I'm going to be installing PPM's kit and I'm wondering about being able to grease the upper and lower A-arm bushings after install. I see this done on the tubular arms, but is it possible to do on the stock arms?
Mike : those fittings on the tubulars are not for Poly bushings. Rather, they are because Chris is (or is about to) offer a "solid" type bushing that is greasable with the arm.
To make a poly bushing truly greasable (i.e. enough that it'd work ), you'd need to engineer the bushing that way from the start. Namely, have the molds set up so that some grease passageways are cut into the bushing. Since this would increase the complexity of the mold quite a bit, no one does it.
I made my lower A-arm energy suspension bushings greasable. The bushing must be modified for it to work. I turned a groove to the outer perimeter to allow clearance for the grease nipple. I offset the grease nipple with a flat washer so that it does not extend very deep into the bushing. The groove on the outer perimeter goes all the way around because a poly bushing can rotate over time. On the inside of the bushing I broached 4 grooves that run along the length of the bushing (in the axial direction). Then I drilled 4 holes into the outer groove that line up with the inner grooves. This is to get the grease to the inner diameter which is what rotates around the sleeve when an a-arm with poly bushings moves. Finally, to make it easier/possible to get in new grease, I cut slots into both end surfaces in the radial direction that line up with the slots cut into the inner radius of the bushing. These slots allow old grease (and initially air) to escape from the ends of the bushings.
There's not really enough meat in the upper bushings to do this, but the lower ones are the ones that carry the most weight. Always use black Energy Suspension poly bushings, not red etc. because the black is graphite impregnated (that's where it gets the black color).
These guys suggest tapping threads into the I.D. of a poly bushing that doesn't already have channels. This is to retain grease placed in there upon assembly -- not an adding of a grease fitting.
http://www.suspension.com/tips.htm If you have had problems with poly-urethane bushings that squeaked in the past, the new Energy Suspension Hyper-flex bushings should fix the squeaks. If you do not want to replace all your existing squeaking poly-urethane bushings, you can tap an SAE thread into the I.D. hole only, of any sway bar bushing, control arm or leaf spring bushing. The thread should go through the entire bore of the bushings. The groove you create will keep the grease from squeezing out the side of the bushing. Do not put a thread in any metal parts. We are not telling you to drill a hole in the bushing. Look at the bushing, does it have a hole you can stick your finger into and is there a metal rod or tubing that fits into this hole, well this is the hole that you must thread.
Tenor, Unfortunately, you won't be able to do anything with the needle, particularly to the lower control arm bushings. (Unless perhaps one had bushings that were so bad that big chunks were missing and then grease alone would not help you.)
Black Mariah, I would not thread the ID of a bushing because you will have that much less surface area on the ID and you still cannot add any grease later.
The modification that I did is time consuming, but it actually works. I would possibly cut only 2 or 3 axial channels into the ID next time if I were to do it over.
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