this is just a reference on how to remove and replace your stock upper control arms with the Total Chaos Upper Control Arms, i am NOT responsible if YOU f*ck up your own truck.
Driver side front, before i touched anything or bent any fender. stock UCA
where the bolt is now, after you loosen it, is where you will have to bend the fender (dont worry, its not that much bending)
bent fender just enough to get the bolt to slide past it, i used channel locks for the bending.
loosen the castle nut holding the ball joint, but dont take the nut all the way off.. normally you would use a ball joint separator to separate (which i dont have) but a few good whacks with a ball peen hammer right here(see picture below) will separate the control arm from the spindle just as well if not easier. ***please dont whack metal on metal in below freezing temperatures. the hammer can and will shatter***
now back to the bolt. punch the bolt through but be careful! in the next pic there is a wire that could get pinched/cut at the other end of the bolt if you bash the bolt through to fast.
now, looking from up top through the engine bay, at the end of my flat head screw driver tip is where the path of the bolt will come out, right next to that is a black wire loom with yellow electrical tape around it. this wire is attached to the wheel well, slide this wire over the bolt or between the bolt and the wheel well fender (which ever works best for you) im not exactly sure what this wire is, but yellow, to the best of my knowledge has something to do with air bags? the bolt will come out under the battery. i hit the bolt out a little, got up checked the bolts position to the wire, went back and hit the bolt a little more, checked again, etc... until i knew it was not going to cut or pinch it, when i knew it was ok and clear, i went back and hit the bolt completely out. after you get it past the wire, the bolt comes out pretty easy.
stock control arm is now free to come out
Now refer to the TC installation manual that came with your control arms. grease the bushings etc etc. (i used green grease, and i put a healthy amount of it anywhere there would be movement)
using the install manual that came with the TC arms, place the washers where they need to go and install that bolt we just punched out backwards.
only on the driver side are these rigid lines, i think they are fuel lines? that will kind of be in the way, i just gently pry'ed/pulled them to the side a little bit and wiggled the bolt back in) where my finger is pointing are the lines that kinda of get in the way of easily getting the bolt straight in. after i got the bolt past the lines, i just pushed them back to where they were originally, Do NOT kink these lines.
install the hardware as per the Total chaos instructions. i greased these so they would go in easier as well. the new bolt and nut they supplied is larger than the OEM castle nut, and they were a standard size, not metric like the OEM castle nut.
torque all the bolts and nuts down to spec. and this is what it should look like finished. (note the ABS line i ran on the inside of the control arm, you can do it on the outside or inside, doesnt matter, just make sure there is enough slack when you zip tie it down for up and down suspension travel)
Do the same for the passenger side. passenger side should be easier as the rigid fuel lines will not be there to get in the way of putting the bolt back in
ALSO TAKE NOTE the zerk fittings that come with the kit are very easy to cross thread when putting them on, they strip VERY easily, i did 3 of the 4 perfectly, then the last one i thought i was the shit and was not as careful and i stripped it but i got it in by tapping on it with a hammer while tightening it down. just take your time to make sure you put them in dead straight!
i left out some small details that im sure if your doing this on your own youd already know how to remove the abs line bracket from the control arms.. cotter pin on the castle nut, bending the fender back to where it was, removing the plastic clips and rubber flaps in the wheel well so you have more room to work, jack the truck up, loosen the lug nuts and take the wheel off etc etc etc... like i said minor stuff.
people have told me to buy new bolts and to just cut the old one ( i saved myself 20 bucks by reusing the old ones). i think i would have spent more time with hack saw or sawzall trying to cut that bolt than just bending the fender and pulling it out to reuse it. if its easier for you to cut the bolt, or have extra bolts.. cut it. thats entirely up to you. but bending the fender a tiny bit and doing it this way was very, very easy if you ask me. my recommendation is to bend the fender a little, if i were to do it again for myself or someone else, id do it the same way. bend the inner fender a smidge, or cut big ass bolt, your choice.
any questions or comments, feedback, input, or questions dont hesitate to ask, or if i need to fix/edit anything you see wrong with this write up
total chaos uca were purchased here http://www.metaltech4x4.com
coupon code: Taco World
for just under $620 shipped
Best of luck,