I have a 1998 Merc Mountaineer with a bolt missing from the passenger side of the stabilizer bar front end. It does not appear to compromize drivability at this point. I do intend to get it repaired. Would it be safe to make a drive to our Car Jocky who is 45 miles away.
Isn’t there anyone closer?
I’d say it’s probably safe, but don’t drive 80 mph on your way to your “Car Jocky.” Low and slow is what you want.
How does “Jocky” equate to fixing cars?
I agree with McP. The vehicle is definitely “driveable”, but I would caution you to make that 45 mile drive on secondary roads, rather than interstate highways, and to hold your speed down to the slowest rate at which you can safely drive on those secondary roads.
Having experienced the exact same thing on an Explorer (which is 99% identical to your Mountaineer), I can tell you that a broken or disconnected stabilizer bar will result in lots of unstable behavior at high speed and poor handling on curves unless you are driving slowly.
However, I also want to point out that simply replacing one bolt is not exactly rocket science, and any mechanic worth this salt should be able to do this quickly and at low cost. Why drive 45 miles when this could be done readily and cheaply much closer to home?