phosphor bronze track rod end cups [4 in the set]
New track rod ball arms are available for 2cv and Dyane models only at present. New track rod ball arms are NOT AVAILABLE for these A series models.
Ami 8 and Ami Super, Acadiane and AK400. The phosphor bronze and Delrin plastic cups MUST NOT, IN ANY RESPECT, BE FITTED TO THESE MODELS, because the existing balls will not be a perfect sphere ( WORN TO SOME DEGREE ) and will only cause premature wear of the cups . There are 2 variations of the available ball arms. One has a machined ground finish surface and the more expensive one, has a finely polished and hardened surface. These new type cups are suitable for any of these brand new ball arms. The difference between 2cv/Dyane ball arms and the other non available ball arms is the angle of their attachment to the hub and the steering rod, as the steering geometry is completely different. The ball diameters are all the same size on every model.
Pre 1974 steering rods are also a different length to the later ones and the attachment threads of the ball/cups housing changed from 14mm diameter to 16mm diameter on some models.
The models which have the 16mm attachment are as follows.
Ami 8 P.O.
AKS P.P. G.A. 1970>
Acadiane P.O. G.A.
Mehari 4 x 4 > 79/81
Mehari 4 x 4 9/81 >
( P.O. designates overseas specification, G.A. denotes Grande Administration, the Government Approval )
You MUST fit brand new undamaged track rod ball joint arms when fitting these types of cups.
These phosphor bronze cups are a direct replacement for the steel ones and are self lubricating, there is no harm in applying grease and it is recommended.
Phosphor bronze is used for bearings and bushes in industry and has a low coefficient of friction and will last a lifetime without making your track rod end balls oval.
There is a 6mm tapped hole in each cup to be able to insert a 6mm bolt in order to push in, or to pull out, and remove the cups, if and when needed, for inspection purposes. You can then check them and measure the ball diameter, to be assured that no wear has occurred. The ball diameter is 22.00mm.
DELRIN acetal homopolymer resin. Manufactured soley by DuPont in the USA.
You can do away with your grease gun and grease nipples by using these very impressive track rod end cups. It is now 2020 and I have been thinking about moving forward and getting away from the technology of the 50's and 60's. This material is self lubricating and will not wear out the cups or your expensive track rod ends. NEW ones MUST be fitted if you use these cups. Citroen do not make these items anymore and the quality of replacement items are not up to the Citroen standards and can quickly wear out if you are still using the standard metal cups, so, to maximize component life, new Delrin cups and new track rod ends are the only answer.
Delrin is a highly-crystalline engineering thermoplastic that industry leaders specify for high load applications. It combines low friction and high wear resistance with the stiffness and strength needed in parts designed to replace metal. Fatigue resistance and high strength are other attributes.
I have incorporated a 6mm tapped hole in each cup to be able to insert a 6mm bolt in order to pull out and remove the cups, if and when needed, for inspection purposes. You can then measure the ball diameter and be assured that no wear has occured. Grease CAN BE applied to these items but should not be necessary.
The cups in the steering rack are identical to the ones in the track rod end and these are available too.
These are the new type DELRIN bearing cups. Some have a 56 degree chamfer, like the original metal ones, and this chamfer is designed to allow storage of grease. Other cups have a slight chamfer, and the third type have no chamfer. With this material, grease is not needed, so I can eliminate the chamfer altogether. The centre hole is tapped 6mm x 1mm. Any of these cups can fit into the steering rack or the track rod end.
When rebuilding a track rod end, first, use a 6mm screw in the cup and enter it into the housing. To extract them, use the screw again. Citroen didn't incorporate a threaded hole and it could be time consuming extracting the metal cups. This way makes life a little easier.
original worn Citroen cup Delrin cups with 56 degree tapered face
Delrin cups with flat face Delrin cups with slightly tapered face
It doesnt really matter which face is used, as it's the concave bearing faces which enables the ball joint to rotate when on the vehicle.
The Citroen CX and DS models has been using these type of cups in the top and bottom ball joints for years, instead of metal bearing cups.
I don't know what the material is, but it certainly works. The top ball joint when assembled it tightened up to a torque of 150 ft lbs
and the bottom ball joint it tightened to 250 ft lbs so there is a lot of pressure on these plastic parts.
Regarding the 2cv and all A series vehicles and the track rod ends makes me wonder why the balls and cups wear out and become oval.
All ball joints wear out eventually, including the human type and every ball type joint that I have ever seen is nothing like the Citroen 1930's design
which the A series and H vans use, by incorporating a spring loaded design. The manuals state that when assembled and tightened up, you must slacken back the cup nut 1/6 of a turn, modern ball joints have no play in them and are completely rigid, the Citroen design allows 1/6 of a turn of play, which equates to 0.2mm.
If you think about it, the vibrations encountered whilst driving must put much pounding on the balls and cups. The play in the track rod end is moving thousands of times a minute, horizontally and vertically with the spring compressing and decompressing, no wonder that they become oval. I would recommend tightening the joint up until it is just tight and not slacken the cup nut back at all. This will surely eliminate the play and subsequent rapid wear on the metal type cups and balls. The modern ball joint just has 2 cups and a spacer and is pressed together and lubricated for life by being sealed. Using the Delrin cups would entail tightening up the joint fully and also not slackening back the cup nut, no grease is used on these cups and they will last far longer than the metal type set up.
I look forward to any questions or suggestions or feedback regarding my ideas on these items.