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Did someone throw away my Camber Bolt parts? Upper Control arm.


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2008 Ranger, 2WD, 3.0 liter 6 cylinder.

90K miles.

Maybe previous owner/mechanic discarded camber bolt parts?

I brought it to a mechanic just for an oil change and replace 2 tires. I noticed a while ago whenever I drive over even just the 1.25" curb in front of my driveway apron that it bangs. I gave the mechanic $25 just to diagnose it and see if I can do the work myself.

One of the bushings for the upper control arm is busted, has a lot of wobble, the mechanic says change it asap before a catastrophic failure.
Mechanic wants $275 total and the part is about $90 and takes about 40 mins I think. I'd rather do this myself, change whole control arm, not just bushing.
Other front side is OK, no wobble, but has the same situation with camber bolts possibly missing those round tab things. Neither control arm looks new'ish so maybe it wasn't removed/replaced.




I watched like 10 youtube videos on changing a Ranger control arm but they all have more complicated camber bolts, I still don't understand camber bolts but hopefully mine is 'Fixed' and it doesn't matter, if so, why even bother with the other styles? Only a couple videos have something similar with fixed bolts with no adjustable round discs/washers or anything to line up or pre-mark location, but not exactly what I have. Maybe I haven't seen the exact same because the 3.0 liter 6 cylinder is rare.


I only have a bolt head on one side, the other side with the nut has a flat disc which locks into position between two tabs on the mount.

I went to buy the control arm from autozone and he asked if I had Coil or Torsion suspension and I wasn't sure, I show a pic of the big spring so I guess I have coil suspension and need that control arm.


At autozone, I had him check what camber bolts their system matches me, the ones displayed had the large round discs etc etc as I show linked below, but there is also just a set of bolts available.


This truck has the same square washers as mine, so it seems mine is also 'fixed'. But his has a tab on the bolt head that keeps it from spinning.


This one also he discovers and says it's simply fixed into position by the square washers:



Can see autozone for this make and model has all types of camber bolt types but also simply a bolt:


I might get an alignment after this but maybe not if it's like $200, I get used tires pretty cheap and good condition for like $50 installed and never really minded when my cars veer in one direction but I don't want to cause any serious problems if it really should be aligned asap after changing the control arm, but will an alignment even adjust the camber bolts or at least the guy let me know if it should have adjustable camber type bolts and something is missing?

Also notice 1 pic with the red circle showing a ripped boot for some part - how important is it to fix that and is it a PITA?

They say when finally tightening down the camber bolts, you need to have the weight on the tire, not just have it hanging there with the tire off like most videos do, they say that can destroy the bushing or something by tightening it without the whole wheel hub assembly being lifted up to where it's supposed to sit. One guy jacked up the bottom area somewhere near the rotor area but I'm afraid to put all the weight on that, I don't know if I can snug the camber bolts, reinstall the tire then let it off the jack and stands and still get a breaker bar in there to tighten the camber bolts to spec.
 

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pjtoledo

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one of my Rangers came with the square camber "adjuster plates" from the factory.
there is a whole set of them with the holes displaced more in each different one.
those plates don't adjust the camber, they lock it in.
when the truck was manufactured the camber was set, then the plate that fit was installed to lock it.

yes the bolts should be tightened with the weight on them.
there are no moving parts at the bushing, it's the flexing of the rubber that allows the arm to swing.
so you want it "centered" to where it will deflect equally up or down.
they can be tightened with the wheels on, remove the rubber flap if you have to.

I'm not sure I would trust the pic from AZ, I suspect the washers are off-set to facilitate adjusting.

I've used both round-offset and oval-offset camber adjuster kits. when you turn them opposite they also adjust caster.
 

superj

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and that torn boot is for your steering. it is the one that turns the gearbox when you turn the steering wheel. the boot probably was just to keep dirt off the joint.


which rubber is so torn up its going to be catastrophic?
 

Eddo Rogue

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sounds like you are on the right track, except for going to autozone. Go to Napa or somewhere besides the home depot of auto parts. Something like complete control arms I would order online. Better quality and cheaper and waaaay more options.
 
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which rubber is so torn up its going to be catastrophic?
mechanic said 1 of 2 bushings for the upper control arm is so worn out that it could eventually cause wheel to buckle.

Thanks for the replies, seems I should just reinstall the same square locking plates and then take it for an alignment.

Also thanks for the good news that hopefully I can fit a breaker bar in there even with the tire installed to torque the camber bolts when all done.
 
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Ranger
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Automatic
haven't gotten part yet but tomorrow probably. As for putting the weight back on the wheel before tightening the camber bolts, I'm going to measure the center of the wheel hub in relation to the fender wheel well area above it, then jack the wheel area up to where it should be (jack on a strong area, not the rotor or something) and tighten without the wheel because I think it'll be hard if even possible to get the breaker bar in there with the wheel in the way.
 

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