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    Thread: Suspension - Control Arm Replacement [TOC]

    1. Member
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      06-28-2020 03:21 AM #251
      Quote Originally Posted by Phaetonlvr View Post
      The sway bar bushings are bonded to the sway bar so unfortunately you have to buy the whole thing. I think the sway bars are different between the V8 and W12 if I remember correctly.

      Btw, I'm in the middle of replacing the whole front suspension on my recently acquired 43k miles W12 and it's amazing how deteriorated the bushings are just from age. I think it didn't help that this one had custom 20" steel wheels from new which I have since replaced with OEM wheels.
      There used to be companies that could vulcanize stuff (like boot soles). I seem to remember there being vulcanizing services for the automotive hobby also.

      You would think somebody could make new bushings and vulcanize them onto our sway bars.

      I might check out services in Hemmings to see if such a service still exists.

      Are you going to use a suspension kit like the one from FCP Euro?

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    3. Member
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      06-28-2020 03:38 AM #252
      Quote Originally Posted by 53PL-50AAA-VW611BAN View Post
      Are you going to use a suspension kit like the one from FCP Euro?
      On the one I just finished (low miler brown W12) I used all TRW parts (except for Meyle drop links) since I had those on my shelf for a while for my silver W12. In two weeks I'll finally do another full front suspension job on the silver W12 (was delayed because previous owner's mechanic rounded off the front diff oil fill plug which prevented me from changing the seal on the diff flange. I found a way to extract that plug though so I'm good to go now). This time I'm using a combination of TRW and Meyle parts, upper and lower forward control arms are TRW, lower rearward and drop links are Meyle. Quality seems to be the same as far as I can tell.
      Stephan

      still have parts left from an ’04 V8 Phaeton, CouCou Gray, Anthracite Interior. For details see my post in the classifieds: link

    4. 06-28-2020 11:31 AM #253
      I also have TRW uppers, one lower was TRW, the other Lemforder (forward I think). The lower TRW had the VW part number but with the Audi symbol ground off. I've been running the Meyle droplinks for a while now and the bushings still looked good on them when I took them off for this job. I used Meyle control arms on a BMW I fixed a couple of years ago, and for the price point the Meyle parts seem to be excellent quality.

    5. Member
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      06-28-2020 12:41 PM #254
      AFAIK the lower forward one (steel) is only available from TRW and is the OE part with the Audi logo ground off. Even the complete Meyle set from FCP Euro has that one from TRW. I was going to go with that kit but shopping from multiple places with a combo of TRW and Meyle was significantly cheaper so I did a mix and match this time. Keep in mind that the Meyle CAs have all the hardware while TRW only has it on the lower CAs and only the ball joint nut. TRW parts came from Amazon (prices fluctuate wildly on those parts from day to day), Meyle from RM European and FCP Euro, Hardware from 1stvwparts.

      Regarding the Meyle drop links, they are the correct thickness and hole size but there is a very minor difference the metal part of the bushing that contacts the sway bar has a larger OD on the VW original part which means it has more contact surface area to resist moving I guess. It's not a big difference but noticeable if you have the parts next to each other.

      The Meyle lower rear control arms (the one with the large inner bushing) is slightly different also in that the large bushing does not have those rubber inserts that the VW original as well as the TRW has.
      Stephan

      still have parts left from an ’04 V8 Phaeton, CouCou Gray, Anthracite Interior. For details see my post in the classifieds: link

    6. 06-29-2020 09:33 AM #255
      You're right, I checked my order, both lower arms were TRW.

    7. Senior Member PowerDubs's Avatar
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      06-29-2020 10:50 AM #256
      I also sourced from many places and saved a ton. Amazon- (use the keepa plugin for price tracking) as well as Rock Auto, and I think Ebay if memory serves correctly.
      -Josh

      Atari Token <- Will allow integration into games for ownership and transfer of digital assets with the ability to create or earn property in virtual worlds, cross platforms, through blockchain. Coming soon to the new Atari VCS

    8. 06-29-2020 01:13 PM #257
      Total cost of the lower arms, with tax & shipping was just over $500 from FCP.

    9. Senior Member PowerDubs's Avatar
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      06-29-2020 01:44 PM #258
      Are those factory parts?

      If so, you beat me- I just pulled up my receipts (TRW and Lemforder- so exact same as the car rolled out of Germany with)

      I paid $570.62 last summer.
      -Josh

      Atari Token <- Will allow integration into games for ownership and transfer of digital assets with the ability to create or earn property in virtual worlds, cross platforms, through blockchain. Coming soon to the new Atari VCS

    10. Senior Member PowerDubs's Avatar
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      06-29-2020 01:48 PM #259
      Being curious- I just checked current pricing on the same parts again from Amazon and Rockauto and it looks like the total would be about $30 cheaper right now if anyone is about to tackle this job.
      -Josh

      Atari Token <- Will allow integration into games for ownership and transfer of digital assets with the ability to create or earn property in virtual worlds, cross platforms, through blockchain. Coming soon to the new Atari VCS

    11. 06-29-2020 05:09 PM #260
      Quote Originally Posted by PowerDubs View Post
      Are those factory parts?

      If so, you beat me- I just pulled up my receipts (TRW and Lemforder- so exact same as the car rolled out of Germany with)

      I paid $570.62 last summer.
      OEM, TRW. Came with the Audi symbol ground off. Looking at the fronts, they don't seem to take anywhere near as much of a beating as the rear.

    12. Member
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      06-29-2020 05:22 PM #261
      Here's what I paid when I ordered 2 weeks ago. Of course 3 days after I put the order in the JTC1138 dropped from $82 to $60 on Amazon. I've bought the lower forward ones for as low as $80 on Amazon before but I couldn't wait any longer this time. Of course I also made sure to hit the minimum order for free shipping on FCP Euro and RM European.

      Stephan

      still have parts left from an ’04 V8 Phaeton, CouCou Gray, Anthracite Interior. For details see my post in the classifieds: link

    13. Member
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      06-29-2020 05:26 PM #262
      Quote Originally Posted by invisiblewave View Post
      OEM, TRW. Came with the Audi symbol ground off. Looking at the fronts, they don't seem to take anywhere near as much of a beating as the rear.
      On two of my W12 as well as on the high miler V8 it was the Lower RH front CA where the bushings were shot completely to the point that the arm was rubbing on the subframe. The lower rear were in better shape usually, probably depends on driving style and climate as mine all came from hot dry areas and the rubber generally doesn't last as long there.
      Stephan

      still have parts left from an ’04 V8 Phaeton, CouCou Gray, Anthracite Interior. For details see my post in the classifieds: link

    14. 06-30-2020 08:59 AM #263
      It doesn't get much hotter & drier than where mine's been for the last ten years.... Weird that there would be so much variation. Maybe the rear arms had previously been changed? Mine were definitely original, only the uppers had been changed before.

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      06-30-2020 02:10 PM #264
      I got no explanation why it's so different between cars. What's consistent is that the upper control arms are all getting worn out a lot earlier than the lower ones. I assume this has to do with those being shorter and therefore getting more rotation on the bushing end.

      The lower rearward ones were original VW parts on all of my cars and none of them had them worn out to the point that they fell apart on removal. I have the service history on all the cars I have so I'm pretty sure those were still the originals installed at the factory.

      Regarding the lower forward ones I had to replace those on two of mine and on a third one it had been replaced the month before I got it.

      '05 V8, 154k miles when I bought it, was in Los Angeles area since new



      '04 W12, 43k miles when I bought it recently, was a Scottsdale, AZ car from new, had aftermarket 20" steel wheels from new, those were pretty heavy so that could explain it
      Stephan

      still have parts left from an ’04 V8 Phaeton, CouCou Gray, Anthracite Interior. For details see my post in the classifieds: link

    16. 06-30-2020 03:47 PM #265
      Wow, that's WAY worse than on mine at 130k. The rear ones are a problem, even if you look closely it's impossible to see if the bearing is in good shape. For the uppers, I put poly bushings in and they've been fine ever since, the only issue is that you need to lubricate them every now & then to stop them squeaking (you can only hear it at very low speed anyway).

    17. Member
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      06-30-2020 05:26 PM #266
      I just got in the habit of replacing ALL front suspension control arms (not just the bushings) at the same time. Over the last few years I have done 3 complete front suspension jobs and one with just the bushings (the first one). At the end of the day $600 - $800 in parts for a whole front suspension job is a lot of bang for the buck if you have the capability to do the work yourself which I fortunately have.
      Stephan

      still have parts left from an ’04 V8 Phaeton, CouCou Gray, Anthracite Interior. For details see my post in the classifieds: link

    18. 07-01-2020 09:26 AM #267
      I just hate throwing away the entire arm, particularly with the uppers. The ball joints all seem to be very robust, and switching just the bushings means you don't have to mess about with the pinch bolts.

    19. Member
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      07-01-2020 12:50 PM #268
      You certainly have a point about not wasting the whole arms and that was the reason I only replaced the bushings on my first suspension job but of course that car had 154k miles on it at the time and eventually ended up doing the complete job again with new CAs. I'd say if your pinch bolt comes out easy than I'd definitely go with complete new CAs, if they are rusted in place then for sure just do the bushings. I got lucky on most of mine since they are all dry weather state cars except for the parts car which was from the Mid West and were I couldn't extract one of the pinch bolts ... I sure was glad that was on the parts car!
      Stephan

      still have parts left from an ’04 V8 Phaeton, CouCou Gray, Anthracite Interior. For details see my post in the classifieds: link

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