There are two styles of control arm bushing in the Type 85/89 Audi. The early style uses a steel core bonded to a rubber bushing shaped like a thread spool - it is fatter than the control arm on both ends. These present the most difficulty during the installation process. The later style, which start in about 1984-85 or so, have the steel core, surrounded by rubber, and also have a steel sleeve which is a tight fit in the control arm and is flared on one end only. These are more difficult to remove.
A shot subframe and perhaps control arm bushing or two on my 1982 Coupe made me decide to clean up a subframe and pair of control arms and get them powder coated, in order to install them with all new bushings. Most of the job is pretty straightforward, but trying to force the control arm bushings in with my arbor press or vise was fruitless, it just looked as if I was going to tear the rubber eventually.
Looking at the Bentley manual, it appears that one of the special tools squishes (tm) the bushing down in diameter so it will slide into the arm easily. Lacking one of these, I cut a 2" piece of 1.5" PVC pipe, then cut it lengthwise once. It's easy to press the bushing into this with a vise because it opens up as the bushing goes in - with a little help from a screwdriver. The second side is pushed in, till the bushing is centered, using a socket. When both sides of the bushing are in, I use a hose clamp with help from the vise to squish (tm) it closed tight. Make sure not to pinch the edges of the bushing - I used a screwdriver to keep pushing the bulging edge in neatly as I went.
Then I made another tool like the first, only 1.25" long, to go around the inside of the control arm flange. This does two things - it allows me to put the stuff further into the arbor press to get a better grip, and also allows the bushing to pop all the way through without rearranging everything halfway through the job.
I think the pictures explain this method far better than words ever could... it took less time to install one than it took to stop and take them!
Faced with a life filled with a seemingly endless ritual of fighting nasty old metal sheathed control arm bushings on my 1989 90 Quattro, I went to the hardware store in search of a way to make a simple tool for removing them. All I needed was $5 worth of plumbing and a bolt I had at home. While building it and using it required a few tools, they are all generic things that any home mechanic will use over and over again.
Simple hardware needed:
How to build it:
How to use it:
I was surprised at how easy this was, the thing that makes it so easy is that the common plumbing stuff just happens to fit the bushing and control arm nicely. I am sure this could be done on the vehicle, too.
To make it clear how this all worked, I have taken some pictures of the tool and its use.