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Grease that steering bellcrank

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  • Grease that steering bellcrank

    I just bought an 84 Avanti. It turns out the bellcrank was bad. In 63/64 they went to a bushing style while the earlier one (used since 51) had bearings. I replaced this one with one with bearings.

    For some reason these are often overlooked when the car is greased. I bet there is at least one person reading this forum that is unaware that you have to grease the bellcrank on cars from 1950 forward!

    I took it for a test drive after the repair and several problems on the list of things to investigate are corrected! These include 1) steering wandering, 2) shimmy in the front end 3) the unknown "clunk" is gone and 4) I bet the tires will no longer wear on the inside like the current ones did.
    Milt

    1947 Champion (owned since 1967)
    1961 Hawk 4-speed
    1967 Avanti
    1961 Lark 2 door
    1988 Avanti Convertible

    Member of SDC since 1973

  • #2
    Milt; I wouldn't feel right taking your money on 4.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Alan View Post
      Milt; I wouldn't feel right taking your money on 4.
      Yep, I agree, #4 is more likely upper "A" Arm Bushings worn causing too much Negative Camber or extreme Toe-in.
      StudeRich
      Second Generation Stude Driver,
      Proud '54 Starliner Owner

      Comment


      • #4
        Good luck on the alignment Milt. Long time Stude Mechanic Abe Witmer actually found the only way to get some Blake Era Avantis within camber spec is to relocate the lower control arm bolt holes in the crossmember.
        I was STUDEBAKER, when STUDEBAKER wasn't "KOOL".

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by LarkTruck View Post
          Good luck on the alignment Milt. Long time Stude Mechanic Abe Witmer actually found the only way to get some Blake Era Avantis within camber spec is to relocate the lower control arm bolt holes in the crossmember.
          Yuck! I'm an alignment tech by trade and such a mod would give me the willies unless all it entailed was elongating the existing lower arm holes on the crossmember to shift the arm(s) in question into spec.
          --------------------------------------

          Sold my 1962; Studeless at the moment

          Borrowed Bams50's sigline here:

          "Do they all not, by mere virtue of having survived as relics of a bygone era, amass a level of respect perhaps not accorded to them when they were new?"

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by LarkTruck View Post
            Good luck on the alignment Milt. Long time Stude Mechanic Abe Witmer actually found the only way to get some Blake Era Avantis within camber spec is to relocate the lower control arm bolt holes in the crossmember.
            Before I would do that, I'd flip the upper control arm bushing bar which can provide more camber, depending on which way it is currently installed.
            Lew Schucart
            Editor, Avanti Magazine

            Comment


            • #7
              For what it may be worth...your cars "bellcrank" wasn't bad..it was the bellcranks "center support" assembly that was bad.
              Pretty hard to wear out the actual bellcrank..!!

              Mike

              Comment


              • #8
                Click image for larger version

Name:	00-Upper Control Arm.jpg
Views:	1
Size:	120.6 KB
ID:	1680436With new bushings, alignment won't be a problem. When they (uppers especially) wear, camber will change. This upper bushing will look perfectly normal if you looked at it as installed in the car. The reason is the large end washer hides the obvious wear. The shaft is supposed to be centered in the rubber. They only thing that moves is the twist of the rubber, the inner steel sleeve is fixed and does not rotate on the shaft, and the outer sleeve is pressed tightly into the control arm. All the forces are taken by the rubber.



                They gernade in a couple of years with daily driving!
                Last edited by bezhawk; 06-23-2013, 07:41 AM.
                Bez Auto Alchemy
                573-318-8948
                http://bezautoalchemy.com


                "Don't believe every internet quote" Abe Lincoln

                Comment


                • #9
                  Thanks for verifying the obvious as in post #3 Bez, that is the best Pic or actual "A" Arm I have ever seen showing what the designed in "TWIST" actually does to the rubber in the bushing which usually can not be seen.

                  My "Fix" for that does not suit everyone, but I think Delrin may be a bit hard (harsh) for the Large Lower A Arm Bushings that take most of the road shock and transmit it throughout the car, but they really ARE needed on the quicker wearing uppers, IMHO.
                  StudeRich
                  Second Generation Stude Driver,
                  Proud '54 Starliner Owner

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I did have a center assembly go bad on me in the Lark. My Lark had one of the older bearing style center assembies. It was after I had the flexplate replaced, that I discovered that when it was cold, the wheel would have trouble moving. I had to work the wheel back and forth to free up, and then it'd be fine after that. Well, it took a few weeks for it to happen, but everyday it'd be the same story. I didn't know what it was, except it was making the wheel real stiff, and this was a power steering equipped car too, with a fully maintenanced system to boot. Well, one day I pulled out of the driveway, got no more than 30 feet, and I completely lost my steering! I could spin the wheel freely in my hand and nothing would happen. As best I could, I got the car to wander into the ditch in front of our house, and of course I couldn't get it back into the driveway. Of course, this didn't happen on a summer day either, that'd make too much sense, this was the middle of winter with snow on the ground. We had a cop drive by the house, and he asked me if I had spun out. No, I just completely lost my steering. Eventually with the help of our neighbor, a cop, and backing up traffic in both directions, my neighbor towed my Lark by it's rear axle into the driveway. Once there, my Dad and I moved the car to the garage, where I pulled my broken Saginaw box out and replaced it with another we had on hand. Still behaving as it was before, we started looking around until we pulled the center support assembly out. One of the bearings, which was in a well greased support assembly mind you, had seized, and no amount of grease was going to free it. A trip to NAPA to find the correct Timken bearings, and I was able to steer again! The hardest part of out that whole ordeal was removing the steering box, even by the shop manual's instructions, because the tolerances between it, and the exhaust manifold had to be opened up by removing some of the casting from the manifold, they were that tight!
                    1964 Studebaker Commander R2 clone
                    1963 Studebaker Daytona Hardtop with no engine or transmission
                    1950 Studebaker 2R5 w/170 six cylinder and 3spd OD
                    1955 Studebaker Commander Hardtop w/289 and 3spd OD and Megasquirt port fuel injection(among other things)

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by StudeRich View Post
                      Thanks for verifying the obvious as in post #3 Bez, that is the best Pic or actual "A" Arm I have ever seen showing what the designed in "TWIST" actually does to the rubber in the bushing which usually can not be seen.

                      My "Fix" for that does not suit everyone, but I think Delrin may be a bit hard (harsh) for the Large Lower A Arm Bushings that take most of the road shock and transmit it throughout the car, but they really ARE needed on the quicker wearing uppers, IMHO.
                      Not too harsh at all Rich. After all they were originally designed with steel bushings (51+52) . That plus the fact that delrin or steel pivot freely, helps with the supposed road shock transfer.
                      Bez Auto Alchemy
                      573-318-8948
                      http://bezautoalchemy.com


                      "Don't believe every internet quote" Abe Lincoln

                      Comment

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