Top link bush replacement - results?

Tor

Active Member
#1
Hi all,
Would love to hear from some of you who have replaced the front top link bushes (for OE spec reman or NOS Metalastik ones), how the car felt afterwards, compared to before?
I’ve never driven one with recent ones on it, except a project car I looked at once. It felt strikingly responsive to steer but I’m unsure if it also had a small steering wheel fitted and thus lied to me
I can add that I have a set of NOS bushes waiting. Since too long now.
Regards to all,
Tor
 
#2
The top link's mounting on the bulkhead seems to be a major path for road noise into the cabin, which seems louder nowadays than I remember it being when the cars were younger. This suggests the bushes harden with age. So it would be very interesting to know how much quieter, if at all, the P6 becomes with new bushes, as well as how the chassis dynamics change.
 

Tor

Active Member
#3
So it would be very interesting to know how much quieter, if at all, the P6 becomes with new bushes, as well as how the chassis dynamics change.
That’s of interest to me as well. I was thinking whether a simple rubber cup could be used on the bulkhead end of the spring to reduce some of it, but maybe the bracket mounting points are the main points of noise transmission.
 

cobraboy

Well-Known Member
#4
I run solid nylon in those bushes and can report that they do transmit noise into the cabin, although it is not excessive, they are not however the miracle cure to sharp handling. If I could turn up a full set of NOS Metalastik I would go back to those.
I tried using a rubber cup from the rear springs under the front spring mount at the bulkhead but I had to remove it as it would not stay in place.
 

Tor

Active Member
#5
I tried using a rubber cup from the rear springs under the front spring mount at the bulkhead but I had to remove it as it would not stay in place.
Thanks, that’s helpful. Did it help with noise at all or did you never get to drive the car?
 

cobraboy

Well-Known Member
#6
Thanks, that’s helpful. Did it help with noise at all or did you never get to drive the car?
I drove it, but a limited distance, I don't think insulating that area made much difference. I was testing a lot of things in that area, it was the time I made a link to triangulate the bellcrank to try to solve steering issues under braking.
I am used to the nylon now, but I recall the first drive out noticing the increased road noise, so it is highly probable that old hard rubber bushes will transmit more noise than new compliant ones.
 

PeterZRH

Well-Known Member
#7
The top link's mounting on the bulkhead seems to be a major path for road noise into the cabin, which seems louder nowadays than I remember it being when the cars were younger. This suggests the bushes harden with age.
And it might suggest we are used to quieter cars. My 3500 felt fast back the day. It doesn't now. But yes it's reasonable to suggest this is the case. We know from P7 onwards they were looking at completely changing the front suspension due to both camber limitations and I'm expecting NVH.
 

Tor

Active Member
#8
I’m a bit surprised hearing about bushes going harder with age, given how the rear suspension ones were disintegrating and the fact that the car feels positively squishy in low-speed turn-in and less than precise at speed. Except when it’s freezing outside! Then, for about twenty minutes until there is some heat transfer into the bulkhead area, I love driving the thing :LOL:
 

SydneyRoverP6B

Well-Known Member
Staff member
#9
Hi Tor,

I have completely replaced all front and indeed rear suspension bushes twice in my Rover. I replaced the factory fitted originals in 1990 at circa 90,000 miles (145,000km) with NOS Metalastic bushes, except for the ball end bush, that was a remanufactured Australian item. I replaced the fronts again in 2017 at circa 358,000 miles (576,000km), again with NOS Metalastic, except for ball end (bush inside the spring cup) and the outer cone bushes. The former was a remanufactured bush made in Australia, vastly better than the Metalastic original in terms of longevity, the latter were from J.R. Wadhams. It feels a touch softer as the rubbers have more give, not hardened and distorted with age and their working environment. I promise that you won't be disappointed with the result once you have changed them.

Ron.
 

Tor

Active Member
#10
It feels a touch softer as the rubbers have more give
Thanks Ron. Have you noted any improvement to steering response? And, are you running any PU bushes anywhere now? Asking this as @chrisyork has recommended them on the front control arms (not the top links). Mine are OEM, replaced in 2012 with minimal mileage on them.
 

SydneyRoverP6B

Well-Known Member
Staff member
#11
Pleasure Tor. Yes, when the top link bushes deteriorate with age, the steering camber will change and the tyres will start to wear unevenly. Once replaced, the steering feels much sharper as the camber is back where it should be.

No, I have never used PU bushes, and I agree with Chris York. For the front lower links, (control arms), I too would think that they would be quite good.

In that case, yours will be perfectly good for many years to come!!

Ron
 
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