Caster correction w/offset ball joints? - JKowners.com : Jeep Wrangler JK Forum
 
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post #1 of 14 Old 04-22-2013, 05:18 AM Thread Starter
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Caster correction w/offset ball joints?

Hello everyone,

Has anyone considered or tried using offset ball joint to help correct caster?

It seems that if the offset on the top joint was installed to the rear and the lower to the front it would rotate the knuckle helping correct caster. With 1.5* offset on top and bottom it should give 3* of correction

Does it sound do-able? Anyone think of issues?

Thanks,
Gary

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post #2 of 14 Old 04-22-2013, 05:27 AM
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The issue is not if it will work (it will) the issue is how much weaker they are over already weak factory ones

Its a band-aid. I would find a happy medium with your current setup or cut and turn the knuckles.
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post #3 of 14 Old 04-22-2013, 05:29 AM
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I agree with Doc. But of course, everyone should just pony up for a PR44 though..

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post #4 of 14 Old 04-22-2013, 06:40 AM
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Thumbs up Agree with USMCDOC14 and Goodysgotacuda

The factory Ball Joints are a weak spot not sure just how much weaker the offset would be but surely they must be weaker. I would also assume they would put added stress on the entire knuckle assembly. If you have access to the tools and are talented enough you can do a cut and turn, sleeve and/or truss and gusset.
If not order, a ProRock44 Unlimited. The Unlimited Models have added caster. I was overseas and just bit the bullet and ordered a PR44 Unlimited with Reid Knuckles RCVs., Poly P High steer draglink flip, tie rod and Track Bar All from Poly performance. I know its a good chunk of change but I cant describe the difference it made. Now I kinda wish I would have had the time and equipment to do a cut and turn and just build my factory 44. Saving some serious $$$
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post #5 of 14 Old 04-22-2013, 10:50 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Goodysgotacuda View Post
I agree with Doc. But of course, everyone should just pony up for a PR44 though..
Here I got you something. Rub it in good.



Yes a PR44 is in my future.

Please go back and READ my posts about the cut and turn, pay attention this time.

Now back to what this post is about.

SPC Performance and Raybestos both offer heavy duty, offset, greasable upper ball joints. I haven't found any HD greasable offset lowers.

Are offset joints weaker just because they are offset? Is there more stress on them because they are offset?

This is a bit of a bandaid, because I'm not going to do anything except gusset the D30 and I plan on having a PR44 within the next 2 years.

If I can't find an HD greasable lower BJ I may go with Synergy lowers and the HD offset uppers. If this combo last 50k I'll be more than happy.

Any thoughts?

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Last edited by ASSFROW; 04-22-2013 at 02:17 PM.
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post #6 of 14 Old 04-22-2013, 03:13 PM Thread Starter
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Nothing else?

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post #7 of 14 Old 04-24-2013, 07:37 AM
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Hmm

Yeah man if you have a backup down the road then go ahead. It may give you that little bit of caster you are looking for. They may last until you get that PR44, they may not. No first hand experience just trying to make an edu-ma-cated guess. Keep us posted. Let us know how the install goes.

Im really thinking about picking up a few more tools and buying a few axles and trying my hand at the ol cut and turn just to see how much of a PITA it will be.
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post #8 of 14 Old 04-24-2013, 04:30 PM
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So, do ball joints affect camber or caster or both?

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post #9 of 14 Old 04-24-2013, 07:57 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GARUBICON View Post
Yeah man if you have a backup down the road then go ahead. It may give you that little bit of caster you are looking for. They may last until you get that PR44, they may not. No first hand experience just trying to make an edu-ma-cated guess. Keep us posted. Let us know how the install goes.

Im really thinking about picking up a few more tools and buying a few axles and trying my hand at the ol cut and turn just to see how much of a PITA it will be.
It seems like a lot of work to cut and turn, but not to hard(if you can weld, I can't). I don't think it's worth it on a D44, much less my D30.

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So, do ball joints affect camber or caster or both?
Only offset ball joints.



Does anyone know if just the fact that they are offset makes them weaker or causes other issues in the steering system?

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post #10 of 14 Old 04-24-2013, 08:55 PM
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I work on cars everyday. I do not do alignment work.

That being stated: I do NOT believe they are any weaker and certainly not weaker then factory. It is not a bandaid IMHO, it's a solution, albeit not the the best solution.

Luckily my d30 and factory bj's are still holding up at 90k miles. LOL

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post #11 of 14 Old 04-24-2013, 09:25 PM
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There not weaker but they don't last long. You'll be lucky to get a year out of them. Years ago they where the only cure for lifted ford f150's. Buy a set of adjustable lower control arms and be done with it.

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post #12 of 14 Old 04-24-2013, 10:31 PM
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It's not just as easy as buying a set of adjustable control arms. You need to find the right balance between castor and pinion angle, and depending on the amount of lift and articulation, this might not be possible just from adjusting the lengths of the arms.

The upper BJ is taking most of the abuse, so if offset BJ's are weaker then you'll have to replace them more often. I don't have experience with offset BJ's, but really, how hard are BJ's to replace? Yes, its a PITA, but can be done with the axle on the rig in a couple of hours per side. Honestly, I don't see the downside of trying it out. Worse case you pull them and stuff the Synergy uppers you saved from the original install and you're back to scratch.

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post #13 of 14 Old 04-25-2013, 05:23 AM Thread Starter
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I have all 4 adjustable control arms. Like BumpIntheRoad said when you increase pinion angle to make the drive shaft happy your caster and handling suffer.

There are two companies I have found that make heavy duty greasable offset upper ball joints. I'm sure they are much stronger than stock. That's why I am asking if being offset makes them weaker.

SPC performance and Raybestos both make heavy duty, greasable, offset, upper balljoints. They both come in 2* offset. I'll probably go with Raybestos, because they are $25 cheaper each and I'm considering the Moog offset for the lower, but will probably go with Poly. My stock ones lasted 6 years and 70k miles. I'm thinking even the Moogs have to be better than stock.

Thank for the replies everyone.

Quote:
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post #14 of 14 Old 05-14-2013, 07:38 PM Thread Starter
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So I went with Raybestos professional grade 2* offset upper and 1.75* adjustable lower ball joints. The uppers look very stout and are greaseable. The lowers look sturdier than stock, but not as stout as the uppers. The lowers are not greaseable, but are greased when they are put together. I was going to drill, tap and install zerks, but the install was a PITA and took way longer to do than I thought. I also had trouble with the short shaft going back in and had to pull the dif cover. I'll be doing unit bearings soon and will put the zerks in the lower joints then.

It may be a band aid, but holy fuck does my Mule drive great now. The ball joints are much, much better than stock, I got back 3.75* of caster and the ball joints are smooth and tight. The only drawback I noticed was the bolt heads in the knuckles hit ahead of the steering stops, but it doesn't seem to have changed how much the wheels turn.

I also installed a Ruffstuff tie rod and removed my steering stabilizer.

I bet if Synergy would put out offset joints this might become more popular.

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