With the new Capri safely in the garage I proceeded to swap the axles over. This isn't quite as straightforward as it seems as I had to plan carefully where each car was going to be so I could get to both back ends simultaneously. Having said that removing a Capri axle is quite straightforward although it is rather heavy. It is just a case of unbolting everything and lowering it down on the jack. On the new Capri I also purchased some new leaf springs which were replaced at the same time.
To make things slightly easier I removed the exhaust system first. This was actually almost brand new but D496 YJB had a brand new performance exhaust fitted so the plan was to swap them around. However removing exhausts without damaging them is not that straightforward. But with a bit of gentle persuasion from a screw driver and lots of twisting and tugging I managed to get it off the car. The manifold was also unbolted and removed. This revealed two broken exhaust studs in the cylinder head that were subsequently repaired at St. Ives Engineering for £20.
With both the rear shock absorbers disconnected (and removed -
The axle is a lot easier to remove with the leaf springs off the car. The procedure for doing this is listed in my work section if you are interested. I did the job both ways and you can just get the axle through the springs with a lot of pushing and twisting. But only just!
With the axle off the car, the rear diff cover was removed and the old oil was tipped out. This job is otherwise very tricky so it is a good idea to do it with the axle off the car. Inspection of the diff showed everything to be normal. The oil was a bit sludgy but this was flushed out and replaced and the cover (cleaned and repainted) was refitted with a new paper gasket.
The replacement axle was cleaned up with a wire brush and given a good coat of black Hammerite paint. The axle was fitted with new wheel bearings as a matter of course and with everything ready she was offered up and connected. I did this on my own by using a set of bricks to lift each side up a bit in turn. The diff was supported using a trolley jack. The propshaft was mated up and reconnected and then the rest of the bits were re-
With the rear completed next job was to tackle the front....
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