front lower control arm dilemma - Chevelle Tech
Brakes, Suspension & Steering Conversion questions & more.

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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old Jan 13th, 20, 3:08 PM Thread Starter
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Tony
 
Join Date: Apr 1999
Location: Folsom, CA
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front lower control arm dilemma

'66, stock resto but upgrading to "Chevelle" discs and 15 inch steel wheels.

I currently have 2 sets of front lower control arms (old, dirty/greasy), along with Moog rubber bushings (although I might only have the larger round bushings). I also have both Moog and ProForged lower ball joints.

Last year, after reading about old arms cracking at the BJ, I finally decided to buy new, repro lower arms... So I now have the set of new, repro arms (non-returnable based on when I purchased).

Has anyone had a problem with, or heard of a problem with the STOCK repro lower arms or BJs? I know I have heard of BJs breaking in the imported tubular arms, but nothing about "stock" repro arms.

Removing the stock arms yesterday, I noticed some minor damage (scraped on edge but not bent), and looks like damage from the steering arm tail hitting the arm (odd because its a low-mileage, manual steering car)... Come to think of it, my other set of arms might have have a loose BJ at one time (not sure if I can identify that set now).

So the dilemma is to:
  • rebuild the stock arms (50+ year old) with the new BJs & bushings
  • use the repro lower arms as-is
  • Use the repro lower arms, but with new Moog or ProForged BJs

Once you go RAT, you never go back...
TC #1366

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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old Jan 13th, 20, 5:35 PM
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Eric
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Poteau, Ok
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Re: front lower control arm dilemma

Since you have the repro arms, use them with the new Moog or ProForged ball joints. Both manufacturers are quality parts.
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Your just jealous because you can't hear the voices!

1967 Olds Cutlass 468 BBC/T400
1963 Plymouth Fury 440/Torqueflite
2007 Ford Mustang GT (momma's car)
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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old Jan 13th, 20, 5:50 PM
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Rick
 
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Re: front lower control arm dilemma

I went with repro control arms and all Moog replacement parts and I've been very happy so far. The front end alignment numbers that I chose for my 70 El Camino were for a 1974 Monte Carlo and I'm very happy with the steering performance. The alignment technician used a completely normal number of shims to get me to the Monte Carlo alignment specs. It also very much helps that I'm running a mid to late 90s steering box out of a Jeep Grand Cherokee.

A great big hydraulic press is needed to get the A-arm bushings in!!!

Rick



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1970 El Camino under Reconstruction - 5.3L LS VORTEC Engine and 4L60E Transmission
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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old Jan 13th, 20, 6:18 PM
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Greg.
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
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Re: front lower control arm dilemma

Where are the New Repro Lower Arms manufactured ?

I replaced my Front Upper & Lower Control Arms with UMI Perf Tubular ones
https://www.umiperformance.com/home/...front-arm-kit/
Alignment Tech said they were easy to adjust & very few Shims needed

I think UMI now has Adjustable Upper ones that do not need/or very few Shims
https://www.umiperformance.com/home/...ms-adjustable/
https://www.umiperformance.com/home/...r-ball-joints/

67 Chevelle Malibu SS Cdn
Born 283 / PG / A51
468/TH400 2,500 stall/ S60 3.70 Gs
Prev Best on M/T ET S/S #3454 street Tires/Dress 2018/05/20
60' = 1.664
1/8 = 7.532 et / 91 mph
1/4 = 11.814 et / 115 mph
NEW Best with 3,500+ Stall TC 2019/09/08
60' = 1.547
1/8 = 7.311 et / 91.76 mph
1/4 = 11.595 et / 114.28 mph


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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old Jan 13th, 20, 6:24 PM
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Eric
 
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Re: front lower control arm dilemma

Quote:
Originally Posted by B52bombardier1 View Post
I went with repro control arms and all Moog replacement parts and I've been very happy so far. The front end alignment numbers that I chose for my 70 El Camino were for a 1974 Monte Carlo and I'm very happy with the steering performance. The alignment technician used a completely normal number of shims to get me to the Monte Carlo alignment specs. It also very much helps that I'm running a mid to late 90s steering box out of a Jeep Grand Cherokee.

A great big hydraulic press is needed to get the A-arm bushings in!!!

Rick



Sent from my SM-G965U using Tapatalk
A great big press is not needed, just a hammer and an old large socket or piece of pipe. The specs most of use for alignment are:
As much positive caster that we can get
.5* negative camber
1/16 toe in

Your just jealous because you can't hear the voices!

1967 Olds Cutlass 468 BBC/T400
1963 Plymouth Fury 440/Torqueflite
2007 Ford Mustang GT (momma's car)
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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old Jan 13th, 20, 10:02 PM
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Rob
 
Join Date: Sep 2016
Location: Mississauga , Canada
Posts: 149
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Re: front lower control arm dilemma

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kirk's67SS View Post
Where are the New Repro Lower Arms manufactured ?

I replaced my Front Upper & Lower Control Arms with UMI Perf Tubular ones
https://www.umiperformance.com/home/...front-arm-kit/
Alignment Tech said they were easy to adjust & very few Shims needed

I think UMI now has Adjustable Upper ones that do not need/or very few Shims
https://www.umiperformance.com/home/...ms-adjustable/
https://www.umiperformance.com/home/...r-ball-joints/
I have checked several of the repo / restoration parts vendors and all have come back overseas or tiawan,,, been on the fence which to go with or go tubular but for just a street cruizer ...
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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old Jan 13th, 20, 11:41 PM
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David
 
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Re: front lower control arm dilemma

IMHO - If you have low mileage original control arms from a non-rusty CA car; I would reuse them.

That's what I'm doing
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66 Malibu......back to life with a 427 BB & 4 speed
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old Jan 14th, 20, 10:13 AM
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Jeff
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Pittsburgh, Pa.
Posts: 2,319
Re: front lower control arm dilemma

I never regret installing the SC&C Stage III set up on my 69 el Camino.. That along with the Lee 14:1 30 pound steering box were the best money spent on my car so far...

I love tooling through the twistys with two hands on the wheel because of the positive feedback of the box..

Yesterday, while thoroughly enjoying my drive, I was thinking what makes Marks SPC set up so great is the use of Howe modular ball joints. Mark had Howe specially make these up for him and its the only place you can get them installed in a SPC custom adjustable control arm..
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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old Jan 14th, 20, 11:26 AM
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Greg.
 
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Re: front lower control arm dilemma

Quote:
Originally Posted by 454chevSS View Post
I have checked several of the repo / restoration parts vendors and all have come back overseas or tiawan,,, been on the fence which to go with or go tubular but for just a street cruizer ...
IMHO using 50+ year old parts that carry the Load of the Front of the car and Steer the car around corners
is not what I would want to fail anywhere anytime

EG. a curvy Mountain Road
on a Hwy going 70+ mph
on a City Street when needing to Stop quickly for whatever Reason

I was amazed at the Build Quality of the UMI Perf Suspension Parts that I have bought

It is to bad/sad that some American Company has not taken up the challenge to build good Original type parts for our old cars

67 Chevelle Malibu SS Cdn
Born 283 / PG / A51
468/TH400 2,500 stall/ S60 3.70 Gs
Prev Best on M/T ET S/S #3454 street Tires/Dress 2018/05/20
60' = 1.664
1/8 = 7.532 et / 91 mph
1/4 = 11.814 et / 115 mph
NEW Best with 3,500+ Stall TC 2019/09/08
60' = 1.547
1/8 = 7.311 et / 91.76 mph
1/4 = 11.595 et / 114.28 mph


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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old Jan 14th, 20, 9:08 PM
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Rob
 
Join Date: Sep 2016
Location: Mississauga , Canada
Posts: 149
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Re: front lower control arm dilemma

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kirk's67SS View Post
IMHO using 50+ year old parts that carry the Load of the Front of the car and Steer the car around corners
is not what I would want to fail anywhere anytime

EG. a curvy Mountain Road
on a Hwy going 70+ mph
on a City Street when needing to Stop quickly for whatever Reason

I was amazed at the Build Quality of the UMI Perf Suspension Parts that I have bought

It is to bad/sad that some American Company has not taken up the challenge to build good Original type parts for our old cars
So true, after reading through and seeing other members posts with control arm letting go either backing out of driveway or one I recall while driving. Has me very reluctant on doing just bushings on mine.As soon as I noticed my lower bushing chewed up(and it was by fluke) car has been parked ever since
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