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First Repair On My '96.... Radius Arm Bushings

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First Repair On My '96.... Radius Arm Bushings

 
  #1  
Old 10-01-2005, 11:03 PM
Fishallot
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First Repair On My '96.... Radius Arm Bushings



Not a pretty sight to discover under my truck this morning. Everything looked fine last time I looked about a week ago. This will be the first repair job that I've had to do on my 96 Bronco. I found a good tech article on how to do this repair and it looks fairly straight forward.

Just a couple questions for those that have tackled this in the past. Should I replace the driver side bushings as well even though they look ok? Should I replace these bushings with OEM style rubber ones or are there better bushings that I can buy to replace them with? Any unforseen pitfalls that I should look out for while doing this repair?

Thanks in advance for any advice the board can provide. I've been lurking here since I bought my truck about 4 months ago and have learned a tremendous amount from reading old threads.

Rob
 
  #2  
Old 10-01-2005, 11:20 PM
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They are cheap enough and if one side is worn then the other is not far behind.
Also, check broncograveyard or LMC truck and other sources, I would buy poly bushing instead of rubber, they may make the ride a little more stiff, but they will probly outlast the truck.
To start, you spray those nuts with wd-40 or liquid wrench, and put a wrench or impact on it. You should take the spring and shocks loose.
Then you should be able too flex it forward enough to get the threaded shaft out of the mount.

Goodluck
 

Last edited by BroncoRoadKill; 10-01-2005 at 11:23 PM.
  #3  
Old 10-02-2005, 07:37 AM
Fishallot
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Thanks, i'll look into the poly bushings. I'm concerned about making her too stiff though as this is a daily driver that will see little offroad time.

I'm planning to do the job by removing the brackets so I don't have to push the front end around. Seems to me that by doing it this way I could skip an alingment as long as everything is tourqed back to specs??
 
  #4  
Old 10-02-2005, 09:14 AM
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You might want to start undoing the bolt before you take the bracket off, b/c I've heard people saying they would of never gotten the radius arm bolt undone unless it would of still been on the bracket to the frame.
I don't think poly bushings would make your ride any worse, I belive they will tighen up your ride and get more turning response out of it with new bushings stock rubber or poly bushings.
 
  #5  
Old 10-02-2005, 12:00 PM
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Originally Posted by MBBFord
You might want to start undoing the bolt before you take the bracket off, b/c I've heard people saying they would of never gotten the radius arm bolt undone unless it would of still been on the bracket to the frame.
I don't think poly bushings would make your ride any worse, I belive they will tighen up your ride and get more turning response out of it with new bushings stock rubber or poly bushings.
Your probly right cause it seems the TTB has so much leverage on those arms that any bushing would give. Those poly bushings could also help out when you do get an alighnment cause they don't give in and out like the rubber one do.
 
  #6  
Old 10-02-2005, 04:42 PM
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I just had to do this on my 94 a couple of weeks ago. One tip that someone on here gave me was to use the candle trick. Its described in the FAQ in the garage and workshop section. It helped a ton. I only found it after snapping the bolt on the radius arm. I then had to take the whole thing apart. Was not to fun.

Also autozone has a set of poly bushings for like $8 that includes the two end washers and the spacer. And if the hole where the radius arm goes through the hanger is not round you have to replace those too. Funny thing is ford charges like $25 for one side $50 for the other and they are the same thing pretty much.
 

Last edited by wjawill; 10-02-2005 at 04:45 PM.
  #7  
Old 10-02-2005, 07:02 PM
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Thanks for all the replies. I crawled under the truck today and the drivers side is also worn but not nearly as bad as the pic of the passenger side above. Looks like I will definately do both sides.

I called around to the local parts stores today and Advance Auto has the Energy Suspension poly bushings in stock for $20 a side. The $8 set at Autozone was for the stock rubber bushings. They could order the poly ones but didn't have them in stock.

Thanks for the tip on loosening up the big nuts first, I never would've thought of that one. I actually put a wrench to both nuts a few minutes ago and was able to loosen them up without applying too much pressure. I guess they don't self tighten as the bushings wear out. I doubt i'll have too much trouble taking everything apart as the underside of this truck is virtually rust free.

I'll snap a bunch of pics along the way of this repair and put them in my gallery in hopes of helping out the next person that comes along with this problem.

Thanks again for all the help.
 
  #8  
Old 10-02-2005, 10:04 PM
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I have this EXACT problem currently with my 94 XLT, I have been contemplating how I am going to approach this, I want to avoid removing shocks/springs if at all possible (this is how someone told me to do it). It looks like it is as simple as jacking the truck and removing the brackets that the bushings are mounted in, and they will slide freely from the lower control arm, is this correct? Thanks for the tips on the poly bushings, I will hunt around for them locally. Mine is MUCH worse than your picture, the steel sleeve that keeps the nut from crushing the bushing is beginning to deform. Odd thing is passenger side is completely destroyed, but drivers side looks brand new.
 
  #9  
Old 10-02-2005, 10:26 PM
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This is the procedure that I'm planning to follow.

http://www.off-road.com/ford/bigbroncos/tech/rad_arm/

On my 96 the passenger side bracket is all bolted in, the drivers side does have the 3 rivets that need to be removed and replaced with nuts and bolts.
 
  #10  
Old 10-03-2005, 04:29 PM
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Went to Advance and bought the poly bushings today, they carry TRW, $20 per side for the bushings. Since I had a few hours to kill before a hot date tonight I decided to tackle the passenger side bushings. Only took about an hour and for the first time in as long as I can remember the repair went smooth, no unforseen problems to deal with. Since I was pressed for time I didn't take any photos but I will when I do the drivers side.

A word of warning.... If you have radius arm bushings that are showing any signs of wear I'd suggest replacing them. The bushings that I have pictured at the top of this thread were complete goo on the inside. The rubber was so soft that I had to scrape gooed up rubber off the end of the radius arm, the stuff was like sticky silly puddy. It was a real mess.
 
  #11  
Old 10-03-2005, 05:13 PM
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I wasn't kidding. Here's a couple pics of the backside of the bushing from the pic at the top of this thread. Nasty goo.


 
  #12  
Old 10-03-2005, 05:53 PM
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Did you get any oil or gasoline on it, perchance?
 
  #13  
Old 10-03-2005, 06:35 PM
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If I were to replace mine, how long do you guys think a new set of stock rubber bushings would last?
 
  #14  
Old 10-03-2005, 07:11 PM
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probly about as long as the old ones did.
Unless the rubbers are getting more like plastic so they may not last as long as originals.
 
  #15  
Old 10-03-2005, 07:20 PM
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I did my right side on my 95 about 4 years ago, exhaust heat destoyed it. 4 months ago I enjoyed doing the other side, which I didn't do at the time since it was riveted on. What a pain in the a$$ to get those rivets off, it took many more beers than originally planned. Was your left side riveted on? Also my shocks were shot from driving on the bad radius bushing.
 

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