View Full Version : Johnny Joints

03-08-2008, 07:15 AM
I was looking at these joints for my rear control arms. I have a 64 Bonneville with a GM four link rear end.

-Is it possible to use them at both ends of the control arm?

-Is it best to use them on all four rear control arms?

Thank you,

Bruning Auto Design
03-08-2008, 09:38 AM
the pictures you posted aren't johnny joints... I have johnny joints w/1.25" shafts on my rockcrawler project. I'm sure they will work fine (probably overkill) on your link setup, but you need to size your link material to the threaded bungs available for the joint. How much misalignment do you need? I would think bushings (like you posted above) would work out great since you aren't building your link setup for maximum articulation.

You can get left hand and right hand joints and threaded weld-in bungs... They are nice quality joints- greasable, rebuildable, etc....

The link material is beefy - 2.25" .375 wall DOM


Bruning Auto Design
03-08-2008, 09:43 AM
Other bushings options that are adjustable...

Something like this on one end and a standard bushing on the other end of the joint This should give you more than enough adjustability considering the length of the link. Hope this helps answer your question...


03-08-2008, 01:19 PM
Thanks for the responses.
I didn't see the weld-in bungs.
I posted the photos to give an idea of what I'm working with. The Lowers I have are called Indian Adventures Ground Grabbers and are made up of Poly and Solid bushings, they are cracking at the solid joints after 20,000 miles.
The black smaller arms are my uppers, the Energy Suspension poly bushings in them are sloppy after 20,000 miles. The uppers seem to be beat up worse then the lowers.
Our terrain here is very demanding on suspensions and brakes!

I'm thinking it will be less expensive to just buy (8) J-Joints (4) right handed and (4) left handed thread and couple them with 1-1/4" Rigid Conduit couplings. My big Pontiac 462 is a torque monster especially with the 4 speed hydros 3.97 first gear and 2000 stall.

Its a nice enjoyable winter project.

03-08-2008, 01:37 PM
And thanks for the links!

03-08-2008, 07:07 PM
....and thread and couple them with 1-1/4" Rigid Conduit couplings. is that what I think you are saying? What is the wall thickness on said "Conduit couplings" ?

03-08-2008, 09:55 PM
I'm going to use the threaded bungs in my existing control arms, Speedway has them.

I may try these from Ballistic for the rectangler lowers.

03-08-2008, 10:59 PM
there you go, much better.

You know the metal to make a correct lower link wouldn't be too much. What is the total link length?

03-09-2008, 05:37 AM
The lower control arm is 22-1/2" hole to hole. The upper is 12-3/4" hole to hole.

03-09-2008, 10:53 AM
You can also buy custom length chromoly links for the ultimate in strength and slightly less weight depending on the wall thickness you specify. The rockcrawling crowd has some cool stuff to offer...it may be worth giving PolyPerformance a call.



03-09-2008, 11:12 AM
yeah you can easily make those with either 4130 if you can tig weld or 1 1/4" DOM.

Another option is pre fabbed swedge steel links from Colemans, very strong and no fabrication required. Just measure with the JJ's taken into account. 3/4" tap threaded steel: http://www.colemanracing.com/catalog/index.php?cPath=49_723
Swedged 3/4" tap threaded steel: http://www.colemanracing.com/catalog/index.php?cPath=49_725

So you have many options in front of you. Including the options you listed. I like the square tube threded inserts.

03-09-2008, 03:22 PM
Thanks for the links, I really appreciate the help!

03-11-2008, 06:08 PM
With a Johnny Joint/ Poly control arm which end should the Johnny Joint be on the rear end or the frame?

03-11-2008, 09:22 PM
poly frame side.

03-13-2008, 05:38 AM
I was wondering why the old solid bushing control arms have these brackets to lower the rear control arms. They have two mounting locations, top for automatics and bottom for stick shift 61-64 Pontiacs.
I'm removing them but I was just wondering why.

03-13-2008, 09:20 PM
That would be an extension to lower the rear control arm mount for lower than stock vehicles. Adjustment to keep the lower arm parallel with the ground. After you lower the car check to see if you need it still. You might,second thought, I'd toss that bolt on unit and make yourself a weld in piece like this. http://www.umiperformance.com/4010?category_id=17

03-14-2008, 05:35 AM
I think I'm going to remove them then. My car never had any traction issues even after I swapped in the 462.
I don't like how low they can catch things on the road.
So what I want is my lowers being level with the ground when the car is down?

03-14-2008, 08:21 PM
I think I'm going to remove them then. My car never had any traction issues even after I swapped in the 462.
I don't like how low they can catch things on the road.
So what I want is my lowers being level with the ground when the car is down?

Yes, ideally they should be parallel with the ground. They should not catch anything if they are set up right. If they do you are TOO LOW. Haaaa haa

03-15-2008, 02:50 AM
Thanks lol........................

03-15-2008, 10:14 AM
BALLISTIC FAB has some great products. we have used on some off road projects

03-16-2008, 09:03 AM
The Ballistic joint looks like a well made joint.

04-06-2008, 02:49 PM
Well I just installed the new rear control arms and wow what a difference!
My car rides so nice and smooth now and when I open up my 500ft lb 462 it goes straight. Its very comfortable and predictable to drive now. Its amazing how much rear control arms matter........

BMF Machine
04-06-2008, 04:50 PM
YikeS; Please put some wheel chalks under the front end?

04-07-2008, 04:32 AM
Heavy duty American made Snap On jack stands don't move and 64 Pontiac's don't have locking steering wheels........................

04-07-2008, 04:43 AM
You definitely chock when you've got the rear end on jackstands (as in the pic here) and nothing preventing the car from rolling forward except for those jackstands though.

Bruning Auto Design
04-07-2008, 09:35 AM
I don't know where you got your info, but you never chalk wheels when jacking a car with a floor jack on roller wheels! The car has to be able to move around.

chock the front wheels once you get the car up in the air and on jack stands... best of both worlds...

links look good :cool:

04-07-2008, 10:20 AM
Well I just installed the new rear control arms and wow what a difference!

what did you end up using? did you build them yourself?

04-07-2008, 05:57 PM
I used my old poly arms, I had 3" threaded bungs made and welded in by a buddy. Then I ran a #8 3/8" bolt and nut through the arms at the bung and JJ stud to lock them up. I don't like the lock nut deal.
What's nice is the ride is so much smoother. Those polys were really binding.

06-20-2008, 04:09 AM
Just a follow up.
The new rear control arms with the Johnny Joints now have about 5,000 miles on them, they are without a doubt one of the best moves I ever made on this car. They keep all the torque from my 462 in a nice manageable straight line.

06-20-2008, 06:58 PM
Hi Jeff, thanks for the update. Is that picture at ride height?

06-21-2008, 03:49 AM
Vince yes its at ride height.