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Pelican Technical Article:

Rear Knuckle Removal

Steve Vernon

Time:

5 hours5 hrs

Tab:

$110 to $220

Talent:

*****

Tools:

5mm Allen, 22mm (2), 19mm (2), 17mm (2) 10mm socket, 17mm wrench, spring compressor tool BM-924-0231

Applicable Models:

Mercedes-Benz W124 (1986-95)

Hot Tip:

Buy, rent or borrow the right puller

Performance Gain:

Proper axle performance

Complementary Modification:

Replace front bearings

Though the rear knuckle or bearing carrier very seldom breaks (unless in an accident), there are several components attached to it that are wearable items, not the least of which is the rear wheel bearing. While the wheel bearing can be replaced while in the car, it is much easier, safer and involves a lot less tools to remove the knuckle and take it to a shop to have it pressed out and a new one pressed in. This article will show you how to remove the knuckle from the rear of the vehicle. Remember all suspension hardware is single use only and needs to be replaced.

Begin by safely raising and supporting your vehicle. Then remove the rear tires. Please see our article on safely raising and supporting your car. You will also need to remove the brake caliper and rotor and parking brake. Please see our article on all of these procedures.

You do not need to remove the axle from the wheel hub before you start but I recommend you press the axle out or at least break its hold on the wheel hub before you loosen or remove everything.
Figure 1

You do not need to remove the axle from the wheel hub before you start but I recommend you press the axle out or at least break its hold on the wheel hub before you loosen or remove everything. If you remove the knuckle and the axle is stuck to the hub it is a pain to get a puller on it later. Please see our article on axle removal for further assistance.

You will need to remove the parking or emergency park shoes (red arrow) so you can get access to the three bolts that hold the dust shield on.
Figure 2

You will need to remove the parking or emergency park shoes (red arrow) so you can get access to the three bolts that hold the dust shield on. Please see our article on parking brake shoe replacement.

From the back of the knuckle remove the 5mm Allen bolt (red arrow) holding the parking brake cable in place.
Figure 3

From the back of the knuckle remove the 5mm Allen bolt (red arrow) holding the parking brake cable in place.

Pull the spreader mechanism forward, unfold it and remove the pin that holds the spreader to the cable (red arrow).
Figure 4

Pull the spreader mechanism forward, unfold it and remove the pin that holds the spreader to the cable (red arrow). Remove the cable from the knuckle.

Rotate the hub so that you can remove the three 5mm Allen bolts holding the dust shield in place.
Figure 5

Rotate the hub so that you can remove the three 5mm Allen bolts holding the dust shield in place.

Remove the lower control arm plastic shield by removing the two 10mm Allen bolts (red arrows) and the plastic clips along the side (yellow arrow).
Figure 6

Remove the lower control arm plastic shield by removing the two 10mm Allen bolts (red arrows) and the plastic clips along the side (yellow arrow).

You are going to want to take some of the tension off of the spring.
Figure 7

You are going to want to take some of the tension off of the spring. You just need to get the pressure off the spring not remove it. I highly recommend you use spring compressor tool BM-924-0231 for Mercedes-Benz. Use of a different tool can cause damage to both you and the vehicle. Warning: Never use air impact tools on the Mercedes style spring compressor.

Place the disks for the compressor as far away from each other as possible; meaning at the highest and lowest points you can get on the spring.
Figure 8

Place the disks for the compressor as far away from each other as possible; meaning at the highest and lowest points you can get on the spring. Expand the compressor and insert it up through the disks and spring making sure that it sits in the pockets on the upper spring in the compression position. Use a 19mm socket and compress the two disks together compressing the spring. The spring will be under a lot of force so make sure the compressor is properly seated in the upper seats before compressing. You are not removing the spring, just getting the tension off of it.

Use two 22mm sockets and remove the nut from the knuckle to lower control arm (red arrow).
Figure 9

Use two 22mm sockets and remove the nut from the knuckle to lower control arm (red arrow). Do not remove the bolt yet.

Next remove the 19mm nut and bolt from the push link.
Figure 10

Next remove the 19mm nut and bolt from the push link. There is a sleeve between the knuckle and link that you will need to push out from the knuckle.

Use a 5mm Allen to hold the end of the tie link and a 17mm wrench to remove the nut from the tie link (red arrow).
Figure 11

Use a 5mm Allen to hold the end of the tie link and a 17mm wrench to remove the nut from the tie link (red arrow).

Separate the tie link from the knuckle using a ball joint or tie rod separator.
Figure 12

Separate the tie link from the knuckle using a ball joint or tie rod separator. A pickle fork will most likely damage the rubber boot on the link (red arrow).

Using two 19mm sockets remove the nut and bolt holding the pulling link to the knuckle (red arrow).
Figure 13

Using two 19mm sockets remove the nut and bolt holding the pulling link to the knuckle (red arrow).

Remove the 19mm nut and bolt connecting the camber link (red arrow).
Figure 14

Remove the 19mm nut and bolt connecting the camber link (red arrow).

There is a sleeve from the camber link that sits in the knuckle, knock this out from the knuckle and be sure to replace it with a new one upon reinstallation (red arrow).
Figure 15

There is a sleeve from the camber link that sits in the knuckle, knock this out from the knuckle and be sure to replace it with a new one upon reinstallation (red arrow).

With everything free or removed wiggle the knuckle around until you can remove the lower control arm bolt (red arrow).
Figure 16

With everything free or removed wiggle the knuckle around until you can remove the lower control arm bolt (red arrow).

The knuckle is now free and can be taken to a bench to press out the bushings, hub or bearing.
Figure 17

The knuckle is now free and can be taken to a bench to press out the bushings, hub or bearing. Installation is the reverse of removal. Remember to use all new mounting hardware.

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Comments and Suggestions:
LarryK Comments: Does the exact same procedure apply to rear hub bearing removal on the estate/station wagon version S124 or is there an increased level of difficulty in that case? I have been told that the bearings on the T version are a PITA to remove, Regards, Larry
June 10, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: It should be similar. I am not aware of any major differences.
I would grab a repair manual. It will have the procedure, special tools and torque specs.

Give our parts specialists a call at 1-888-280-7799. - Nick at Pelican Parts
 

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Page last updated: Fri 12/9/2016 02:41:51 AM