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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hello All. I'm in the process of "almost" completely rebuilding my front suspension. I have loosely mounted my new Moog Prebuilt Upper and Lower Control Arms. My question is on the lowers. It took a bit of pushing while swinging up and down to get the lower bushings lined up in the frame hinge. I greased the bushings and hinges. I put the bolts through the hinges and loosely threaded the nuts on the bolts. My question is this-My new lower control arms seem tight at the rubber bushing as in their pressure just enough holds the lower arms up in the air if I push them up. The driver one seems a little tighter. Is this tightness a normal thing from new bushings (new control arm)? I painted the hinges So that's a little added but I think the result would of been pretty close the same If I didn't paint. I'm guessing it's a silly question as the spring probably sees no added resistance aside such a heavy vehicle all assembled. I just have to ask the question so I'm very sure my new bushings are not at risk while seeing this resistance and after all the work done and tightened up. And I've heard stories of people saying their front ends were not returning to normal height after they seemed to do everything correctly. Im noting the FSM says to install spring isolators top of spring (I'm waiting on a pair of Moog) "and" FSM says put tape on the lower end of the spring, following by covering at least some of the first drain hole none of the second. I'm guessing the tape keeps the noise down and prevents scratching of the protective coating on the control arm minimizing the introduction of corrosion. Thanks
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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Also, I would like to know what tool type/combination everyone is using to tighten the (end two)- top control arm bushing nylon nuts on each side of the upper cross shafts? Socket, crow foot, etc.? I'd like to torque with torque wrench but Im not sure it's possible with the factory space of brake lines etc. and what tools I have. I'd buy the 15/16 crow foot but not sure it will fit. Maybe a box end wrench and a cheater pipe?- give it a guess pull and be done? Feedback appreciated and what tool assortment is typically used in our application on factory setup (non deleted items vehicle).
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The lower arm bolt hose tend to cave a bit pinching the bushing sleeve as long as the sleeve does slip in the frame when the bolts are loose that is all that matters.
This so the bushings are not wound up at ride height when you do the bolts up finally
Normally one works the frame at the holes a bit before sliding the arms in.
You have the later bolts with flanges, the early 95 and before really caved the frame.

The upper nuts you could torque the accessible ones , then get a feel one them with what ever box end. Use the same force on the unaccessable nuts
 

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Also, I would like to know what tool type/combination everyone is using to tighten the (end two)- top control arm bushing nylon nuts on each side of the upper cross shafts? Socket, crow foot, etc.? I'd like to torque with torque wrench but Im not sure it's possible with the factory space of brake lines etc. and what tools I have. I'd buy the 15/16 crow foot but not sure it will fit. Maybe a box end wrench and a cheater pipe?- give it a guess pull and be done? Feedback appreciated and what tool assortment is typically used in our application on factory setup (non deleted items vehicle). View attachment 205788
I double wrenched the shafts after being at ride height and rechecked a month later
 

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The lower flanges I made a tool with bolt, nuts and a bunch of washers to spread flanges slightly. Got idea from a real old post
 

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All that is normal. When you tighten down the bolts for the lower control arms, they'll be in there even tighter to the point where the inner sleeve might not pivot at all. This is one of the reasons why it's recommended that you do final tightening of those bolts with the vehicle sitting at ride height with the full weight on the suspension. That way the rubber bushings can have maximum flex for full articulation without the sleeve needing to pivot. On polyurethane or delrin bushings, the bushings aren't bonded to the inner sleeve and all the articulation is done with pivoting, hence the need for regular greasing.
 

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As for the upper arms, I assemble those with the cross shaft outside the car. The Moog ones I've bought in the past were already pre-assembled with a cross shaft and all I had to do is slide the full unit onto the studs.
 

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" might not pivot at all"
It is critical the inner sleeve does NOT move relative to the frame, bolt, inner shaft.
Bonded rubber uppers, tighening the upper nuts at finished ride height is every bit as critical as lower bolts.
Even is they tried, the Moog assemblers can't know your particular cars finish ride height.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I installed my springs and shocks yesterday. I have a question or two. Just before releasing the spring compressor, as directions state, I snugged the 2 castle nuts to the upper and lower ballpoint to hold the assembly under its own pressure. After this, I tried to turn the knuckle by hand to simulate turning the steering on each side of the car. Is it normal to feel pretty stiff? I'm sure it's more than before. BUT, all these parts are new. I'm guessing it's normal. And, second question. Do these Moog pre assembled upper and lower ball joints come progressed? Not only are they stiff but they sound dry. Ummmm, maybe grease doesn't fix this either and that's "normal too"? I've never done this before so I don't know how "smooth" or "free" the knuckle is supposed to turn with new Moog everything.. Note, my tie rod etc. tapers not finalized/compressed as I would like to know if I need to use a rental tool to compress the tie rod tapers etc.Thanks
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I always add grease to new ones if they have a zerk, and it usually takes a few pumps to get them filled, so I'm guessing that they have minimal grease pre-applied.

Yes, new ball joints are stiff, they don't take long to wear in
 

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You can tighten the castle nuts, and steering components at any time. They only hold the ball end of the joint in the knuckle/link taper, and there is no adjustment to them. I have found some ball joints with small/short tapers that need spacers/washers to pull the taper far enough into the hole. There are torque settings for all steering components in the FSM. Make sure you put the cotter pins in the castle nuts. There should be prevailing torque nuts on the upper shaft, not nylocks. Make them good and tight. I usually take the tire off, and put jack under the AXLE until the frame slightly lifts off of the jack stand. Then tighten the nuts on the suspension. It gives you access, and weight on the suspension.
 
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
My upper ball joint to knuckle is spinning before I reach the 125 lb ft torque. How do I get this to stop spinning without damaging the balljoint?
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The other thread i mention lifting the lower arm and prying down the upper arm.
125 lbs ?? If you are reading this STOP!!!

I don't know the torque without looking but it cant be that high.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
The FSM also seems to have a contradiction on the lower torque. The diagram states item 22 to be 100ft lbs in the list. Then the text says to torque the same bottom nut to 125 ft lbs.
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The lower, 125 I would not be afraid of.
It's that 125 upper that scares me.
I found my 1995 service manual and yes it says 125 upoer but due to the size of the ball joint I question that number even though it is in print.!!

Look at torque specs for that same ball joint part number in other GM cars, typically 60-80 max.
Something up here.
Would be interesting if someone here has GM manuals for 77 up to 96 and see what those numbers are
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
The lower, 125 I would not be afraid of.
It's that 125 upper that scares me.
I found my 1995 service manual and yes it says 125 upoer but due to the size of the ball joint I question that number even though it is in print.!!

Look at torque specs for that same ball joint part number in other GM cars, typically 60-80 max.
Something up here.
Would be interesting if someone here has GM manuals for 77 up to 96 and see what those numbers are
Well, as I speak,

1. I have my lower knuckle nut cotter pinned at 125 lb ft. no more.
2. My upper is spinning at about 81 lb ft with the cotter hole showing. Should I back it off and re torque to a new number-say 70ft. lbs? Or be done? Wouldn't it be stretched not to do what I just asked?
 

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They tend to open up the hole then break:(
If it was mine I would be taking it apart, inspecting cleaning the stud and taper with brake clean or acetone.
Put back together clean and dry.
Attempt to torque to 60 .

It concerns me it was turning at 80
 
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