At one time or another we all end up taking our rides for granted and paying the price. Case in point, when vehicles sit idle for a while you can kiss your joints and bushings goodbye. Without the movement of the car's suspension, grease doesn't get distributed and the factory rubber bushings dry out and turn to junk, turning literally to stone. They can no longer be relied on to do their job. Sure, they will work, but as soon as that suspension begins to articulate and twist again they become brittle.
What do bushings even do? On the short side, they serve as the middleman between moving metal parts-for example, suspension components such as the upper and lower A-arms. When bushings go bad, they can rattle a car to bits and create a sloppy feeling in the front end of the car, creating excessive play in the steering wheel and potentially putting you in a compromising situation. To make matters worse, if you happen to have a combination with big inches or even a power-adder, you could wind up turning any street machine into an rogue missile.
This month we hooked up with a reader who turned out to be a perfect candidate for us to work with. While the progress of the car had to be put on the backburner for the past couple years, it's on track now and anxiously awaiting a big-block transplant. To get things started, we ordered up a front-end poly-bushing replacement kit from Classic Performance Parts. It came complete with all new polyurethane bushings, tie-rods, ball joints, and even new zerk fittings.
To help us out with the install, we relied on the expertise of Lou's Performance in San Fernando, California. Lou Zamora is a whiz when it comes to second-gen Camaros. Follow along as we replace the bushings and prepare this vehicle for hitting the streets again with a fresh front end.
What We Did
Installed a Classic PerformanceProducts frontend rebuilt kit.(PN 7579SFKP)
Get your project cars moving safely without drama.
While a simple hydraulic hand-jack...
While a simple hydraulic hand-jack at home would do the same trick, to get this project going and for ease of illustration, we pulled the old Camaro onto a lift and raised it off the ground. Noyo Miramontes started by removing the front tires to gain access to the old rotors.
Miramontes attacked the front...
Miramontes attacked the front end with confidence and unbolted the brake calipers from the rotors using a 3/8-inch Allen wrench with a ratchet. He removed the calipers and set them aside. Then, using a 9/16-inch socket and wrench (top and bottom), he disconnected the sway bar and removed it as well.
Preassembly CPP's kit includes...
CPP's kit includes upper and lower ball joints, inner and outer tie-rod ends, tie-rod adjusting sleeves, idler arm bushings, and control arm bushings and bumpstops. If you need new end links, they're sold separately. We also went ahead and preassembled as many of the components as possible. For example, we threaded together the new tie rods with sleeves and painted them. In the long-run this saves time and frustration.