Ball joint

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SlimPickinz

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Red hot, then oil-quenched? The knuckle, or (more likely) the control arm?

You've heat-treated the control arm. That control arm is now junk. Hardened...brittle.

DO NOT heat the control arm to press-in a ball joint.
Well I’m a farmer and I’ve heated up plenty of **** to get something in or out and haven’t ever had a problem. And what do you know it worked
 

TechNova

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One of the worst things you can say when justifying mechanical repairs is "I'm a farmer".
"It worked" does not work. It may have gone together but if you heat treated a part you will not know
it until it fails in use. Current rule for mechanical parts is of you heat it you replace it.
 

Schurkey

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Less a matter of "heated", more a matter of "heated RED HOT and then QUENCHED".

There's all sorts of stuff that can be heated enough to loosen a press-fit, but rarely oil-quenched. Connecting rods get heated to cram a press-fit pin into. Sleeves get chilled, blocks get warmed in an oven to slide the sleeve in easier.

And, yeah, even that sort of stuff can be over-done.

No reason at all to heat a control arm red hot in order to stuff a ball joint into it. That's why ball joint presses were invented.
 

missouritig

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I redid my lower ball joints yesterday and thought of this thread. The first time it went in crooked so I knocked it out, went in crooked again.

I have a weak compressor so my impact doesnt have the strength to really torque it in there, but what worked for me was eyeballing the ball joint flange to the mating surface and then use the impact to seat it gently. Then I used my breaker bar and slowly worked it in a few turns, then would back off and reset the tool. Turn a few times, then back off and reset the tool.

One side was very finicky, I could tell the BJ had been replaced before by a hack or impatient mechanic due to the control arm surface having knocks and stuff around the joint.

The other side went in very well without having to knock it out. I suspect the other side having slight imperfections made it a bit more of a pain. Either way they are now both in and look good. I bought cheap Mevotech ball joints so I expect they wont last forever.
 
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