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Discussion Starter #1
This weekend was going well, enjoying the new engine in the '66, went down to a friends house to pick up my TKO which I'm trading for a 700r4 for the Elco. Packed it all up, strapped it down in the bed and headed home.

I got fifty feet when this happened.







I talked to Jeff Smith at Car Craft, he says believe it or not this isnt all that uncommon with early a-bodies, it almost happened to him, only he saw the crack on his lower a-arm before it had a chance to fail like mine.

So if you have an older elco, with the original 40+ year old control arms, it might not be a bad idea to just crawl under and inspect for cracks around your ball joint.

A friend told me, man if you didnt have bad luck you'd have no luck at all....the way I look at it, I had tons of luck, it happened at less than a mile per hour - the only body damage was the already poor chrome trim, if this had happened on the freeway at 70+ mph - I could be a dead man.
 

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WOW x2 good to hear your ok. sounds like you had just enough luck any more this would have never happen
 

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Glad that you're safe..............

:poke: Maybe this will be a message to all of us driving classic cars. We should inspect the front suspension regularly if it hasn't been replaced in the past few years - and not just the A-Frames. Check all of the ball-joints and bolted connections. Be Safe - Not Sorry.............................Ken :poke:
 

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Wow! Bad luck. Was there fender damage? It looks like you have some trim damage there.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Trim damage yes, no obvious exterior sheetmetal damage though the first photo hints as some possible distortion, the wheelhousing took a good rub but doesnt appear damaged otherwise
 

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Man,I'm glad your ok and no seirous damage to your Elky and you.

:beer:
 

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VINTAGE MOTORHEAD
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Glad you were so fortunate. I"ll take your advice by washing and "eyeballing" my A arms.
 

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Yeah you know it happens more than we think. A few years ago I was driving my son's 2001 blazer back from the parts store. Stopped at light and as soon as I pulled away the front left fell to the ground. Broken ball joint. So yeah, check everything you and your loved ones drive!
 

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I've made it a habit to do a once over, top to bottom, on the vehicle I'm washing, the cruck, suburban, bike, whatever. It's amazing what you notice when you know what it should look like and the next time you see it, it looks 'funny'.

Glad you weren't hurt or the cruck!
 

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Wow, I've never seen that one before, sure glad it happened and low speed. I think I'll go with new arms when I add the cubes.:texas:
 

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Happening at low speed was definitely a blessing. You have me curious though. How do you "talk to Jeff Smith"? Do you know him personally? I remember him from Chevy High, and was sad to see him go. I always enjoyed reading any thing he wrote, he is as down to earth as it gets. If you look up "car guy" in the dictionary, it should have his picture.
 

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Similar incident happened to me. For me, it was also a ball joint failure... and I was lucky I had nearly come to a full stop for a red light. I was about 100 yards from my destination too.
 

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My front end rebuild just moved to the top of my list!
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Happening at low speed was definitely a blessing. You have me curious though. How do you "talk to Jeff Smith"? Do you know him personally? I remember him from Chevy High, and was sad to see him go. I always enjoyed reading any thing he wrote, he is as down to earth as it gets. If you look up "car guy" in the dictionary, it should have his picture.
Met him years ago through a friend, he went to Hot August Nights with me and some friends last year, in fact we fly out to minneapolis on thursday for the Car Craft Summer nationals to help him with Real street eliminator events. He's helped me out on my elco with tips and advice aplenty.

I couldnt agree more with your assessment of Jeff :)
 

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I just happened to be under the truck taking off some lights and looked up at a support for the back of the tranny and the center bolt the nut was coming off time to go back under and look at everything. That's the one part of my truck I never think of.:neutral2:
 
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