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VE sedan control arm and castor arm replacement

Discussion in 'VE Holden Commodore (2006 - 2013)' started by swmcl, Jun 6, 2019.

  1. swmcl

    swmcl New Member

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    Hi all,

    Sorry if it is covered elsewhere but I am experiencing a metallic knock of a ball joint (I think) somewhere in the passenger side front. I've had the struts replaced and also the swaybar links because of a mechanic opinion which didn't really help. The only options left I think are the control and castor arm replacements.

    The Haines manual seems to indicate they should just be able to be taken off. There is no mention of needing to compress the spring. I guess one just jacks the car up and take the wheel off to do the job.

    Any tips on tools or technique would be appreciated.

    Cheers,
    Steve
     
  2. krusing

    krusing Active Member

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    Hi there, I did this 3 weeks ago for the EXACT same annoying noise as you seem to have, taking into account the car has done 150,000 k/m.
    I did a full change over -
    Gas Struts
    Lower Control Arms
    Radius Arms
    Sway Bar Links
    New Tyres
    Wheel Alignment
    New Hubs
    And still had the damn knocking, so I am putting down to the Spring Seat/Base, or Steering Rack.
    Is sounds like a real heavy metallic knock, like its something under pressure, as I could feel it through the steering wheel, especially when turning left or right.

    I did read that it was an issue with the rubber buffer at the bottom of the springs,
    they compress the rubber that hard, that it splits it, and the springs rub against the metal where the spring sits on the bottom of the tower,
    I think they said, and I read somewhere, there was a re-call for that, but don't quote me on that.
    My next option is to go and buy some Thick Rubber at Clarks Rubber, and cut a circle out, and cut the centre out and fit it over the shocker to fit on the spring base.
    The problem I see with the VE's, is that the spring can move around on the base [slide from side to side] because there is nothing holding the bottom of the spring in place,
    where on the VY's, the spring sits in a enclosed base, and can not move around.
    If the rubber doesn't work, that leaves only one option, replace the Rack, where I have already checked for one on eBay.

    On a site note, After I replaced all the hardware, as I had it all on stands, I didn't tension all the bolts up,
    I dropped the car, and drove it up onto ramps, and tightened all the bolts up by hand,
    Took it for a road test to settle in, and then re-tensioned it with a tension wrench.
    Especially the Front Radius Arms, they HAVE to be 140nm, [Tension Wrench Recommended] and after I did that, it wasn't so bad.
    However, I did recheck the tower bolts with the weight of the car on it,
    and found on the left hand side, the nut under the top cup on the top of the tower was lose, which was causing a rattle,
    so I retightened/tensioned that, and place the top tower washer back on, and tightened the top nut up with a rattle gun. [24mm socket].
    So it seems to be quiet now, well at the moment.
     
    Last edited: Jun 6, 2019
  3. swmcl

    swmcl New Member

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    Gee whiz that sounds like a lot of work !

    My knock isn't a heavy thump of significant metal its a light knock and is most noticeable on the passenger side when going over bitumen that has some pock marks in it (not potholes) and is certainly there all the time (uphill, downhill, left, right etc.,)

    I wonder where the 'radius arm' is ...? I'm using terminology from EBay...
     
  4. krusing

    krusing Active Member

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    It sounds like big job, but wasn't really, I took my time and did it in approx. 3.5 4 hours for the front end work only,
    I didn't rush it, as I planned to take my time and let it take all day if need be.
    but I enjoyed doing it, I have all the right gear to do it [apart from a hoist], but its my hobby,
    and great satisfaction.

    Radius Arm is the arm from the Wheel Knuckle, to the Front End of the Sub-frame,
    The Lower Control Arm is the one that goes from the knuckle to the Centre of the Sub-frame,
    Different people have different terminologies, but I am old school,

    In your case, I would double check the tension of the whole front end,
    Especially the Sway Bar Links.
    like the wise Irish man said, to sure, to be sure.
     
  5. swmcl

    swmcl New Member

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    Hello again,

    I have used a breaker bar to check tension on ball joints in the knuckle so I know they are not at the thread-end of the joint. My car is an ex-cop sedan that has had a large number of issues. It has been thrashed previously.

    Are you saying you did the job without spring tensioners ? Just a variety of sockets and torsion wrench etc.?
     
  6. krusing

    krusing Active Member

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    I had my car on stands, so what I did, put it all back together, hand tighten all the bolts, and the nuts,
    dropped the car on the ground, took it for a drive [road test] and when I got back, run it up onto ramps, and tensioned all the Bolts and Nuts up to Spec.
    Took it for another road test, to see if there were and noises, and re-checked the tension.
    A Breaker Bar is ok to tighten them, but for piece of mind,
    I would see if you can obtain a tension wrench, so its done correctly, with all the work you have done, you don't want to have re-visit it again, because if there is a annoying/knocking sound, it will be frustrating to try and locate it again, and it could of been something simple that should of been done in the first time around. ;)
    Do it once, do it properly ;)
    Being an ex-police vehicle, it should be pretty much standard, apart from the police suspension pack, which was normally FE2, it should say what the Suspension is on your compliance plate.
     
    Last edited: Jun 12, 2019
  7. swmcl

    swmcl New Member

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    Hmmm.

    Thanks again for your reply. I do have almost every common tool for the job so I've replaced the front castor arm at the minute without issue. Easy job considering it is a major suspension element. Next is the lower control arm. Maybe a reduction in noises but not an elimination so I hope the lower control arm is the last component.

    This setup sure beats things I've worked on in the past (like older Holdens ie. HG) .
     
  8. krusing

    krusing Active Member

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    They had [what they called] wishbone arms, they were from HD to HT Holdens I think,
    different setup of suspension, but were very effective, the Shocker was in the middle of the wishbones.
    then they went to a different setup again, and they called that "Radial Tuned Suspension" [RTS].
    Had that on my 1977 Torana.
     

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