Mark Simpson

Lower Control Arm Replacement

Mark Simpson
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Duration:   14  mins

Lower Front control arms are crucial components of a classic car’s front suspension system. These components have evolved over time, and their design and function have been refined to improve the ride quality, handling, and safety of classic cars.

Early cars, such as those from the late 19th and early 20th centuries, often featured simple leaf spring suspensions and a straight axle. These suspensions provided a basic means of absorbing shocks and vibrations from the road but offered limited control over the wheel’s movement. As automobile design evolved, so did the need for more advanced suspension systems to provide better ride comfort, handling, and stability. Control arms began to replace simple leaf spring suspensions in the 1920s and 1930s.

Most commonly the lower control arms come in either an A-arm design or a straight arm design that utilizes a strut rod to locate its position. Both designs have their pros and cons, however servicing either style is very similar in process.

While the upper and lower control arms themselves seldom wear out, they are susceptible to damage and corrosion. However, the ball joints and bushings are considered “wear items” and require regular maintenance and replacement. Fortunately some classic cars are popular enough where manufacturers have offered complete replacement control arms with new ball joints and bushings for less than the components would cost separately.

Our project 1967 Mustang is well supported by the aftermarket, so we opted to replace the entire lower control arm. We’ll take note of the lower control arm camber adjustment cam so once the control arm is replaced they will be close to the original position but a trip to the alignment shop is a “Must” once the job is complete. Follow along as we remove and replace the lower control arms and give our pony car improved handling, ride quality, and safety.

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