Camaro5 Chevy Camaro Forum / Camaro ZL1, SS and V6 Forums - Camaro5.com
 
Gen5DIY
Go Back   Camaro5 Chevy Camaro Forum / Camaro ZL1, SS and V6 Forums - Camaro5.com > Other Generations > 1st & 2nd Generation Camaros

1st & 2nd Generation Camaros 1967-1969 Camaros / 1970-1981 Camaro

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old 03-27-2013, 09:44 PM   #1
caverman


 
caverman's Avatar
 
Drives: '69 SS Convertible
Join Date: May 2009
Location: DFW, TX
Posts: 7,062
My eBay tubular A-arms experience Ė long and pic heavy

Since I didnít find the kind of information I was really looking for online I decided I would make a thread about my experience using the overseas made tubular A-arms you can get off eBay.

First off let me say that this is an information thread about the installation and use of these arms. I understand there is a big controversy over using them instead of paying four times the price for the big named brands. No need to post how they are dangerous and of poor quality unless you have specific experience with them and have photos to prove any failures or problems.

Here is some info about my car and its current configuration. I have í69 SS Convertible with an iron headed small block 350. I also have vintage air in place of the factory air. Iím currently running a set of Hotchkis lowering springs up front and out back. I have a set of Bilstien shocks on all four corners. Back in 2005 I upgraded my steering box to an AGR and added new pitman arm with upgraded tie rod sleeves. I am running a stock style sway bar up front and no sway bar in the rear. Iím also running on some 17x7 and 17x8 wheels. I also have a set of 4 wheel Wilwood disc brakes.

My scenarioÖ.my car is a weekend driver that hits the local weekend car shows along with an occasional big show like Good Guys or Power Tour. I do not race this car at the drag strip or Auto-X and donít ever plan to. What Iím wanting is a better ride, better feel in the steering, and the ability to raise/lower my car. Currently the Hothckis springs give me a nice stance but itís just a little too low for me. With Hooker Super Comp headers I do occasionally bash them on a good dip in the highway or going over some angled driveways. In addition we all know tubular arms look cool. Even though that is not my main goal it is definitely an added feature.

So, I decided to upgrade my front suspension. The first thing I knew I wanted to do is at add a set of QA1 coilovers. This should take care of height adjustability and ride. The question then was to either use tubular arms or OEM arms. I asked around various people/places about using either tubular A-arms or to just put new bushings in the OEM A-arms and use them. This is when I was shown both the tubular arms on eBay and the Jegs brand which seem to be the same overseas eBay arms. I was also told to look at the bushing kit from Global West that would upgrade the stock arms.

After weigh my options and getting various feedback, I decided to give the tubular arms off of eBay a try. I picked them up for $261 shipped to my door. I figure what the heckÖ.worst case these donít work (which I will have no problem admitting if they donít) and I have to upgrade my OEM arm bushings or spend the big bank on named brand tubular arms. I then ordered a set of 400# single adjustable QA1 coilovers. With a racers account I got them for $400 shipped. So, Iím into this upgrade for basically $660 at this point.


Tubular arms came in about 4 days. Right off the bat what I can say is these donít seem to be junk. They feel a heck of a lot heavier than I thought they would. I got them in about 3 days and they seemed to be packaged up pretty good. I know a lot of peopleís concerns are the welds so I took plenty of up close pictures to so them off.

Pros:
-Seem to be well built.
-Look to have nice bumper stops and bushings.
-Bends look good and so do the welds.
-Powder coated and not painted.
-Ball joints look good and nothing wrong with the ball joint boots.

Cons:
-Powder coat seems a little thin.
-Powder coat not as glossy I would prefer but Iím being picky.
-There were a couple scuff marks in the powder coat. On looks like it was done during the powder coat process and other looks like it was chipped during packaging or shipping.

Got them installed. I had no real issue with them at all. The only thing I had to do was drill out the wholes where the QA1 shocks bolted to the lower control arm. This is due to QA1 using larger bolts and nothing to do with the tubular arms. Still, it was a modification I had to make. Everything else went perfectly fine.

Alignment info
I asked my alignment guy to get it as close to the Pozzi alignment specs as he could. It was recommended to get the Caster to 5* positive caster as possible. He got mine to 3.4* and said that if I the car sat up a little more, maybe ĹĒ or so, then he couldíve probably got it to the 5*. I might eventually raise the car a little but for the most part Iíve got it about right where I want it. I was able to raise the car right at 1Ē over what it was with the Hotchkis springs. Still the car looks loweredÖ.just not slammed.
I set the QA1 to setting of 4 (out of 12). That was the setting QA1 suggested and it seems like a good setting for me. I need more seat time to really get more feedback but Iím a lot happier with the QA1 over the Hotchkis springs.

Iíll eventually check back in after time and update if I have any issues. It will take a while for me to rack up some mileage since I only put anywhere from 500-800 miles a year on the car.
Attached Images
               
__________________
-2010 Camaro 2SS | M6 | VR w/White Stripes | 1 3/4" KOOKS - 3" Magnaflow | LPE 3.91 gears | ADM tuned | Halltech w/ADM Scoop | Spohn/BMR Trailing Arm/Toe Rod | BC Coilovers| Pedders FE4 ZL1 swaybars | Cradle/Diff/Radius Rod bushings | VMax TB | Morimoto Projectors | MGW shifter | Red Calipers
Build Journal
caverman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-27-2013, 09:47 PM   #2
caverman


 
caverman's Avatar
 
Drives: '69 SS Convertible
Join Date: May 2009
Location: DFW, TX
Posts: 7,062
Here are pictures from the install.
Attached Images
            
__________________
-2010 Camaro 2SS | M6 | VR w/White Stripes | 1 3/4" KOOKS - 3" Magnaflow | LPE 3.91 gears | ADM tuned | Halltech w/ADM Scoop | Spohn/BMR Trailing Arm/Toe Rod | BC Coilovers| Pedders FE4 ZL1 swaybars | Cradle/Diff/Radius Rod bushings | VMax TB | Morimoto Projectors | MGW shifter | Red Calipers
Build Journal
caverman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-27-2013, 10:39 PM   #3
WiSSDiver

 
WiSSDiver's Avatar
 
Drives: 1968 Coupe, 2010 2SS
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: WIsconsin
Posts: 1,243
Man that's a nice looking 69. Great write up. Looks like you had to do a little tweaking to get them to fit. Excellent job.

I've got to spend a little more time with my old girl this year. Probably wouldn't hurt drive the 68 too. Either way, I've been spending way too much time with the 2010 and need to show the 68 some love. Just gotta convince the wife it's time to refit the 68.

Might need some pointers on that one.
__________________
WiSSDiver is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-28-2013, 08:01 AM   #4
caverman


 
caverman's Avatar
 
Drives: '69 SS Convertible
Join Date: May 2009
Location: DFW, TX
Posts: 7,062
Quote:
Originally Posted by WiSSDiver View Post
Man that's a nice looking 69. Great write up. Looks like you had to do a little tweaking to get them to fit. Excellent job.

I've got to spend a little more time with my old girl this year. Probably wouldn't hurt drive the 68 too. Either way, I've been spending way too much time with the 2010 and need to show the 68 some love. Just gotta convince the wife it's time to refit the 68.

Might need some pointers on that one.
Yep....I know what you mean about ignoring the '69. That's what's been happening to me as well. Man, the things I could've done to my '69 had I not spent the money on my 2010....Thats why I decided to spend a little money on her.

BTW: the only tweaking was for the QA1 shocks. They use a larger bolt that stock and the A-arms are designed to bolt up to stock. So, you either use the smaller stock bolts or drill out he wholes a little and use the bigger bolts that are supplied. You would probably have to do this with some of the high end arms as well and I don't fault the A-arms for this.
__________________
-2010 Camaro 2SS | M6 | VR w/White Stripes | 1 3/4" KOOKS - 3" Magnaflow | LPE 3.91 gears | ADM tuned | Halltech w/ADM Scoop | Spohn/BMR Trailing Arm/Toe Rod | BC Coilovers| Pedders FE4 ZL1 swaybars | Cradle/Diff/Radius Rod bushings | VMax TB | Morimoto Projectors | MGW shifter | Red Calipers
Build Journal
caverman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-28-2013, 08:29 AM   #5
NH 2012 SS/RS
 
NH 2012 SS/RS's Avatar
 
Drives: 2012 2SS/RS L99 IBM
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Goffstown, NH
Posts: 559
Great write up
I also used these "ebay" control arms, and was a bit concerned about the quality. I have a 1974 Olds Omega (I believe they are the same control arms, as the front sub frames are the same) I got the 2" drop.
I installed them myself and fount it easy and the fit was perfect. I also have Hooker Super Comp Headers (ceramic coated) and the drop was to much, so I installed 1" rubber spring spacers under the stock height springs.
Now I have the 1" drop and looks great.
I use mine the same, weekend cruising, car shows etc....no racing or autoX.


Name:  IMG_1956.jpg
Views: 698
Size:  178.2 KB

Name:  IMG_1957.jpg
Views: 723
Size:  109.9 KB

Name:  IMG_1959.jpg
Views: 688
Size:  93.1 KB

Name:  IMG_1960.JPG
Views: 681
Size:  258.7 KB
NH 2012 SS/RS is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-28-2013, 09:16 PM   #6
flyingskibiker
 
flyingskibiker's Avatar
 
Drives: Cars, Trucks, Bikes, ORVs, Planes
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: South SF Bay, CA
Posts: 214
Send a message via Yahoo to flyingskibiker
Well done!

Have you visited Team Camaro/camaros.net? I'm sure someone there has gone through the same thing. Great place to get info, ask questions, and get help!
__________________
1968 SS w/ 1966 427/425 Sequoia Green w/ Bumble Bee stripe. Always working on it...
Drooling over the ZL1s. It will be my next car if I can manage to pull it off...
flyingskibiker is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-28-2013, 09:21 PM   #7
caverman


 
caverman's Avatar
 
Drives: '69 SS Convertible
Join Date: May 2009
Location: DFW, TX
Posts: 7,062
Quote:
Originally Posted by flyingskibiker View Post
Well done!

Have you visited Team Camaro/camaros.net? I'm sure someone there has gone through the same thing. Great place to get info, ask questions, and get help!
Yes, I've been over there. That's where I got some info about them. I also read the controversy over them as well. Kind of like the overseas header stuff on this forum. That's why I decided to post a thread. Alot of people bash them but they have no proof or any threads showing where they've failed or didn't work.

There actually very little about the install of QA1 coilovers as well. So, I plan to post a little info about that as well.
__________________
-2010 Camaro 2SS | M6 | VR w/White Stripes | 1 3/4" KOOKS - 3" Magnaflow | LPE 3.91 gears | ADM tuned | Halltech w/ADM Scoop | Spohn/BMR Trailing Arm/Toe Rod | BC Coilovers| Pedders FE4 ZL1 swaybars | Cradle/Diff/Radius Rod bushings | VMax TB | Morimoto Projectors | MGW shifter | Red Calipers
Build Journal
caverman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-30-2013, 01:30 AM   #8
flyingskibiker
 
flyingskibiker's Avatar
 
Drives: Cars, Trucks, Bikes, ORVs, Planes
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: South SF Bay, CA
Posts: 214
Send a message via Yahoo to flyingskibiker
Cool.
__________________
1968 SS w/ 1966 427/425 Sequoia Green w/ Bumble Bee stripe. Always working on it...
Drooling over the ZL1s. It will be my next car if I can manage to pull it off...
flyingskibiker is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-30-2013, 08:03 PM   #9
Synner


 
Drives: 2011 2SS/RS M6
Join Date: May 2011
Location: VA
Posts: 3,201
Only thing I see is the welds don't look very consistent. But if you're not racing or putting a ton of miles on I doubt you'd have an issue. But considering my welds look like they were done by Ray Charles during withdrawal I can't hold it against anyone.
Synner is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-31-2013, 10:50 AM   #10
caverman


 
caverman's Avatar
 
Drives: '69 SS Convertible
Join Date: May 2009
Location: DFW, TX
Posts: 7,062
Quote:
Originally Posted by Synner View Post
Only thing I see is the welds don't look very consistent. But if you're not racing or putting a ton of miles on I doubt you'd have an issue. But considering my welds look like they were done by Ray Charles during withdrawal I can't hold it against anyone.
Which brand of arms did you use?
__________________
-2010 Camaro 2SS | M6 | VR w/White Stripes | 1 3/4" KOOKS - 3" Magnaflow | LPE 3.91 gears | ADM tuned | Halltech w/ADM Scoop | Spohn/BMR Trailing Arm/Toe Rod | BC Coilovers| Pedders FE4 ZL1 swaybars | Cradle/Diff/Radius Rod bushings | VMax TB | Morimoto Projectors | MGW shifter | Red Calipers
Build Journal
caverman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-01-2013, 02:34 PM   #11
Synner


 
Drives: 2011 2SS/RS M6
Join Date: May 2011
Location: VA
Posts: 3,201
I mean my own personal welding skills. I do exhaust brackets for bikes, headlight mounts, repairs and crap like that. Its a little Hobart 140 but works on 120V wherever I move to with no need to put in a 220 line. I really want to get a tank and start doing stainless but I move too much and the movers won't touch the tanks. Plus I need to improve my skills before wasting expensive metal but I work too much.

You could always strip them, touch up the welds, and recoat them if the scratches bother you at some point. You'd still be under half price of most. I had a 77 Z28 I restored but had to sell to pay the bills. As soon as I get out of the military I'll be finding something 1st/2nd gen to restore again.
Synner is offline   Reply With Quote
 
Reply

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 10:37 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.