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Old 05-25-2010, 10:37 AM
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67 El Camino - Drag Link

I need some ideas.

Rebuilding the front suspension on my 67 El Camino.
The drag link I bought (from a parts depot) doesn't fit.

The link binds against the "shoehorn" on the front crossmember when I mount it up to the idler arm and pitman arm.

All of the ball studs for the arms and tie rods are correct size.

I noticed that the replacment link has more drop in the middle section than the link I took off the car.

Any ideas?

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Old 05-25-2010, 12:20 PM
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First of all that isn't the "drag link" it's the "center link" there is no "Drag link" on this car.

Now, I have just replaced two of those center links on A bodies in the past few months. I had to kinda wrestle them in, but both worked fine. Bought on from a local parts store, the other from "rareparts" in Sacramento Ca.

Is there any posibility you have it upside down? I forget if that is even possible, but maybe?

There is VERY little room to that crossmember so anything out of whack and it's going to hit that is for sure.

If it's the wrong part, it's the wrong part.

Come to think of it, on the early A body I seriously doubt a regular parts store is going to have it, probably for a later model car.

Brian
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Old 05-26-2010, 03:31 PM
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Brian,

Yes it is a center link. "Drag" link is often used incorrectly, I use it because I like drag racing.

I double checked and it definitely doesn't fit. Compared with the one that came off the car and another one given to me (neither is serviceable); there is a noticeable difference in the amount of drop from the ball studs to the bottom of the bar in the middle. Also on both of the other links, the drop is slightly angled forward which improves clearance at the "horn" on the front crossmember. Another difference is the length from ball stud to ball stud, the link I removed from the car is shorter than the new replacement link, which is in turn shorter than the other link I have.

I checked and NAPA has one for $126, I also found one with PST and with a discount from Team Chevelle, I got it for $117 with free shipping. I've got my fingers crossed.

Looking at these,it would seem that they are formed from 7/8" bar with tubes welded at the ends for the ball studs. The bends, angles, and distances are not constructed to tight tolerances, which except for clearing the crossmember is not significant since the tie rods adjust to make up the difference.
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Old 05-26-2010, 04:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by starnest
Brian,

Yes it is a center link. "Drag" link is often used incorrectly, I use it because I like drag racing.

I double checked and it definitely doesn't fit. Compared with the one that came off the car and another one given to me (neither is serviceable); there is a noticeable difference in the amount of drop from the ball studs to the bottom of the bar in the middle. Also on both of the other links, the drop is slightly angled forward which improves clearance at the "horn" on the front crossmember. Another difference is the length from ball stud to ball stud, the link I removed from the car is shorter than the new replacement link, which is in turn shorter than the other link I have.

I checked and NAPA has one for $126, I also found one with PST and with a discount from Team Chevelle, I got it for $117 with free shipping. I've got my fingers crossed.

Looking at these,it would seem that they are formed from 7/8" bar with tubes welded at the ends for the ball studs. The bends, angles, and distances are not constructed to tight tolerances, which except for clearing the crossmember is not significant since the tie rods adjust to make up the difference.
When I checked (and with a pretty good parts man) at NAPA they had nothing and I had to go to RAREPARTS. That price sounds aweful cheap!

Brian
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Old 06-02-2010, 03:52 PM
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I'll try to post some pics tomorrow to show the old and new center links, as well as the idler and pitman arms as installed.

Hope somebody spots something I can fix.

I got the new center link form PST and it is identical to the other "new" link I have.

I have checked the chevelles.com site and it turns out that this problem is not that uncommon. Saw threads for this problem with 66-67 Chevelles/El Caminos as well as the later Chevelles/El Caminos.

What was missing was a definitive answer to the problem. Some cures included moving the idler arm and steering box mounting combined with grinding a bit off the center link and the frame horn to get the clearance. Others involved heating and BFH on the frame horn to get the clearance needed.

I'm thinking the real problem is the change in shape/size of the replacement center links. Anybody have a real Moog p/n DS740 center link?
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Old 06-02-2010, 04:13 PM
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I'll try to get the part number from the link I put on my Gran Sport and post it tonight.

Brian
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Old 06-03-2010, 01:35 PM
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I posted pics of the old center link installed and pics of the new center link, etc in my project journal.

I didn't post them here.

Any ideas are welcome.
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Old 06-24-2010, 01:54 PM
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I'm still trying to sort out the center link problem.

I've now tried three different center links for 67 chevelle, all will not fit. I also tried the 69 chevelle center link (it has smaller ball studs), still no joy.

I'm now questioning if I have the right steering box and pitman arm.

Please look at my journal and give me some ideas.
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