The installation of a Tubular K-member is not an installation to be taken lightly and should only be performed if you have total confidence in your own mechanical ability. These instructions are not intended to replace but supplement the installation documents supplied by AJE Racing.
The OEM K-member that currently on the market is a stamped, steel fabrication with welded components for the upper springs buckets and cross member that goes under the oil pan. This particular piece is heavy and is subject to flexing when pushing the car to the limits. Flexing creates small changes in the alignment geometry and can if pushed hard enough, produce unexpected suspension reactions.
The installation of a Tubular K-member not only significantly strengthens the front end, it also makes it easier to access the oil pan as well as reducing the front end weight by about 60 lbs.
To start this installation, you will need to have the car totally supported by jack stands as high as possible. In addition you will need to lift the motor slightly. This is best accomplished via an engine lift. If you don't have a lift available, you could make a support to span the strut towers. Ford makes a support that does just that. We utilized and engine lift during our installation. We don't recommend supporting the engine on the oil pan.
Once you have the car jacked and are ready to get started, remove both front wheels and move them out of the way. If you choose to stack one on top of the other, ensure that you have marked where each tire came from. Most Mustang rubber is Uni-Directional, meaning they can only install in one of 2 locations, either left front or rear and right front or rear.
With the wheels removed and out of the way, you will have full access to disassembly the rotor assembly. Removing the rotor disk will make the assembly significantly lighter. Remove the spring clips on the wheel studs that are holding the rotor to the spindle assembly. They might break, but you also might be able to unscrew them and re-use them later. With these removed, the rotor will slide off of the wheel studs. Put them aside, making sure you know which side of the car they came off of.
The brake caliper will need to be removed and suspended out of the way during the install. Start with turning the steering fully one way or the other. This will provide maximum access to the 2 bolts that restrain the brake caliper. These bolts have Loc Tight applied at the factory and will be tight turning until completely removed.
Once both bolts have been removed, Make a support for the brake caliper. An easy solution to this is to create a wire hanger. Find an appropriate hole in the shock tower and feed some suitable wire through the hole. Wrap the wire around a screw or nail creating a T-head and let the wire hang against the new T-head. Carefully remove the caliper by rotating the top of the caliper outwards. The caliper is fairly heavy, you will want to support it before it is completely loose from the rotor. Don't let it drop or be fully supported by the brake hose. Thread the wire through a couple of spots on the caliper creating a support mechanism for the caliper. Synch up the wire to support the caliper up and out of the way from the rotor and the strut.
Once the caliper is out of the way, we will remove and protect the ABS sensor. Undo any of the plastic retainers along the harness of the ABS sensor and remove the small bolt holding it to the spindle assembly. With the bolt removed, rotate the sensor back and forth while applying pressure to remove the sensor. There is usually some dirt and grime build up on the sensor and it will need some persuasion to be removed from the spindle casting. When is loose from the spindle assembly, tuck it up on the frame rail, between the ABS sensor harness and the brake hose. It will stay there nicely and be well out of the way during the rest of the installation.
Next remove the nuts that are restraining the sway bar on the connector link. You will not be able to do any more with the sway bar until you do the same on the opposite side of the car. When both upper nuts have been removed, the sway bar can swing up and be clear of the connector links. Remove the lower rubber bushing and washer and put them in a container for later.
One large nut holds the bracket for the ABS sensor harness. Remove this nut, as well as the bracket and put in the container of parts. This will expose 2 more nuts holding the strut to the spindle assembly.
Remove the cotter pin from the castle nut on the tie-rod connector. Save the cotter pin to re-use later. Using an electric or air impact wrench, loosen the nut from the tie-rod end. Using a special tapered ball joint removal tool, or loosen the nut so that the threads are completely protected, hit the top of the tie-rod ball joint to loosen it from the spindle assembly. Once you have broken loose the ball joint and the spindle assembly at the tie-rod connection, remove the nut and allow the tie-rod to hang free of the spindle assembly.
Loosen the remaining large nuts that are holding the strut in place but leave the bolts in place for now. Using a floor jack under the stock A-arm lifting it enough to relieve the spring pressure on the strut. Now you should be able to remove the 2 large bolts that are holding the strut to the spindle assembly. The spindle assemble is held on to the A-arm by the ball joint only.
Repeat this procedure for the opposite side of the car. When complete, you are ready to remove the spindles from the ball joint on the A-arm of the K-member. An impact will be required again to remove the castle nut from the ball joint. Once loosened, again unscrew the nut until it is flush with the top of the ball joint stud. Use the ball joint tool or strike the top of the stud/nut flat with a heavy hammer several times until the ball joint comes free from the spindle assembly. Remove the nut and the spindle assembly from the OEM A-arm. Repeat for the opposite side of the car.