lower ball joint and outer tie rod... - GM Forum - Buick, Cadillac, Chev, Olds, GMC & Pontiac chat


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Old 10-01-2007, 12:44 PM   #1
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Default lower ball joint and outer tie rod...

on a 95 SSE

this weekend I replaced the end links and found that I have worn ball joint and tie rod on the front passenger side.

is this something we can do in our home garage with pretty good tools or is this a mech. job?

parts are cheep..but labor???

what do you think?

thnx...todd
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Old 10-01-2007, 01:27 PM   #2
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Well, thing is, if one side needs to be done, both sides should be done.

Yes, they're doable, I've done tie rod ends, but not personally done ball joints on these cars....but can't be that bad, just drill through the rivets and bolt em back in.

tie rods you just remove the cotter pin, back off the castle nut, pull it out with a tierod puller, and back the jam nut off the inner tie rod. sounds more simple than it is, but its not that bad.
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Old 10-01-2007, 01:45 PM   #3
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I don't fully agree with that John. If one ball joint went bad..the other isn't necessarily bad in my book. Two parts off the same assembly line can have very different lifespans.

The ball joint will be the tougher piece if the joint has never been replaced. The factory rivets are a pain, but possible. Once you do both..you will need an alignment.
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Old 10-01-2007, 11:44 PM   #4
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Be prepared for a fight. I have personally replaced the passenger front ball joint. Wasn't fun, but was worth the saved penny. I haven't done tie rods, but I've heard they're not too difficult.
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Old 10-02-2007, 11:57 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wjcollier07
Well, thing is, if one side needs to be done, both sides should be done.

Yes, they're doable, I've done tie rod ends, but not personally done ball joints on these cars....but can't be that bad, just drill through the rivets and bolt em back in.

tie rods you just remove the cotter pin, back off the castle nut, pull it out with a tierod puller, and back the jam nut off the inner tie rod. sounds more simple than it is, but its not that bad.
what is a tie rod puller. never heard of one. is this a must?
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Old 10-02-2007, 11:58 AM   #6
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Quote:
just drill through the rivets and bolt em back in.

could I just hit them with a air hammer?
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Old 10-02-2007, 02:19 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by toddster
what is a tie rod puller. never heard of one. is this a must?
There is a special tool for the inner tie rod. I'm not aware of a special tool for the outters.

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could I just hit them with a air hammer?
Only if you don't wish to succeed. I used an air chisel and took off the heads. Then drilled and ground and kept going. Pete aka TFC drilled and found that worked well. Our factory rivets are quite solidly holding the ball joints. Expect a good fight. If you drill it is probably the quickest method.
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Old 10-02-2007, 04:56 PM   #8
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how thick is the rivet. i mean what kind of drill bit will i need? thanks

todd
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Old 10-02-2007, 08:44 PM   #9
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The factory rivits are really tuff. If you do decide to chisel the heads off, you will needs a GOOD powerfull air hammer with a good sharp bit. My Snap-on gun will usually take the heads off and then I punch the rivit through with a punch bit. But I have had a couple that not even that gun could get out. With those I end up either drilling them out or blowing them out with a torch.
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Old 10-03-2007, 08:29 AM   #10
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I used my homeowner special from the old days to chisel the heads off. That didn't help since they are pressed in when molten steel. I had to grind through the metal of the ball joint where the rivets are because I didn't put the car high enough to drill.

TFC drilled from the start and said it was rather easy. Get a good bit and have at it.
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