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I recently got my cougar back (long story) and had 3-4 boxes of assorted parts in the back seat upon arrival.

Among these, was a brand new (assuming repop) idler arm. I know the car has play in the steering wheel and likes to randomly go left or right while going down the road a bit, so figured it couldn't hurt to swap this part out since all it would cost is my time.

Question is.... can I do it by myself??? I've never replaced anything steering related. I do have decent mechanical aptitude, so I think I could figure it out. But, before jumping into something I'd like to ask yall if there will be any unforseen issues.

Any special tools? Anyone strongly agree that I don't attempt this? Link to a walkthrough?

Thanks in advance!

It doesnt seem to want to upload the picture, so here's a link the the part on ebay in case you were curious. IDLER ARM
 

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Discussion Starter #2
After looking into this quite a bit, it looks like it's just a matter of separating one ball joint and taking off the 2 bolts and 1 nut. Easy enough.

I'll let yall know if anything abnormal happens :p
 

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It's pretty straight forward, remove the carter pin, then the castle nut, the two bolts holding it to the frame and that's it. No ball joints involved.
Edit, when you put it back, make sure your wheels are straight before you tighten up the crown nut.
 

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Carlton,

What's a carter pin? :buck: :1poke:
 

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Get to the point. He meant the cotter pin.
 

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Im happy to see this post, i changed the bushings in mine, never did find out from the forums (haven't reinstalled since) the torque on the castle nut. i found it somewhere and tightened before putting away till ready to reinstall,
i read the "be sure the wheels are pointing straight ahead when you install" what is the correct torque for this nut. I beleive i tightened mine to the proper torque and it makes it unpivotable by hand, i mean feels like im going to tear the rubber free of the bushing its fused into- im assuming that why they say install/wheels straight ahead before tightening.
 

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Im happy to see this post, i changed the bushings in mine, never did find out from the forums (haven't reinstalled since) the torque on the castle nut. i found it somewhere and tightened before putting away till ready to reinstall,
i read the "be sure the wheels are pointing straight ahead when you install" what is the correct torque for this nut. I beleive i tightened mine to the proper torque and it makes it unpivotable by hand, i mean feels like im going to tear the rubber free of the bushing its fused into- im assuming that why they say install/wheels straight ahead before tightening.
When tightened, part of the rubber bushing stays stationary, and the inside twist when turning.This helps the wheels come back to center.
 

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Does anyone know what the torque setting is on the nut? I have to change mine today!


John
 

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Idler arm to frame 30to40 ft. lbs, Idler arm to pitman arm 50to70 ft. lbs. Torque to low limit, then tighten the nut to nearest cotter pin slot and insert cotter pin.
 

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Idler arm to frame 30to40 ft. lbs, Idler arm to pitman arm 50to70 ft. lbs. Torque to low limit, then tighten the nut to nearest cotter pin slot and insert cotter pin.
Thanks!!!

John
 

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Well, I got it done, but for the life of me, I can't get the cotter pin in the frame end! Whoever designed the 'stud' part, designed it perfectly to where the hole completely lines up with the frame! I think I have it bent enough to be OK, but would like it to be in, and bent more. I imagine the only thing left to do, is take it apart again at the center link, and move the arm to one side. I tried turning the wheels both ways, lock to lock, and it doesn't seem to move! It's always got to be something!

Because of the bolts going through the frame, to the connector piece, I also couldn't torque the castle nut on the frame end. I just got it as tight as I could. Honestly, I think that's what was wrong with the old one, it wasn't tightened enough in the first place! I didn't need the pickle fork for either end, they both came right off!

John
 
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