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Discussion Starter #1
Looking for some input on front control arms, it seems there is a lot of discussion about the rear control arms, but not near as much about the front control arms.

The bushings in one of my ‘A’ arms are shot and are allowing the arm to shift around in the K-member. I originally thought that I would just replace the bushings with some polyurethane bushings and be done with it. However, I figured that while I was in there I should replace the ball joints as well. After pricing things out it looked like it would be about the same price to just replace the control arms with new arms instead. I was planning on using Ford Motor Sports M-3075-A arms, Summit used to have them for $189 and wouldn’t you know it, now that I am in the market they longer carry them. Cheapest I can find them for is $325, so it looks like it might be back to just using the old control arms.

What other options/manufacturers are there? Most other arms are tubular setups and are made for coil overs and those with spring perches are quite expensive. Are there any ball joints on the market that are similar to the improved ball joints in the M-3075-A arms?

I am not looking to go to any extremes, this is my daily driver so I am looking to do this as cost effectively as I can. Thanks!
 

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What year , model , etc? Personnally I'd replace the worn out parts , bushings and ball joints, and that is probably the least expensive. Though the service manual says these parts aren't servicable they are. Good luck,Greg
 

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I am using the Moog Problem Solvers.


:bigthumbsup:bigthumbsup:bigthumbsup:bigthumbsup

And poli Bushings in the control arms:bigthumbsup:bigthumbsup:bigthumbsup:bigthumbsup
 

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I put Energy Suspension Polyurethane bushings in my front control arms, and on my front sway bar. I replaced the ball joints with regular parts store ball joints. When I did my front suspension I had access to a hydraulic press so it wasn't all that hard to press out the old bushings and old ball joints and then press the new ball joints back in.

I replaced the front struts and the strut mounts while I was at it then took it in for an alignment. It was all money well spent.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
"...Though the service manual says these parts aren't servicable they are."
I've been wondering about that as I have read some threads that say not to repair them as the ball joint will enlarge the mounting hole when they are pulled out and the new one will never sit tight unless you tack weld it into place. However the guys at the shop I talked to said they had not ever had a problem with the new joints falling out. Any thoughts?

I have some Energy Suspension poli's for the arms that I was going to drill out to make them grease-able, and was going to get some for the swaybar as well. I do not have access to a press, but I've seen a couple how-to vids using a bench mounted vice to get the old bushings out and the new ones in. Figured I'd just have to take the ball joints to the pro's. Would poli or rubber bushings be better for the steering rack? Don't want too much NVH so I didn't know if poli's in the arms and rack would be too much.

Is this the correct part number for the Moog joints K8259? From the looks of it they look like they are grease-able is that correct?

Thanks for you guys' help!
 

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I put Energy Suspension Polyurethane bushings in my front control arms, and on my front sway bar. I replaced the ball joints with regular parts store ball joints. When I did my front suspension I had access to a hydraulic press so it wasn't all that hard to press out the old bushings and old ball joints and then press the new ball joints back in.

I replaced the front struts and the strut mounts while I was at it then took it in for an alignment. It was all money well spent.
:bigthumbsup:bigthumbsup:bigthumbsup

BIG C as usual you are spot on. Those upper mounts are always ignored. I have seen the upper mounting points destroyed by defective upper spring plates. They also rust where you cant inspect them. Always replace them with new ones or adjustable ones. :bigthumbsup:bigthumbsup:bigthumbsup Peace Tom

All the components on the lower A arm are serviceable. Go on the advanced auto web site for the MOOG part number for the Ball Joints. The number sounds right but i deal with numbers all day long. Check with the parts GUY. Peace Tom
 

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Harbor freight has a ball joint tool for cheap. Works great for getting the rubber bushings out too.

For the novice mechanic that tool is perfect!!!:bigthumbsup:bigthumbsup:bigthumbsup

You are batting a THOUSAND RANGER Good post
 

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Discussion Starter #10
This is good stuff to know! How involved of a process is replacing the strut mounts? Do you know of any good write up's or how-to's? I cannot find squat on it, everything just brushes by the procedure. Also any part numbers or suggested manufacturers? Unless I am looking at the wrong thing I am only bringing up replacement bushings, and no hardware.
 

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If you have new struts just unbolt the uppers from the car 3 bolts. Install the new upper mounts to the new struts and chuck the whole stock removed struts and mounts in the TRASH.

http://i600.photobucket.com/albums/tt88/tomrenzo/family167.jpg

I use these. They are totally adjustable and are a little pricey. But they work great and very strong. Peace Tom
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Thanks Tom! Those caster/camber plates would be nice. Someday when I am ready to lower the car those are on my list of things to get.

If it really is that easy to replace the strut mounts then it would explain why most write-up's just brush by them. If I am using the same struts, would it be easier to disconnect them from the strut mounts while they are on the car, or after they have been removed?
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Just to update anyone following along. Thanks to some clarification from Tom and b_chandler, it turns out that I actually have some new strut mounts. I received them by accident in an order a while ago and forgot about them, so here is to my lucky day three years in the making, woot!

Anyway, I placed the new mounts on top of the factory mounts to see how they compare. The three bolts line up fine, but the section where the strut comes through is completely off. I don't know if this is because the factory mounts are just worn out, or if maybe the new mounts are manufactured to provide a different caster than the factory ones. I hate being so paranoid, but I would like to eliminate as many surprises as possible before digging in.

Also, any guess on how these new mounts might effect the ride quality? The factory mounts have large bushings, while the new mounts only have a small thin bushing around the strut bolt. Improved handling is much welcomed, but I also want to keep a somewhat smooth ride. Yes....I do want to have my cake and eat it too. :)

The new mounts


New mount vs factory


Not sure if this picture does any good....the mount is sitting on the strut bolt, you can see how far off aligned the three attaching bolts are.
 

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Good luck 7 ZERO those mounts are OK and makes the instillation a SNAP. peace tom
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Finally found some more info on these strut mounts. Turns out they are some old Kenny Brown Caster Plus plates. I am still waiting to get some more info and hopefully mounting hardware from them. In the meantime this is what their website states for the newer plates:
-Fixed Caster design offers more caster than most common strut mounts
-Increased caster improves directional and high-speed stability
-Improves camber gain for uncompromising grip
-Dramatically improves cornering, handling and "road feel"
-Used in all Kenny Brown AGS Suspension Systems
-Increase the caster angle by approximately 2°

The Kenny Brown Caster Plus Upper Strut Mount Kit dramatically improves cornering ability by relocating the upper strut mounting point for maximum caster, enhancing the front camber curve and totally changing the dynamics of the front suspension. Caster Plus is engineered to maximize caster, while also providing the full range of camber adjustment, for both street and track use. Increasing the caster angle improves high-speed and directional stability, and provides sharp cornering ability by maximizing the "foot print" of the tire under all demands. Whether your blasting down the straights, turning hard into the apex, or powering out of the corner exit - Caster Plus keeps your car pointed in the right direction, without the hassle and high cost of other common strut mounts.

Caster Plus Strut Mount Kit for '79-'04 Mustang and Cobra | Shop Kenny Brown
Although it states that they provide for full range of camber adjustment, I believe that is for the newer plates as these do not appear to have any camber adjustment. Anyway, do you think that these would work with the car being lowered .75-1.25”?
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I received some more info from KB about the plates, they have been out of production for quite a while so the only one that knew anything about them was Kenny himself. He cleared up some of my questions but he could not remember if the plates needed any additional bushings or not. They were designed around the SVO/Saleen onion head mount and he thought that they did not need the strut mount bushings.

However, looking around at various parts sites it looks like the SVO did have strut mount bushings. I am not sure which bushings to get, some appear to have metal caps while others don't, I am guessing those are to replace the top piece of the stock mount, so I am not sure I would need that style of kit.

More Information for MEVOTECH MP901925


More Information for MOOG K8634

I know you get what you pay for, but sometimes there are those products that it doesn't make a difference. Is the Moog part really worth 3x the price of the MevoTech or Monroe?
Thanks!
 

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The onion head WAS the strut bushing and incorporated the caster/camber plate all in one.

As for lower control arm bushings and ball joints, you can't just go out and order Moog (or whomever) replacements, as the LCAs on an SVO are another animal altogether. The ball joint would have to be machined out and a suitable replacement researched for fit. Believe me, SVO owners have been battling this for years. If it were that easy, there would be many more SVOs with OEM LCAs.
Your best bet would be to get the SN-95 LCAs and use the Maximum Motorsports spindle adapter.
 

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As for caster/camber plates....I would just get the MM ones and be done with it. No rubber doo-hickies to wear out and messing with trying to adapt those to the SVO plate.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Thanks Navy! Just to clarify, I do not have an SVO....I wish I did, but no such luck. Sorry, I should have mentioned that in the first post that it's an '88 LX.

I'd like to at least try these KB plates since I already have them, then if they do not work I will spring for the MM plates. I did head over to MM's site though and read through some of their stuff. I am glad I did because they have an exploded diagram of the factory strut mount in their instructions. Now I can finally put my head around how this all fits together. I did not realize that the after market plates do not require all of the bushings that the factory mounts do. Looks like I might just need the bump stop.

While I was on MM's site I took your advice and ordered some H&R Sports. They should be here on Tues! :happyhapp
 

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I could have sworn you had an SVO...oh well...now where's my beer?
 
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