months.
they say your supposed to check your lugs 1x a month even though I and most people dont....i was driving behind my friend and i saw little metal nuggets bouncing around on the road as he drove im like what the hell and then his wheel fell off...someone loosened his lugs on him while he was in school, which is fkin ghey
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Old 09-17-2008, 01:16 PM
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Re: serious topic on the 5 lug conversion-- i need opinions (must read)

god damn i woulda found out who did that **** and knocked him/her out with a tire iron to the cranium.
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Old 09-17-2008, 02:26 PM
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Re: serious topic on the 5 lug conversion-- i need opinions (must read)

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god damn i woulda found out who did that **** and knocked him/her out with a tire iron to the cranium.
hahahaha i dunno if he ever found out who it was
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