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Discussion Starter #1
I bought the kit to redo my lca bushings, rather than replace the whole control arm. Problem is, the new bushings are too short flange face to flange face (see pic). I'm wondering if they need to be heated up or something so that the rubber stretches a little. I thought that I had gotten the wrong part, but I went to a different vendor today, and theirs is the same. The old bushings are 5/16" longer inside the flanges, than the new ones. Any advice? The old ones weren't bad, I'm regretting now that I pressed them out. The rear bushings were horrible though.
 

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Discussion Starter #2
Well, I got the bushings in, and they stretched out like they needed to, which seemed impossible. I had stopped by an alignment shop on the way home to see if they could tell me anything, and they said they’d never had any success at pressing in those types of bushings, and would just get new lca’s altogether. So, I soaked them in dishwashing soap, and all went well. Then, when I was putting the pieces back in the car, I tapped the front bushing bolt with a rubber mallet, and nocked the nut off the inside of the frame (see pic). I can’t believe it wasn’t welded on or something, especially being that it’s not accesible in any way. I had to fish in the hole with a pencil magnet, and finally got it back up agains the hole, but there’s no way to get glue or anything on the face of it to hold it it place. I had to hold it on the back side with a screw driver, then carefully thread the bolt in, and pray that it doesn’t turn when I torque it down. Now if the nut works off, it won’t be just a matter of re-tightening the bolt, I’ll have to remove the whole lca. That’s incredibly stupid. Those nuts should be welded on good at the factory. I’m afraid to use loctite, as if I ever replace the bushings again, I won’t be able to get the nut off.
 

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Lca

sorry to hear you having problems fellow member and wish I could help u but when I did mine I just bought the whole LCA already assmbled for like $65 cause the cheapest I could find the bushing kit was about 30 and then shipping and than $$ to have a machine shop press them in it would have been around $50 per side, I just bought the whole lca and be done with, hope this helps the next guy.
 

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sorry to hear you having problems fellow member and wish I could help u but when I did mine I just bought the whole LCA already assmbled for like $65 cause the cheapest I could find the bushing kit was about 30 and then shipping and than $$ to have a machine shop press them in it would have been around $50 per side, I just bought the whole lca and be done with, hope this helps the next guy.
Same here. I was thinking of just doing the bushings but that seemed like a big pain in the A$$ so I decided to go with the MJM Autohaus Control arms that already came preinstalled with the more heavy duty, solid TT/R32 bushings which should hold out a bit better than those slotted OEM bushings.

Hopefully you don't have to go through that ordeal again any time soon.
 

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You guys lowered your beetles? Pics?
LOL, nope we didn't lower them. :p I wouldn't want to either.
Even at stock height you run the risk of ripping the bottom of the aluminum oil pan wide open when going over large bumps or chuck holes.
The control arms are just called lower control arms. They have rear bushings that tend to wear out and need to be replaced. Easier to just replace the entire control arm rather than just the bushings. Big hassle in trying to press them out and the new ones back in.
I am sure there are some people that lowered their beetle's but I bet they either have a very heavy duty skid plate or are replacing their oil pans on a regular basis :D
 

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Even at stock height you run the risk of ripping the bottom of the aluminum oil pan wide open when going over large bumps or chuck holes.
Been there, done that, except it was an upturned pipe cover that caught my drain plug and ripped a hole out the of back of my oil pan:


Plenty of people do lower their cars. I can't. My GTI has the same ground clearance stock as a NB (4"), but I also have an extra lip on the front that is mere centimeters from scraping our driveway when I go into the garage (and does scrape on ocassion). I already have to be careful enough with it. I learned to drive carefully in my NB and still do in my GTI. I would hate to have to worry more than I do now...
 

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Discussion Starter #9
If I had to do it over again, I'd still press in the bushings myself, not just because of the cost difference, but quality control. I know that the bushings are good quality, and if I buy a "new" lca, who knows what quality the bushings are. And if I had known that the front bushings would stretch like they did, then there would have been no issues. Knocking the nut off inside the frame could have happened regardless, so I'm good. I'm surprised that of all the people I've seen post about replacing their bushings, no-one has mentioned any issues.
 
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