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post #1 of 45 Old 04-11-2011, 10:40 PM Thread Starter
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Ball Joint Install Vids

Specialty tools used:
- Harbor Freight "Four Wheel Drive Ball Joint Service Kit"
- 2" long X 1.25" piece of pipe. (I'm sure that 1.5" diameter would work too)
- 1.5" - 1.75" OD washers (I used four thick ones)
- Small piece of 1/8" thick steel to use as a spacer. I used a thick washer.
- 21mm socket for caliper bolts
- 35mm socket for the axle nut
- 12 point 13mm closed end wrench
- Torque wrench
- might need a pickle fork
- A small box that's strong enough to support the weight of the brake disk and caliper (8" - 12" tall)
- All other required tools are fairly common.

Here's the order of events. (not very useful when taking it apart, but will most likely save some frustration when putting it back together)

Removal:
1. Remove wheel and clean the working area. A pressure washer works great.
2. Remove the two 21mm caliper bolts and place the brake disk and caliper on the box
3. Remove the speed sensor
4. Remove 3 12 point 13mm bolts, axle nut, unit bearing and axle shaft
5. Remove ball joint cotter pins and castle nuts
6. With the 2" piece of pipe and washers, press out the upper ball joint
7. Press out the upper ball joint
8. Press out the lower ball joint

I could have save a lot of time, by printing out the following and keeping it next to me during the install

Installation: (this assumes that you will torque all fasteners to spec and use thread locker when required)
1. Press in the lower ball joint
2. Install zerk fitting if applicable
3. Using the 1/8" spacer, press in the upper ball joint
4. Install Zerk fitting if applicable
5. Install the grease boots (do not grease yet)
6. Using the lower ball joint castle nut, place the knuckle in position
7. Place the speed sensor wire holder, in place on the upper ball joint and install the upper castle nut
8. Torque the castle nuts to spec and install cotter pins
9. Grease the ball joints if applicable
10. Install axle
11. Run the speed sensor wire through and install the dust cover, unit bearing and axle nut
12. Install the speed sensor
13. Install the brake disk and caliper...

Couple of ball joint install vids:

YouTube - Jeep JK Ball Joint Installation - Part 1 of 2 Removal

YouTube - Jeep JK Ball Joint Installation - Part 2 of 2 Install

Woods Storage Tub Enlargement Kit - Steering Stabilizer Relocation Kit - Evap Can Relocation Kit Muffler Relocation Kit - Tailgate Shock Kit
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post #2 of 45 Old 04-11-2011, 10:56 PM
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Very nice Woods!!
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post #3 of 45 Old 04-11-2011, 11:07 PM
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Great video.

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post #4 of 45 Old 04-12-2011, 06:46 AM
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Subscribing, since I feel mine are going...

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post #5 of 45 Old 04-12-2011, 07:07 AM
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yeah mine are going too, subscribed!
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post #6 of 45 Old 04-12-2011, 07:08 AM
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Excellent video man. I'll be keepin this one to look back to for sure! Thanks

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post #7 of 45 Old 04-12-2011, 07:36 AM
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Super nice videos. I needed these videos like 3 months ago.

W6FJK

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post #8 of 45 Old 04-12-2011, 07:38 AM
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Excellent "write-up"

Thanks for taking the time to make that vid


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post #9 of 45 Old 04-12-2011, 08:42 AM
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Nice description and video! Great job!

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post #10 of 45 Old 04-12-2011, 12:03 PM
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Excellent write-up and video. Well thought out. Thanks for taking the time to share this with us.

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post #11 of 45 Old 04-24-2011, 10:22 PM
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Very cool, I will be doing this project in the next couple of weeks. Just got the new ball joints. Gonna go with Ried knuckels and new unit bearings while I'm at it.

Thanks for the write up.

08 2Door Red Rubicon. Rock Krawler 5.5 Longarm Coilover, Polly rear Coilovers. AEV hood & wheels, 37"KM2s, JE Reel 1350 shafts, 5.38 Yukon gears, Superior axles, Shrockworks stubby, Fab Fours rear, sPod, Rebel Offroad brakes, Warn winch and lots more.

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post #12 of 45 Old 04-28-2011, 07:07 PM
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x2 great videos, thanks for taking the time to make them and post them up, will be doing this myself shortly as well.

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Originally Posted by TEXASKEV View Post
Very cool, I will be doing this project in the next couple of weeks. Just got the new ball joints. Gonna go with Ried knuckels and new unit bearings while I'm at it.
stock unit bearing replacement? did a quick search didn't see much in the way of aftermarket replacements.

any specific axle seal replacements everybody favors?

'08 no limit red rock rubi

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post #13 of 45 Old 04-28-2011, 07:11 PM
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Originally Posted by TEXASKEV View Post
Very cool, I will be doing this project in the next couple of weeks. Just got the new ball joints. Gonna go with Ried knuckels and new unit bearings while I'm at it.

Thanks for the write up.
Lemme know

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post #14 of 45 Old 05-23-2011, 06:32 AM
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WOW!! I installed by new Poly Ball joints yesterday and I most definitely needed a couple of beers after installing them. Just want to give thanks to Brett from Jeep Swag for making a 'great' video and providing written instructions and having the ball joints in stock when I needed them. Oh, and to everyone else that have already have done the ball joint install, here's to you

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post #15 of 45 Old 05-23-2011, 03:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by offinthewoods View Post
x2 great videos, thanks for taking the time to make them and post them up, will be doing this myself shortly as well.



stock unit bearing replacement? did a quick search didn't see much in the way of aftermarket replacements.

any specific axle seal replacements everybody favors?
FYI i ordered a Timken HA590242 unit bearing it has the Chrysler P/N Etched into it so i am assuming Timken makes these for Chrysler. It was 79 bucks shipped at Rock Auto and it comes with the speed sensor Q-Tech wants 130 bucks for the Chrysler P/N which is the same part.

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post #16 of 45 Old 05-23-2011, 03:38 PM
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WOW!! I installed by new Poly Ball joints yesterday and I most definitely needed a couple of beers after installing them. Just want to give thanks to Brett from Jeep Swag for making a 'great' video and providing written instructions and having the ball joints in stock when I needed them. Oh, and to everyone else that have already have done the ball joint install, here's to you

I agree with my lowers did not want to come out at all i wish the popped out as easy as the ones in the video did. I had a 2 ft breaker bar and both of my jack handles onto the end of it while pushing with my legs to break them loose while smacking the knuckle with a sledge. I did not bend of break the harbor freight 4x4 ball joint press i must be a lucky one. I did manage to break the passenger side speed sensor, but i put it back in with the two metal prongs in the holes where it broke and i did not get any ABS lights. I bought the whole unit bearing to replace when i drill out the broken piece at least i will have an extra unit bearing i guess. One tip i would like to ad if you get both of your speed sensor out without breaking them re route the wires so you don't have to pull the sensor out when you remove the bearing next time.

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post #17 of 45 Old 06-29-2011, 08:04 AM
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Anyone know what size socket I'm gonna need to remove the stock castle nuts to do this install?

I'm at harbor freight and need to know ASAP!!



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post #18 of 45 Old 07-09-2011, 06:52 PM
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Originally Posted by paramaniac View Post
Anyone know what size socket I'm gonna need to remove the stock castle nuts to do this install?

I'm at harbor freight and need to know ASAP!!

I know it is late but for future searches - the top one is a 22mm and the bottom is 1 1/8"

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post #19 of 45 Old 07-09-2011, 07:31 PM
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Thanks to Woods for posting those videos. I wouldn't have taken it on without that.

I will say that he makes it look awful easy... mine fought me from the start and kept on fighting until I put the wheels back on. Good news is that its done, test driven and I can actually feel a difference.

Nice work Poly, and Woods.

While watching the videos (numerous times) I wondered why you would need the washers, spacers and 2" piece of pipe. I used a threaded nipple instead of pipe and it worked perfectly. Easier for me to get as well. The extra stuff that Woods suggested is a necessity IMO... even though there are multiple adapters in the cheapo Harbor Freight kit. More on the kit in a min.

Here is my pile of extras as per Woods.


The Harbor Freight kit works.... it is cheap and won't last long but it gets the job done. It will also do U joints and brake anchor pins. The threaded jackscrew is 15/16 on the end and will work with a short socket.

The pickle fork was needed big time in my install and I basically trashed it getting my hubs to release. My dead blow hammer wasn't getting the job done so a small sledge should be close by in case you run into the same headache. I was going to buy the pneumatic pickle fork but they were out and I don't know if it would have done any better... you could always just hammer it in like the other one that they offer.

I didn't have a box to rest the brake assembly on but have used my tire in the past and it worked well to hold things where I could reach them. I used a bucket turned upside down to hold the outers after getting them to release.


I would suggest that you soak everything in PB blaster before you get busy.... soaking things the night before should help quite a bit. I have had my front axle torn apart not too long ago (8mo) and everything was pretty grumpy.... could be that I am like a fuckin' gorilla when I bolt stuff up too.

One thing that I ran into was the upper spring perch was always in the way.... a good fix for that is to lower the side that you are working on after you get the wheel/tire off and, if needed, jack the vehicle up using something other than the axle so the springs can flex out a bit - giving you some room to work.

I didn't get an after pic but it was a non issue after adjusting where the axle was, height wise.



Another tip...
Make sure that you remove the grease boots and spring retainer from the Poly ball joints otherwise you will likely ruin them while pressing the BJ in.





Once you get them pressed in you can easily slide them back into place. I found that it was easier to install the spring retainer back on the boot before sliding it back on the BJ.



The bottom grease zert should be facing forward so you can easily get to it for service.

Old vs new.... from the passengers side.


A quick vid.... there is a bad ball joint in the vid somewhere.. you have to look for it real close but it can be found.

YouTube - ‪2011-07-09_09-33-56_857.mp4‬‏

So.... plan for the possibility of lot of work and bring some patience, watch the vids several times and make sure you have everything that you need before you get started and you can get'er done.

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post #20 of 45 Old 07-09-2011, 11:26 PM
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Thanks for the additional info Ron. My HF ball joint kit just showed up on Friday so next Sat I'm going for it. Can't bvelieve how bad your lower looks in that video!

I haven't found any hub bearings that look better than stock. Well the SKF's look good but are very high $. Soooo I'm just gonna put new OE ones in. Polly ball joints and Ried knuckls to fix a taper issue that one of my stock ones have. I should be good for a couple of years after that.

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Last edited by TEXASKEV; 07-09-2011 at 11:29 PM.
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post #21 of 45 Old 02-13-2012, 06:33 AM
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Great information! I followed the video to get the lower ball joint on the drivers side, but I couldn't get the passengers side out that way. I ended up putting the clamp in the same position as installing the lower. It came out easier that way. The double stacking of pucks and tubing kept falling out.

I did have a hard time getting the uppers in. It took a lot of patience, but I finally got them in. Totally can tell the difference. My hood would shake side to side when I got up to 50+. My lowers were shot but the uppers still seemed to be good. Don't put this off, I should have replaced mine a lot sooner than I did.

Joe
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post #22 of 45 Old 02-13-2012, 10:48 AM
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How many miles did y'all get out of the stock ones?

2008 JK 4Dr Rubicon
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Post count from the "other" place when i was following the "herd" was 692 on 4-2-09, not a noob...

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post #23 of 45 Old 02-13-2012, 10:57 AM
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How many miles did y'all get out of the stock ones?
They can go at any time-have read guys needing them at 15,000 miles and others go much longer before they crap out. Only constant is they do crap out.

Is this thing on?.....

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post #24 of 45 Old 02-20-2012, 09:40 PM
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I hit about 30k with mine and replacing them with the Polys this weekend. This will definitely help when I get started on it. Great write up and videos!
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post #25 of 45 Old 02-20-2012, 09:45 PM
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This thread and videos were a huge help to me when I did mine last fall. Only hard part of the entire process is removing them. Just take your time and it'll work out.

08 2Door Red Rubicon. Rock Krawler 5.5 Longarm Coilover, Polly rear Coilovers. AEV hood & wheels, 37"KM2s, JE Reel 1350 shafts, 5.38 Yukon gears, Superior axles, Shrockworks stubby, Fab Fours rear, sPod, Rebel Offroad brakes, Warn winch and lots more.

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