Ball joint questions and differences in control arms on 67

I need to replace at least an upper ball joint and the sway bar bushings on my 67 Standard with a 302.

My upper control arms have the 3-bolt ball joint riveted onto them. What is the difference between the 3-bolt ball joint and the 4-bolt ball joint? Are the upper control arms interchangeable between the 3 and 4 bolt ball joint designs, and is there any upside to one or the other?

Were the OEM ball joints riveted or bolted? I can obviously save some money if I take the time to drill out the rivets on mine and bolt in a new ball joint, but if mine is already an aftermarket part, I don’t know that it’s worth the time to save it versus just changing it all out.

Next question, did the 67 Cougar have the same one year only specific lower control arm as the 67 Mustang? If so, what is the difference between the 67 and the 68 lower control arms and ball joints?

Now, as for the sway bar – if I have to take it off to put the new bushings on, is it worth upgrading it? What does the sway bar even do and will moving to a 1" sway bar make any sort of noticeable difference in handling?

And final question, if I just got crazy and decided to redo it all with something like this (, will I really feel $2000 worth of handling difference? Will my car suddenly become a cornering machine or will it mostly drive the same?

Thanks in advance.

early upper arms were 4 bolt. The design was “cheapened” by minimizing the steel around the 4 holes. This led to cracks & issues. The 3 bolt was a redesign. These were riveted. You can swap 3 & 4 bolt arms.

The 67 lower arm is different due to the articulated strut. ( the holes in the arms are closer together). Suggestions are to swap to 68+ style. New repop strut rods & Moog (all Moog parts strongly recommended) lower arms.

Front sway bar. The bigger is not always better. Upto 1" is probably ok, but any more the car will push in the corners & not turn well. Requires a rear bar. Take a lok at the vids of my 69 RestoMod on the track. Has all original style suspension. A few mods & it handles…

Hope this helps save a lot of $$$ on items not needed or helpful.

If you do a kit look at these, super heavy duty and use bearings instead of bushings, plus a hinged strut rod.

If I was going to spend the money on that kit and a set of roller perches, I might as well just do their Bilstein coilover kit instead.

Just for my 2cents, i can tell you the three bolt top arms give you 13mm more tyre clerance.

After much research and deliberation I decided leave the sway bar and upper and lower control arms stock, but do the Shelby drop and upgrade to roller spring perches and add an export brace. I feel like that’s going to maximize my bang for the buck as far as performance from the stock suspension and still costs a fraction of the coil over kits.

A bigger sway bar makes for an incredible improvement. Just adding poly bushings to the stock bar is the cheapest best bang for the buck mod you can do to a stock Cougar.

So would I feel a big difference between a 3/4" and a 1" sway bar?

Yes, bu the stock bar isn’t 3/4" it is closer to 5/8"

It lists the stock 289 bar as 3/4" on the WCCC site. I’ll try to measure what I really have tonight.

My local shop only had one 67 lower control arm in stock, so when I go to pick up the second one maybe I’ll grab this as well.

Well, still waiting on my second lower control arm to show up, but I installed a 1" sway bar with poly bushings. Wow, what a difference. I can’t wait to see how it all feels with the roller perches and Shelby drop.