getting lower ball joint in place?

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I have never seen a ball joint that wouldn't flex that much to go in at that angle. Unless you have already pushed the joint to the side as far as it will go, but it doesn't look like it in the pictures.
Originally Posted By: old1
I have never seen a ball joint that wouldn't flex that much to go in at that angle.
Agreed. You're not even close to the angle that the ball joint is designed to move to. A new joint will be stiff but certainly moveable with some pressure or 'convincing' with a soft mallet or piece of wood. Also, make sure you don't tighten the lower control arm bolts all the way until everything is installed and there is weight on the car. You'll probably need ramps to do so.
Originally Posted By: Miller88
Is the strut fully extended, pushing the knuckle all the way down? Jack up on the knuckle - that will give it a better angle.
This! Had to do it on a few vehicles.
There's three things you need to do: 1. Make sure the lower control arm bolts are loose so that the lower control arm swings easily. 2. Adjust the angle of the ball joint stud to match the angle of the steering knuckle. (Tap the ball joint stud with an orange plastic dead blow mallet to adjust the angle) 3. Press inboard on the brake rotor to compress the axle assembly in order to insert the ball joint stud into the steering knuckle. The axle assembly is "springy" along it's longitudinal axis.
As previously mentioned, you just need to move the suspension bits around a little. I would suspect you can just push in on the rotor towards the trans and it will move enough to get it into place.
Are you missing a sway bar end link? That might be good to get started/ threaded before the BJ goes in. However you could probably lower the driver's side to get the same effect. I see both sides are in the air, good thing.
Sometimes you have to remove both swaybar links in order to move the lower control arm closer to the ground. Hopefully they don't break during this procedure. Next, you might still use a prybar to lower the arm even further.
I was able to get it in today, major victory, very happy. Thanks Merkava_4 for the mallet idea. I didn't have room for a mallet but I was able to pry the ball joint with a screw driver, using the caliper for leverage. It popped in quite easily.
Sorry i wasn't getting it. If someone has enough skills to replace the control arm putting the ball joint in is the easiest part. Like asking i rebuilt the whole engine now how do install the air filter bolts. Nice to hear you got it in there.
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