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2004 Ram 2500 Cummins 5.7 4WD.
So I had a heck on a time getting the rears off last week and replacing those shocks. But at least you could get to the nuts.

Now working on the fronts and the lower Nut is not welded on and the little metal bar that is supposed to help undo the bolt completed sheered off. It just spins and my attempts to get something in there to hold it in place has now rounded off the nut. I have used a ton of PB Blaster already (matter of fact, did it a few days in a row since I had so much trouble with the rears).

I went ahead and just cut the shock off about 2-3 inches from the bottom mount.

I even bought a cresent variable wrench (similar to a pipe wrench) and could get a decent grab on the nut but it just eventually slips as well.

What other options do I have besides the following:

take spring out and just cut through the bolt


If that is my only option, what do I have to do to get the spring out?

thanks.
 

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The nut takes a 21mm wrench... I am in the same boat but do not have the option to cut the shock. Since you already cut the shock, pull one of the control arms on that side and let the axle drop under a controled condition (so you dont damage the arms) and pull the spring. Then you should be able to get a wrench on it and pull it.

I have searched a few dealers and there is no replacement clip. The replacement nut is one of those flag nuts that sits on the tracbar. Again, however there is no retaining clip to hold that in place. You'd have to hold the flag nut up there to get it started. I believe there is a retaining clip holding the tracbar flag nut in place which could be used on the lower shock buckets.

Hoping to get to a wrecking yard tomorrow to see if an axle I know is there has the flag nut retainer (again not found @ the dealer).

Forgot to add that the axle I'm looking at I already snagged the 2 retainer nuts that we are fighting with, I am reluctant to re-install them and am waiting to find out what holdsthe tracbar nut in place.
 

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Thanks Steve. I did a lot more researching last night and I am going down the path of trying to use an air impact wrench with something wedged in the Flag nut. If that doesn't work, then I'll go with removing the spring and cutting the bolt (really don't want to do this, so many things can go wrong).

I will continue to updated the thread.
 

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my approach was to drop the axle to loosen the spring, get a 21mm wrench and bend it as needed to allow an impact wrench to break it free. dodge is now pushing the same flag nut that is on the tracbar. how that is held in place, idk went to a yard today where i previously got the 2 clip nuts that we are fighting with and had a look at the tracbar flag nut...it was not held in place with anything. i could swear that last time i had my tracbar out it was held in place... took a pic of what it looks like for reference. .
 

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update:

So the passenger side was the bear. Had to take out the spring and just cut out the shock the rest of the way. Then I was able to get a decent pair of pliers on the nut and eventually back it out with an impact wrench. I used a new bolt and flange nut of this side.

BTW, i used ratcheting straps (3 of them) to compress the spring enough to remove it.

The driver side worked as expected. The flag/retaining nut held and I was able to back it out with an impact wrench. Every thing went back together quickly. This is how changing shocks should be. maybe 1 hour max.

Anyways, every bolt/nut that got touched got a generous amount of PB Blaster and then anti-sieze all over them.

I put Rancho 9000XLs on and I was concerned about being able to adjust them inside the spring but it is doable, just not as easy as the rears.

For any others out there with the same issues, keep working and it will eventually go your way.
 

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Interesting. mine did not look like this at all. my mfg date is 10/2004.

I will try and find picture but it is a real Nut with a piece of metal pressed into the nut with clips on both side that attach to the shock mount. I think I misspoke early saying the fronts were the same as the rears. That isn't right. The rear was the same pressed technique but the metal didn't wrap around the mount. just a straight piece


Here is rear:
 

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Those are the same as the dealer flag nuts they now sell to replace that clip nut. I just dont see how to get it up there when re-assembling it. I see it being a royal PITA.
 

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They really out did themselves on this design. Clip broke on mine, if it wasn’t as rusty as it was you can squeeze a wrench down in there and get the open part on. But that wasn’t my case go figure. I ended up cutting the nut off with a hacksaw blade in my hand. You do have enough room to get it in between the coil spring without taking anything excessive off. You’re just gonna be nibbling at it for a WHILE. Unless you have a saw zaw with a long blade. Anywho a job that would NORMALLY take only a half hour took about 6 hours.
 

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So start over here... They replaced the original nuts with the flag nuts? That are the same as the track bar nuts? Track bar has 2 size bolts available. 14mm and 16mm. What are the shock bolt sizes? 14mm or 16mm?

Sent from my SM-N950U using Tapatalk
 

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Yep . The flag nuts ( and anti seize ) are the way to go for shocks and trac bar

BAD thing IS you will notice the flag nut doesn't really have a full sized nut ,, more like a nut with crimped edges . NOT GREAT if one encounters difficulties .

Dodge flag nuts , kinda love them kinda hate 'em.
 

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The original nuts were a manufacturing solution for robotic assembly...

Anyone reading this thread... if you have them, ditch them for the flag nut
 

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My neighbor went through this a few months ago. He was able to Jack the frame up enough to wiggle a modified box end wrench on the nut and use an impact to remove them. He went back with the same nuts. It was a company truck that they didn’t want to fix right.
 

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For the record..the front lower shock bolts are the 14mm size. NOT THE 16MM size that is the late third gen track bar flag nut! The early third gens used a 14mm nut and bolt for the track bar!!

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