TCCoA Forums banner

1 - 8 of 8 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
27 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
On Ebay, they have these 8 pc, 12 pc, etc, kits that include upper and lower control arms with ball joints, sway bar links and tie rods....all for rediculous prices, even after shipping. Anyone bought one of these? What are your opinions ?
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
299 Posts
Spend the extra money for Raybestos/ACDelco Professional grade.

You can find good deals on Amazon and Rockauto.

Money saved on cheap E-bay garbage will be lost when you have to replace them again a year later, assuming you catch them failing before going off the side of the road.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
484 Posts
On Ebay, they have these 8 pc, 12 pc, etc, kits that include upper and lower control arms with ball joints, sway bar links and tie rods....all for rediculous prices, even after shipping. Anyone bought one of these? What are your opinions ?
I looked at them too. The price is atrractive isn't it? But.....

When the lower ball joints break with out warning on a cold day - like we have in Cleveland and you have in Canada ;)

The rear control will swing back. The tire will hit the the back of the fender. If your cars rusty it will ruin the lower front fender with the added bonus of slamming into the bottom of the cowl. Damaging that. Along with destroying the sway bar links. Then you get to have car flatbed towed to a shop to get fixed. Which will require a new control arm, sway bar link. And strut rod bushings. Like me you might figure it's a fluke - because the parts just aren't that old. And then two weeks later while your still recovering from the the first repair bill. BANG! You get to do the other side. And replace the rim in the process.

While I didn't use a kit fron Detroit Axle I did use budget lower control arms from Federated. A name I had trusted and literally sold thousands of parts back when I was a auto parts counterman. Never had any issues with that line. But in the decade or so I got out of the business suspension parts have changed from USA manufactured to mostly being sourced off shore.

MN12's have a extremely well designed front and rear suspension. But they are heavy cars and these parts are highly loaded. And it's only as strong as the weakest link. There are many places you can save money but any load bearing suspension parts are not one of them. This is the one area of the car you want to seek out the best parts and pay the price.

RockAuto does seem to have the best prices and inventory levels. And a little bird told me TCCoA members can get a 5% discount. While not a specific recommendation they do have a complete MOOG kit listed. Moogs moved a bunch of production offshore too.

Just my personal experience. I learned the hard way that this just isn't where you want to save a buck.

As far as the the budget suspension kit mentioned I'll echo the poster with the word death wish. Both of my LCA's broke at parking lot speeds. Had I been going highway speeds the outcome might have been entirely different. Buy budget springs, shocks alternators, oil filters, sway bar bushings maybe end links. If it's a load bearing suspension part buy the best. If not your sure ask yourself "What's going to happen if this breaks at 65 MPH or on a icy road"
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
404 Posts
I have a buddy of mine who owns a tow truck company and he says almost all ball joints give out on hard turns at low speeds. He usually pulls cars out of parking decks in the turns where they give out under the stress.
I bought one of those kits off ebay, when I went to install it I compared the parts to the original I could literally could feel and see the difference. The lower ball joints weren't pressed in the arms were cast around them! I fell for this stunt because on ebay, they were listed as OEM brand. Stick with the good stuff (not NAPA) and live a long time.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
484 Posts
I have a buddy of mine who owns a tow truck company and he says almost all ball joints give out on hard turns at low speeds. He usually pulls cars out of parking decks in the turns where they give out under the stress.
I bought one of those kits off ebay, when I went to install it I compared the parts to the original I could literally could feel and see the difference. The lower ball joints weren't pressed in the arms were cast around them! I fell for this stunt because on ebay, they were listed as OEM brand. Stick with the good stuff (not NAPA) and live a long time.
I think the cheap stuff is glued or epoxied in. I suspect cold has something to do with it too. Or it's possible I suppose that the cold contracted the parts enough that the slop allowed them to separate.

Mine gave no real warning. Just a bang. Going straight at 35 MPH or so. I'd forgotton that. I thought I'd lost a wheel bearing from the grinding. The lower arm was riding in the inside of the rim. But you couldn't see that when I stopped to look under the car. I was about 3/4 of a mile from the house and decided to try to limp it home. It wasn't until I turned that the wheel popped loose. I'd forgotton that bit. Luckily I was directly in front of a body shop my brother in law manages. So I got a free flatbed ride the 1/2 mile to the house. And since it landed in the drive I felt obligated to fix it myself ;) it's only a couple of bolts right :)

The second one did break at low speeds after a hard right.

Here in Cleveland it's not uncommon to see someone with a broken ball joint about 600 feet past a chuckhole ;)

These were the only ones I've ever had break. And it's something I'd like to avoid from ever happening again.

I looked at the Kits on eBay. And I don't think I'd even put that quality stuff on a car I was selling.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
183 Posts
Cost,is what generally catches my eye. It may sound trite,but one generally gets what they pay for. The prices of these kits should be a red flag in other words. Given some of their prices,I just paid about half the price of an entire kit for just ONE upper control arm,and my Motorcraft one was a good deal.

I'll never forget the symptoms of my old passenger side lower control arm a couple of years back. It was more than a knock.It was a violent loud high pitch thud. I'd cut the car off and you'd hear this loud "SNAP"! It was scary,and my mechanic scolded me for driving it that way. He said he was surprised I made it to his shop. ...Why would I ever want to possibly repeat that experience with cheap inferior parts?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
412 Posts
Spend the extra money for Raybestos/ACDelco Professional grade.

You can find good deals on Amazon and Rockauto.

Money saved on cheap E-bay garbage will be lost when you have to replace them again a year later, assuming you catch them failing before going off the side of the road.
Just what I needed to know. This DIY project, even after I buy a new floor jack will still cost less than hiring it done.
 
1 - 8 of 8 Posts
Top