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3-Bolt Ball-Joint Versions and related info... a more definitive guide.

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  • 3-Bolt Ball-Joint Versions and related info... a more definitive guide.

    This may serve to provide a single location for photos, illustrations, P/N's, and discussion of the subject differences, tips and related info necessary in understanding effective ball-joint functioning. Some of this may also be helpful if one is either trying to match or replace a joint or two; or trying to achieve a particular joint off-set, wheel position and / or caster angle.

    Note the part numbers included here are, to the best of my knowledge correct, but please double-check them for yourself.

    1) This photo's OEM bits show the front axle's stock forged-arm and joint arrangement from above, looking down at the top-sides, and note the front of the car would be towards the top of the photo:

    A-arms, cast, with ball-joints attached 2019-04-30 at 22.41.27.png


    2) This (A1QShip's) photo of the two later raised ball and more bent styles (these are LH side parts) which attempts to show the slightly different pin offsets between two nearly but not identical joints:

    image_74620.png
    I believe the P/N's for the B3 Sedan (LH item in above photo) are 895 407 365 (LH); and 366 (RH).


    3) These show the B4 type (less offset, more caster) (P/N's 895 407 365A (LH); and 366A (RH).):

    Ball-joint 895 407 365A, bent type, inside view 2019-05-23 at 23.12.57.png Ball-joint 366A, bent type, top view 2019-05-23 at 23.47.04.pngBall-joint 366A, bent type, bottom view 2019-05-23 at 23.51.05.png


    4) These photos show the single type of earlier flat style, note also serrations present, and that the pin offset may be as per the joint shown in the photo at 2) above, on the right (the B4 Cab style) i.e.: the pin centered on the aft slot center-line? P/N's 8A0 407 365 (LH); and 366 (RH).

    Screen Shot 2019-05-23 at 14.45.17.pngScreen Shot 2019-05-23 at 14.48.07.png Ball-joint 365 flat, underside 2019-05-23 at 23.26.54.pngBall-joint 365, flat type, top view 2019-05-23 at 23.37.55.png Ball-joint, early flat, drwg & dimensions.png


    5) The flat style also appears to hold the ball of the joint at a lower height, perhaps this and the lack of buttressing indicates it is originally meant for the welded arm?

    Screen Shot 2019-05-23 at 14.53.11.png Ball-joint 895 407 365 flat style, in profile.png


    6) This photo (Stevieyid's) below shows how the A-arm has the joint fastened to its' underside (and perhaps an original (super-ceeded by the serrated on bottom lock-nuts IIRC?) spacer-plate(?) under the nuts):

    image_74621.png


    7) Plates, Lock & Spacer: For the older original fasteners, this is the lock-plate (8A0 407 175); followed by the above mentioned spacer-plate (895 407 203):

    SWAG Securing Plate, ball joint 32 78 0022.pngSWAG 30 91 9569 Securing Plate, ball joint.png


    8) Nuts 'n bolts:
    - Older: Graded hex-headed bolts with washers and lock-nuts or the OEM splined studs in the lock-plate and a spacer plate under the nuts (both shown above); & plain all-metal lock-nuts; or
    - Newer: Splined studs (silver/green zinc plated); & serrated on bottom flanged all-metal lock-nuts:

    Originally posted by Lago Blue
    Re: Ball-joint to A-arm fasteners, these are the latest factory items to use with the forged arms.

    a) Stud:

    You're question is apt as this is a proper rated stud (it is listed in your link also); and as discussed above, splined and pressed in. To expand that just a bit, you can press them out of or into place in situ (with a nut installed, an old socket and a C-clamp) if the arm-holes are clean, anti-seized and the splines lined up:

    Screen Shot 2019-01-01 at 21.01.06.png

    This (ECS Tuning) photo shows the original ( P/N: 893 407 745 A ) with the VAG galv. coating. But functionally they are not strictly an Audi item and you will find non VAG non-galv equivalents such as:

    https://www.s2forum.com/forum/techni...78#post1273478

    You may want to coat them with tar after the install to protect them.


    b) Nut:

    These exact original flanged and radial-ribbed on the flange face (also ECS photo) nuts ( P/N: N 902 856 02 ) are harder to find as they are perhaps Audi 80/90/etc. specific, and usually NLA at the dealer:

    Screen Shot 2019-01-01 at 21.02.10.png

    These nuts where the subject of a TSB (IIRC?) that also eliminated the washer used under the previous nut.

    K Simmonds has mentioned this before but I can't find it just now, make sure the nuts are torqued (65Nm?) and going to seat onto clean bare or only lightly painted metal such that the nut's ribs can bite against the arm's surface. Note your alignment guy may have to move the joint.

    https://www.s2forum.com/forum/techni...74#post2039074

    Although NLA if you are determined, perhaps you may find some using the P/N.

    I did see someone say these should only be done up with the weight on the wheels but I don't agree that it would be correct to wait till then. I do them up before that.

    The substitutes I've seen don't have the ribs on the flange.


    9) The part numbers for all six ball-joints (the 3 above types, LH & RH of each) and a few more P/N's (thanks to GlynRS2):

    ETKA re ball-joints 1.pngETKA re ball-joints 2.png


    10) Best tip: From JariP:
    (https://www.s2forum.com/forum/techni...16#post1255516)

    "It might not be about counterfit parts. Many times the problem seems to be that the joint is bone dry and the only small bit of grease is high up in the boot and the joint will wear out before getting any lubrication. You really have to open up the boot and have a look inside before installing the parts. I found this out when I started having problems with tie rod ends lasting less than a years worth of driving. I bought three rod ends, expensive "known good" one, mid priced one and the cheapest one. I took off the protective rubber boots and all of them were the same. Small bit of grease high up in the boot and bone dry joint. So I put more grease in the joint and moved it around to spread it, put the boot back on and installed the rod end. This was some years ago and I haven't had any problems with tie rod ends after that."

    I'll come back and revisit this again later.
    Last edited by Lago Blue; 2nd June 2019, 00:40.

  • #2
    Great project to document the subtle but important differences.

    Didn't know that B4 versions had more caster than the B3. I should know this by now, but any issue using them on a B3 Cq, at least up front?
    Find me on Instagram @pry4sno
    2010 Golf Sportwagen TDI /// Wifey Mobile
    1992 80q 20v /// Eventual AAN'd Winter Sled
    1990 Cq /// Project: Because Racecar

    Comment


    • #3
      Hi Dustin,

      Thanks, but know that I'm approaching an age that I need an aide-mémoire myself!

      And yes sir, I didn't know either till planning for the swap to forged-arms on the front of the CQ some years ago, and thought I should use some new joints; and faintly remembered reading someone else's write-up.
      So I'm just passing it on. Picked the B4s and quite happy with them. I"m blissfully unaware of any issues so far but happy to hear of others' experience.

      The above could use some help with a couple more photos & P/Ns which will get done eventually.

      Comment


      • #4
        Thanks for adding the info. Really useful.
        Greg

        S2Forum.com Administrator & Webmaster

        '93 Coupe with a few tweeks

        Comment


        • #5
          You are welcome sir. It's more useful to have it all in one spot rather than spread throughout the over 30K posts of "Suspension and Steering". Greg, perhaps the Admin. folk could please remove the word "Style" from the title at some point, as it would just read a little better?

          Update: Title edited, thank you mods/admins.
          Last edited by Lago Blue; 5th June 2019, 04:50.

          Comment


          • #6
            you can use the CQ (b3) or B4 front (forged) control amr on the rear, but you either have to swap the arm orientation and/or use the more centered ball-joint

            B4 cab and B4 90 FWD had the same forged CA and Ball-joint (in the usa, since it had the forged arm)


            #5 is for the stamped front arm with 3 bolt ball-joint

            #6 the arm is forged not casted

            Aaron covered it here few years ago:
            https://www.motorgeek.com/viewtopic....R6Q97DL9dSQ3ZQ

            On my urq w forged rear ca i had to use a more centered BJ
            sigpic

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Lago Blue View Post
              5) The flat style also appears to hold the ball of the joint at a lower height, perhaps this and the lack of buttressing indicates it is originally meant for the welded arm?
              Flat style ball joints are used only with the pressed sheet metal wishbones and "reinforcecd" ball joints are only used with casted wishbones.




              Originally posted by varia View Post
              #6 the arm is forged not casted
              The wishbones are made from cast iron and they are casted.
              I don't know where this info comes that they are forged. Even ETKA says they are casted.

              Last edited by M2ki; 25th May 2019, 17:16.
              1989 Audi 80 Quattro
              1994 Audi 80 Quattro Competition

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by M2ki View Post

                Flat style ball joints are used only with the pressed sheet metal wishbones and "reinforcecd" ball joints are only used with casted wishbones.





                The wishbones are made from cast iron and they are casted.
                I don't know where this info comes that they are forged. Even ETKA says they are casted.


                its ok, they are forged. otherwise they wouldnt bend but snap.
                sigpic

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                • #9
                  Cast iron wouldn’t last 5 minutes
                  Panthero Coupé quattro 20vt
                  Indigo ABY coupé
                  Imola B6 S4 Avant

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Why would they snap? Lots of cars have cast iron wishbones.
                    https://www.1aauto.com/content/articles/control-arms
                    1989 Audi 80 Quattro
                    1994 Audi 80 Quattro Competition

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Meanwhile, back at the ball-joint...

                      The forging press is really heating up! (I don't mind at all, happy to see some discussion) I would bet though that the ball-joints are forged versus cast (look at how thin they are), and some of the reasons why would be:

                      Audi 90 ball-joint, in profile.png

                      - forging does good things to metal structure which markedly improves its' strength, on the order of 25% or more for steel, it also minimizes material defects due to impurities, so for both of those reasons you can slim down the design, and use less raw material;

                      - pounding alloyed steel into its' desired finished shape comes from a time-honoured tradition of hand-hammering that has long allowed old swords and knives etc. to be light, thin, flexible and have a higher yield, fatigue and tensile strength than cast can ever be made to reach; and

                      - when you are making a gazilion of something, there are manufacturing cost savings to be had when you can make it in as few steps as possible such as by forging. To have it come out of the forge press pretty much done finish-wise, to size and with very little waste material to trim off, that makes the choice to forge it even more compelling.


                      This photo, although mislabelled as having cast wish-bones actually illustrates, relative to the bulk of the sub-frame (and the missing mass of all the wheel / tire / disc / caliper / and strut assembly that the arms must support), how really thin and delicate these A-arms are:

                      Front 90 sub-frame with forged arms mounted, orange mat 2.png


                      ...particularly compared to these earlier Battleship Admiral Graf Spee Edition arms, the eventual thinning of which could only be viable if one could forge the arms:

                      A-arms, forged, early large x-section.png


                      Part of the problem may be that some poor scribe may simply have had to guess how they were made and mistakenly wrote cast in ETKA. There are other errors in the factory literature, I saw either alloy or stainless A-arms listed somewhere which may not exist.


                      Perhaps the best illustration of how these arms may have been made is seeing how they can bend; and still not fail:

                      VAPs bent A-arm.png

                      A casting lacks ductility and could simply not deform anywhere near this much without failing first by cracking and breaking apart because it would be so brittle to start with.

                      Photo is from Mance's interesting post here: A little kiss-the-curb venture....

                      On a Russian forum I saw a craftsman fix a bent forged arm by carefully straightening it. That's another thing a cast part could not withstand.

                      For use as a brake disc is where one would choose cast steel, in part because ii would be so rigid, whereas you want your A-arm to bend if hit; and not snap.
                      Last edited by Lago Blue; 2nd June 2019, 00:50.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Worth noting the translations in the various parts catalogues can be pretty poor, using literally translated German at times, which oddly enough doesn't translate too well!

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Cast iron doesn't mean it is made of the same material as your frying pan.
                          Below are links to the same part, where one is made of cast iron and other is forged.
                          https://www.moogparts.eu/catalogue/3...arch_type=part
                          https://www.moogparts.eu/catalogue/3...arch_type=part
                          1989 Audi 80 Quattro
                          1994 Audi 80 Quattro Competition

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by M2ki View Post
                            Cast iron doesn't mean it is made of the same material as your frying pan.
                            Below are links to the same part, where one is made of cast iron and other is forged.
                            https://www.moogparts.eu/catalogue/3...arch_type=part
                            https://www.moogparts.eu/catalogue/3...arch_type=part
                            sometime you should use common sence and knowledge (like from trade, scoool, education) then things you read on the internet.
                            that arm is foged steel, because .....
                            the answer is this picture: https://www.s2forum.com/filedata/fet...0&d=1558840174
                            sigpic

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Okay, maybe these audi wishbones are forged.
                              But cast iron wishbones are still used and made every day and they will not snap in 5 minutes like error404 claimed.
                              1989 Audi 80 Quattro
                              1994 Audi 80 Quattro Competition

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