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Discussion Starter #1
After having a lot of problems recently with my good ol' clutch cable, I decided to install a Viggen clutch and the hydraulic conversion kit from Taliaferro Saab, and do all the work with the help of a friend and the occasional advice (and tool) from my dad. Since others have posted about installing clutches, I'll just post about the surprises I've found so far, and how the hydraulic kit is going.

I had no luck finding one of the engine support beams shown in the Saab service manual and the Haynes manual. I made one myself out of a 2"x4" and a 1" threaded eyelet from Home Depot. Total parts cost: $5.00.

The ball joints wouldn't come out with the usual tuning fork-looking ball joint remover. It just split both boots open. Replacements are $25 each at the dealer. I had to disassemble the entire lower suspension, pop the driveshafts out of the hubs, and use a small gear puller to pop them loose.

To get the bearing bracket out for the intermediate driveshaft, the alternator has to be tilted out of the way. The top bolt was so tight that it couldn't pivot, and it was very hard to get to, but I did it with an 8mm hex socket and a 1/4" ratchet with a short jack handle slipped over the end for leverage.

My throwout bearing looked pretty fried after 63,000 miles. There was no grease left on the shaft, so it was hard to slide, and it sounded really dry when spinning it. The clutch plate had a little bit of life left in it, but not much.

As for the hydraulic clutch kit, installing the pedal involves drilling three holes in the firewall. This was really easy with a couple of hole saws and a 3/8" drill bit. The template on Taliaferro Saab's website was a little small, but printing it at 113% was perfect. Other than the pedal installation, the rest should be extremely easy. The slave cylinder mounts in the transmission with three screws and the hoses all snap together. The brake fluid reservoir already has a nipple on the bottom for the clutch cylinder hose, but I will need to punch a hole in it since it's sealed up.

That's where I'm at now, but I'll be sure to let you guys know how the clutch works when it's all finished next weekend!
 

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Best of luck with this endeavor, Jeremy

Aftermarket has new boots/bellows for less than Saab, i am sure..
my ball-joint separating tool does not cut the rubber, but you must use the correct size..
I think too a hydraulic jack could be used - that and vibration..
The air compressor and air hammers are vital..

Does the slave cylinder not fit inside the bell housing , as the 9-3 ??
The old 96s used an external unit - good thing too as these were super-prone to leak..

An idea/invention : The clutch shaft should be greased,lightly, but over the years this becomes dry. So this can be a problem...

I also think that a thin application of graphite grease would be effective, better than regular heavy grease..
Or a Teflon coated disk( on the female splines only, of course.).
I like to use a Teflon spray lubricant on these areas but here the access is about zero, even on a Saab 93/96..

The solution :
So, why not a plastic tube placed in an access hole that would allow this lubrication upon the shaft ??
I disagree with much of todays "service free" cars concept, favor grease zerks, oiling points...
 

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Jeremy R. said:
I had no luck finding one of the engine support beams shown in the Saab service manual and the Haynes manual. I made one myself out of a 2"x4" and a 1" threaded eyelet from Home Depot. Total parts cost: $5.00.
Very McGyver of you....good thinking. As long as it was a very sound piece of wood with no knots, this might work a couple of times. Use a 2x6 if you plan on using this again to do the tranny....

The ball joints wouldn't come out with the usual tuning fork-looking ball joint remover. It just split both boots open. Replacements are $25 each at the dealer. I had to disassemble the entire lower suspension, pop the driveshafts out of the hubs, and use a small gear puller to pop them loose.
Wedge a small cold chisel between the hub carrier and the lower arm and give it a couple of whacks with a hammer. It will pop right out without spllitting the boot...


Nice work on this project!
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I didn't have any luck finding aftermarket boots. I checked with several stores, but no one had any that would really fit. Earthworm, you're right, the slave cylinder does mount inside the bell housing. It has three screws that go into existing holes, so it's an easy retrofit. The tubing goes right up through the hole where the clutch lever arm was. I'm going to use Mobil 1 synthetic grease on the shaft, which will hopefully last a while longer. Its temperature rating is actually higher than a lot of high temperature greases I've seen. If I was to make another one of those support braces out of wood, I'd probably use a 4"x4". The 2"x4" is bowed a little bit, but I'm sure it will be fine until the weekend.
 

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Only other tip I can give is that the tubing supplied to run from the pedal master cylinder to the brake fluid reservoir was barely long enough in my case. I had to lengthen it with a section of hose and a barbed splice.

Oh, and make sure you cut off the tip of that hose nipple that supplies fluid to the master. According to Nick T., every so often techs will forget to do this and the next day the customer wonders why the clutch isn't working!

Good luck with it.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I was thinking of what the best way was to open up that nipple. It's sure handy that it's there! I was trying to decide if I should drill it and risk getting crap in the reservoir, or punch it with an awl, but cutting sounds much easier. I'll have to do a test fit to make sure that hose is long enough. Thanks for the advice!
 
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