While we’re all here…why not rebuild an r32 Nissan Skyline front upper control arm this weekend?


When this R32 1990 Nissan  skyline came into the shop, we noticed the front right tire was rubbing on the fender. At first we had thought that one of the RS-R drop springs had started to sag because it was just the one corner doing it. We then cycled the suspension and noticed that the upper control arms had some play in it. The owner didn’t want to buy, wait for, or mess with,  aftermarket adjustable replacements and OEM parts weren’t available locally, so we decided to rebuild it here while the car was in the shop. This gave us an opportunity to do a how to for you nissan skyline and 300zx owners.

Two things we should point out, one is that we opted to make our new bushings out of bronze because its what we had here in the correct size . The bushings can also be made out of plastic bearing materials like ramex or others, and they work just as good if not better. Two you are going to need replacement seals, have your local bearing and seal distributor get you seals with the dimensions 20mm x 38mm x 7mm. They are typically 3-5 dollars each and you will need 4 per side of the car you rebuild.

1-Remove the upper control arm your rebuilding  and pry out the 4 old seals.

1-Remove the old seals

2- Remove the 4 steel sleeves and save them for later. Keep track if which ones came out of where because on this vehicle the two on the outer side are shorter than the two on the inner side of this upper control arm.

2-Pull out the sleeve

3- Behind each sleeve is the OEM plastic bushing that is worn out.

3- this is the worn out factory plastic bushing

4- Remove the factory OEM plastic bushing using a flat screwdriver pushing on the inside lip of the bushing from the other side of the control arm. This lip is internal and hard to see,  use your finger  to align the screwdriver tip on the inside lip, then tap it out.

4-removing the old plastic bushings

5- Here is a look at the components removed.

5-The three components removed.

6-Here is a closer look at the. The wear is in the inside diameter of the plastic bushing, so when your checking your measurements be sure to use the steel sleeve to get that measurement, or refer at the image below with bushing dimensions listed on it.

6-closeup of the three components removed.

7-Cut 4 new bushings on the lathe at any machine shop….Lathe operators probably already know this, but be sure to drill the ID to 3/4 of an inch or 19mm then REAM it out to size. Do not attempt to drill the center to 20mm drilled holes are almost always to sloppy. If your dropping the work off to be done, be sure to include all of the OEM parts so the machinist can verify proper fitment.

7-making the new bushings on the lathe

8- Ream the inner diameter to exactly 20mm. Any more and you will have to cut a new one.

8-reaming the ID to EXACTLY 20mm or.7874 of an inch

9-Here we are filling grooves  for the grease to flow down the bushings contact surfaces. It’s hard to tell in this photo but the grooves are running through the inside of the bushing, around the corner, and across the flange.

9-filling grease passages

10-Here is a look at the new bushing with dimensions.

10-The new bushings with dimensions

11- Here we are installing the 4 new bushings in the control arm.

11-installing the new busings in the control arm

11- new busings installed in the control arm

12- Because we made our bushings our of bronze, we opted to install grease fittings. This is the location we choose for the outer side of the control arm identified by the capital “A”. We sanded so you could see it better. Use a 3/16 drill bit (most people don’t have a number 3), and a 1/4-28 thread tap and grease fitting.

12-Drilling and tapping grease fitting for outter side of control arm (drill 3-16 and  tap-1-4 x 28 threads)

13- Here is a photo showing the location of the inner grease fitting. The locations we chose were based on use of a regular pump grease gun, with a regular straight hose end, when greasing it.

13-Drilling and tapping grease fitting for inner side of control arm (drill 3-16 and  tap-1-4 x 28 threads)

14- A look at the outer grease fitting installed.

14-outter grease fitting installed

15- Inner grease fitting installed.

15-inner grease fitting installed

16-Re-install the metal sleeves…did you remember to keep track of where they go? If not, the difference isn’t much but, the longer two go on the inner side and the shorter two on the outer side.

16-reinstall steel sleeves

17- Install the 4 new seals and your ready to put it back on the car.

17-install 4 new seals and your all done

18- Problem solved.

18-Back on its own weight at the proper ride height.

If your wondering why we didn’t show you how to remove the control arm is because its really straight forward. You simply jack the car, unbolt the shock and unbolt the upper control arm . That is all you don’t even have to take the wheel off to do this. If you decide to do this on your own and  need any help, give us a call or drop us an email.

Scissor Doors Inc.



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