Upper control arm removal.. HELP!!!

Suspension, Steering and Chassis

  1. Kent mosby

    Kent mosby FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

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    What is the best way to remove the upper control arm bolts. They will not budge at all. I can get the nuts loose but the bushing will not move. Penetrating oil for a day, no help. I bought the rebuild kit from DR Diff that has new upper control arms but I cannot remove the old ones. Any Help Appreciated. Thanks
     
  2. Demonic

    Demonic Well-Known Member

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    They're frozen in the inner sleeves, sounds like. Not unusual. It's a tight spot, tricky to work in. Give a good penetrating oil a few more days, repeated applications. If the rubber tears and the inner sleeve stays stuck to the bolt, you'll have to cut them out.
     
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    • 65 Dartman

      65 Dartman FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

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      I’ve had to cut more than one out over the years
       
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      • Projectile Dart

        Projectile Dart Well-Known Member

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        every car is different, but if you can remove pressure from them as much as possible, a hammer has always finished the job for me. The nail remover side of the hammer usually takes care of it all. good luck
         
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        • 12swinger

          12swinger Well-Known Member

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          Sometimes a air hammer breaks it loose, if you can get on it.
           
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          • 72bluNblu

            72bluNblu FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

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            Make sure that in addition to the nuts you remove the eccentric washers from the nut side as well. They have a flat cut in them that locate them on the bolt, so sometimes they can hang up and add some resistance to pulling the bolts out. Then on the bolt side get something under the washer to pry with. If you can pry at the same time you're trying to spin the head of the bolt back and forth that will help. If you can get a punch on the end of the bolt and give it a few smacks that will help too.

            You've already been using penetrating oil, but heat in the form of a propane torch can be really helpful. Be careful not to light all the penetrating oil on fire. If they're really stuck in there you will need heat, a hammer and a prybar.

            And had already been mentioned, sometimes they do need to be cut out. I managed to get them out in one piece on my Challenger, which was originally a Utah car that then went to Florida, it was a rusty mess.
             
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            • hemi71x

              hemi71x FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

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              Flame wrench.
              Borrow one, rent one, beg, borrow, steal one.
              That gets those rusted ones out.

              Torch.jpg
               
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              • Garethw

                Garethw Well-Known Member

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                I had to put a box end wrench on one side and hit that with a hammer.
                 
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                • Dana67Dart

                  Dana67Dart Like a fine wine, only getting better with age! FABO Gold Member

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                  You got the nuts off, Can you turn the bolt?
                  Is the suspension in the full droop position? if so I would put a jack under the LCA and jack it up a bit or remove the ball joint from the spindle so there is no pressure on the bolts.
                   
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                  • Kent mosby

                    Kent mosby FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

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                    The k frame, shock and lower are removed. I cannot turn the bolt.
                     
                  • moparmarks

                    moparmarks FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

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                    Yep if the bolts are rusted in there it's time for the O' hot wrench.
                     
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                    • Jim Lusk

                      Jim Lusk Well-Known Member

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                      If you can't turn the bolt with the nut and washer removed from the other end, you will likely need heat.
                       
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                      • Dana67Dart

                        Dana67Dart Like a fine wine, only getting better with age! FABO Gold Member

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                        I saw a youtube on using an air hammer and water to remove a rusted in bolt.
                         
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                        • RedFish

                          RedFish Well-Known Member

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                          I used a torch to cut the rusted bolts out. The rubber bushing caught fire, smoked and stank. A fan helped.
                           
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                          • 12swinger

                            12swinger Well-Known Member

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                            We use air hammers or cut em out with an air saw, sometimes a cut off wheel gets its started.
                            I’m not a fan of a torch, as a last resort.
                             
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                            • Kent mosby

                              Kent mosby FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

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                              Lots of grinding, and cutting with sawzall got the job done. No heat or penetrating oil worked. No blood spilled, so that is a plus. Now time to put it all back together. I ended up having to replace the entire front brake lines as well when rebuilding the front end. MC and distribution block went also as nothing would budge. The car is not rusted, just 47 years of gunked up.
                               
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                              • AndyF

                                AndyF Well-Known Member

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                                Yep, you just have to get physical with the old stuff. It has been together a long time and hasn't been maintained. I spent about a year on my Duster taking things apart, cleaning, scraping, power washing, wire brushing, etc. Day after day. Finally I got it clean enough to paint and then it started going back together. Now it looks great.
                                DSC_3570 (Large).JPG
                                 
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                                • Tooljunkie

                                  Tooljunkie King of cobble/master of the broken bolt FABO Gold Member

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                                  Done it hundreds of times. But if you have sprayed penetrating oil the water becomes less effective.
                                  Heat bolt and spray water on it. Heat will burn the penetrating oil off, water will break down the rust. The heat/ cool process expands/contracts the parts. Its slow but works almost every time. I cut off an air hammer bit and drilled a countersink in the end, so it will stay on the end of the bolt.
                                  I know stuff like this can be a bear, it will come out.

                                  i posted a couple videos about this, one was a stuck brake rotor, other was a manifold bolt. Control arm bolts arent that easy.

                                  also used a ball joint press to push bolts out.
                                   
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