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  1. #1

    Default bushing inspection

    Greetings, all:

    I have been trying to replace the rear lower control arms on the 86GT and so far I have a used set of arms with what appear to be decent original bushings on both ends. I know the factory bushings for this part are difficult to locate. Don't want poly so don't suggest it. Question is, how can I compare them without actually installing them? I plan to replace the upper arm bushings at the same time. The arms on the car are the original ones with the of course original bushings and while the ride isn't bad, it is getting rougher. I did manage to replace the spring isolators about two years ago which improved things slightly. All front bushings are new rubber and really helped the front end. Now I need the back to be better. Ideas? Thanks much.

  2. #2


    I bought upper rubbers from o Reilly. It would be hard to believe you can't get the lowers too. As for removing them. Burn them out. NOT ON YOUR CAR. That's necessary to say these days.they are a little tricky going back in. I used my press and some wood spacers to keep from mashing the arms. Oh, also don't do this on your driveway without putting something down to catch the goop... trust me. Wives hate this
    Last edited by 2nd chance cobra; 01-10-2017 at 05:56 PM.

  3. #3
    FEP Senior Member 83gt351w's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2014
    Grand Rapids, Mi


    Do the upper axle side bushings, you'll need the Maximum Motorsports install tool for this, and when they say "burn" them out, they're referring to heating the outer shell, and loosening the glue, and pushing them out. Piece of cake.

  4. #4


    I used a piece of all thread and various sockets washers and a half of a gas union I had laying around. It does work. I'm sure the tool is handy, but what is the cost and how often will you use it. And burn out was to retain the outer shell for poly bushings for me.

  5. #5
    Moderator wraithracing's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Grand Junction, CO


    Unfortunately there really aren't any cost effective options for replacement rubber bushings. There is one company that offers both bushings for the rear lower control arms, but I can't find it in my bookmarks right now. IIRC the cost to repair both rear lower control arms was well over $200 for the bushings alone.

    IMHO you would be better off using that money to buy a set of Maximum Motorsports rear lower control arms.

    You can also do the adjustable combo:

    If you want to move up in quality you have the same options of non adjustable or adjustable.

    Any of the above arms will improve the ride and handling over the stock rear control arms even with new bushings. Good Luck!

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  6. #6
    FEP Super Member gr79's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    SE Michigan


    Cannot figure why both fronts and rear upper bushings are common but rear lowers not.
    The rubber kind.
    It is fact other parts from other Ford apps interchange.
    Wonder if Ford used those bushings on other product lines?
    Like Aerostar rear control arms.
    Or other company vehicle lines that used lower rear control arms.

  7. #7


    Great info but I still need to check the second set of arms I have with original bushings in them. I checked them the other day and they seem good, little give and not rotted or damaged. I heard they were produced as an assembly- arms and bushings together and delivered to Ford that way. Not sure of the manufacturer although it is possible they were done in house somewhere in the Ford system. Couldn't even find a part number on the arms. When the weather improves I can check the ones on the car to see if my second set would be better. Of course, I will replace the uppers at the same time as I swap out the lower arms.
    Thanks for the info.

  8. #8
    FEP Super Member gr79's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    SE Michigan


    Nothing as complex as a car can contain parts manufactured totally in house.
    Ford's and the others focus is final assembly of vehicles and building certain sub assemblies for them.
    Design, tooling, materials, time, cost, and space needed, are planned well ahead of product model year intro.

    Usually parts like that are done by some company that has a Ford contract to make them.
    They can have a Ford logo stamp on them, a tooling item Ford vendors can add too.

    A stamping company stamps the arm, a bushing company supplies the bushings.
    Then someone assembles the pieces and ships to Ford, prob in bins for a part like this.

    Many factories, big and small off site of assy plants, make auto parts.
    Could be Ford itself or Tier 1,2,3 vendors with familiar corporate names.
    Or simply a local factory in an industrial park.
    Back then pretty much from North America, now globally.

    Usually there is more than one source for the same part due to distances involved with shipping and as a backup.
    The original supplier may or may not be still be business, or merged into another.

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