Brother of The Benz,pfphipps
It's amazing how many DIYers, and even a pro has been lead down the pathe of mis diagnosis by that little rascal.
We have as you, thought of PING, lifters, timing chain or even the loose nut behind the wheel.
When all along it was a shock absorber in minature size.
So happy you've solved your problem.
Happy Trails Beep Beep from The Spiderman in Houston!!!