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Suspension Power Flex bushings and new control arms.

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Suspension Power Flex bushings and new control arms.

  #1  
Old 01-26-2018, 09:44 PM
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Power Flex bushings and new control arms.

/articles/how-to-replace-the-front-control-arm-bushing-without-removing-the-subframe.59/

Google the above

I did this tonight but didnít have access to the write up as the server was down. I neglected to loosen the steering rack bolts but the subframe dropped enough for clearance anyway. I opted to replace the control arms complete with ball joints from Dorman on Amazon for $40 each. Got the pre pressed PowerFlex bushings from Way Motors https://www.waymotorworks.com/powerf...shing-kit.html. and all told form jack up to jack down 3.5 hours
 
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  #2  
Old 01-27-2018, 10:13 AM
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nice! it's always good to hear of a bit simpler and easier way to do something. nice work.
 
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Old 01-27-2018, 10:53 AM
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It was cheaper to get the complete control arm vs just the ball joint too.
 
  #4  
Old 01-27-2018, 01:31 PM
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Thanks for the link, that's a great DIY. The Powerflex control arm bushings are on my to-do list but I wasn't looking forward to the job. Looks like it's not too bad.
 
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Old 01-27-2018, 06:06 PM
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Originally Posted by squawSkiBum View Post
Thanks for the link, that's a great DIY. The Powerflex control arm bushings are on my to-do list but I wasn't looking forward to the job. Looks like it's not too bad.
Highly recommend the pre pressed ones from Way. $100 core charge but $80 back on return. So $20 for the pressing is a great deal. I wasnít looking forward to it either but went surprisingly well.
 
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Old 02-03-2018, 07:43 AM
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So just curious, how much more shock is transmitted to the cabin with the stiffer bushings ?
 
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Old 02-03-2018, 09:39 AM
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No shock is transmitted. The suspension feels nice and firm now and more responsive.
 
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Old 02-03-2018, 04:30 PM
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Excellent, thanks I've close to doing it but needed someone to say it wouldn't be too harsh. I guess I'll do all of them while I'm at it.
 
  #9  
Old 02-06-2018, 10:58 PM
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Any special tools needed? In the article it looks like a flex head ratchet to get the control arm bracket out. The Bentley manual says those bolts are torqued to 122 ft.-lb. Must have been tough to get out!
 
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Old 02-07-2018, 05:49 AM
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I just used 18mm box wrench with a cheater bar at first. Itís slow at first till they get loose enough. Was able to get socket on two of them. Good luck.
 
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Old 02-15-2018, 09:01 AM
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That's a nice tip to replace the LCA at the same time. That way you aren't under the gun getting the old arm out of the old bushing.

I used the powerflex on my old car and thought it was a nice upgrade. No downside to it, just a little better 'feel' and response in the steering.

Have fun,
Mike
 
  #12  
Old 02-24-2018, 10:41 PM
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I spent about 8 hours total between last night and today replacing the LCA bushings and the front swaybar bushings. What a total pain.

The instructions linked in the first post are incomplete, at least for the R56 LCI. The instructions say to remove the bolts holding down the steering rack - 2 bolts, one on each side. Torx E-14 socket required. OK I did that - but when I got the subframe lowered the rack came with it, there's a 3rd bolt in the center on the back side of the steering rack that there's just no way to get to without dropping the subframe completely. In order to get the subframe down far enough I had to disconnect the steering from the rack inside the car (in front of the pedals), remove the V-band clamp to lower the exhaust, and also disconnect the subframe from the front bumper. All told it was about 90% of the work to just drop the entire subframe, which I would have done if I had a ball joint tool handy.

The bolts that hold the brackets are torqued down hard - I managed to get the subframe down far enough that I could use a 24" breaker bar to get them started, then use a puller tool as in the instructions to get the bushings/bracket off the LCA. I replaced the bushings with the pre-pressed Powerflex bushings from Way, and also replaced the swaybar bushings with Powerflex so I shouldn't have to do that job ever again. I was really happy when I finally got both of the old bushings off and could flip the lever on the socket wrench to go from loosen to tighten.

Still have to replace the front pads and rotors then I'll get it all back together and go for a test drive.
 
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Old 06-13-2018, 09:19 PM
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Following this thread closely.

Can the lca be removed without lowering the subframe? Whatís the risk of damaging the inner control arm busing?

Any one one tried the sawzal method?



 
  #14  
Old 06-13-2018, 09:22 PM
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Or even this method with the torch ...


the shop Iím going to isnít familiar with Mini however they can do either method.

Seems pretty quick and easy.
 
  #15  
Old 10-07-2018, 06:11 AM
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Dorman control arms with ball joints?

Originally Posted by EdsNotHere View Post
/articles/how-to-replace-the-front-control-arm-bushing-without-removing-the-subframe.59/

Google the above

I did this tonight but didnít have access to the write up as the server was down. I neglected to loosen the steering rack bolts but the subframe dropped enough for clearance anyway. I opted to replace the control arms complete with ball joints from Dorman on Amazon for $40 each. Got the pre pressed PowerFlex bushings from Way Motors https://www.waymotorworks.com/powerf...shing-kit.html. and all told form jack up to jack down 3.5 hours
could you post a link for the Dorman control arms? Only ones I saw appear sans ball joints. Thanks!
 
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Old 10-07-2018, 10:46 AM
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They were on amazon
 
  #17  
Old 03-04-2019, 04:02 AM
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Originally Posted by squawSkiBum View Post
I spent about 8 hours total between last night and today replacing the LCA bushings and the front swaybar bushings. What a total pain.

The instructions linked in the first post are incomplete, at least for the R56 LCI. The instructions say to remove the bolts holding down the steering rack - 2 bolts, one on each side. Torx E-14 socket required. OK I did that - but when I got the subframe lowered the rack came with it, there's a 3rd bolt in the center on the back side of the steering rack that there's just no way to get to without dropping the subframe completely. In order to get the subframe down far enough I had to disconnect the steering from the rack inside the car (in front of the pedals), remove the V-band clamp to lower the exhaust, and also disconnect the subframe from the front bumper. All told it was about 90% of the work to just drop the entire subframe, which I would have done if I had a ball joint tool handy.

The bolts that hold the brackets are torqued down hard - I managed to get the subframe down far enough that I could use a 24" breaker bar to get them started, then use a puller tool as in the instructions to get the bushings/bracket off the LCA. I replaced the bushings with the pre-pressed Powerflex bushings from Way, and also replaced the swaybar bushings with Powerflex so I shouldn't have to do that job ever again. I was really happy when I finally got both of the old bushings off and could flip the lever on the socket wrench to go from loosen to tighten.

Still have to replace the front pads and rotors then I'll get it all back together and go for a test drive.
Resurrecting this to add, the third torx bolt can be accessed by removing the air box. To echo squawSkiBum , just drop the subframe. Additionally, an impact gun, cordless ratchet and 1/2 inch flex head ratchet made this relatively quick, a little over 6 hours on Saturday. I found the 4" or 100mm three jaw puller to be the perfect size for removing the FCAB carrier from the FCA. The carrier bolts are torqued to 122 ft-lbs and when you have the subframe lowered you have very little room to get leverage on them. As you can probably guess, this makes getting them torqued to the correct spec kind of iffy. I would say the majority of my time was spent dealing with the carrier bolts. Hit them from above and below with penetrating oil the night before. If I had to do it again, I'd just drop the subframe.

 
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Old 03-04-2019, 05:37 AM
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I recently did this, and have a couple more comments:

1. I was able to reach the 3rd rack bolt by reaching in from the passenger side.
2. I had to drop the exhaust. The tough part is the V-band clamp, the rest is easy (a shot of WD or spray grease makes the rubber come off much easier). Its so much easier to work on with the exhaust off.
3. I just pivoted the subframe down, didn't remove it. I forgot to remove the 2 fasteners from the fender liner just in front of the axle, so those holes got slotted.
4. By removing the subframe I didn't need to mess with the ball joints or anything like that. Still not a fast or easy job, but not too bad.
5. I used pre-pressed bushings, so I didn't have to hammer or press anything out. WMW and Detroit Tuned offer this.

Have fun,
Mike
 
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Old 03-04-2019, 06:51 AM
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Originally Posted by mbwicz View Post
I recently did this, and have a couple more comments:

1. I was able to reach the 3rd rack bolt by reaching in from the passenger side.
2. I had to drop the exhaust. The tough part is the V-band clamp, the rest is easy (a shot of WD or spray grease makes the rubber come off much easier). Its so much easier to work on with the exhaust off.
3. I just pivoted the subframe down, didn't remove it. I forgot to remove the 2 fasteners from the fender liner just in front of the axle, so those holes got slotted.
4. By removing the subframe I didn't need to mess with the ball joints or anything like that. Still not a fast or easy job, but not too bad.
5. I used pre-pressed bushings, so I didn't have to hammer or press anything out. WMW and Detroit Tuned offer this.

Have fun,
Mike

I should have completely removed the exhaust. I undid the v-band, but I should have removed it from the hangers. That probably would have given just a couple more inches that I could have really used.

Good call on the prepressed bushings, their importance cannot be understated. That made it so much easier.
 
  #20  
Old 03-04-2019, 10:52 AM
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Originally Posted by mbwicz View Post
I recently did this, and have a couple more comments:

1. I was able to reach the 3rd rack bolt by reaching in from the passenger side.
2. I had to drop the exhaust. The tough part is the V-band clamp, the rest is easy (a shot of WD or spray grease makes the rubber come off much easier). Its so much easier to work on with the exhaust off.
3. I just pivoted the subframe down, didn't remove it. I forgot to remove the 2 fasteners from the fender liner just in front of the axle, so those holes got slotted.
4. By removing the subframe I didn't need to mess with the ball joints or anything like that. Still not a fast or easy job, but not too bad.
5. I used pre-pressed bushings, so I didn't have to hammer or press anything out. WMW and Detroit Tuned offer this.

Have fun,
Mike
Press Pressed is the way to go! https://www.detroittuned.com/powerfl...ushings-gen-2/
 
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Old 03-04-2019, 01:01 PM
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At what mileage are you guys seeing these bushings go out?
 
  #22  
Old 03-04-2019, 02:00 PM
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I'm at 95K. The bushings hadn't failed yet, but it seemed like a good time to do it. The car had been a little unsettled up front under heavy braking, so I took that as a clue.
 
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Old 03-04-2019, 05:56 PM
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Originally Posted by Kcyotz View Post
At what mileage are you guys seeing these bushings go out?
R53s go through the stock bushings every 40k
https://www.waymotorworks.com/powerf...shing-kit.html
R56s seem to last longer and are harder to tell, but usually you will see a black trace on them as they loose the oil in them as the first tell of them being bad. But after you replace them you'll notice how much better the feel is. So our general rule is if it's over 50k and we have the subframe out we just go ahead and do them and customers always report back how much better the feel is.
https://www.waymotorworks.com/powerf...7-r58-r59.html
 
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Old 03-22-2019, 10:58 PM
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Originally Posted by scotty_r56s View Post
I'm at 95K. The bushings hadn't failed yet, but it seemed like a good time to do it. The car had been a little unsettled up front under heavy braking, so I took that as a clue.
Scotty,

after installing the bush do u have any squeaking noise.

I have my black version of powerflex installed but experience squeaking noise.

But the car handling is firmed and great, therefore the squeaking sound can be ignore.

 
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Old 03-23-2019, 09:43 AM
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I just completed this job last night but kinda went about it a different route. I removed the control arms first by prying them out from the OEM bushings using a pickle fork. With the control arms removed, it was easy access to cut out the old bushings using a sawsall. After that I went ahead and lowered the subframe to install the new Delphi control arms, complete with ball joints. I too noticed that the steering rack didn't separate from the subframe but I had more than enough room to install the new control arms at that point. Used the homemade bushing press tool to install the Powerflex purple bushings. Went in fairly easy after lubricating them with dish liquid.
 
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