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  1. #1
    FEP Super Member gr79's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    SE Michigan

    Default Rear LCA frame to arm bolt removal and install

    Did it today.
    Did not take tire off
    Did not take spring out.
    Did not take control arm off.
    Main part of the bolt realignment and install was done from inside the car.
    New bolt, nut, and reinforcement plates in.

    Been trying for years to get the nut off this bolt.
    Well got it today. Easily. Unexpectedly broke the bolt in two pieces.
    Car was parked in drive. 90 in the shade.
    Deep trouble. Car was now disabled. Now what.

    Had to attempt to install a new bolt without taking anything apart.
    Got out the floor jack to support the arm.
    Then took the bolt pieces out. Came out easily.
    Nothing odd happened in the frame box area when lca bolt pieces were removed.
    Installed new bolt installed. Started it by tapping with socket on bolt head.
    Pried into position with long crow bar, long screwdriver, and luck.
    Was easier than working with car overhead.

    Took opportunity to install reif. plates.
    Made a sandwich with thick metal plates for the bread. Used the RLCA bolt as a 'toothpick'
    One slice is under the bolt flange head as a backing plate.
    Used a 1/8" thick trailer axle spring mounting u-bolt plate. Had exact hole size.
    The other slice is the pass side SMR reinforcement bracket.
    The lca bolt was long enough to pull this off with treads to spare. Bolt kit from Jegs.

    Turned out fine for now.
    Replacing control arm hopefully next week.

    Car is back on the road.

    Name:  rlca new bolt and plate (6).jpg
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    Name:  rlca new bolt and plate (8).jpg
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  2. #2


    Do you plan on repairing all of that rusted frame and floor? I wouldn't think that would hold up for long
    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

  3. #3
    FEP Super Member gr79's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    SE Michigan


    Working on the plan now.
    Been like that for years.
    No cracks.
    New thicker gauge metal floor plate(s).
    Thinking structural steel in frame channel. Tie into floor plate.
    Or LMR rear frame rail.

    Rust remove, treat, paint.
    Weld or 1/4" rivets as needed.

  4. #4


    they sell replacement upper and lower torque boxes and frame rails. Lots of work to install, but some of the options available are a massive upgrade compared to stock. You can pick from around 5 different mounting points for the lower control arms which change ride height, etc.

    Any way -- looks all to familiar. My 1/2 million mile 1986GT has seen better days back there also. Eventually it and a decent shell may just become one, hard to say right now.

  5. #5


    Looks familiar to me as well! I've honestly considered moving since Minnesota destroys cars and limits the amount of months I can drive/partake in one of my favorite hobbies. Unbelievable what road salt can do!

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

    Default war on chassis rust damage

    Mechanical items are more available, replaced quicker.
    Preserving overall body integrity should always be top priority. Beyond wax.
    Without that, everything else cannot function as intended. Or car life ends.
    Easier said than done.

    Rust, the #1 killer of cars. Salt water accelerates the process much faster.
    Salty road slush a killer combo.
    Freshly tarred roads have tarred pebbles that stick.

    Frames are more exposed and start first, inner body sections next.

    Passenger side has more rust. Road crown and salt water pools near curb lane?
    Drain holes, like at the door bottom, get plugged and the process speeds up

    The fronts of these cars go first.
    Then floor pans, rocker panels, door bottoms, rear wheel well seams.
    Spreads to adjoining panels. if not stopped and cause corrected.

    Moldings around the glass collect the same type of dirt under them. Same states. Wet/dry cycles.

    Repair kits and panels are slowly appearing. The progression from patch to replace.
    Rust wont wait for kits. So temp patching is the only answer until they become available.

    The rusty metal is peeling off in layers. Weird. Steel is not made that way.
    Over the years, have cut off small squares of rusted out floor pan over and near the frame rails.
    Has allowed top access to certain hard to get to bolts. Control arm, rear TP hanger.

    The frame rails have holes, slots, which trap dirt, water, everything inside.
    Have vacuumed lots of flaked off metal pieces and chunks from the rails.
    The rockers are like that too. Once a rust hole starts, dirt gets trapped in there.
    Then driving in rain or snow wets this stuff down. Slow to dry out.
    Perfect for staring rust outs, discovered after advancing hidden for years.

    The infamous front end frame rails were the first to show damage.
    Most holes were used in production and are no longer needed.
    Dirt enters and packs up in there, goes to town helping fuel the rust process.
    Rails are pretty solid, but would have been better if sealed at the factory.

    Have been treating and sealing off sections as i go. Seems to have stopped the madness there.
    Parts of the front frame rails were patched and reinforced in 2000. They are fine.
    However, the other smaller sections now need attention.

    Car was driven about 50 miles every day in the 80's.
    Was undercoated with Ford Superseal, same as Ziebart.
    Prob saved/is saving it. A lot of it is intact after almost 40 years.
    Have avoided driving the car in salt since 1987. Avoiding rainy driving if possible too.
    I believe most of the damage was started back then.

    So salt baths now do a number on the poor Ranger.

  7. #7
    FEP Super Member JTurbo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Western MA


    Sucks living in the rust belt. You have your work cut out for you with the remainder of that repair....
    1979 Indy Pace Car Mustang 302 / 5spd
    1982 Mustang GT T-Top 302 / 4spd
    1986 SVO Mustang - 1C

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

    Default Thinking ' inside the box'

    The frame box is rusted out right where it curves up in back.
    Now is a rear 'access door' (rustout hole) to the inner channel of frame.
    Straight shot to slide metal in and forward to where the aftermarket sub frame connector end is.
    Could always jam one of these in there:
    Its like 2 gage.

    Let's see- 2x6 treated wood would not rust or rot...nah

    Am going to stop by a local trailer mfr when in the area.
    May have something of interest. Good people.

    The front part of the rear frame box stops where the Ford Motorsport sfc rear bracket is mounted.
    Thinking add 12" long section of square tubing inside the frame box channel.
    Meet up at both ends where the cars metal is intact.
    14g-11g is about what was/is there.

    Others have ran box tubing front to rear.
    Not ready for that yet. I would if that's what it took to save a car.

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