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Old June 9th, 2011, 09:55 AM   #1
jimmyroyse
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Default radius arm bushing question?

ok, dumb question time.

I have an older E150 (99') . I'm having alot of handeling issues at freeway speeds. The kind where I don't know what lane I will be in at any given moment. The last trip I took from detroit to Traverse city I couldn't go over 60-65MPH as it would randomly jump lanes. made things interesting.....

I have had it checked out at an independant mechanic & by belle tire in troy. neither can find anything wrong.

in the last 8K miles;
upper & lower ball joints
shocks
drag link
wheel bearings
brakes & rotors

that leaves me with tierods that are tight, but original & radius arm bushings???

How do I check radius arm bushings? am I missing anything else?
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Old June 9th, 2011, 03:12 PM   #2
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There are those, and then the bushings that the twin I-beams pivot on.

I can't tell you how to check them - I just replaced them all when I rebuilt my F-250 front end. The other bushing I'm talking about is the one closest to the cardboard in this pic:
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Old June 9th, 2011, 10:03 PM   #3
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look for shiny spots that would show excessive movement around the bushing. Also, use a pry bar and try to move the radius arm, it should not move much at all (I dont know an exact measurement on how much is acceptable)
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Old June 9th, 2011, 10:35 PM   #4
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Take a look at slop in the gear box also.
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Old June 10th, 2011, 12:58 AM   #5
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You might also want to look at the pitman arm and sector shaft to make sure the splines aren't chewed up. It the splines have play in them you will have issues like you described, but a mechanic may not notice that in an inspection since the nut that holds it on would hold it tight enough to keep it from moving while on the hoist.
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Old June 13th, 2011, 12:04 AM   #6
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Another thing that might have been overlooked is the rear leaf spring bushings. We had those wear in 2 of our '98 E-250s and caused them to do what you describe.
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Old June 13th, 2011, 05:47 AM   #7
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Daddy Dan, funny you mention that. I was under the van yesterday and noticed that the leaf bushings were dry and cracked looking.
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