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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I took my front upper and lower arms in to a machine shop to have the bushings and ball joints replaced. I took all the parts and they wanted $15 per bushing and $25 for each of the 2 lower ball joints :eek: :eek:

Quick math told me OUCH thats $170 !!!!!

I don't know if that's high or not but it ran me off. So I went to Harbor Freight and bought a 12 ton press to do it myself. The press was only $79 so I figure it's not a bad deal if it does the job I'm money ahead and I have a new tool :D

I'll post again when I get them pressed in and let you know how it went.... cause I'm sure you're all on the edge of your seats!!!!
 
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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Chris,

Press???? Who needs a stinkin press. :D :D
I did mine with nothing more than a vise, hammer and some big sockets.

No matter how you do it, just be careful you don't bend the a-arm tabs when you put the bushings in.

Easy way to get old bushing out. Heat the outer shell with a torch and the rubber will literally pop itself out. Then hit the outer shell to collapse it and it will come right out.

If you need to reuse your stock shells, some bushings are just the bushing, just do the first part with the torch and then clean the inside of the shell with a wire brush.

Bada Bing, Bada Boom. Job Done.
 
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
exactly what paul said. when i did them on my nova, i put a small socket in between to keep the tabs from bending.
 
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Labor-wise, that is about the going rate.

One other tip on the bushings is to weld a small piece of reinforcement steel on the end of the lower A-arms. This will keep the arm from collapsing, and also give a little extra strength to the arm at a minimal (few ounces) weight penalty.

Which new bushings did you go with?
 
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I'm using the PST polygraphite kit and all of the new bushings have their own shell.

Ed.. do you have a pic or anything of the suggested size and place for this extra piece. I had seen a post of your's before that mentioned it but I couldn't find it.

Sounds like you guys think the press is over kill for the job.... I guess I'll see how it works.
 
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Can't get to the pic right now (wierd thing, work has the ROD.com web domain blocked right now, guessing it is because of the "MyDoom" virus running around.....they saw the word "Doom" and got scared or something :D ), but I'll try and find it tonight.

Basically though, it is at the part of the arm that is facing the middle of the car on each bushing support. Piece is the width of the bushing arms, and about 1" tall. Just weld it in, some black Rustoleum over it and call it a day
 
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
OK, got home and can finally see the pics that Noel linked. Basically, they don't really show it ;)

Here are some pics that do show the extra pieces welded on




 
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Nice pics & nice boxing/welding job on your control arms Ed...

Rustic,
If money is no issue Bill Harper is the way to go for best price on upgraded control arms. Near Seattle the machine shops want more like $35 a bushing [F-ing mercenaries..!].

On the lower arms & if the bushings you are using are designed like the stock bushings [outer shell] then try to flare them to prevent "Bushing Walk". Flare as in raise the inner edge of the shell lip on the inner part of the inner lower control arm bushing bore hole.

To remove the upper control arm shafts: Remove the outer nut then use an oxy/acy torch to melt the bushing rubber. Don't worry, the shaft will just "Pop Out". If the shaft is too big to fit through the bushing bores then you will have to cut it with the torch. The bushing outer shells will still have to be removed as the last step.

If I was rich then I would just buy four new 9C1 front control arms to minimize the down time of the car. They are insurance as well for a car with any wrecks at the front to be sure all arms are straight & true.

It is a heck of a job [for me] I would pay the money...

Best of Luck--George
 
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thanks guys.

I'm working with 9C1 arms with the 5/8 ball joint and I have a spare set of SS arms that are 9/16.

I had to buy new upper shafts (MOOG) because the threads were rusted so bad on the old ones that they dissapeared when I removed the nuts.

Thanks for the pix ED. I'll look into getting a similar thing accomplished. My neighbor is a metal worker... so I may try to cash in a favor he owes me :D

Down time is not an issue for me... this is a long term build project... you can watch the progress in the Impala SScene.
 
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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I'm currently working on my front suspension too. The local NAPA wants $12 per bushing. That's R&R... Same for a Ball joint. On my upper arms I took the Sawzall and cut the cross shaft into three pieces. Then pulled them out.. I then heated up each bushing shell with the torch, then put the arm ontop a piece of pipe and hammered the bushings out in about 5 wacks with my 5lb hammer, and the bushing fell into the pipe.... Same for the ball joint...

The lower arms were a different story... It took me 2 hours to remove the first bushing.. Was not able to get the 2nd one to budge, or the ball joint.... Everything on my car has been in place for 120,000 miles and seems to have rusted together.. I even broke one of the bolts on the control arms with my 5 foot breaker bar. :D
 
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