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Ball Joint Jobs Suck.

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by chevydan3, May 6, 2006.

  1. chevydan3

    chevydan3 1/2 ton status

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    Okay so today I decide to tackle my wobbly front driver side ball joints. And after taken off the hub, rotor, spindle, axleshaft, and ball joint bolts, I go to whacking at the knuckle to try and break it free. Problem is, I only have a claw hammer, so does my dad. So after trying in vain for about 15 minute, I go grab dad's axe and start hitting the knuckle with the back side of it to break it free, but alas, no luck. So I jump in my mom's car and fly to Kragen (I hate that place), and buy a ball joint seperater and the biggest ball peen hammer that they sell. Go home and 5 minutes later, the knuckle, draglink, and tierod are all free. I get out the harbor freight press to press out the ball joints but after really struggling for a long time, I decide that the piece of sh!t harbor freight crap just isn't going to cut it. So I take the knuckle to a couple a brake shops before I find one that will press the old joints out and new joints in, I know better than to use this shop but they are the only ones that would do the job on a Saturday afternoon, problem is, I have to wait until they have free time, which means all day.

    So I go home and decide to change the axleshaft u-joint that has no needle bearings left in it, but the snap rings are rusted on. After a good soak of PB Blaster and multiple beating with the hammer, the rings finally are beaten off with a hammer and punch, so I use the old sockets and a big vise to try and press the u-joints out, but they are rusted tight, we put the hi lift handle on the vise and ended up doing nothing but bending the vise handle, so I give up and decide that I will just have the local driveshaft shop press the new u-joint in later.

    I go back to the tire shop at 5:00, and pay them the $88 (1 hour) in labor and take my knuckle home and as I go to put the knuckle back on my truck, it won't go on right, then I notice that they pressed the top ball joint in the bottom and the bottom in the top, awe crap! So now I have to take it back tomorrmow and hope that they don't mess my new balljoints up while pressing them out and correcting the mess. I guess that I will never buy a harbor freight tool again, and the tire shop will not get anymore of my business. But it is better than paying somebody to do all the work. Just my luck, I guess.
     
  2. Inu-Hanyou1776

    Inu-Hanyou1776 1/2 ton status

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    That stinks. Be sure when you take your ball joints back to them to fix the mess that you tell them to their faces that because of this screw up, they have officially lost your business, and you will spread the word around too that you won't be recommending them to your friends so that they're business will drop off that much more. Maybe that will give them a little bit of incentive to the do the job right the first time for the next customer.
     
  3. wayne

    wayne 3/4 ton status

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    I used the HF ball joint tool with no problems. I also used it to do U joints.
     
  4. Blue85

    Blue85 Troll Premium Member

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    I would buy the Harbor Freight one if Autozone didn't have the loaner one.

    That thing saved me one time. I was helping a buddy do ball joints on a Br0nc0 and we were taking turns for about 20 minutes beating the pickle fork with a 10lb sledge (very rusty, stubborn rig). When the knuckle finally dropped, half of the ball joint was in it and half was still pressed into the axle. After wondering for a minute how we were ever going to get it back together again, I realized that press would take out the pieces.

    So yes, I agree, ball joint jobs suck.
     

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