Doing ball joints with the Autozone loaner press - Ford Bronco Forum
 
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-28-2007, 11:19 PM Thread Starter
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Doing ball joints with the Autozone loaner press

So, last weekend Ben (Swatchie) and I did all four ball joints, two tie rod ends, and the axle pivot bushings on my Bronco. We used the Autozone loaner ball joint press, which isn't exactly the right tool for this job. However, with a little creativity, you can make it work.

Ian already has a great writeup for how to do ball joints, but he had a machine shop do the press work for him. I highly recommend starting with his writeup: http://www.fullsizebronco.com/forum/...ad.php?t=45983

Once you've read that, here's how to press them in and out yourself using the imperfect loaner tool:

Here's the knuckle removed from the truck. The left of the picture is the top. We cut the upper stud while we were figuring out how NOT to use the press.



The bottom of the knuckle. The lower joint has a snap ring that you must remove. The upper joint does not, although the new kit will come with one that you won't use.



This is NOT how you press out the bottom joint.



THIS is how you press out the bottom joint. By the way, you must press the bottom joint out first.



Both joints removed. We coated the bores with anti-seize before installing the new joints.



Press the upper joint in first. This is how you set the press up; there's a lip on the joint and one of the cups should fit right onto it. We used a radius arm washer on the bottom so that there was something for the press to, well, press against.



You'll run the threaded rod through the lower joint's bore. This is why you install the upper first.



Once you've bottomed the joint against the tool (it won't be fully seated in the bore), you'll need to hammer it in the rest of the way. Notice that we've got two cups stacked up; you'll have to do this with the Autozone tool because the stud is longer than the installing cup. When it's fully seated, it will stick out the bottom of its bore about 1/16".



Here's how to set up and press in the lower joint. Don't forget to install the new snapring.



And now you're done! A big thanks to Ben for all of his help. And here he is busting a nut:
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-28-2007, 11:35 PM
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dont forget to lube them after installing the knuckle and before continueing re-installing(IE: before th shafts)

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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-28-2007, 11:36 PM
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Y'all still working on that Bronco??? Good write-up. How long did it take to remove those ball joints? And post up a pic of your version of the axle pivot bushing removal tool you pieced together (IF YOU HAVE A PIC). That one bushing was stubborn, JSM84

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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-28-2007, 11:48 PM Thread Starter
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These joints didn't have fittings. But yes, if you've got them, lube them.

Randy, that was Ben's a couple of weeks ago. This week it was mine. I need to take some pics of the press we rigged up. And thanks again for your help on that one.

The ball joints didn't take too long once we figured out how to use the press. Not counting the brake R&R, I'd say we spent 1.5-2 hours doing the joints, including the learning curve.
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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-29-2007, 02:19 AM
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careful when you get the loaner press, looks identical to the HF one which i bent pressing out a ball joint.
also a tip, put your ball joints in the freezer to shrink them a tad
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-29-2007, 09:10 AM
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good write up, i was doing this about a week ago and i could've used this and those pics.

1996 302 E4OD BW1356(clocked)
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5.13's, ARB's, OBA, Custom Bumpers

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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-29-2007, 05:40 PM
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the axle pivots were easy to remove on his too. just had to remove the bolt, hold the arm down, and then push with our finger and the bushing came out

The ball joints was easy too. we did his whole bronco in no time at all.
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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-29-2007, 07:03 PM
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all those snap on and mac tools you got and you dont have a ball joint press? the hundred bucks you spent on that hammer could have gotten you one.

95 351w e4od 4 inch rancho 3 inch body 35-12.50-15 goodyear MTR's
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-29-2007, 07:20 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bansheebeater View Post
all those snap on and mac tools you got and you dont have a ball joint press? the hundred bucks you spent on that hammer could have gotten you one.
I bought all those expensive tools when I did this for money. Now that this isn't my job any more and it's just a hobby, I don't buy off the trucks. Although there are a few things I sure could use, like another $100 hammer
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