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Thread: Aluminum Control Arm Answer?

  1. #1
    Senior Member Neunelfer's Avatar
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    Aluminum Control Arm Answer?

    Hi Gang,

    I'm looking for the definative answer regarding my Aluminum control arms for my 71T conversion car.

    I have the control arms, these are the early models with the sway bar ball joints. I have a set of Koni's with the 14mm bolt hole. I have an early (76) Turbo 18mm bar. I've heard:

    1. Everything will bolt right up.
    2. Everything will bolt right up but you'll need to take the dust cover off the Koni's
    3. You'll need to weld in a new rear crossmember with the proper shock angles.

    Anybody BTDT before who can offer some insight before I hit the garage and attempt the final install?

    Many Thanks!

    E.
    Eric - Sandy, Utah
    71 911
    914-6/GT
    914-6/ORV
    87 944 Spec 1
    Porsche Truck
    62 Beetle
    80 VW “Caddy” Pickup
    72 R75/5 Toaster Tank
    PMB Performance
    We'll Make Your Calipers New Again
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  2. #2

    Thumbs up Yes

    Hi Eric,

    Yes, they will bolt right on. I suggest also installing later model adjustable rear spring plates and 26mm torsion bars at the same time. I don't know about any mods needed for Koni's, all the cars I've done the update on I've used Bilsteins's with no issues.
    Hope this helps, email or call me if you need anymore info.

    All the best!
    Roger Grago
    R Gruppe #27

  3. #3
    Senior Member Neunelfer's Avatar
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    Roger to the Rescue (again)

    Thanks Buddy,

    I have the 26mm bars and adjustable plates sitting on the car waiting to bolt the control arms on.

    E.
    Attached Images Attached Images  
    Eric - Sandy, Utah
    71 911
    914-6/GT
    914-6/ORV
    87 944 Spec 1
    Porsche Truck
    62 Beetle
    80 VW “Caddy” Pickup
    72 R75/5 Toaster Tank
    PMB Performance
    We'll Make Your Calipers New Again
    Love Us On Facebook

  4. #4
    admin_old
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    E,
    Your '71 and my'69 share the same rear shock geometry. The factory moved the upper and lower shock mount points slightly in '72 ('72-'86 geometry the same). The result is that with the alloy control arms installed in the early chassis, the dust cover on the Koni Sports interferes slightly with the shock housing sheet metal. Don't know about Bilsteins.

    You can partially compensate by removing said dust cover as well as some material from the lower shock mount boss on the control arm. This isn't as drastic as it sounds. The actual threads (14mm) are a steel insert in the control arm and the necessary amount to remove is merely aluminum, in effect a spacer and not threaded either. Remove the excess material on a milling machine or carefully, by hand. This was Kevin Buckler's (TRG) recommendation when I researched for a piece in Excellence.

    In addition:
    - If the engine is installed, you'll probably have to yank it for this upgrade. The control arm pivot bolts are factory-installed from the inside.
    - You'll need late model camber/toe eccentrics and slightly longer control arm-to-spring plate bolts.
    - There may be some physical contact between the lower shock mount and the heat exchanger sheet metal when the suspension is at full drop. A large hammer is the solution.
    - You may or may not have any issues with matching CV joints and axle stubs (4 vs 6 bolt) with your early alloy arms, but be aware there might be differences. Porsche used the ball type sway bar mount up until about '77.
    - Control arms (steel or alloy) can be bent in their previous life. It won't be obvious until the car is being aligned. There is a rare factory jig to check alignment off the car.
    - Roger's recommendation for larger torsion bars and late model spring plates is a good one. I'd go 26 or 27mm.

    That's my experience. I think you now have enough anecdotal info to proceed. It'll either be a complete bolt-on or "some work necessary."

    Sherwood
    http://members.rennlist.org/911pcars

  5. #5
    Senior Member Neunelfer's Avatar
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    Some final ?'s

    Thanks Sherwood,

    If the engine is installed, you'll probably have to yank it for this upgrade. The control arm pivot bolts are factory-installed from the inside
    I lowered the tranny to get the old ones out. Both engine and tranny need to come out anyway as I have a rebuilt 915 ready to go in the 911's place and the 930/07 engine is on the stand waiting for pistons for the S-cam/MFI conversion. Here's the question. Should/could I simply install those bolts the other way around this time (the control arm pivot bolts)?

    You'll need late model camber/toe eccentrics and slightly longer control arm-to-spring plate bolts
    I made sure they were included with the control arm purchase. Parts Heaven had the best price for this BTW.

    You may or may not have any issues with matching CV joints and axle stubs (4 vs 6 bolt) with your early alloy arms, but be aware there might be differences
    I'm rock'n there... no problems, early 915 and the early arms had the hubs still loaded. Bolt on.

    the dust cover on the Koni Sports interferes slightly with the shock housing sheet metal
    This is now consistent with what I've heard. Probably not a problem with Roger's Bilstein installs
    Eric - Sandy, Utah
    71 911
    914-6/GT
    914-6/ORV
    87 944 Spec 1
    Porsche Truck
    62 Beetle
    80 VW “Caddy” Pickup
    72 R75/5 Toaster Tank
    PMB Performance
    We'll Make Your Calipers New Again
    Love Us On Facebook

  6. #6
    admin_old
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    Eric,
    Sounds like you've got the bases covered. Yeah, install the pivot bolts from the outside in.

    We'll wait for your 915 questions. :-)

    Sherwood

  7. #7
    Senior Member Neunelfer's Avatar
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    Oh Boy... Can't wait ;-)

    We'll wait for your 915 questions.
    BFH to dimple the body? I have the updated shift lever and tower but I know there will be more... waaaaaaaaaaaa :-(
    Eric - Sandy, Utah
    71 911
    914-6/GT
    914-6/ORV
    87 944 Spec 1
    Porsche Truck
    62 Beetle
    80 VW “Caddy” Pickup
    72 R75/5 Toaster Tank
    PMB Performance
    We'll Make Your Calipers New Again
    Love Us On Facebook

  8. #8

    Shifter and clutch cable

    Eric,

    For your shifter you will need a 915 shift rod (through the tunnel), give me a call and I'll give you trick on how to install it with the transmission in the car. Also if you are using a 78-83 915 trans you will have to clearance your driver's side heater box for the T.O. bearing lever return spring mounted on the bottom of the bell housing. Also you will need clutch cable assys. the same as
    whatever year 915 trans you have.
    Call or email if you need to. Hope this helps.

    All the best!

    Roger Grago
    R Gruppe #27

  9. #9
    admin_old
    Guest
    "Dimple" is a kind word. BFH's do not produce mere dimples, but they produce the needed clearance that's required. You'll need a jr. size BFH for the heat exchanger area that Roger refers to.

    The 915 shift tube is something I recently learned about but didn't install with my 915 conversion. However, I don't have any shifting issues. Maybe it all depends. Still, it's better to save some time in the long run and avoid R&Ring the drivetrain more times than necessary.

    Sherwood

  10. #10
    I had Ron Kain at IPB Autosport in Sacramento do mine...here's his number :
    Mr. Ron Kain
    IPB-Autosport
    2630 Broadway
    Sacramento, CA 95818
    916-453-1465

    Tell I said hello.
    Ed
    Ed Barnett
    RGruppe #124
    Northern California Racing Club
    American Racing Club
    Member, Northwest Hillclimb Association

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