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Old 03-26-2006, 08:23 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Best Bushings for Radius Arm Setup

I'm getting ready to do a radius arm setup on the front of my Cruiser. I know...a 3 or 4 link would probably work better....but they won't fit with the stock engine. Anyway, I am getting ready to start ordering parts. I will be running Johnny Joints from PIG on the frame end...but what bushings will work the best on the axle end??? I don't want to be replacing them every year if I can help it, and I'm pretty sure they will see a little more than the average stress due to the portals. Any suggestions and where to get them?? Thanks.
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Old 03-26-2006, 11:31 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Killerpee
I'm getting ready to do a radius arm setup on the front of my Cruiser. I know...a 3 or 4 link would probably work better....but they won't fit with the stock engine. Anyway, I am getting ready to start ordering parts. I will be running Johnny Joints from PIG on the frame end...but what bushings will work the best on the axle end??? I don't want to be replacing them every year if I can help it, and I'm pretty sure they will see a little more than the average stress due to the portals. Any suggestions and where to get them?? Thanks.
I would receomend any of our BA series bushing assemblies....

BA Series Bushings
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Old 03-26-2006, 11:50 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I've been running range rover radius arms with volvo portals. I have stock rover rubber bushings and they wear out pretty quick with lots of axle wrap as a result. If you want flex with radius arms you need soft bushings and soft bushings will get torn a part by portals.

I'm going get rid of the radius arm setup as soon as possible and geta a 4 link instead. Try to fit 5-link if you can't fit 4-link or 3-link.
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Old 03-27-2006, 07:10 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PIG
I would receomend any of our BA series bushing assemblies....

BA Series Bushings
Pig....everytime I go to your website you've got a ton more stuff. Are just the bushings available for your bushing assemblies or will I have to replace the whole assembly if the bushings wear out??
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Old 03-27-2006, 09:36 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Killerpee
Pig....everytime I go to your website you've got a ton more stuff.
I guess that means we are doing our job.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Killerpee
Are just the bushings available for your bushing assemblies or will I have to replace the whole assembly if the bushings wear out??
The bushings are only available in the kit but they are only 11.50 each.
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Old 03-27-2006, 03:46 PM   #6 (permalink)
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so anyone use poly bushings on the frame end? to stiff? im gonna be running factory ford style radius arms for a while, should i go the huge rod end path with my trackbar?
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Old 03-28-2006, 01:48 PM   #7 (permalink)
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JBT...I checked out the front raduius arm setup on a disco today and I believe that I can design my own to control wrap a little better than that...the is almost no seperation between the bushings at the axle end, and they are in the horizontal plane. I think putting the aligned vertically will redue up and down movement, and a little more vertical seperation at the axle end should help control the wrap. I would love to see some pics of yours though...I've always wanted to see your ride anyway.

Just for the sake of research...any other bushings that are being used with good results?? I'm leaning toward the poly perf ones..but would like to check some others.
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Old 03-28-2006, 01:57 PM   #8 (permalink)
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i've had problems with the bushing assemblies living on my radius arm. I even increased the vert sep at the axle and they're still not enjoying life. I'm about ready to give up on the whole radius arm bullshit myself. My shit is like 10x more beef than most I've seen and I still fuck it up. Oh and the 0.120" wall bushing sleeves definately aren't enough... i don't a pic of the first one i broke... but i ripped that shit in half.

i gotta change the 9/16" bolts every few runs (even grade 8's) cause they bend. I would step up to 5/8" bolt in some kind of joint... or run 3/4" bolts in those bushings with no sleeves. It's too late to step mine up to 3/4 holes I think... no straight shot to the lower mounting location with the bracket welded to the axle





old arm on top in the pic below




this silver arm is 1.75" x 3/8" wall dom and I bent that thing too :banghead:

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Old 03-28-2006, 03:54 PM   #9 (permalink)
 
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I have had good luck using the big TJ/XJ lower control arm rubber bushings.
Rocklogic should have cups for them, if not try midnight4x4.com
The bushings are pretty cheap, easy to find, hold up well and flex well.
Also, Tera-Flex makes a sort of rod end with them....
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Old 03-28-2006, 03:58 PM   #10 (permalink)
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I agree with rockteeth.... the OE Jeep bushings work well. I just built some arms using OE Jeep bushings at the axle end and Johnny Joints at the frame end. I got unmachined RE Superflex Joint shells from PP and pressed some OE bushings into them. A really tight fit because of the lip on the bushing, but a 20-ton press worked wonders
I will be installing them tomorrow and I can let you know how they work after this weekend.
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Old 03-28-2006, 05:23 PM   #11 (permalink)
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I had the same problem as danger ranger on my radius arm, so now I build all my links like this.
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Old 03-29-2006, 09:12 AM   #12 (permalink)
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BGreen....what bushings are you pressing in those arms, and what tubing are you using to press them into?? I really wanted to weld a stud on the bushing sleeves and make them pivot, but if several people are pulling them apart I guees I will have to be very picky which bushings and sleeves I use. I'm not sure If I'm as hard on things as Danger Ranger...but I tend to abuse some parts.
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Old 03-29-2006, 09:38 AM   #13 (permalink)
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probably heresy here, but i have the "johnny" flex joints at my frame end and have bushings on my axle. just a radius arm set up as well. it works quite well. not the flexiest thing in the world, but it works a little like an anti sway bar for me.
don't buy into the radius arm haters, if built right it works well.
prolly have less than $100 in material in both arms.
btw, i just have the regular red bushings from the crappy off road shop here in town. standar chevy 1.5" bushings. like $20 for a set of 4.
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Old 03-29-2006, 11:23 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Aaron..that is what I wanted to hear..some success stories. I actually have wheeled with tons of radius arm guys that work great. Got any pics of your setup?? Are you radius arm on both sides, or a single link on one? How are the bushings holding up?? Those are actually the same bushings I am leaning toward since they would be super easy to replace..unlike the press-in style.
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Old 03-29-2006, 12:07 PM   #15 (permalink)
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large yj leaf spring bushings are really easy to come by too If I was doing a radius arm from scratch I'd use these. They have an O.D. of 1.5"... so some 2"x0.25" tube works perfect and you won't tear that in half! I run them with 3/4 bolts and no sleeves... this how half the joints are on my rear 4-link (heims for the other end). Super cheap and easy to repair on the trail fix...

brook has it right too... build the arm out of SOMETHING square. There is just too much damn bending force for round tubing to handle. I built one for a friend completely out of a 2x6... should have just done the same for mine.

My shit "works" but I've just had to mess with it too much IMO.
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Old 03-29-2006, 01:35 PM   #16 (permalink)
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I have always used the BA200's from ORD. They are 2" .120 wall DOM tubing IIRC. But....

I found a new bushing assembly the other day (right after I built my new arms of course) from Rubicon Express. Hopefully Blackjack will chime in with more info. Way more heavy duty than the regular BA stuff most people sell.
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Old 03-29-2006, 01:46 PM   #17 (permalink)
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Are you considering going with a wristed radius arm?
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Old 03-29-2006, 02:07 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Danger Ranger, are you running both top links connected, no wristing? If so, I can almost guarantee you that if you removed one of the top links (passenger side maybe), you wouldn't kill bushings as much as you do. The thing about radius arms is they bind in order to flex. I have a buddy that originally went with a radius arm setup on his Tacoma using all heims and no matter what you did, it wouldn't flex. We then disconnected one of the top links and it flexed beautifully. The only problem with only using one top link on one side was that it wanted to wander when you hit the brakes but other than that, it worked I guess. Probably not well enough to be in a DD truck but might be different for your useage
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Old 03-29-2006, 02:58 PM   #19 (permalink)
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lots of good bushings here.
they also have chromo sleeves....and they carry uniballs,heims,etc.
The RAs I have seen that worked the best had huge poly or rubber bushings at the axle end, and uniballs or heims at the frame end.



http://www.kartek.com/products/all/fab/fab.htm
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Old 03-29-2006, 05:06 PM   #20 (permalink)
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Danger Ranger, are you running both top links connected, no wristing? If so, I can almost guarantee you that if you removed one of the top links (passenger side maybe), you wouldn't kill bushings as much as you do. The thing about radius arms is they bind in order to flex. I have a buddy that originally went with a radius arm setup on his Tacoma using all heims and no matter what you did, it wouldn't flex. We then disconnected one of the top links and it flexed beautifully. The only problem with only using one top link on one side was that it wanted to wander when you hit the brakes but other than that, it worked I guess. Probably not well enough to be in a DD truck but might be different for your useage
nah, that shit is wristed permanently here's an old old thread when i first did this stuff... obviously a few things have changed since then

https://www.pirate4x4.com/forum/showthread.php?t=107157
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Old 03-29-2006, 07:15 PM   #21 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bgreen
I have always used the BA200's from ORD. They are 2" .120 wall DOM tubing IIRC. But....

I found a new bushing assembly the other day (right after I built my new arms of course) from Rubicon Express. Hopefully Blackjack will chime in with more info. Way more heavy duty than the regular BA stuff most people sell.


The new super ride bushing from RE is showing some promise. Thick outer shell and hourglass bushing with heavy steel sleaves. These can be purchased as pictured (replacement for OE TJ bushings) or as a simple weld on with just one outer shell.
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Old 03-29-2006, 09:02 PM   #22 (permalink)
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Thats the stuff right there! From my initial inspection, every other bushing assembly I've seen on this board pales in comparison. Someone needs to build a link suspension with these things, and nothing else, then report back how they are holding up.
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Old 03-29-2006, 09:04 PM   #23 (permalink)
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Are you considering going with a wristed radius arm?
No...I'm not going wristed. As a matter of fact, I am planning to go with complete radius arms on both sides and not removing a link. My rig currently runs leaf springs in the front and I really don't have a lot of travel..and I'm ok with that. With the radius arm setup and some coilovers I figure I should be able to get another 4 or 5 inches of wheel travel, and I just want it to handle fairly predictably beyond that.

Danger Ranger...when you run those YJ bushing with no sleeve..do they deform faster?? It seems to be that the best way to keep the bushings in decent shape and not bend the bolts all the time would be to run a sleeve and just torque everything very tight. Opinions??
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Old 03-29-2006, 11:43 PM   #24 (permalink)
 
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Yea, the reason your link ends are tearing out is that the joint isn't soft enough. It also looks like you might not have a soft joint where the two parts of the link come together. If that is the case, the joint at the frame will be the only one twisting, instead of all 4 joints moving and squishing. I have a couple pictures of my junk in the "Y link tech" thread. I used junk yard XJ joints all around so they would be extra soft, and there all the same as when I got them, with about 40k miles, and maybe 20 wheelin trips.

Besides being soft, your application needs a joint that is more on the narrow and fat side, so it bends side to side without over extending it. If the rubber isn't under much stress then the metal around it is much less likely to stretch, because the force is very evenly spread out over a big area.
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Old 03-30-2006, 12:11 AM   #25 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Killerpee
It seems to be that the best way to keep the bushings in decent shape and not bend the bolts all the time would be to run a sleeve and just torque everything very tight. Opinions??
Shane - I am on two years of wheeling on my radius arm setup with TJ bushings and have had no issues with the bushings.

Come down and look at my junk if you need to.

Ed
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