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Old 08-03-2014, 10:30 AM
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Tie rod ends. L & R, or not?

Here is a puzzle. Falcon Parts uses one tie rod end for both the left and right side. Mac's auto parts sells two different tie rod ends, one for the left and one for the right. Which do you think is correct?

Falcon Parts:
Tie rods outer (2) 1963-1964 V-8 MANUAL STEERING OUTER TIE ROD ENDS SKU: C3DZ-3A130-G This part serves as the left hand or right hand outer tie rod end for all models of the 1963 & 1964 Ford Falcon & Mercury Comet equipped with a V-8 engine & manual steering. It is also used as the right hand outer tie rod end on all models of the 1963 & 1964 Ford Falcon & Mercury Comet equipped with a V-8 engine & power steering. The adjusting threads on this tie rod end are RIGHT Hand. Falcon Parts $87.95 x 2 = $175.90.
See: http://www.falconparts.com/ford-falc...DS-197p533.htm

Macs:
Outer Tie Rods - Manual Steering
Macs 1963 V8 Right, Falcon 41-35548-2 $94.95
1963 V8 Left, Falcon 41-35550-2 $116.95

See: http://www.macsautoparts.com/ford_fa...e+rod&x=16&y=8
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'63 Futura Hardtop (260, Ford-O-Matic, bench seat)
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Old 08-03-2014, 11:13 PM
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Luva65wagon Luva65wagon is offline
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I know in 1965 the two inner are the same and the two outer are the same - if you have manual steering, but I'm not so sure earlier models. I installed '65 manual parts on my '63. The '64 parts are one-off and may carry back into '63 cars too. They did weird stuff those years. If they look identical (thread size and rotation, length, bends) then they likely are the same. Power steering car, not so.
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Old 08-05-2014, 01:30 PM
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I have been very impressed with the falconparts guys when I have a question. They are still owned by the guys who started the company because they loved falcons. Each time, I get the feeling they know the answer, and each time I found what they said to be correct-as far as I could tell. It seems like with the MAC's people, sometimes they're reading the answer from the same catalog you are. If you have any question about it, I would email the falconparts.com guy directly- I have always gotten an answer quickly.
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Old 08-05-2014, 04:18 PM
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Rebuilding the Front End

Hello, Roger and Don.

Thanks for the input. I believe that Falcon Parts is correct and that the left and right outer tie rod ends are the same based on the following picture. I bought a CD called "1960-1968 Ford Car, Part Diagrams and Exploded Views" and found a page labeled "1963/64 Manual Steering Linkage (Falcon 8 Cylinder)". The diagram labels the outer tie rod ends as "3289" and the inner tie rod ends as "3290". That indicates to me that there is no left or right, just two each of inner and outer.
1960 - 1968 Ford Car Parts Diagram.jpg

My front tires are wearing on the inside edge and it turns out that my ball joints are worn out. That's no surprise. The whole front end is worn out. Rather than just change the ball joints, I am looking at re-doing everything on the front. Here is the parts list that I have.

Have I missed anything?
Should I change the front coil springs "while I am at it"? The existing coil springs seem alright.

1. Upper control arms with ball joints and bushings (2)
2. Lower control arms with ball joints and bushings (2)
3. Sway bar mount bushings (2)
4. Sway bar link kit (1)
5. Strut rod bushings (2)
6. Coil springs (2)
7. Coil spring perch (2)
8. Front suspension bumper (2)
9. Engine mounts (2)
10. Idler arm
11. Pitman arm
12. Tie rod ends inner (2)
13. Tie rod ends outer (2)
14. Tie rod sleeve (2)
15. Top coil spring insulator (2)
16. Shocks, front and rear

Here are some photos of the existing parts. I stuck my head under the car last night while it was in the garage and tried to identify the parts that I was reading about. I've never had time to pay attention to the front end until now and it is all really interesting to read about what each part does and how they all fit together.

Here is the idler arm. The long rod in the background is the center link. Wikipedia says: "The idler arm supports the end of the center link on the passengers side of the vehicle. The idler arm bolts to the vehicle's frame or subframe. Generally, an idler arm is attached between the opposite side of the center link from the Pitman arm and the vehicle's frame to hold the center link at the proper height. Idler arms are generally more vulnerable to wear than Pitman arms because of the pivot function built into them. If the idler arm is fitted with grease fittings, these should be lubricated with a grease gun at each oil change."
2 Idler arm right side to center link.jpg

Pitman arm to center link. The tie rod adjusting sleeve is in the center background. "The Pitman arm is a linkage attached to the steering box (see recirculating ball) sector shaft, that converts the angular motion of the sector shaft into the linear motion needed to steer the wheels." ** "1963 Falcon V-8 vehicles used 1 1/8 inch sectors shafts, six cylinder cars used a one-inch shaft."
Pitman arm to center link.jpg

This shows the strut rod connection to the lower control arm. The bolt sticking up is the sway bar link. A ball joint is on the right.
Strut rod to lower control arm 5.jpg

Upper control arm. The coil spring sits on a "perch" positioned on top of the upper control arm. The ball joint is on the right in the photo and the pivot bolt is on the left.
Upper Control Arm.jpg
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'63 Futura Hardtop (260, Ford-O-Matic, bench seat)

Last edited by ew1usnr; 08-05-2014 at 04:31 PM.
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Old 08-05-2014, 07:39 PM
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If your coil spring perches are the original bronze bushing type I'd re use those or go with the opentracker roller perches.

The replacement bushing type in my personal opinion don't rotate as well as the bronze bushing type do and puts the suspension in a bind. Plus they have a tendency to squeak.

opentracker is expensive at $119 a pair.. and a little overkill for a street car, but are a good alternative.

Finding NOS bronze bushing type perches is difficult at best. So unless yours are real sloppy lots of play in the cross shaft the rides on the bushings I say clean them up and reuse them.

Just my opinion though.
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Old 08-05-2014, 08:48 PM
dhbfaster dhbfaster is offline
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Dennis,
You'll be amazed at what that stuff will look like powdercoated. It's not that expensive either. I'm a rookie at this stuff, but I'm figuring it out step by step. I have all the front suspension stuff powder coated (except I replaced the control arms in one piece.) The stuff is so beautiful I'm going to hate to put the fender back over it after I get it put back together! I just made the decision to do it all from the ground up. (By the way...those ball joints were horrible...old hardened grease...and the shocks were totally spent. Whatever was in them was long gone...) Now I'm focused on the rear axle...almost done. Some pics below- you can see what a beauty it is now. You can imagine what it looked like before, and it was rancid inside. Of course, it could all fall apart when I get going if I screwed it up...but I don't think so. Before it was very sloppy. Huge play at the yoke, and one axle shaft wobbled. I replaced all the bearings, but kept the origional yoke and pinion based on members recomendations, I carefully put everything together by the book, youtube videos, and recomendations from others (carefully setting all torque...) Low and behold...that big slop is gone, and everything seems to work great...(on the bench anyway...) unfortunately I probably won't find out until late next spring, but I'm already getting pretty excited.
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  #7  
Old 08-06-2014, 07:46 PM
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Perches

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nathan289 View Post
If your coil spring perches are the original bronze bushing type I'd re use those or go with the opentracker roller perches.

The replacement bushing type in my personal opinion don't rotate as well as the bronze bushing type do and puts the suspension in a bind. Plus they have a tendency to squeak.

opentracker is expensive at $119 a pair.. and a little overkill for a street car, but are a good alternative.
Hello, Nathan.

Youch! The opentracker roller perches are $199 a pair. See: http://www.opentrackerracingproducts.com/rollerperch/
roller bearing spring perches.jpg

And there is a double roller perch for $300, see: http://www.mustangsplus.com/xcart/19...r-Bearing.html
The price for a TRIPLE roller perch must really be up there.

Then there are the cheapie rubber bushing pieces that cost $39 a pair on ebay.
ebay spring perches .94.jpg

You are correct that the original pieces rotated on a metal shaft and bushings shaft (see diagram below). That indicates that the piece was intended to rotate freely. Whether my car still has the original piece or not has yet to be discovered.
60 - 65 Suspension.jpg

But .... I read that the rubber-bushings have advantages over the metal bushings or roller bearings in that the rubber bushings insulate the car from road noise, they cannot be damaged by a sudden shock as can bearings, and they do not require lubrication as do the bearings.

The roller bearings do rotate more freely, and I am trying to understand how that lessens "bind" in the suspension and what effect that would have on handling. The bottom of the shock absorber bolts (I think) to the spring perch and if the perch does not rotate freely its angle will change as the control arm moves up and down. This would put a small amount of twist on both the coil spring and the shock absorber. I guess that the twist would work against keeping the tires square on the road and would make the car feel less stable.

Does that reasoning sound correct? Could you really feel a difference in your car's handling after installing roller bearing spring perches?

Note to Don.

All you powder coating looks really nice. I'm looking forward to your getting your car back on the road and you posting pictures of the trips that you will take it on.
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'63 Futura Hardtop (260, Ford-O-Matic, bench seat)

Last edited by ew1usnr; 08-06-2014 at 08:04 PM.
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  #8  
Old 08-08-2014, 03:06 PM
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ew1usnr ew1usnr is offline
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Sway Bar and Strut Rod

I've been studying the pictures of front suspension parts and its is becoming more clear (I think) about what they do and how they do it.

The sway bar is held to the frame rails by two bushings and the sway bar ends are held to the lower control arms with link rods.

Sway bar bushings on frame:
sway bar bushing.jpg

Sway bar link connection to lower control arm:
sway bar link.jpg

If the front wheels are traveling up and down in tandem, as when driving straight over an undulating surface, the sway bar rotates in its bushings and provides no resistance and does not interfere with the action of the coil springs. This provides the car with a soft ride. When the car leans during a turn, the lower control arms move in opposite directions relative to the frame and cause the sway bar to twist and act as a torsion spring. The torsion spring tension is proportional and opposite to the degree of body roll and provides additional support to the coil springs. If the frame rail bushings and/or the control arm links are worn and do not hold the sway bar and the sway bar ends firmly in place, the sway bar will move up and down instead of being twisted and it would not provide any torsion spring function. The sway bar would not do anything. (Mine probably is not doing anything. I need to change the link connections and frame bushings.)

The lower control arm is designed to swing up and down around a single pivot point. The strut rod prevents the lower control arm from moving forward and backward and becoming bent. The lower end of the strut rod is bolted to the top of the lower control arm.

Strut rod connection to lower control arm:
Strut rod to lower control arm 5.jpg

The upper end is sandwiched between rubber strut rod bushings and is bolted to the front cross piece of the car’s frame.

Strut rod bushings:
Strut rod bushings.jpg

As the control arm moves up and down the upper end of the strut rod pivots within the springiness of the rubber bushings. If the rubber strut rod bushings become old and hard and worn, the fit of the upper strut rod end will be looser. That will allow more forward and backward motion on the control lower control arm. The lower control arm would move a little bit fore and aft in an arc and cause a changing alignment of the front wheels which would result in less precise handling and steering. (I need to change my old hard strut rod bushings.)
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Last edited by ew1usnr; 08-08-2014 at 03:11 PM.
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  #9  
Old 08-08-2014, 11:23 PM
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Luva65wagon Luva65wagon is offline
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Dennis, I just added Urethane bushed spring perches to the Ranchero and so-far so good. They come with a grease fitting, just like yours has, which indicates you have the bush'd version and not the rubber version.

I also noted that the rubber spring pads on the perch on my only 3 year old parts (less than 1000 mile parts) had split allowing the spring metal to metal contact. I replaced them on my new urethane-bushed parts with the same material I made the hose hanger I sent you. I'm hoping that webbing strap holds up better than rubber.

The only other part you didn't mention is the drag-link. Whether you need all the parts you list will depend how good what you have is. Good luck!
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Old 08-09-2014, 04:07 AM
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Perch

Quote:
Originally Posted by Luva65wagon View Post
Dennis, I just added Urethane bushed spring perches to the Ranchero and so-far so good. They come with a grease fitting, just like yours has, which indicates you have the bush'd version and not the rubber version.

The only other part you didn't mention is the drag-link. Whether you need all the parts you list will depend how good what you have is. Good luck!
Hello, Roger.

Is there something to replace on the 1963 drag link (center link)? It looks like it is just a metal rod (see below) that the pitman arm, idler arm, and tie rod ends plug into. Do I need something else in addition to a new pitman arm, idler arm, and tie rod ends?

1963 Center Link (the black one).jpg

I am finding out about things that I didn't know existed. The picture I showed is for the basic cheapie rubber perch. I looked up "urethane spring perch" and they were listed for $199 per pair. Those seem nice in that they are evidently more flexible than rubber while also providing the same road noise insulation function. I also saw a "synthetic elastomer" perch for $104 per pair (see description below). Does the urethane offer an advantage over the "synthetic elastomer"?

"Part # C4DZ-3388-HP Now available from Scott Drake, these 1964.5-73 Mustang High Performance Coil Spring Perches offer a very affordable upgrade to stock spring perches with rubber bushings. These are made with synthetic elastomer bushings which are similar to polyurethane in performance and longevity, but will not squeak like polyurethane. The perch can rotate 360 degrees on the shaft, which allows the front suspension to articulate freely. This feature also eases the installation of the coil spring. Zerk grease fittings are installed and locking nuts are included."

See: http://www.mustangdepot.com/OnLineCa...ng-perches.htm
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Last edited by ew1usnr; 08-09-2014 at 04:10 AM.
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Old 08-09-2014, 07:16 PM
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Luva65wagon Luva65wagon is offline
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Dennis. My bad. It was the elastomer perches I used. Right at $50 each. Exactly as you described.

Didn't pay close enough attention I guess that you have that 1.5 year only version of the front end. Looking again it is evident. Most of those with that front end upgrade to the '65 front end parts (complete) because it's more readily available and less expensive because so. Ron at Falcon Parts has this nice page showing all the parts comparisons.

http://www.falconparts.com/ford-falc...ersion-d19.htm
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Old 08-10-2014, 03:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Luva65wagon View Post
Most of those with that front end upgrade to the '65 front end parts (complete) because it's more readily available and less expensive because so. Ron at Falcon Parts has this nice page showing all the parts comparisons.

http://www.falconparts.com/ford-falc...ersion-d19.htm
Hello, Roger.

I considered upgrading to the 1965 steering parts and noticed a few things. The first is that the numbers on that Falcon Parts chart do not add up (literally). It says that the 1963 -64 parts are $900+. But, the numbers in the column add up to $535.75, which is not much different than the $417.55 for the 1965 parts. The chart says that the 1963 1/2 pitman arm is not available, but it is. Not from Falcon Parts, but you can buy it as Mac's, or at regular parts stores. It is Rare Parts brand part number 20103 (RP20103). It is listed for a 1964 Falcon 4.3L and fits a 1 1/8" sector shaft (six cylinder cars had a one inch shaft). The part is expensive ($260 at Macs), but it is readily available. See: http://shop.advanceautoparts.com/p/r...erm=pitman+arm
The chart says that the 1963 center link is unavailable, but that would not typically need to be replaced. You replace the parts that plug into it, but not the center link itself.

I read the article "Upgrade Your Steering" (from 1963 1/2 to 1965). See: http://www.cometeastcarclub.org/PDFs...ingUpgrade.pdf
It sounded good until Page 4 Note 1, where he says that you will need to change to a six cylinder steering box. Note 2 says that you have will also need to change to a shorter steering shaft and that also means a shorter steering column and shift tube.

What??!!

Then he went on to say that to install it he had to remove the shift linkage, an exhaust manifold, and a motor mount.

Uhhh ..... no. I will just keep the original configuration.

The point of the upgrade is to reduce "bump steer". If I am driving on a bumpy road and having a hard time holding onto the steering wheel, I could solve the problem by simply slowing down.
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Last edited by ew1usnr; 08-10-2014 at 04:10 AM.
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  #13  
Old 08-10-2014, 03:27 PM
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All very good observations. Having never done the swap I'd not gone that far into the pros and cons. Looks to me like you're heading the right direction.

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Old 08-26-2014, 07:53 PM
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Keep it stock and let it rock.

I've got all my new front end parts, including motor mounts, and will drop the car off after work tomorrow to have them installed:

3-DCP_5769.jpg

I decided to keep everything completely stock and not "improve" anything. I bought new coil springs because the car had a noticable lean towards the drivers side. Maybe a previous owner was a big ol' boy. The drivers side seat springs are broken down also. The new coil springs should set the car straight. They were described as fitting a "Falcon Futura Sprint; 8 Cyl 4.3L; Automatic Transmission, Car, Without Air Conditioner." Perfect.

I did pay extra and bought the easy turning "elastomer" swivel spring mounts. That is not much of a change because they will perform essentially the same as the original brass bushing swivel mounts, but with possibly a little less road noise.

I had initially bought a set of the base $33 cast-in-rubber spring mounts but decided not to use them. The rubber was so hard that I couldn't budge the pivot shaft. That didn't seem very good.
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Last edited by ew1usnr; 08-26-2014 at 08:18 PM.
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Old 08-27-2014, 12:20 PM
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Luva65wagon Luva65wagon is offline
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Christmas in August!



I thought you were going to do the work yourself and then have it aligned afterward, but either way should be nice driving it with a new front end. Are they going to inspect the steering box 'while they'er at it' (WTAI as opposed to WIAI).

The hard-rubber spring perches don't move, which has always made getting the coil spring in a pain (for me, anyway). Going to the elastomer type made getting the spring in the Ranchero a breeze in comparison.

The only other thing you could have added, which I think you would have liked a lot, is a thicker front sway bar. Never thought I'd notice the difference, but having done my wagon (15 years ago) and recently with the Ranchero - a world of difference. Easy add later, but well worth the small investment.
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