TCCoA Forums banner

1 - 20 of 27 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
158 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
seeings i havent done this on these cars, any tips on installing? not
many miles ,but a boot is split. should you have to realign the front
end? any help appreciated. looks simple but you guys are the experts.
any other parts that have to come off to get them out?
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
5,132 Posts
For the upper arm - 1) You'll just about need a 18mm ratcheting box wrench to get the nuts off inside. 2) When reassembling, Ford recommends putting the control-arm-to-shock-tower bolts in, leveling the arm, torquing the bolts down, THEN connecting the ball joint.

OTGH, there are folks ( Robert for one ) who have replacement boots if the ball joint is still in good shape. You'll probably need to use a needle injector to refill it with grease when done, but still.

RwP
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
158 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
For the upper arm - 1) You'll just about need a 18mm ratcheting box wrench to get the nuts off inside. 2) When reassembling, Ford recommends putting the control-arm-to-shock-tower bolts in, leveling the arm, torquing the bolts down, THEN connecting the ball joint.

OTGH, there are folks ( Robert for one ) who have replacement boots if the ball joint is still in good shape. You'll probably need to use a needle injector to refill it with grease when done, but still.

RwP
only one oem control arm left at vintage so i bought the delco ones. they look
identical,even the boot retainers are green. no zerk. was gonna get lowers, but no delcos anywhere. i do have the service manual , but you guys have the real world knowhow. thank you!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
412 Posts
For the upper arm - 1) You'll just about need a 18mm ratcheting box wrench to get the nuts off inside. 2) When reassembling, Ford recommends putting the control-arm-to-shock-tower bolts in, leveling the arm, torquing the bolts down, THEN connecting the ball joint.

OTGH, there are folks ( Robert for one ) who have replacement boots if the ball joint is still in good shape. You'll probably need to use a needle injector to refill it with grease when done, but still.

RwP
Those nuts are much smaller than 18mm. I'm in the planning stage of doing this job and today I tried several different sizes of wrenches. The nut measures 15mm, but my 15mm socket is too big, the 14 is too small. I'm thinking their must be a special tool needed, but the only thing mentioned in my Ford factory manual is to use a 6 point socket.

Has anyone here been through this and know the correct size? Also, the instructions say to break off the flag on the bolt before removing the nut. I don't see the reason for this. The new parts don't have a flag. How does one snap of the flag?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
484 Posts
I just did my 1992 this spring and they probably weren't needed. The key one for me was the tie rod end ball joint. It had a tiny bit of play. My brake rotors were making everything wobble when applied.
You can try oiling your upper control arm bushings to see if they will get quieter and keep rolling if your front end is tight and there are no noises. People let these cars sit for a few years with lots of road salt on them and the ball joints seize and fail.

My new control arms were Moog uppers and the dust boot split before I got it installed. That's not going to hold grease and its going to rust a lot in a road salt environment before any real wear happens at the joint. I get catalogues from Duluth Trading with a supertape I may try to use to hold some grease against the ball joint in the upper control arms by taping around my failed dust boots. More money for RobertP's new dust boots but better.
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
8,220 Posts
Those nuts are much smaller than 18mm. I'm in the planning stage of doing this job and today I tried several different sizes of wrenches. The nut measures 15mm, but my 15mm socket is too big, the 14 is too small. I'm thinking their must be a special tool needed, but the only thing mentioned in my Ford factory manual is to use a 6 point socket.

Has anyone here been through this and know the correct size? Also, the instructions say to break off the flag on the bolt before removing the nut. I don't see the reason for this. The new parts don't have a flag. How does one snap of the flag?
18mm on mine when I changed them. Leave the flags there, you'll need them when it's time to tighten things back up. :)

Joe
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
13 Posts
I don't mean to hijack your thread - especially as a newbie, but I am working on this aspect of my Mark VIII right now. My UCA to body mount nut also measures 18mm. I realized too late that a ratcheting box wrench would have been perfect - after it took two hours to take off and re-attach. I changed my tie rod ends and control arms, had it aligned, and now it doesn't drive right. It is vague and twitchy, not precise and well-weighted like it was. I changed the parts trying to fix a shimmy when braking at high speed. Its fixed, but doesn't feel right anymore. I am going thru everything once more to see if something is loose, or assembled wrong. Couldn't torque the nut by the brake booster - no room.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
11,017 Posts
Most likely, the alignment shop tightened the bolts with the wheels off the ground.

That really jacks up the suspension.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
484 Posts
I don't mean to hijack your thread - especially as a newbie, but I am working on this aspect of my Mark VIII right now. My UCA to body mount nut also measures 18mm. I realized too late that a ratcheting box wrench would have been perfect - after it took two hours to take off and re-attach. I changed my tie rod ends and control arms, had it aligned, and now it doesn't drive right. It is vague and twitchy, not precise and well-weighted like it was. I changed the parts trying to fix a shimmy when braking at high speed. Its fixed, but doesn't feel right anymore. I am going thru everything once more to see if something is loose, or assembled wrong. Couldn't torque the nut by the brake booster - no room.
I assume your talking about the drivers front upper rear control arm nut? I ran into the same thing and had to pull off the master to tighten it. Then bleed the brakes all the way around. This was on a couger not a MK8. Absolutely no mention of needing to pop off the Master cylinder in the shop manual. But in my case there was no way of getting a wrench or socket of any type in there without removing the Master. All of the lines looked to be factory (to me).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
412 Posts
I assume your talking about the drivers front upper rear control arm nut? I ran into the same thing and had to pull off the master to tighten it. Then bleed the brakes all the way around. This was on a couger not a MK8. Absolutely no mention of needing to pop off the Master cylinder in the shop manual. But in my case there was no way of getting a wrench or socket of any type in there without removing the Master. All of the lines looked to be factory (to me).
I don't mean to hijack your thread - especially as a newbie, but I am working on this aspect of my Mark VIII right now. My UCA to body mount nut also measures 18mm. I realized too late that a ratcheting box wrench would have been perfect - after it took two hours to take off and re-attach. I changed my tie rod ends and control arms, had it aligned, and now it doesn't drive right. It is vague and twitchy, not precise and well-weighted like it was. I changed the parts trying to fix a shimmy when braking at high speed. Its fixed, but doesn't feel right anymore. I am going thru everything once more to see if something is loose, or assembled wrong. Couldn't torque the nut by the brake booster - no room.
Okay, now I'm feeling a bit silly, but I blame it partly on manuals telling me to remove bolts. I mistakenly thought those bolts with 15mm head were what the manual was referring to.

If 97CatMan had not chimed in about his under the hood work, I'd still be scratching my head. I see the four 18mm nuts. Now I see the reason for the flags is to hold the bolt heads in place while loosening the nuts. Correct? I believe I can't go forward without the 18mm ratcheting wrench and possibly an 18mm socket.

Thanks for helping, folks.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
5,132 Posts
TBird Bob - ayep, that's what the flag is for. And yes, 18mm on the nut.

RwP
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
13 Posts
I noticed in an old Lincolns of Distinction post that one member actually took a hole saw and created a 3 inch hole to access the nut by the master cylinder. I actually contemplated doing it until I decided that I would have to weld it back together to maintain structural integrity, because there is one hole already in that area. Still considering it, as I have decided to start from scratch, connect the upper bolts to the body first - with the UCA out at 90 degrees, then connect the ball joint to the spindle. If that doesn't cure my vagueness problem, then back to the front end shop. Why is it so difficult to get good geometry done on our cars?
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
5,132 Posts
Because it's an unusual design.

I've actually been told "We can't adjust the caster on these cars." I point to the strut rods, and get BS back.

Which is why it goes to ONE shop in town ... and not any of the others in that local chain!

RwP
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
158 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
Because it's an unusual design.

I've actually been told "We can't adjust the caster on these cars." I point to the strut rods, and get BS back.

Which is why it goes to ONE shop in town ... and not any of the others in that local chain!

RwP
in just replacing the uca"s, does it really need an alignment, or just check toe in?
actually ill probly just do the left.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
404 Posts
Because it's an unusual design.

I've actually been told "We can't adjust the caster on these cars." I point to the strut rods, and get BS back.

Which is why it goes to ONE shop in town ... and not any of the others in that local chain!

RwP
You got that right. The local chains never could get my car straight. Got a local guy and my car drives straight as an arrow.

I just did the front end on my mark and have done 5 birds, never had to remove the master. Just takes a lot of patience.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
484 Posts
You got that right. The local chains never could get my car straight. Got a local guy and my car drives straight as an arrow.

I just did the front end on my mark and have done 5 birds, never had to remove the master. Just takes a lot of patience.
Disclaimer. I don't own a 18mm rocketing box wrench and needed to get a deep well socket on there to clear the the stud and the bolt. It's entirely possible that the offending brake line had been changed or replaced at some time. But looked normal. I'm not sorry I did that way as I was able to use a torque wrench upon reassembly and the fluid desperately needed flushed.
 

·
Super Moderator
1997 Thunderbird 4.6, 1998 Mark VIII LSC
Joined
·
9,527 Posts
Disclaimer. I don't own a 18mm rocketing box wrench
I do, so you know who to call when you do UCAs now. ;)

I only reconsider alignment when doing lower suspension stuff, since that's where the bolts are that adjust all the alignment specs are located. Tie rods, LCAs, strut rod... About the only time I might entertain the thought of an alignment when replacing the UCA is if the car was previously aligned with a severely worn out upper ball joint.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,916 Posts
While even with the 18mm ratcheting box end it's slow work, it's really not so bad, and they don't need replaced very often, especially if you get good parts with grease zerks.

I wouldn't cut a hole in the car to access the bolt easier for that one job personally.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
13 Posts
I would check the "thanks" button to all of you, but I am not on that other site. Thank you all for the input. Now to put it to the test by implementation.
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
8,220 Posts


Borrowed the picture from Rick (NetKeym) when he did his drivers side upper arm, figured it might help some people here! :D

Joe
 
1 - 20 of 27 Posts
Top