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Lower Front Control Arm Bushings Question - Suspension/Brakes/Wheels/Hubs/Steering/Geo - The Lotus Forums Jump to content
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p1renn

Lower Front Control Arm Bushings Question

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I burned out the rubber bushings in my lower front control arms and now I'm wondering if that was a bad idea. Apparently, the control arms on early S1s are obsolete or were updated with a larger bushing bore. The bores are also tapered so that one end is a larger diameter than the other, meaning that the actual poly bush will need to be tapered too. I ordered new poly bushes from SJS and sure enough they are a larger diameter so they won't fit. Does anyone know if these odd size bushings are still available and where? I don't want to modify my control arms if it isn't necessary as I already powder coated them.

lower_bushing.jpg

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Could you not have the bushes turned down on a lathe?


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Possibly, but the taper inside the bore is going to make turning the bushing very difficult. I forgot to mention that the SJS bushing is significantly bigger than the bore of my control arm. You'd have to remove a lot of material and then replicate the taper in the control arm bore which is difficult. I imagine if you don't get the perfect fit then the bushing will fail later on.

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Call After sales at the factory and find out their advice, but my feeling is that Chris's solution is one that should work, tapering on the lathe would be easy, and measuring is a doddle.

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I've a feeling you've not got all the bush out, I'm sure that the metal lip on the left of that photo is the outside metal sleve of the bush. Not 100% sure but seem to remember someone else on here who replaced thiers not too log ago and that was part of the new bush.

Can't remember who it was but I'm pretty confident I'm right, although I may not be :thumbsup:

Have a real good search at some of the S1 restos and also around the G car tech room and you should find some useful info!

Edited by Simon350S

Chunky Lover

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Yep, you can hammer out the metal sleeve and put in a new rubber bushing which comes bonded to the sleeve part (Dr. Manta has those). It's problematic though because you need serious gusto to get the sleeve out. The walls of the control arm are thin and I've read that it's easy to bend those if you hammer on them too much .

Also, I'm hesitant to mix rubber and polyurethane bushings on the same axle, but if anyone has done it and not run into any weird handling problems...

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Personally I would not suggest mixing bushing types on the same axle. Basic rule of thumb when working on steering/suspension/brakes is that what you do to one side, ALWAYS do to the other. Keep in mind that rubber tends to be softer than poly, and one thing you don't want to do is make one side more or less responsive than the other (unless your making all left turns on a track).

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I'd mix Polly and rubber and most Definately wouldn't be the first. Infact the aftermarket upper link bushes in poly are so crap it's recommended you use the original metal sleved rubber instaed. Not sure if they are the same on the S1

As long as you do both sides the same I see no issue to be honest.

I'd rather the bonded, sleeved original as the bonding between the rubber and the sleeve is part of the suspension compliance.

Poly isn't always better :thumbsup:

Oh, and pop somewhere that has a press to get the old sleeve out and the new bush in!


Chunky Lover

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I found the tapered poly bush from a few sources in the United States:

http://www.opelsunl.com/

http://www.opelgtsource.com/

It's too late for me as I already bought everything overseas but these guys have everything for the front suspension (ball joints, bearings, bushings - both rubber and poly, control arm assemblies, etc). It's all Opel stuff, but obviously since the early Esprits use the same suspension bits...

poly_bush.JPG

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