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Control Arm Bushing Material

Posted: Tue Aug 02, 2011 7:24 pm
by Steve Towers
I posted to the SEB my thoughts re the control arm bushing material for C5's. The ongoing issue is that for those of us running A6/710 tires the stock rubber control arm bushing won't hold up for even one full season. As the control arms creep on the bushings, alignment settings go away, such that in my case, I lost fully half of caster adjustment, leading to a lack of camber. It's my thinking that aftermarket material should be made legal - all would do it, the playing field level. A whole lot less expensive. SEB (#5678) but your insights would be invaluable.

Re: Control Arm Bushing Material

Posted: Tue Aug 02, 2011 9:28 pm
by Jayson Woodruff
Is there any factory TSB's on the subject? If you request doesn't go over with the SEB (which on first glance, won't, bushings are a significant handling upgrade), maybe getting GM to address the problem would work. I.e., get GM to put out a TSB decribing a control arm modification that make the bushings replaceable.

Jay W

Re: Control Arm Bushing Material

Posted: Tue Aug 02, 2011 9:57 pm
by Craig Naylor
Jayson Woodruff wrote:Is there any factory TSB's on the subject? If you request doesn't go over with the SEB (which on first glance, won't, bushings are a significant handling upgrade), maybe getting GM to address the problem would work. I.e., get GM to put out a TSB decribing a control arm modification that make the bushings replaceable.

Jay W


I'm only guessing here...

its probably not an issue of not being able to replace the bushings, but rather, GM does not sell rubber bushings alone, only the entire control arm, and aftermarket bushings that are available, are not rubber (aka OE type and material).

Does this more or less sum up the problem Steve?

Re: Control Arm Bushing Material

Posted: Tue Aug 02, 2011 10:18 pm
by Mako Koiwai
Correct. I thought under hard braking the bushings resets itself. :-)

Re: Control Arm Bushing Material

Posted: Wed Aug 03, 2011 6:02 am
by Steve Towers
I'm only guessing here...
ts probably not an issue of not being able to replace the bushings, but rather, GM does not sell rubber bushings alone, only the entire control arm, and aftermarket bushings that are available, are not rubber (aka OE type and material).
Does this more or less sum up the problem Steve?


No, the stock bushings are not replaceable with stock bushings, even if there was a standalone part number. That in a nutshell is the whole issue.

Re: Control Arm Bushing Material

Posted: Wed Aug 03, 2011 9:44 am
by Jason Isley BS RX8
I think you have zero chance of getting an allowance for a bushing change in stock. This is not a new problem, this same issue plagued the C4, but it gets worse because you can no longer buy the A-arms from GM. We were getting them from bone yards the last few years we ran our car (pre 2005). The SS C5 Z06 has lived with this issue for a decade. It is the manufacturers problem, not the Clubs. The Corvettes in T1 are having an issue with this now as well, GM spec'd a special control arm with different bushing for the C5 T1 kit, and they are out of stock - even the T1 part is disposable in Club Racing. GM needs to learn how to make bushings that last, or a better option for replacement.

Wait long enough and someone will make them... All the restoration places offer a replacement part for the C1/2/3. :unimpressed:

Re: Control Arm Bushing Material

Posted: Wed Aug 03, 2011 10:19 pm
by John Stimson
The SEB won't make a rule that only affects one model, so any rule would apply to every car in the Stock category. For most of the cars in the category, it's not a cost savings, because their bushings don't die annually. For them, it is a $500-1000 extra preparation cost up front. No thanks, I say.

Re: Control Arm Bushing Material

Posted: Thu Aug 04, 2011 7:01 am
by Robert Puertas
Ouch.

Time to buy a more cost effective stock class car...
like a Lotus or Porsche.
:roll:

Re: Control Arm Bushing Material

Posted: Sat Feb 18, 2012 12:34 pm
by Steve Lepper
Here's a variation on the question:

I have a particular car that needs new control arm bushings, but both the bushings and the complete control arm assembly are now officially NLA from the manufacturer.

Are we completely screwed?

Re: Control Arm Bushing Material

Posted: Sat Feb 18, 2012 12:54 pm
by Mako Koiwai
Hard to believe ... how can GM not supply replacement front A arms for a car that is only 10 years old?

T1 front arms or go straight to Spherical bearings ... our Poly Bushings squeak like crazy, even freshly installed and lubed, ie. Join us in CST or CSM.

From a fellow AX'er, vis a vis Poly Bushings:

I have coilovers. My evidence is real. After 8-12 months of no maintenance, I decided to grease them. After this horrible job, the car felt so smooth going down the freeway, you would have thought I changed the spring rate #200. No kidding. I let it go awhile again. The stiff ride came back. I decided after doing this procedure a few times, to go with spherical bearings. My suspension was working so good now, I had to change the spring rate and have my shocks re-valved. One more thing to mention. I couldn't even come close to corner balancing my car with poly's. I would get different readings every time I went on the scales without any changes. It's just the facts. I had VB&P poly bushings. I tell people to go with T1 front control arms and stock rear ones. You can't get T1 rears. I think that setup is better then poly's. Spherical are expensive and wear out, but they have almost no stiction.


http://forums.corvetteforum.com/autocro ... -arms.html

http://forums.corvetteforum.com/autocro ... eview.html

Re: Control Arm Bushing Material

Posted: Sat Feb 18, 2012 1:14 pm
by John Stimson
Steve, it sounds like time to widen your search to the used parts market. If that doesn't work out, then yeah, totally screwed if you want to run Stock. Street Prepared is an option, or a custom reproduction of the stock part with as much documentation as you can gather to show that the resulting part is equivalent to the original. I think I'd go with Street Prepared, given those options.

Re: Control Arm Bushing Material

Posted: Sat Feb 18, 2012 3:04 pm
by Steve Lepper
John, that's what i figured. Used parts are hen's teeth for this car since it was a rare bird to begin with.

Remembering this Corvette story prompted me to ask in case anyone had come up with a work-around.

I really want to build a Prepared car, but it's not my $$$ being spent here.