Mark VIII vs T-Bird tie rod ends - TCCoA Forums
 
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post #1 of 22 (permalink) Old 02-06-2015, 03:07 PM Thread Starter
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Mark VIII vs T-Bird tie rod ends

I usually order t-bird suspension parts for the Mark VIII because they are magically 50% cheaper for the same thing (bushing differences allegedly), but one thing I can't wrap my head around is the tie rods.

Rock Auto lists different p/n's for the T-Bird and Mark VIII tie rod ends, apparently they are not interchangeable - even though the inners are the same part.

Does anyone have any experience with this? I can get T-Bird TRW tie rod ends for $6 but a comparable quality Mark VIII one (Moog since TRW isn't available for the Mark) is $24!

Will the T-Bird ends fit? They look identical and I'd like to save some coin.
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post #2 of 22 (permalink) Old 02-06-2015, 03:34 PM
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I've never tried, so I can't say for sure that they will fit, however I know the spindles are the same, so if the inner tie rod ends are the same, the outers should work since they are connecting the same inner tie rod to the same spindle.

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post #3 of 22 (permalink) Old 02-06-2015, 03:50 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MadMikeyL View Post
I've never tried, so I can't say for sure that they will fit, however I know the spindles are the same, so if the inner tie rod ends are the same, the outers should work since they are connecting the same inner tie rod to the same spindle.
My thoughts exactly.... shall I be the guinea pig and let you know?
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post #4 of 22 (permalink) Old 02-06-2015, 04:02 PM
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post #5 of 22 (permalink) Old 02-06-2015, 09:32 PM
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Same part numbers in all aftermarket sources, no need to guinea pig, they work.

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post #6 of 22 (permalink) Old 02-06-2015, 10:00 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris_Murder View Post
Same part numbers in all aftermarket sources, no need to guinea pig, they work.
Really? All of the Rockauto p/ns aren't interchangeable. Although the part looks identical, I couldn't find a single tie rod end that was listed for both the Mark and Tbird, only inners were the same.
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post #7 of 22 (permalink) Old 02-06-2015, 11:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 96beaterbird View Post
Really? All of the Rockauto p/ns aren't interchangeable. Although the part looks identical, I couldn't find a single tie rod end that was listed for both the Mark and Tbird, only inners were the same.
Sorry I was looking at inners. I don't see why they would be different since they use the same spindle, inners and rack.

My professional opinion is they are likely the same up to the body change in 97 if they are different at all. Just like mark viii upper control arms with coil spring conversions I can't imagine anything important being different.

-1996 Pearl White Thunderbird 4.6 Sport 4v with many mods:
Current Best: 13.583 @ 103.74 10/2014.
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-2001 White Ford F-250 Super Duty 6.8 V10, 4-door, 4x4, Limo Tint, BFG KO2's, Bilstein 7100 Remote Reservoir Race Bypass Shocks, 6" Spring lift, Kenwood Double Din, K&N Intake, FlowMaster Exhaust
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Last edited by Chris_Murder; 02-06-2015 at 11:49 PM.
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post #8 of 22 (permalink) Old 02-07-2015, 08:26 AM
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The only difference I could see would be if the track was different - and what I can Google, they're the same.

Dunno why they'd be different. Unless it's the "Soak the Lincoln Owner!" subtax ...

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post #9 of 22 (permalink) Old 02-07-2015, 09:11 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RalphP View Post
Dunno why they'd be different. Unless it's the "Soak the Lincoln Owner!" subtax ...

RwP
LOL, I learned all about that tax when I bought the Mark

"It's the same thing as the Tbird so parts are cheap" I said....
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post #10 of 22 (permalink) Old 02-07-2015, 03:20 PM
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Are the factory Mark VIII tie rod ends sealed for life? I know the Tbird/Cougar ones aren't so maybe that's the difference

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post #11 of 22 (permalink) Old 02-07-2015, 08:59 PM
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"DO they have a lifetime warranty on them?" "Yes, if they fail you die." *grins*

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post #12 of 22 (permalink) Old 02-07-2015, 09:41 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by XR7-4.6 View Post
Are the factory Mark VIII tie rod ends sealed for life? I know the Tbird/Cougar ones aren't so maybe that's the difference
Nope, they've got zerks with a castle nut and cotter pin.
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post #13 of 22 (permalink) Old 02-07-2015, 09:42 PM
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Well I too am at a loss then

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post #14 of 22 (permalink) Old 02-07-2015, 09:44 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RalphP View Post
"DO they have a lifetime warranty on them?" "Yes, if they fail you die." *grins*

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Makes perfect sense to me!
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post #15 of 22 (permalink) Old 02-10-2015, 05:10 PM Thread Starter
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So I ordered the t-bird tie rod ends (TRW) since they were on sale on Rockauto. I will let everyone know if they fit the Mark when they arrive (I'm sure they do).
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post #16 of 22 (permalink) Old 02-10-2015, 06:35 PM
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I just ordered a whole font end for my mark. I noticed the prices higher but didn't want to take the chance. Is there any differance in the lower control arms?

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post #17 of 22 (permalink) Old 02-10-2015, 07:04 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by steamer471 View Post
I just ordered a whole font end for my mark. I noticed the prices higher but didn't want to take the chance. Is there any differance in the lower control arms?
Zero difference but price. The only thing I can say is 'different' is the p/n for the LCA to subframe bushing. I don't know if it's harder or softer.

Even the shock to LCA bushing p/n is the same, so I guess the only 'difference' is the LCA to subframe bushing.

With that said, I have noticed zero difference with the way the car drives between the mark and t-bird arms.
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post #18 of 22 (permalink) Old 02-17-2015, 07:48 PM Thread Starter
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Finally took some pics to the T-Bird vs Mark VIII tie rod ends.

Note that the tie rods that are still on the car at the Mark VIII ends and the tie rods that are in my hand are the T-Bird ones.

Side by side



Note the more pronounced bend in the tbird tie rods.



Same length





The threads are the same, and the stud has to be the same (same spindle).

They're the exact same length, width, thread, everything.

The only difference I can see is that the Mark has a less dramatic curve in the tie rod end. The T-Bird tie rod end seems to drop more. I wonder if it's for bump steer characteristics?

Last edited by 96beaterbird; 02-17-2015 at 08:01 PM. Reason: Images not on page
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post #19 of 22 (permalink) Old 02-17-2015, 11:06 PM
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I was wondering if it was for bump steer also.

Could also have had to do with clearance required for the air ride suspension, too.

RwP

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post #20 of 22 (permalink) Old 02-17-2015, 11:19 PM
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Maybe for better bump steer control while in the lowered highway cruise condition that marks droop to in factory form.

-1996 Pearl White Thunderbird 4.6 Sport 4v with many mods:
Current Best: 13.583 @ 103.74 10/2014.
227hp/241tq measured on calibrated mustang dyno, tested at full vehicle simulation with inertia enabled, no number skewing.
-2001 White Ford F-250 Super Duty 6.8 V10, 4-door, 4x4, Limo Tint, BFG KO2's, Bilstein 7100 Remote Reservoir Race Bypass Shocks, 6" Spring lift, Kenwood Double Din, K&N Intake, FlowMaster Exhaust
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post #21 of 22 (permalink) Old 02-18-2015, 06:49 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris_Murder View Post
Maybe for better bump steer control while in the lowered highway cruise condition that marks droop to in factory form.
Was thinking that too. My car's on coil springs now anyways, so I guess it's a non-issue.
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post #22 of 22 (permalink) Old 05-04-2015, 08:00 PM Thread Starter
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Well I just found out the hard way that they're not 'exactly' the same.

I changed out my TRE's and counted the threads, then after install, I noticed my wheels were severely toed in.

Turns out the T-Bird tie rod ends are 1/8" shorter than the Marks, so I had to do a redneck alignment with a tape measure, carpenter's square and a lot of trial and error
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