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View Full Version : billet strut rod's what do you guys think?



blown94cougar
10-01-2007, 07:11 PM
After having owned many mustangs in my life I have noticed that some of there suspensions are basically the same as ours heres a link to total control products strut rod bushings

http://www.totalcontrolproducts.com/strut.html

and the lower control arms..

http://www.totalcontrolproducts.com/lower.html

My question is if the measurements where the same on the length of the strut rod and the length from the mount on the control arm to the center of the balljoint why wouldnt these work? Im assuming it'd be a vast improvement

even if we couldnt get the whole setup to work the end spherical bushings would be awesome

A1cntrler
10-01-2007, 07:39 PM
Not a clue as to if it would work or not, but it sure is cool looking!

seawalkersee
10-01-2007, 08:12 PM
Wow...at first I thought "HECK NO" but as soon as I looked at them, I think they my be close. See if you can get a measurement from the company and go from there.

Chris

Mercutio
10-01-2007, 08:41 PM
One immediate problem I see is that 64-70 Mustangs mounted the spring and shock on the upper control arm, not the lower, leaving no place for a shock mount for us.

seawalkersee
10-01-2007, 08:45 PM
One immediate problem I see is that 64-70 Mustangs mounted the spring and shock on the upper control arm, not the lower, leaving no place for a shock mount for us.

I think a mount for that would be more than easy to make. Also, it would be cheap.

Chris

blown94cougar
10-01-2007, 09:49 PM
If I can get stock ford measurements from the mustang and our cars then I can build a jig and make them I will call the company and ask them what they think

fast Ed
10-01-2007, 10:41 PM
I have a 68 Cougar that I can measure up. Off the top of my head, they are pretty different. Main thing I can think of, is which ball joint is the load bearing unit. Because the early Mustang mounts the spring to a perch on the upper arm, I don't think that a lower ball joint / control arm intended for a Mustang would do the job on an MN-12.


cheers
Ed N.

blown94cougar
10-03-2007, 04:01 PM
hmmn maybe we can coerce this company into making them for our cars...I see a large profit in it for them I'd definetly buy a set...even if they only sold the spherical tension strut bushings they'd definetly help

A1cntrler
10-03-2007, 04:12 PM
hmmn maybe we can coerce this company into making them for our cars...I see a large profit in it for them I'd definetly buy a set...even if they only sold the spherical tension strut bushings they'd definetly help


I would say not too likely. The probelm with the MN-12 is that it just isn't popular enough. Look at what happened when Kenny Brown (:rolleyes:) made parts. Didn't make too many. Cost too much money for them to develop the parts for something that didn't have a high payout. This is why the little guy (you) can make these. Mostly because your profit margin doesn't need to be that high, as this is your hobby, not lively hood. If your braces don't sell, oh well. If thiers don't sell, it puts them in the red, which isn't good. Maybe many many moons from now it would be profitable to make stuff for the MN-12, but the time just hasn't arrived yet. Good luck though. Can't hurt to ask, eh?

XxSlowpokexX
10-03-2007, 06:04 PM
Well think about it..How much of a demand can there be for these for an older car?..Being this company has the resources it may be a possability. Id just be curious as to hwo it would affect the ride..Definitely a weak point on our cars

Duffy Floyd
10-03-2007, 10:28 PM
I'm trying to figure out how these would be better than the OEM strut rod. To my knowledge no one is having the stock bar bend so what is the point? They might look neater but if they don't make things better I doubt I would ever buy them.

XxSlowpokexX
10-04-2007, 12:22 AM
Duffy,

The rod itself nahh..But the bushing itself.

fast Ed
10-04-2007, 03:48 PM
Other than coolness, probably not much of a benefit at this point for new strut rods on our cars. On the vintage Fords, there are two reasons these get replaced (that I'm aware of) ... corrosion causing weakness and damage to the threaded area at the front attachment point, and also the poor bushing design and binding on that end.

With aftermarket strut rods, many of them have new bushing designs or heim joint ends, which increases caster adjustability on the old cars ... something nice to have with modern tires on an old car. On my 68 Cougar, I can only get around 0.7 positive caster on one side, and a bit less than 2 on the other. Ideally 3 to 4 degrees would be nice to have for better steering feel and response, so I'll likely replace the OEM rods at some point.


cheers
Ed N.

blown94cougar
10-04-2007, 08:02 PM
exactly the bushing is much more desirable than the actual strut/tension rod

XxSlowpokexX
10-05-2007, 07:10 AM
Thats what I was thinking. The major issue with almost every SC I run into is shot strut rod bushings

blown94cougar
10-05-2007, 04:30 PM
I believe this would tighten the front end up a considerable amount

Duffy Floyd
10-05-2007, 08:15 PM
Care to explain how you think it will tighten up the front end? The strut rod only provides caster adjustment and a means of tranfering fore and aft forces on the Lower control arm to the subframe that occur as a result of acceleration or braking.

XxSlowpokexX
10-06-2007, 08:11 PM
I think when the strut rod bushing are brand new you may notice little.. But these bushing seem to be the first togo. A majority of mn12's you go up to have excessive to and fro movement of the front wheels./ Not sure if a solid bushig is the way to go or wehat the negatioves may be if any handeling wise

Duffy Floyd
10-06-2007, 09:17 PM
What part of the forward and rear strut rod bushings aren't solid already? I know the rear ones are and have a steel liner too. Don't remember how the fronts are contructed.

What is your evidence Damon that a lot of MN12's have fore aft movement of front wheels and that the cause is sub-standard strut rod bushings?

I know of one reason for front wheel movement during heavy braking and it isn't becuause of strut rod bushings.

XxSlowpokexX
10-07-2007, 04:18 AM
Duffy. Ive only owned 5 sc's and 1 lx bird and they all ended up suffering from this except for my my teal car (low miles). I have besides that observed it on many other SC's that i have some sort od intamate relationship with.

Perhaps this is east coast not so nice road and salt usage winter thing. All I can say is around these parts the strut rod bushingfailure seems to be something that occurs often and something over here we all talk about.

Perhaps with nice smooth roads its the last peice to go. Couldnttell ya.

Do I have video tape and a certified letter attesting to this no. Nor am I saying a solid bushing would be a good idea as I have no idea how it would impact the drive..Although if you are saying its "solid" for the most part why not just go real solid.

And perhaps i worded it wrong. In good condition the bushing does its job fine. Just seems to prematurely fail over in these parts. Why? Substandard design> material?.. I dont know

quick35th
06-04-2008, 09:57 PM
Duffy,

Here is the pain that everyone on here is talking about:

http://i86.photobucket.com/albums/k114/quick35th/img215.jpg
http://i86.photobucket.com/albums/k114/quick35th/img216.jpg

In my case this is what caused their distruction:

http://www.incom-racing.com/images/gallery/OvrAutoX06012008/images/dsc_0529.jpg

The strut rod to kmember bushings are toast, completely gone in some places and barely there in others. From what I can tell the strut rod to LCA bushings are fine.

What I would really like to know is, what about making aluminum or billet strut rod to kmember bushings? Would something like that even work? I dont care for ride quality because my car is a track only car. I do have the means to make a set of all metal bushings happen I just need to know if metal bushings is smart or if they will only cause me further issues.

Shane
Glynn Motorsports

Duffy Floyd
06-04-2008, 10:03 PM
When were the bushings last replaced? Moog makes a "Problem Solver" poly front strut rod bushings but I have heard they crack with heavy use. I have heard of more problems with the LCA to strut rod bushings than the fronts mounted to the crossmember.

quick35th
06-04-2008, 10:12 PM
When were the bushings last replaced? Moog makes a "Problem Solver" poly front strut rod bushings but I have heard they crack with heavy use. I have heard of more problems with the LCA to strut rod bushings than the fronts mounted to the crossmember.

The bushings were probably a few years old but have only four autox events on them, all coming from this season. My car in Lawrence's hands went threw a few sets of these very same bushings in just one short NASA track session. So they are obviously a weak link.

Shane
Glynn Motorsports

Duffy Floyd
06-04-2008, 11:15 PM
Based on my understanding of the function of the bushings a billet replacement would not work. Given the suspension goes through jounce and rebound to solid mount the strut rod would affect handling since there would be no "give" to account for the change in relative distance between the LCA and the unmoving crossmember. But I will be seeing Chuck Weiss at Carlisle and will ask.

I will say that part of your problem very well could be the lack of unibody stiffness in your front end due to the removal of the major portion of the radiator crossmember. I mentioned it to you at last year's Shoot-out and bascally you blew it off. Lou Williams was with me and agreed on the side......VERY bad idea unless you are running a FULL tube chassis front end structure which you aren't.

Law of unintended consequences could very well be at play here.

BTW...the bushings being discussed here in this thread was mainly the LCA to strut rod bushings not the crossmember to strut rod bushings.

seawalkersee
06-05-2008, 12:29 AM
If you remember a few years ago, there was another guy who had a similar problem with his. I do not believe it is just Shane's car with the problem. I think IF you had a strut rod that worked on the same plane as the LCA such as thre one on the AJE subframe, you could use heims or another pivot and eliminate the problem.

Chris

Duffy Floyd
06-05-2008, 12:42 AM
I don't remember another fellow with the same problem but not doubting your memory is better than mine. Laurence perhaps who owned Shane's car first??????

Ask Wlll Smith if he is having the same issue since he is another AutoX guy on here.

seawalkersee
06-05-2008, 12:55 AM
If I recall correctly, it was a white SC out of FL. I will have to do a search for them....Tomorrow...

Chris

Duffy Floyd
06-05-2008, 01:14 AM
Shane,

What Lower Control Arms do you have installed in your car? If you don't have Ford OEM SC arms or TRW 10771 & 10772 arms your LCA inner pivot bushings are too soft (compared to the correct SC ones). This could allow excessive twisting of the control arms during braking and acceleration leading to additional stess being placed on the strut arm bushings. Just another thought that might play into the equation.

Mercutio
06-05-2008, 08:56 AM
Ask Wlll Smith if he is having the same issue since he is another AutoX guy on here.

I completely destroyed a set of the urethane bushings (strut rod to frame) that came in the old MN12perf. urethane front end kit. Since switching back to regular parts store replacements I haven't had any trouble on either of my two cars. However, I have had to double-nut the front of the strut rod, as I have had the locknuts back off over time. If that happened and you didn't catch it, that could probably tear up the bushings pretty quick.

Mike8675309
06-05-2008, 09:52 AM
This car formerly owned by Brad aka 4cam bird with a Lincoln motor in it and now owned by Melon had issues with poly strut bushings when doing autocross. Basically the strut would pull out of the subframe spitting the bushings and flopping around. The bushings wouldn't deform with the cup washers to hold things in, instead they cracked then pulled through the hole.

Note just because the parts look familiar, doesn't mean the fit. Check the length on that stuff to make sure, otherwise you mess up the geometry of things.

http://www.midwestthundercats.com/forums/galleryimages/gallery_45_16_78475.jpg

Brad's latest project car... getting twin cam lincoln motor in this:
http://i13.photobucket.com/albums/a253/braddoerr/IMG_5266.jpg

Micahdogg
06-05-2008, 10:07 AM
That new car of brads is tight!

quick35th
06-05-2008, 10:24 AM
When using polly strut rod to kmember bushings how solidly mounted is the strut rod? I can see where poorly designed metal bushings would greatly limit suspenssion up and down travel.

Duffy,

The NASA rule book states that the core support can be removed which is I guess the logic behind Lawrence's decision to do so on my car. My roll cage is solidly tied into the shock towers on my car and the seems around the shock towers have been welded. It very stiff up front as is and I dont think there is an flex near the radiator. I have mounting bars for the radiator and the stock kmember holding the very front together as well.

Several people over on the tccoa are having this same issue as well.

Shane
Glynn Motorsports

Duffy Floyd
06-05-2008, 10:21 PM
Shane,

Yes, I knew where the roll cage had been tied into. You car....your choices. I don't have poly bushings so I can't answer your question about how solid the mounting is.

XR7 Dave
06-05-2008, 10:38 PM
All K-member bushing failures can be traced to either non-OE bushing material or severe fatigue due to age or the nuts backing off like Will said. Shane, your car had MN12 Performance bushings and those are the only ones that failed on Lawrence. Numerous people have experienced the same failures. If fact one of the first things I ever read on SCCOA was a thread about failed aftermarket strut rod bushings. This would have been about 10 years ago. Nothing has really changed.

As for the rear strut rod bushings, the Ford ones are rubber and metal vulcanized bushings which fail typically after about 80K miles or so. Simple fix - replace them. Aftermarket bushings are made from poly and will increase ride harshness. The probably don't have any real effect on performance but who knows? Best bet in this case is OE.

quick35th
06-11-2008, 11:26 AM
When were the bushings last replaced? Moog makes a "Problem Solver" poly front strut rod bushings but I have heard they crack with heavy use. I have heard of more problems with the LCA to strut rod bushings than the fronts mounted to the crossmember.

Duffy,

Do you happen to have the part number for the Moog "Problem Solver" bushings?

Shane
Glynn Motorsports

Duffy Floyd
06-11-2008, 06:45 PM
K8659 is the part number for the MOOG "improved" frame to strut rod bushings. The "Problem Solver" bushings are thermoplastic and actually for the control arm to strut rod junction. MOOG PN K8680.

I asked Chuck Weiss at Carlisle about my understanding of the function of the strut rod bushing at the frame and he agreed......billet will not work. He also agreed you have compromised the structure of the car by running with a sectioned radiator support. Got to remember the forward part of the K Member relies on the front structure of the car to maintain rigidity. The K Member is not a stiffened structure on its own...it operates within the structure of the unibody to perform its function.

quick35th
06-12-2008, 10:30 AM
K8659 is the part number for the MOOG "improved" frame to strut rod bushings. The "Problem Solver" bushings are thermoplastic and actually for the control arm to strut rod junction. MOOG PN K8680.

I asked Chuck Weiss at Carlisle about my understanding of the function of the strut rod bushing at the frame and he agreed......billet will not work. He also agreed you have compromised the structure of the car by running with a sectioned radiator support. Got to remember the forward part of the K Member relies on the front structure of the car to maintain rigidity. The K Member is not a stiffened structure on its own...it operates within the structure of the unibody to perform its function.

Thanks Duffy for the part numbers. I have to fix the car on Saturday for Sunday's race this weekend.

As far as the front end goes if I really am getting a lot of flex then I will have to have my welder weld a brace across there and remount my radiator.

Shane
Glynn Motorsports

Duffy Floyd
06-12-2008, 06:13 PM
Shane,
Recognize that the strut rod is where the caster adjustment is made. You should do a four wheel alignment after replacing the bushings.

Roadboss
06-13-2008, 07:15 AM
The previously posted pictures show that the sphereical washers are totally absent, thusly the rubber bushing is getting shreaded. I have the shop manual here and it gets into some detail to insure which washer goes where and also how long each pair of ferrels are for the proper functioning of the strut rod.