Detailing front suspension parts

tom h

Active Member
Sep 1, 2001
Concerning front end tie rods, steering parts, idler arms, linkages, and such, what have the "super obssessive" of you done for appearance?

ordinarily I might powder coat or POR15, but the thick film buildup would cause problems with threads fitting, and possibly with proper ball joint fit (??).

One possibility is to leave threads and critical mating surfaces un-painted, and live with the rust in those sections.

I've also been thinking the possibility of zinc dichromate plating. It's supposed to be fairly rust resistant, and I think it looks pretty, albeit non-stock.
Here's some examples of zinc dichromate (sometimes called "gold iridite"):

Comments ??
When I removed the front suspension parts for a bushing/ball joint kit, a friend sandblasted the a-arms, spindles and brake shields and I painted them with the POR 15. I would add a black topcoat paint if I did it over, but after a year, it is dirty but mostly rust free. I painted the rusty sway bar and it is still ok also.
I am in the middle of the exact same project. I sandblasted all the parts and painted them Base clear, I painted them a real dark charcoal grey instead of black. I understand powder coating is stronger than Base clear but I am a painter at a body shop so it cost me $0 to paint them, car is hardly ever drivin in anything but good weather so I expect it will last a long time. I spent alot of time with a die grinder and removed all the metal flashing on the parts and they look to good to put on the car now. You can always clean out the threads wilth a tap and that should solve any buildup problems. I will try to post some pics if I can camera to work?
You could use aluminum foil to cover things you don't want painted if you spray some things. Use heavy duty antiseize for the tapers and the threads to prevent rust and easy removal. I POR-15 a lot of stuff on my front end too.
Tarey D.
What I have done is replaced the drag link and tie rods with new parts and I keep them nice and clean with a coating of WD-40 every once in awhile. On the spindles I media blast them and than use this kit to make it look zinc gray again. After plating soak the spindles down with a coating of WD-40 and they will stay that way for a long time. Make sure you remove the zinc from the shiny parts that the bearings ride on. I use black epoxy on the frame and control arms. I dont like to use enamel paints on chassis parts because brake fluid will take them off faster than anything and you have to lay it on so thick that it just starts to look cheap after awhile.
Originally posted by turbofish38
... Make sure you remove the zinc from the shiny parts that the bearings ride on....
Is this to guard agains the zinc peeling off and galling/damaging bearings ??

And, would you expect powder-coating to be similar to epoxy paints , in their resistance to brake fluids & such?