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PDM Racing Installations

 

TC Rod Bushing Installation

 

1. Jack up car and put jackstands underneath.
2. Remove front wheels
3. Remove front bottom splash guard with 10mm socket.
4. TC Rod (or Tension Control Rod) is the long round bar that is attached to the front lower control arm and the front suspension box. You will be removing this arm to replace the front bushing.

 

 

 

 

The TC Rod is a vital suspension arm that controls the front lower control arms movement for and aft as the vehicle drives. Making sure your TC Rod is functioning properly is extremely critical under hard cornering or braking where all the road force is transmitted through the car’s tires and control arm to this rod. If your bushing is worn out, you will have a sloppy control arm that can give a shimmy, and inconsistent braking (as your tire toes in and out as the arm moved back and forth). Worn TC Rods in Nissan 240SX’s, 300ZX’s and Skylines is THE most common bushing to wear first.

A closeup of the worn bushing. Note this bushing is beyond hope. Early signs of this bushing being worn are radial cracks, then loss of viscous fluid, then complete failure like this TC Rod bushing.

 

 

 

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5. Using a 17mm box end wrench on the back side and 17mm socket, loosen and remove the main front TC Rod bolt. (This bolt may be seized or rusted on, so you may want to use penetrating oil before hand to help loosen this bolt. An impact wrench works the best to remove this bolt).

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6. Unbolt the 2 control arm nuts with a 17mm socket.

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7. This is what the worn bushing looks like in it’s advanced stage of “worn out”.

Next, soak the arms in a bucket of very hot water for 10-15 minutes. This will help the metal-encased stock bushings to release from the arm easier in the press. If you are pressed for time or water, you can lubricate the arms up with WD40 or solvent, but this is a messier method.

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8. Removal of the TC Rod bushing is recommended with a shop press of at least 10 tons or higher. We do NOT recommend you use a vise, as the force required to remove the metal shelled bushing is quite high. Contact your local machine shop or garage first to ensure they have a proper shop press and dies to remove bushings.

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9. Next press out the old bushing in the press. (If your press is not very strong, we recommend soaking the assembly in hot water for an hour, as this will help to loosen any rusted/galled TC Rods).

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10. This is what the bushing looks like once it’s removed. (note the thick metal outer shell that can rust itself into the TC Rod).
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Inside of the rubber membrane is a viscous silicone fluid that is used to aid in ride comfort. While it may give you a smooth ride, sooner or later the outer rubber membrane will dry up and crack, leaking out all the fluid and leaving you with a rubber “balloon” to control your front control arm's movement.

 

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11. Lube up the inside of the TC Rod with the supplied grease to aid in ease of installation of the polyurethane bushing.
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(note at this point, since you have the bare metal arms out, we recommend you clean up the arms in solvent, degrease them and repaint them with a good anti-rust paint).

 

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12. Using the shop press, push the SPF1202K bushing into the TC Rod. (note it will just “pop” in once it passes the outer ridges, so not much force is required).

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13. Lube up the center hole of the SPF1202K bushing and press in the inner metal crush tube.


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And your’re set to re-install each TC Rod. We recommend you clean up the bolts and nuts, apply an anti-sieze compound on the bolts prior to installation.

Torque the front bolt to 65 – 80 ft/lbs, and the control arm bolts to 65-80 ft/lbs also.

A wheel alignment is not 100% necessary if your car’s TC rods were not badly worn. HOWEVER if you had an alignment done with worn TC Rods, your front toe settings may have been aligned with worn bushings, and your settings will now be different with the new bushings installed.