Last fall I replaced my rear yoke and trailing arm bushings . Now with 410 miles on them the large
rear trailing arm bushings are done . I contacted Rare Parts the maker and they were defensive and
wanted me to purchase new ones and if sent the old ones back they, upon inspection would reimburse the original seller (Old Parts) a seller on ebay. Seemed like a lot of hoops to jump through so I inquired at all the
known Cadillac Suppliers and it seems the Rare Parts is the only maker of the RP15606 bushings . Further
internet searches found this is a common problem. This has led to Dan McNarry and Russ Austin heading up making replacement arms with high tech bushings that do not distort and last. Rare Parts needs to retool and use rubber that will last . In the mean time DO NOT purchase trailing arm bushings from them with the
expectation they will last as I assure you they will fail quickly
My 1964 CDV has control links that are 55 years old and have 164K miles on them.. and are doing OK. Of course if I remove them again I will probably want to replace if someone has found known good replacements. I would stick a lower mileage used one back in my car if the only option was the "drag racers" option. Of course I am the 1st to admit I am a sample of one... have had zero issues with good old used control links and bushings, but understand it has been an issue for many. With that I admire that you and others have pursued other options. No one has yet to confirm who supplies the Rubber the Right Way bushings. I would assume they are the same sourced "crappy" ones but they surprisingly have zero reviews (no negative or positive) so just not sure. I think I would go with theirs as they are a very well know middle man and I would definitely be jumping all over their site with negative reviews if they fell apart after a few hundred miles. I would STRONGLY encourage everyone to provide public feedback for anyone selling these crappy items. It may just be a case they just are note aware of the magnitude of the issue. If RTRW suddenly got a dozen negative / 1 star reviews, I bet they would be having serious discussions with their supplier ... especially with a nice turn-key add with all the rear end bushings as they have it on their page. One bad apple (i.e. the control link bushings) would be a black mark on their name, which as far as I know is a pretty commendable, middle man seller company. Prices are good (often lower than who they source the items from) and as far as I know RTRW has a pretty decent reputation. Perhaps. even Rare Parts, is unaware they have a crappy product. The could be just doing some CMA with their request send in the bad one as Doug indicated, or it could be legit and they truly are unaware that many are having the issue. We can talk about this issue until the cows come home but until enough people contact the supplier and make it publicly known on their website and other feedback mechanisms, we might as well be blowing hot air.
Since we're already reinventing the wheel, this is not the only option to replace the bushings with a quality product, but yours is a really good and easy one for the 'backyard mechanics' on this site.
If I were doing a replacement, if I can trust the measurements from the Caddy Daddy site, I'd look to use something of the same size and slightly modify it. It so happens that gm 1 ton leaf springs are 1" ID, and 3 inch length. So if I were doing the job, I'd take a b335 bushing that fits the length and the bore, put it in my lathe and cut off the flange, then relieve about .01" on each side for side flex, and it would work great (U would need to drill the holes out to accept 9/16 hardware first, just a note). But I understand this isn't an option for everyone.
Another option would be to get a steel tube matching the O.D. of the OE bushing, machine it to fit ready made control arm bushing kits (like the ones from energy suspension), then weld it in and slide in new polyurethane bushings and sleeve. This is very similar to what your supplier has done with the weldment, but keeps the original look. Again, though probably more than what most are capable of doing without paying someone.
Always lots of ways to solve any problem, no solution fits all.
Would you have any interest in making bushings in your spare time ?
The same bushings are required from 1958 thru 1964 which is a reasonable market
We have an in with the CLC —you know ———-LOL !!
nah, I won't have any spare time for years.
and it didn't seem like it's gone so well for the last couple of people who've tried to solve this problem as we've seen.
I'm warming up to Russ' part little by little. it MUST be better than the stock part. I've done hundreds of GM control arms and they are notoriously flimsy, most of the work in pressing the bushings out is trying to keep the control arm from collapsing, and they didn't really solve that problem on RWD IFS vehicles ever.
these cars are convo starters by nature even when bone stock. If somebody sees those ladder bar looking contraptions under there, I'm sure they'll be asking "what do you have under that hood, anyway?" you can always swap them out for shows, if that's what blows your dress up. :)
thanks so much for your feed back
I myself have not worked with the control arms as my entire rear suspension is functioning as it should - tight and right
the fact that you have a lot of experience with handling the arms and indicating that they have to handled correctly or they could be damaged is the single reason I too will be going with the arms that Dan and Russ are making and have installed with good feed back from Russ
i do think if the color of the arms was changed from black to some other they would be less outstanding and could be camouflaged to some degree making them more aesthetically pleasing to the eye
the fact they are a stronger replacement is making them —MY CHOISE —-FOR THE GOLDEN THERMOSTAT AWARD and the arms going into my car when needed ( A very old long story - you had to be here —-
just have to hope that Dan stays interested in his arm construction
thank you again for helping me solve the problem for myself that this thread has been addressing at length
Dans arms are a proven solution to the rear end bushing replacement problem
Tried true and tested by yourself which is proof enough for me of there
Performance and quality ( a very good thing )
Feelings about the way they look will vary with the individual person and the direction they choose to take there pride and joy
I am on the fence about them and would care more for the stock arms being stock if a solution for the bushing issue could be devised
Mostly because the stock suspension is one of my loves of driving my 64
Why screw with perfection
Even with Dans arms available --we really need to find a correct bushing solution to properly maintain the rear suspension of our stock Antique Cadillacs for those requiring replacement in the future ( and many should )
I really feel for these guys that spent $ 387 for parts that lasted 400- 600 miles and now need replacement
Not to mention the time frustration and aggravation
A correct stock bushing replacement that would hold up for many years just like the stock parts would be my own goal to aquire if at all possible
Steele Rubber and AV could work out
I wonder if Moog would have any interest in the subject ??
These bushings would be used in a good number of different Cadillac years so producing them could be good for the supplier in question
I just would like to know when i need these bushings some time in the future they will be available to purchase for my stock control arms ( no issues at this time for me )
We mostly only have feed back on the guys who are changing there rear bushings to count on until the correct bushings for the stock control arms problem gets solved
I wrote a not so nice review on Rare Parts web site as suggested by Jason
Hoping it will flag the problem we are having with there product and have them look into improving it
Lets see if they post it at all
Kind of odd there were no other reviews listed
The fact that there TAB cover the 58 thru 64 Cadillacs makes the problem a larger one for Cadillac community accross the board
Something just bugs me about a good replacement part not being available for my personal favorite ride
I checked and rare parts did not post my bad review
still no reviews recorded
Tony, Unless I am missing something, you are not a customer of Rare Parts, and have not bought and installed their control link bushing and WOULD NEVER EVER SUGGEST ANYONE POST A REVIEW IF THEY DID NOT HAVE 1ST HAND EXPERIENCE. Doug Scarrow and Ronnie Lay should post the reviews as they are customers with 1st hand experience. I know when I leave reviews on Amazon it checks to see if I actually bought the product and posts my review as a validated customer. As much as I respect all of our members and their opinions I would never suggest we post a review for something we do not have 1st hand experience based on negative statements here on this site. If you buy something from Company ABC and it is crap you have every right to post a negative review, but I have zero right to tear down a company based on someone else's opinion. Surely, if this is a widespread phenomenon, then actual customers can provide sufficient feedback to alert powers that be that there is an issue at hand.
My test was --to see if Rare Parts were posting product feed back from there customers --- at all from anyone
They are not posting any feed back --from my test so that normal approach would not be accompishing any good in this situation
The facts i presented were of there two customer on this site with issues --so truthful fact ( no names exchanged )
That is why there is -----no customer feed back --on that product on the site
This is not something i would do under normal cercumstances --ever
It was an attemp to make the company aware there is an issue i would think with a defective run of rubber bushings ( best guess )
I did speak with Glen in R and D at Rare parts
He said his hands are tied unless he can get the old bushing back so he can focus on the lot number of the bushings and see what he can do to correct the problem on his end
If he found a problem he would be happy to refund the purchase price of the item
Basically what he told Doug from the get go and Doug did not like that approach and came to us for a solution to the bushing issue which this tread has been adressing due to his inquiry
After very much checking and research on my end for myself and others regarding control arm bushings -- the end result is
--- I will be choosing to go with the the arms Dan is making and Russ has been testing on his own car with the correct end ride quality we expect from our Cadillacs
Russ being a major contributor to this site does make his opinion very important to me as he lives and breathes our year Cadillacs daily
I think if the part was painted another color other than black ( silver or whatever ) the arms will stand out less as an after market part And be more pleasing to the eye
The additional strength they offer and the poly bushings ( no squeek ) used should make for a long term solution to our currect problem of replacing our bushings on the stock arms with bad results due to new stock replacement bushings failing in a very very unreasonably short amout of time
Will eliminate the expensive bushings failing the time involved in instlation and the frustration and aggrovation associated with a repair -that is short lived
Keeping these cars rolling down road --without issues ( or as few as is possible ) is what this website and the people involved here are all about
Happy this issue has been solved for me personally when the time comes for these bushing to be replaced
My 64 convert for me is my --Forever Car for the joy it brings to my Life for 55 years ( and that is a LONG TIME !!! )
Unless someone can confirm where RTRW gets their bushings (I KNOW THEY ARE A RESELLER.. NO REMINDERS NEEDED), later this fall or next year, I may do a restore on some 64 control links and order the front and rear control link bushings from them as their prices are reasonable. That will also give me the chance to have the local machine shop take a hard look at what is going on. Some of these good ole boys have been pressing bushings in and out for 30+ years and can probably give me some additional info and guidance.
What I will not do is eat green eggs and ham and install the Drag Racu's LOL The one thing I will do is take my time and patiently go through the process. I've got plenty of good used ones to throw in my car if I had a real issue, so if it takes me a couple years that's fine. I think my initial thought to rebuild my engine, ended up taking about 5 years. My thought to go thru my AC system is probably now on it's 15th years.
As has been said... and sometimes attributed to Ralph Waldo Emerson "Life is a journey, note a destination", so is ownership of these fine automobiles.