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  1. #1
    FEP Member 4eyed85gt1's Avatar
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    Default Front control arm.bushings

    I'm gonna be replacing my front control arm bushings soon...question I have is ..what ones to buy ..I see there's some that have the "SHELLS" AND others with out ..what should I get ...ones with or with out the shells and how difficult are they to install with the shells versus the ones with out
    85 ford mustang gt 5.0 h.o.5 spd
    68 chevy nova SS 350 (slightly modded)
    92 ford ranger prerunner

  2. #2

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    At parts geek you can buy entire stock style control arms with everything all new and ready to go. Balljoints, a arm bushings, etc. After having wasted my time rebuilding stock control arms Iíll never fight that fight again.

    https://www.partsgeek.com/catalog/19...ntrol_arm.html

    Correctly installed A arm bushings use a process to install them that we cannot replicate at home. The rubber bushing is effectively glued into the arm and the bushing sleeve is effectively glued to it. Replacements donít work the same way and produce unpredictable results.

    On the flip side, as our stock stuff ages the rubber gets so stiff that the sleeve will begin to move on the bolt in the K member before the rubber bushing will flex to do its job. When that happens it trashes the K member big time. Ask me for picture of how I know..... arg.

    One thing worth noting is the balljoint in the replacement arms is the old fox balljoint, not the 92+ low friction balljoint. There a major benefits to using a low friction balljoint. The best balljoint is an SN95 low friction balljoint.

    For my 1985-006 Saleen build I bought replacement arms and also SN95 low friction balljoints to press in.

    If you want to drop the roll center in front the X2 balljoint is 3/4Ē longer.
    Last edited by erratic50; 04-05-2018 at 11:59 PM.

  3. #3
    FEP Super Member gr79's Avatar
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    Default

    Ford shop manual says replace entire a-arm assy with new.
    Less work, unless going with urethane parts or stuff like that.
    Either way, entire control arm has to come off.
    Moog premium ball joints, bushings, cost almost as much as a new arm (no leg).

    Touchiest part is compressing springs safely. A spring tool and cargo straps to safe them when out work well.

    Thank you 50 for the link. Pretty much the going rate for them. Summit, Jegs, others.
    Says hd suspension spec arm, plus grease fittings.
    Interchanges with Ford F3ZZ3078A. Dorman #524-009 (LT), 524-010 (RT) per Dorman site.
    Note the Ford M3075A has a side reinforcement plate. Cant tell if the Dorman or others do. Will check AZ.
    Last edited by gr79; 04-06-2018 at 03:26 AM.

  4. #4

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    Here why I stressed the approach thatís needed. Imagine the level of effort needed to locate and weld in washers that correct this.... needless to say I have another K member to put in when I do a full restore. Arg!

    Several more carnage pictures for this old girl on my build thread in the contributors area, although Iíve stopped posting stuff due to what seems to be a complete lack of interest.

    Anyway, itís just one of the things to fix on my 1/2 million mile four eyed fox.
    Attached Images Attached Images  
    Last edited by erratic50; 04-06-2018 at 08:20 AM.

  5. #5
    FEP Member 4eyed85gt1's Avatar
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    Default

    Thanks for the tips....reason I asked was maximum motorsports has replacement poly bushings...and mine are as old as the car far as I know...so if one had to get bushings would the shelled new poly bushings be a route to take being the old ones are obviously shot..or could I just get the ones with out shells as the old ones should come out...I have a reputable shop I taske my stang to when I can't do the work...thanks for the advise..
    85 ford mustang gt 5.0 h.o.5 spd
    68 chevy nova SS 350 (slightly modded)
    92 ford ranger prerunner

  6. #6

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    I got moog ones from rock auto, they were about 60 each I think

  7. #7
    Moderator wraithracing's Avatar
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by 4eyed85gt1 View Post
    Thanks for the tips....reason I asked was maximum motorsports has replacement poly bushings...and mine are as old as the car far as I know...so if one had to get bushings would the shelled new poly bushings be a route to take being the old ones are obviously shot..or could I just get the ones with out shells as the old ones should come out...I have a reputable shop I taske my stang to when I can't do the work...thanks for the advise..
    When I do the bushing swap, I go with the full shell poly units from Prothane or Energy Suspension. I believe the MM stuff if Prothane. I hate all the extra work of cleaning the shells for the bushings only to be installed.

    The trick is to make a metal sleeve that prevents the stamped control arm from deforming when pressing the old bushings out and the new bushings in. I also measure the bushings before removal and attempt to match the position of the new bushings. Most of the new shells have a bump or raised portion that prevents you from pressing the bushings in too far. Good Luck!
    ​Trey

    "I Don't build it hoping for your approval! I built it because it meets mine!"

    "I've spent most of my money on Mustangs, racing, and women... the rest I just wasted."

    Mustangs Past: Too many to remember!
    Current Mustangs:
    1969 Mach 1
    1979 Pace Car now 5.0/5 speed
    1982 GT Awaiting Restoration
    1984 SVO Restoration in Progress
    1986 GT Wrecked by PO, but still want to save!

    Current Capris:
    1982 Capri Roller
    1984 Capri Returned to Bubble Back Glory
    1983-84 Gloy Racing Trans Am/IMSA Body Parts
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  8. #8

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    I rebuilt my front control arms on my 84....ball joints and bushings. I used the energy suspension poly bushing kits with sleeves. After not being able to comfortably being able to remove the factory bushings/shells from the arms, as I didn't have a press, I burnt the old bushings out and put the poly bushings in the factory sleeves. I had to trim the poly bushings a bit, due to the fact that the factory sleeves are slightly smaller than the replacements, as they elongated when installed. Honestly, the worst part of the job was the ball joint replacement....not the burning of the rubber bushing. there is an easy trick to getting them out in 1.5 minutes or less, with hardly any smoke.
    Brock
    1984 Mustang LX Convertible 3.8L V-6/Auto (SOLD)
    1984 Mustang GT Hatchback 5.0 V-8/5 Speed

    I'm an FEP Supporter and proud of it. Are you?

  9. #9
    FEP Senior Member 83gt351w's Avatar
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    Default

    I replaced mine with poly. No shell. I did one the hard way, one the easy way. When they say “burn” them out, simply take a little torch, and heat the shell itself not the rubber. This will loosen the glue, and it’ll push right out. I used my jack under the control arm once I had the ball joint loose and simply lowered the back slowly to remove the spring. Easy Peasy. Right way? Don’t know, but it worked. If you’re considering new springs, now would be the time.

  10. #10
    FEP Senior Member 83gt351w's Avatar
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    Default

    Forgot to add, they make a little 1.5” or 2” wire wheel that I put on my drill to clean the inside of the shell.

  11. #11

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    ^^^^^ that’s exactly it. That’s how I did my bushings. Easy peasy and quick. I got the first one a bit hot, but I learned for the next 3 lol.
    Brock
    1984 Mustang LX Convertible 3.8L V-6/Auto (SOLD)
    1984 Mustang GT Hatchback 5.0 V-8/5 Speed

    I'm an FEP Supporter and proud of it. Are you?

  12. #12

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    there are some aftermarket control arms available that have a spring pocket. Discovered them after I went through all the work of replacing the bushing and balljoints in my factory control arms......

    You guys can all just have at it, its a job. I'll never do another set if I can help it. Getting balljoints out on a car that's crusty and rusty in beyond memorable. Almost as much fun as getting the bolts out. (I had to cut them...... ever tried to cut a Grade10 bolt? ... GRR)

    Lennox blades are the ONLY blade that works on a sawzall for that job. And if you get it hot enough to throw sparks, the sparks are the teeth on the blade and its not going work. That was the moment that I almost called a towtruck to haul my 86 out of my garage and to the scrap heap. Aggravating!

  13. #13
    FEP Member 4eyed85gt1's Avatar
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    Default

    Thanks for the useful tips....I just gathering up parts for the full suspension replacement....thanks again. I'll let you know w hat I choose,to do with the build ....
    85 ford mustang gt 5.0 h.o.5 spd
    68 chevy nova SS 350 (slightly modded)
    92 ford ranger prerunner

  14. #14

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    Name:  C5B2DB0E-A1A2-4A62-9275-377DEF26F03A.jpg
Views: 275
Size:  64.5 KBGood luck!!
    Last edited by erratic50; 04-07-2018 at 12:35 AM.

  15. #15

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    Mine was a West Coast car most of its life, so it didn’t have the crust issues that cars in these parts do. It came apart easily and went back together fine. The only real issue with assembly was trying to get the control arm bolts tightened and torqued up during install. There’s not a ton of room laying under it when it’s up on ramps.
    Brock
    1984 Mustang LX Convertible 3.8L V-6/Auto (SOLD)
    1984 Mustang GT Hatchback 5.0 V-8/5 Speed

    I'm an FEP Supporter and proud of it. Are you?

  16. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by erratic50 View Post
    Name:  C5B2DB0E-A1A2-4A62-9275-377DEF26F03A.jpg
Views: 275
Size:  64.5 KBGood luck!!
    I had to cut 3 out of the 4 bolts holding my FCAs. UGH!
    They were rusted to the metal busing, and the bolts and metal bushing were ONE solid piece. People that don't live in snow States (where salt is used like it's free), often can't begin to understand how rusting works/effects metal parts.

    I went through ~4-10+ sawsall blades per cut. I had to cut both sides of the bolts off.
    So, for 3 bolts, that was six cuts through a hardened bolts.
    There was no way those bolts were coming out.\
    Still, for whatever reason, for one of the bolts, I was able to use an impact driver and BFH, to bang the bolt out of the bushing.







  17. #17
    FEP Member 4eyed85gt1's Avatar
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    Default

    My car spent it's life here in california...but I'm sure them.bolts are gonna be a bitch..
    85 ford mustang gt 5.0 h.o.5 spd
    68 chevy nova SS 350 (slightly modded)
    92 ford ranger prerunner

  18. #18

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    Damn - those FCA bolts really took you for a bad ride! There is a split in them that if you can get a cold chisel into you can sometimes open the slot up enough with a BFH to get them out without cutting ó sometimes. I got 3 that way and one was a total bitch.

    Jegs carries replacement Grade 10 FCA bolts.

    I pressed out the center of the bushings then zipped around them with my sawzall and burned the bits here and there that were missed out. as I said before - never again.
    Last edited by erratic50; 04-08-2018 at 10:30 AM.

  19. #19

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    I guess Iím lucky! Everything came out great! No sawzall required. A little heat on the outside of the bushing shells and they push out intact and easy.
    Here is where I did mine: http://vb.foureyedpride.com/showthre...=1#post1854346

    Name:  3E4E5888-3ECA-4E51-B4A7-1E6050A69B6D.jpeg
Views: 236
Size:  208.5 KBName:  99FA66AE-E2A3-4782-BF2F-82390660B748.jpeg
Views: 236
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    Last edited by 84StangSVT; 04-08-2018 at 09:46 AM.
    Brock
    1984 Mustang LX Convertible 3.8L V-6/Auto (SOLD)
    1984 Mustang GT Hatchback 5.0 V-8/5 Speed

    I'm an FEP Supporter and proud of it. Are you?

  20. #20
    FEP Supporter Broncojunkie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 2nd chance cobra View Post
    I got moog ones from rock auto, they were about 60 each I think
    I recently looked them up. They're more like $100 each, these days.

  21. #21
    FEP Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by stangPlus2Birds View Post

    Boy that scene looks all too familiar. Bottles of PB Blaster and a myriad of cutting and blunt force instruments strewn about on the floor. Blood and tears mixed in with a pile of rust underneath where you are working.

    Quote Originally Posted by Broncojunkie View Post
    I recently looked them up. They're more like $100 each, these days.
    And they are the "R-Series" which apparently is code for cheap offshore parts. I like Moog a lot, but I try to stay away from those unless my only other choice is Dorman.
    '89 XR-7 5 Speed
    '95 SC 5 Speed
    '91 Crown Vic P72 351W
    '95 Saturn SW2
    '85 Ford LTD Squire

  22. #22

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    I wish I would have seen this two days ago. I had a garage torch out the old rubber bushings... what a smokey mess!!
    Project "WinBacK" 1986 LX Hatchback
    - CA car, 5.0 w/5 speed
    - Cobra 17x8.5's + Modded Mach1 Chin Spoiler + 83-84 Hood & Scoop/85-86 "Blackout"+ FMS Mass Air Kit+ MM Clutch Cable & Quadrant + Fiore Cable Adjuster + MM SFC's+ Wild Rides "Battle Boxes" + Explorer Intake, Converted TB & Injectors, 70 mm Mass Air Meter + BBK Ceramic Shorties + 2.5" Bassani O/R X-Pipe & Cat-Back Exhaust w/ 3" Tips + 3L27 w/ Carbon Fiber Clutches​(out of retirement) + Pistol Grip Shifter + 99-04 GT Front/00 Cobra Rear Disc Brakes

  23. #23

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    I'm lucky my car has never seen salt or much rain. So far everything has come apart pretty easily.

    I know what it's like to work on "rust belt" cars up here in the great white north.
    Project "WinBacK" 1986 LX Hatchback
    - CA car, 5.0 w/5 speed
    - Cobra 17x8.5's + Modded Mach1 Chin Spoiler + 83-84 Hood & Scoop/85-86 "Blackout"+ FMS Mass Air Kit+ MM Clutch Cable & Quadrant + Fiore Cable Adjuster + MM SFC's+ Wild Rides "Battle Boxes" + Explorer Intake, Converted TB & Injectors, 70 mm Mass Air Meter + BBK Ceramic Shorties + 2.5" Bassani O/R X-Pipe & Cat-Back Exhaust w/ 3" Tips + 3L27 w/ Carbon Fiber Clutches​(out of retirement) + Pistol Grip Shifter + 99-04 GT Front/00 Cobra Rear Disc Brakes

  24. #24

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    What EXACTLY do you do to install the Prothane bushings into the shells on the arms? I have the bushings without the shells.
    Project "WinBacK" 1986 LX Hatchback
    - CA car, 5.0 w/5 speed
    - Cobra 17x8.5's + Modded Mach1 Chin Spoiler + 83-84 Hood & Scoop/85-86 "Blackout"+ FMS Mass Air Kit+ MM Clutch Cable & Quadrant + Fiore Cable Adjuster + MM SFC's+ Wild Rides "Battle Boxes" + Explorer Intake, Converted TB & Injectors, 70 mm Mass Air Meter + BBK Ceramic Shorties + 2.5" Bassani O/R X-Pipe & Cat-Back Exhaust w/ 3" Tips + 3L27 w/ Carbon Fiber Clutches​(out of retirement) + Pistol Grip Shifter + 99-04 GT Front/00 Cobra Rear Disc Brakes

  25. #25

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    ^^^^ Anyone??... Do you grease the inside of the shells, the outside of the bushings, the inside of the bolt bushing sleeves, or the outside of the bolt bushing sleeves?
    Project "WinBacK" 1986 LX Hatchback
    - CA car, 5.0 w/5 speed
    - Cobra 17x8.5's + Modded Mach1 Chin Spoiler + 83-84 Hood & Scoop/85-86 "Blackout"+ FMS Mass Air Kit+ MM Clutch Cable & Quadrant + Fiore Cable Adjuster + MM SFC's+ Wild Rides "Battle Boxes" + Explorer Intake, Converted TB & Injectors, 70 mm Mass Air Meter + BBK Ceramic Shorties + 2.5" Bassani O/R X-Pipe & Cat-Back Exhaust w/ 3" Tips + 3L27 w/ Carbon Fiber Clutches​(out of retirement) + Pistol Grip Shifter + 99-04 GT Front/00 Cobra Rear Disc Brakes

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