just finished my DIY upper control arms from opentracker!

enferno

Member
Jun 20, 2006
418
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16
this week i started and finished my upper control arms from opentracker. i bought the DIY roller kit from him, and here are some pics of the processes i went through.

i had some low-mile upper control arms from the shop from a car that wanted new ones. i removed the shaft, ball joint, and sandblasted them to bare metal.

i went to lowes and bought some 1-1/4" washers with 1/4" hole, and a 2" holesaw.

the washers i welded onto the control arm to serve as pilot holes for my holesaw:

View attachment 298331

i then used the hole saw and cut out all of the holes on both arms. i found that using wd-40 helped cut it a little easier, plus it protects from burning out the hole saw:

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i used a round file to clean up the edges. i then placed the shaft, journals, and bearings as a test fit:

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i forgot my camera when i took them to the shop for welding, but here are the finished pics of it primered and painted:

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i put a pretty thick weld on both the inner and outer sides of the journal. it was a little tough to find an equilibrium of speed for the weld to prevent severe warping/melting on the inside of the journal. i had to use a die grinder with a sanding wheel attachment to clean out the inside on the journals to get the bearings to fit smoothly, but it didn't take much. i put a thin film of bearing grease on the outside surface of each bearing, plus the inside hole and the edge to prevent siezing/rust in the future. i put one side in first, then slid the shaft in, then put the remaining bearings in. tightened the two nuts down, and voila! DIY upper control arms from opentracker!
 
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jlangholzj

Mustang Master
Oct 23, 2006
248
30
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CLT
:nice:

i don't think you'll have to worry about those welds..... :D


nice job, and its always fun when you do stuff like this isn't it?
 

enferno

Member
Jun 20, 2006
418
2
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quite so! plus i saved a little bit of cash . . . every penny counts when i'm a starving college kid ;)
 

Hack

15 Year Member
Mar 23, 2004
1,945
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Minneapolis
Very nice job! The write up is really nice to see and your work looks good. I don't think you should have any reservations about the weld strength for when you go out and drive the car.

I have one question though. How did you make sure that the two ends (the steel tubing that the bearings fit into) were aligned properly during welding? Did you clamp them to a straight bar or something?
 

enferno

Member
Jun 20, 2006
418
2
16
Very nice job! The write up is really nice to see and your work looks good. I don't think you should have any reservations about the weld strength for when you go out and drive the car.

I have one question though. How did you make sure that the two ends (the steel tubing that the bearings fit into) were aligned properly during welding? Did you clamp them to a straight bar or something?

i put the journals and bearings on the shaft then tightened the nuts down all the way, then slid the whole thing in the control arm. i just eyeballed it and made sure it was centered horizontally and then put a couple small tack welds on each side. took the nuts off, the bearings and the shaft and then welded the journals in all the way. i let it cool, then smoothed out the inside with a sanding wheel on a die grinder until the bearings fit in smoothly more or less.

i figure that if i got it as close as i could by eye, the alignment will account for any minor differences.
 

Hack

15 Year Member
Mar 23, 2004
1,945
12
69
Minneapolis
i put the journals and bearings on the shaft then tightened the nuts down all the way, then slid the whole thing in the control arm. i just eyeballed it and made sure it was centered horizontally and then put a couple small tack welds on each side. took the nuts off, the bearings and the shaft and then welded the journals in all the way. i let it cool, then smoothed out the inside with a sanding wheel on a die grinder until the bearings fit in smoothly more or less.

i figure that if i got it as close as i could by eye, the alignment will account for any minor differences.
That makes sense to me. I have been thinking about doing the Opentracker UCA mod, and it seems like a couple tacks would not damage the bearings.
 

enferno

Member
Jun 20, 2006
418
2
16
That makes sense to me. I have been thinking about doing the Opentracker UCA mod, and it seems like a couple tacks would not damage the bearings.
definitely. it didn't get hot at all after the tacking
 

70vert

New Member
Dec 31, 2004
722
0
0
Bay Area, CA
Nice attention to detail

Very nice work. You want to come to the Bay Area and weld my Pro-Motorsports Shock Tower Reinforcement Kit in when I put the engine in? :D

That's great, clean work there. You have excellent attention to detail! :nice:
 

65ShelbyClone

Founding Member
Sep 9, 2000
4,601
22
109
Antelope Valley, SoCal
I'm going to have to do this mod(and roller perches) when I'm ready to install the Granada discs. Might even cut a wedge out of the arm for a built-in negative wedge effect and I might go so far as to box in the whole arm. :crazy:

Nice writeup and photos. :nice:
 

enferno

Member
Jun 20, 2006
418
2
16
i'm working on LCA and spring perches now . . i'll have separate threads for those.


thanks for the comments!
 

enferno

Member
Jun 20, 2006
418
2
16
update: just getting ready to bolt them in my car today, and the bolts for the shaft don't line up with the factory holes.

http://i4.photobucket.com/albums/y136/enferno/DSC04791.jpg

i'm thinking perhaps i was sent the kit for a 67+ mustang? are the bolts further apart on 67 and up versus 65/66? i sent john an email asking him, but things are busy over there so i'm not expecting a reply anytime soon . . .
 

latamud

Founding Member
Oct 22, 2002
791
2
19
Tampa, FL
www.hubgarage.com
update: just getting ready to bolt them in my car today, and the bolts for the shaft don't line up with the factory holes.

http://i4.photobucket.com/albums/y136/enferno/DSC04791.jpg

i'm thinking perhaps i was sent the kit for a 67+ mustang? are the bolts further apart on 67 and up versus 65/66? i sent john an email asking him, but things are busy over there so i'm not expecting a reply anytime soon . . .
I'll call hm.
 

enferno

Member
Jun 20, 2006
418
2
16
yeah sorry for the delayed update. he and i talked and he sent on accident the '67 shaft. he's putting the order in monday and i'm sending him back these.

all is well!

thanks!