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Discussion Starter #1
I'm in the process of rebuilding the front suspension and steering on my 115 Giulia. I have the suspension mostly taken apart, am almost ready to place a parts order, and am looking for feedback on suppliers.

For A-arm bushings, OKP has two versions, one more expensive than the other, P/Ns AR 50 003 009 and AR 50 003 008. The former more-expensive version claims to be "OEM quality exclusive for OKP made in Italy." Classic Alfa sells one version, which appears in photos very similar to the less-expensive version from OKP.

As far as lower ball joints, OKP has one version that claims to be "OEM quality made in Italy." Classic Alfa's offering looks very similar from photo and description.

And for non-adjustable upper control arms and caster joints, the offerings from OKP and Classic Alfa look similar, and neither makes claims as far as origin.

I'm looking to buy the best I can find (within reason) both for steering/suspension feel and longevity. (As a point of reference, I purchased Lemforder tie rod ends early in the project because Classic Alfa claims there's only a finite number remaining in the universe.)

Does anyone have experience with these sources, or have other recommendations?

Thanks,

Logan
 

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I like the OKParts quality! From other suppliers, make sure that you get NO parts made by FRAP. Pure junk.
 

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The cheaper ones which are Akron brand are slightly bigger. Even after freezing the Akron ones it was hard to get them in.

Get the more expensive lower a arm bushings. They should be made to the Lemforder specs. Its only 28.00 more on a set of the more expensive ones.

Unless you can find NOS Lemforder for the upper arm and lower ball joint. You will more then likely get Frap' brand.

Also 2 more lower a arm bushings and replace the inner bushing on the upper arm with them. Thats what Alfa used until 1969.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Classic Alfa recommends replacing the rubber caster bushing in the upper arm with poly for longevity. Anybody have experience with this? I'm more interested in nice stock ride than racecar-like reflexes, and don't want to add harshness. On the other hand, if poly will likely improve longevity without added harshness, I'll consider it.

(FWIW, the tie rod ends that came off the car are a mix of TRW and FRAP. They all have seen better days.)
 

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The caster bushing is the bushing closer to the ball joint.
 

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Certainly buy the best quality parts that you can. I just replaced the six Frap tie rod ends on my '88 Spider after 12 years and 80k miles. Excessive play in the steering motivated the new parts. While not great durability by modern standards, my experience with Frap has not been as bad as reported by some folks here.

I agree with the recommendation to use polyurethane at the forked end of the caster arms. I think I installed the Superflex bushings on the Spider in 2011. No noticeable harshness or other issues.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
@Jim G -- Right, replacing the caster bushings with poly would be in addition to replacing the inner bushings with the lower A-arm type. The latter makes sense, but I'm not sure about the former.
 

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I had FRAP ball joints that failed quickly. I did another rebuild a few years ago and Jason at Alfissimo was able to source some of better quality. I avoid using FRAP if possible. Andy Kress at Performatek may be able to get some of the parts that you need and he only sells good stuff. He has good quality poly bushings for the inner end of the control arm and the caster arm. Give him a call and have an interesting conversation about your options.
 

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The caster bushing just absorbs for and aft motion. It won't change the feel of the ride. Unlike how main suspension bushing can.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
@ Jim G: Question about replacing the upper arm inner bushing with a lower-a-arm-type bushing: The latter comes with a single plastic (formerly felt) washer to keep out dirt and water on the inner side of the a-arm. For the upper arm, did you fab or source a second washer for each side, or just discard the washer? (Upper arm inner bushing seems to be in a generally cleaner and drier spot than the lower a-arms, so maybe washers aren't needed.)
 

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You don't need to use the washers when you put the a arm bushing in the upper arm.
 
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