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post #1 of 6 Old September 8th, 2015, 05:44 AM Thread Starter
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front lower control arm????

well I bolt up the stock k-member finally after all this time doing the repair.. feels good to finally be putting stuff back on the car instead of taken off...

So I also bolted up the new front stock replacement control arms.... are these suppose to move freely? the Haynes book says to torque up to 150, so that's what I put it too... well I had them pointing down when I did that (easier to get torque wrench on bolts that way... anyway I could not move them back up... arrrgg so I had to loosen it, and when I did the other side I didn't torque that one at all (I forgot to clean up the spindles so I had to stop and spend the rest of the day clean them)

so in any case, when I get done getting the spindles painted I'll be ready to put everything else back...

but just want to make sure about these controls arms... just like the stock ones the metal sleeve inside had little teeth on the outer edge to bite into the k-member when tightened down... so there not going to move... I thought the bushing was suppose to move around that, but that don't seem to be the case..

so, is this normal? and then I guess they should not be fully torqued down until I got the spindles and struts and springs in right?

1990 Mustang GT 5.0 5sp Hatchback
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post #2 of 6 Old September 8th, 2015, 11:50 AM
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Torque the control arms with the suspension loaded. This is done to keep the bushings from binding, which can actually hold the car up. Same deal with the rear control arms should they ever need done.

When it comes to the factory rubber bushings themselves, the rubber is bonded to the sleeve. The rubber does not rotate seperately. The rubber is pushed and pulled. Those teeth on the end of each sleeve were designed to prevent the entire bushing from rotating, probably to keep squeaks to a minimum (metal against metal). Polyurethane bushings on the other hand are not bonded to the control arms and rotate seperately. This is why they need lubed. Free range of motion, and ease of installation. The lack of teeth i can only assume is that they are simply not needed since the bushings are not bonded.

As for the spindles, you can torque those down. That wont affect the control arms. But make sure the end of the springs are between the two holes in the control arm for an even ride height.
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post #3 of 6 Old September 8th, 2015, 12:26 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by fb93 View Post
Torque the control arms with the suspension loaded. This is done to keep the bushings from binding, which can actually hold the car up. Same deal with the rear control arms should they ever need done.

When it comes to the factory rubber bushings themselves, the rubber is bonded to the sleeve. The rubber does not rotate seperately. The rubber is pushed and pulled. Those teeth on the end of each sleeve were designed to prevent the entire bushing from rotating, probably to keep squeaks to a minimum (metal against metal). Polyurethane bushings on the other hand are not bonded to the control arms and rotate separately. This is why they need lubed. Free range of motion, and ease of installation. The lack of teeth i can only assume is that they are simply not needed since the bushings are not bonded.

As for the spindles, you can torque those down. That wont affect the control arms. But make sure the end of the springs are between the two holes in the control arm for an even ride height.

Ok, so all this bushings do is flex (or rather the rubber twists) a little in either directions (up & down). I just assumed the moved freely...

ok, so then I keep the bolts loose enough to allow the control arm to move up and down, then install my MM caster plates and spindle and strut.... then install the spring and then load the suspension and then torque the control arms.

? since the motor is still out, would there now not be enough weight to load the suppression? So will I would need to wait until motor is put back in?

But in any case I will need to put jack stands under the control arms (near ball joint) and then let the car down to load the suppression right.


Spring: are you saying the end of the spring is not to go all the way to the end of the pocket side, but the end should stop before the last of the 2 holes? (be in the middle?)


and last, I have the ford racing lowering springs, the B ones I believe (the ones that lower just a little), can the springs be put in by installing and then jacking up the control arm from the ball joint end? from what I read it looks like they say the lower springs can be done that way since there a little shorter, but since mine are not that low I wasn't sure. But also it seems the internal and external spring compressor's really don't fit?

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post #4 of 6 Old September 8th, 2015, 01:42 PM
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I would drop the engine back in as there is nothing to load the suspension. I always position the jackstands under the spring perch. I dont like sticking them near the balljoints. The ends of the spring should cover one hole only. Yes, in the middle. Thats the factory position. You can put them anywhere you want really, as long as both sides are in the same position, but the factory position is in the middle.

Yes, you can position the spring in the control arm and use a jack to lift everything into the k-member. You can get by using a bunch of thick zipties to compress the spring, or even chains to hold it all together. There was a thread around here somewhere that used another method, but i have yet to find it.
If you plan on using a dedicated spring compressor, the store bought internals do not fit thru the hole in the control arm and the hooks get hung up on the coils and once the spring is in, you may not be able to get the compressor back out with the coils compressed, and the externals get hung up on the control arm and spring perchand dont compress enough. The only compressor that is designed to work with a Fox body is the OTC 7045B. At close to $200 its not cheap, but you will be done in no time, quick and easy. I dont know how easy B springs are to install. I have a set collecting dust as i used a set of Mach 1 springs instead.
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post #5 of 6 Old September 9th, 2015, 01:22 AM
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I haved installed Eibachs,BBK & Steeda lowering springs and didn't need a spring compressor,but their drop rate is 1.25-1.50".The Motorsport B springs have a drop rate of 7/8-1/2",so they don't sit as low as most spring kits do.One good thing about the B springs is they have the same spring rate(425/530 front & 200/300 rear)as the OEM spring on the 85-93 GT's.The ride comfort should be OK.I do remember a thread on here that talked about mounting stock height springs without a compressor.Well actually,they did use a compressor but it wasn't left on the spring during install.The guy basically put a( outside the coil mounted)spring compressor on it,compressed it til it was at the spot he wanted,ran a (extra large)ratchet strap around one of the upper most coils,ran the other part of the strap around the 2nd to lowest coil,ratcheted the strap down tightly,removed the compressor,installed the spring,jacked the control arm up,attached the strut to the spindle,lowered the jack then cut the straps off.I don't know why he had to cut the straps off though.You could also install the spring into the control arm,put the hook over the 2nd to last coil(at the top of the spring)then go around the bottom of the control arm & back up to the 2nd last coil on this side of the spring & attach the other hook to this coil then start ratcheting it down until the spring is compressed enough.This will also keep the spring connected to the control arm.I also know of a couple guys that installed the springs with a completely unbolted control arm.They put a jack under the control arm(in between the two bushings)& under the control arm near the ball joint area,put the spring in place,begin jacking the control arm up with both jacks so you can keep the control arm somewhat level.Youll wanna raise the jack (closest to you)just slightly higher than the rear jack since the top of the spring needs to lean inwards(towards the engine)somewhat to match the upper spring perch angle.The control arm bolts are gonna be a little tedious since youll have to get the control arm bushing & kmember hole aligned before you can slide the bolts through.
If you use a different method than this,make sure youve got the car far enough off the ground so the control arm can drop completely down.You want it to pivot as far down as it can,to allow as much space as possible between the lower spring perch(in the control arm)& upper spring seat(on the strut tower.
You should be able to get them in without a compressor,but if not I would try the strap method.The spring is not gonna need as much compression (as a stock height spring )since its a little shorter than the OEM spring.I rubbed a little bit of grease on the spring pocket to help the spring slide into place easier.
FB is right about putting the coil between the two drain holes.The pigtail(very end of the bottom coil)lands between those two holes.

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post #6 of 6 Old September 9th, 2015, 05:17 AM Thread Starter
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thanks I give it a go hopefully this weekend... unless... since the motor is not in the car... would the car have enough weight? If I start jacking the control arm up... will the spring compress or will the front of the car come off the jack stands...... hmmm I was hoping to get the front all back together, then I was going to do what I needed to the motor before I drop that back in... install all new clutch stuff from rear main seal out...

1990 Mustang GT 5.0 5sp Hatchback
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