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Upper Ball Joint Casilated Nut???

Discussion in '1973-1991 K5 Blazer | Truck | Suburban' started by four_by_nut, Jan 20, 2003.

  1. four_by_nut

    four_by_nut Registered Member

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    I have a GREAT discussion going with someone about the intended function of the casilated nut that threads onto the upper ball joint before putting on the HUGE outer nut. The part I am talking about needs that special casilated tool to torque it down and I believe the recommended torque is 25 ft lbs.

    The question: What is the intention of that castelated nut? IE: Alignment, preload, etc......

    Moose just thinks he has ALL of the answers! We'll see. /forums/images/graemlins/rolleyes.gif
     
  2. Blazer1970

    Blazer1970 1/2 ton status

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    It is to set the proper preload on the ball joints.
     
  3. jimmyjack

    jimmyjack 1/2 ton status

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    It's purpose is to set preload. The specified torque is 50 lbs if I remember right. I borrowed the "tool" from a certified GM mechanic. When I torqued it went way into the shoulder of the ball joint. So I went to see this guy and explained my situation to him. He said he always tightens it enuff to be level with the knuckle. So my Q is, why torque it then?!?!?!?!?!?!
     
  4. backyardbuilt

    backyardbuilt 1/2 ton status

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    The tool is called a spanner wrench and the torque is 100lbs according to the book I am doing this right now just picked up the tool it is to preload the balljoints.
     
  5. CooknwithGas

    CooknwithGas 1/2 ton status

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    100lbs? My info. says 50 ft-lbs. I had to make my own tool from a spark plug socket. I barely got 50 ft-lbs before it started to break. Just made it work on two sides. Hard to find little bugger.
     
  6. Triaged

    Triaged 1/2 ton status

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    Where is Executioner when you need him?

    It is to adjust upper-balljoint preload.
    I made a tool out of a impact socket to torque it.
    The torque spec. is 50 ft*lb.
    If you don't set the preload corectally your balljoints will wear out much faster.
     
  7. backyardbuilt

    backyardbuilt 1/2 ton status

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    Here is a copy of the page and a couple of pics of the tool.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  8. four_by_nut

    four_by_nut Registered Member

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    Funny how something so simple can get so many different responses. In step 13 it says to tighten to 100 ft-lbs and then install the cotter pin. If I remember correctly, the top of that preload nut goes into and below the top of the knuckle. So no cotter pin is going to work. It's almost like two steps were stuck into one and mis editted. My guess is the preload nut is somewhere around 50 ft-lbs and the outer HUGE nut that gets the cotter pin is 100 ft-lbs. I think that step 13 is a messed up and puts two together into one step erroniously.

    Just thinking outloud.

    But we have definately answered my question of where it is for preload or not. And........it is.

    Thanks.
     
  9. Dave1

    Dave1 Registered Member

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    My book said 50lbs on the pre-load nut. I just replaced ball joints on my 86' K25 GMC, didn't have the tool so got it as tight as I could with what I could get down in there. The pre-load nut was well below the top of the knuckle. Also, if you look closely at that pre-load nut you will notice it is thinner on one side than the other. Seems like that would be used to somehow adjust the position of the joint stud. Maybe someone can elaborate on the purpose and how it works. Seems if the nut is only for pre-load it would be straight tapered. The joint had to be pressed into place so I am not sure how the nut could change anything. Thanks for any feedback. Dave1
     
  10. four_by_nut

    four_by_nut Registered Member

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    Dave1: That is exactly what I and Moose noticed. Which is why the question came up in the first place. If it was for preload only, why the thickness differences side-to-side? I tried to find an old one around my bench last night after replacing mine, but couldn't find one to look at again.

    Anyone got a suggestion as to who might be considered a "professional" in this area? I don't believe dealerships know this stuff except for probably 1 old crotchety guy who tells everyone what to do and you can never be sure you have found him and are talking to him (sort of like the "wizard" guy behind the curtain).
     
  11. Sandman

    Sandman 3/4 ton status Author

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    I think that the dealorships around here lay off anybody that knows anything about trucks before '88. /forums/images/graemlins/tongue.gif
     
  12. Blazer1970

    Blazer1970 1/2 ton status

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    The factory preload nuts are not eccentric like what you guys are describing. The eccentric ones are an aftermarket deal that is used by alignment shops to try to set the camber. The camber on a solid front axle is meant to be factory set, and if it is off, something is bent, or the ball joints are worn out. There is no way that the preload nut can be used to properly set the preload, and also set the camber.
     
  13. Blazer1970

    Blazer1970 1/2 ton status

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    Check this out:

    Federal Mogul Ball Joint Install Info

    I quote:

    "CAUTION: The use of certain aftermarket alignment bushings (adjustment sleeves) may cause high spindle torque, resulting in poor handling and damage to the upper ball joint."
     
  14. CooknwithGas

    CooknwithGas 1/2 ton status

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    Step 13 "screwed the pooch." Better get a new book. Nice tool though.

    _______________________
     
  15. backyardbuilt

    backyardbuilt 1/2 ton status

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    That's why I posted it if it was wrong (which it seems it is) I did not want to mess up the time and money I have in this axle.
     
  16. will89

    will89 1/2 ton status

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    Is this on a 1/2 ton?
     
  17. Blazer1970

    Blazer1970 1/2 ton status

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    1/2 or 3/4. Any Dana 44 or 10 bolt.
     
  18. Dave1

    Dave1 Registered Member

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    Because the Upper Ball Joint is Pressed in, How Could the Casilated Nut???

    I am listening and learning too. I just finished one of these jobs and am beggining to wonder if I have the nut set correctly as afterwards my truck pulls off to one side slightly. May have to have the alignment checked and corrected. Yall keep explaining, it is not clear yet.

    If what I am hearing is correct, it seems the thick/thin wall casilated nut should be set/adjusted for perfect tire/wheel alignment instead of a torque setting. I better keep reading and maybe the light will come on.

    Dave1
     
  19. imiceman44

    imiceman44 1 ton status

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    Re: Because the Upper Ball Joint is Pressed in, How Could the Casilated Nut???

    Dave
    It's both, you have to adjust it to within the correct torque then align it to get the right camber.
     
  20. BowtieBlazer

    BowtieBlazer 1/2 ton status

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    Oh Dear /forums/images/graemlins/confused.gif /forums/images/graemlins/1zhelp.gif /forums/images/graemlins/confused.gif

    Please tell me this isnt something on all aftermarket and replacement ball joints these days...I am swapping some new ones in soon...keep the info coming... /forums/images/graemlins/ears.gif
     

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