ball joints

Discussion in 'Suspension' started by dartsun, Jun 23, 2014.

  1. dartsun

    dartsun Junior Member

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    I have a 1981 Dodge 1/2 ton 2wd..I was wondering what tools ill need to change put my lower and upper ball joints..thanks dustin
     
  2. Redtruck-VA

    Redtruck-VA Senior Member

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    My local Advance Auto has ball joint tool kit they loan out. Basically you buy the kit and can bring it back within 30 days and get your money back. Good luck.

    Edit: A special socket is needed to unscrew the top ball joint and install the new one. Becareful as it is easy to strip the threads out of the UCA. I had to replace the UCA because the previous owner welded the ball joint in place. If you need specific information send me a PM.
     
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2014
  3. Matteo

    Matteo Member

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    How are you able to go about telling if you have a threaded ball joint? is it only the top that would be threaded?

    I'm betting the ball joints on my '89 D150 (spring suspension) have never been done.
     
  4. Redtruck-VA

    Redtruck-VA Senior Member

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    I don't know what years have screwed in ball joints, but the 89 does have screw in upper ball joints. The bottom was pressed in. You are probably lucky no one has messed up the threads by beating on them.

    http://www.ebay.com/itm/Mopar-Ball-...s&fits=Make:Dodge&hash=item2333afdc4f&vxp=mtr
     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2014
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  5. crazzywolfie

    crazzywolfie Senior Member

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    i think you can tell if they are threaded in or pressed in by the shape of the head on them.
     
  6. Redtruck-VA

    Redtruck-VA Senior Member

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    I agree.
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    [​IMG]
     
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  7. BlindJax

    BlindJax Junior Member

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    89 D-150 upper ball joints do screw in or cut threads as you screw them in. Takes a 2-9/64 ball joint socket 20 bucks from auto zone. Looks like a bolt head. I learned the hard way, dodge dealer told me they pressed in.

    I have question. I have a 89 D-150 I pressed the threaded uppers out, yep did it twice. so I need to replace the upper control arms and ball joints maybe the bushings if I feel lucky.

    I am being told my axle weight is the 4000 lbs so that confused me but have searched and have found so far that the 3000 up and 4000 lbs upper control arms are the same thru 1984 and up to 90 something. The only difference is ball joints and maybe bushings.

    Does this sound correct? If so my question is ball joints. I ordered the 3000 lbs ball joints will they work? What determines the rate of a ball joint?

    The truck is just a driver, I don't haul much in it. Any help on this would be appreciated.
     
  8. Redtruck-VA

    Redtruck-VA Senior Member

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    I'm new at working on my 1st gen, and didn't compare #3000 with #4000 pieces. But when I took my front apart I found the upper ball joint welded to the UCA and the ball joint stud was loose in the upper hole of the spindle. My conclusion was the PO screwed up and used 3000# ball joint and welded it in the UCA then when he assembled the spindle and UCA he found the BJ stud was smaller then the hole and just tightened it all up and call it good. Of course it was all ruined and I had to replace everything.
     
  9. BlindJax

    BlindJax Junior Member

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    Doesn't the ball joint stud seat in the spindle hole when you torque it to spec? I'm new at this as well and finding most garages don't know as much as they claim on these older trucks. Sounds more like the cat pressed the ball joint out and didn't want to own up to his mistake because if he did it surely ruined the upper control arm. If I understand ball joints correctly it's all about tensile strength of the ball joint when working with something so close to each other. I bought the 3000 lbs ball joints not knowing gvw difference but learned for this vehicle and manufacture of ball joint it didn't matter they were the same.

    I replaced all of my steering linkage and ball joints and cam and caster parts and upper control arms and had the garage align it and now it binds on the pavement like a 4x4 and they can't figure out why on top of them calling it good to go and I can't drive it now. Their fall back is I supplied the parts. so anytime I make a hard turn it binds.

    I'm thinking when I put the adjusting sleeves on and tie rod ends in I screwed them in to far. so maybe if I take the right side apart re-thread the sleeve on and then the tie rod end maybe I can back it off.
     
  10. Redtruck-VA

    Redtruck-VA Senior Member

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    The ball joint is threaded into the upper control arm and if he pressed out the old one, I'd say he ruined the upper control arm. The ball joint stud as I understand has two sizes, #3000 (smaller) #4000 (larger) diameter stud. If you used the smaller it will easy go in the hole being smaller and no matter how tight you make it, it will still be loose and shortly ruin the taper in the upper hole of the knuckle. Look at some of the pictures I posted earlier. I think if you are not careful you'll end up with the same mess I had.
     

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