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Ball joint bad? Castle nut spinning!

 
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Old 01-05-2011, 03:13 AM
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Ball joint bad? Castle nut spinning!

I was changing my CV axle and I got everything together and found out that my ball joint castle nut is spinning.

Does that mean my ball joint is bad? Internet search comes up with people putting pressure on the joint and getting the castle nut in there. Or should I replace the ball joint?
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Old 01-05-2011, 07:11 AM
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Re: Ball joint bad? Castle nut spinning!

If the ball joint moves smoothly, isn't loose and the boot isn't damaged it should be ok.

The only thing that stops the joint from spinning when you try to tighten the nut is the tapered seat below the thread. Check that both the male and female tapers are clean and not damaged. If the tapers are good then you may need to tap the casting onto the ball joint with a rubber mallet before tightening the nut.

Ausluder.
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Old 01-05-2011, 12:37 PM
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Re: Ball joint bad? Castle nut spinning!

You may end up needing an impact gun to pull it off, but first I would try using a jack to put pressure on it so the tapered end is forced against the mating surface
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Old 01-06-2011, 11:34 PM
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Re: Ball joint bad? Castle nut spinning!

Thanks, ausluder and InvaderTrax.

The threads in the tapers had been damaged when I got the ball joint off. I used an impact to get the bolt back in there after I got the control arm off and used a metal saw to kind of make put the threads back. However, I should get a tap and die set for these circumstances since the metal saw didn't work that great and had to use an impact to get it in there since the bolt was still snagging on some damaged threads.

The castle nut should have been gone up to the control arm metal by tightening with my hand. But, it would just go a few rotations of the nut and get stuck on a damaged thread. I turned the nut over with the crenels facing up and used impact on the nut and then turned it over again and used more impact till it finally went in.

So, the moral of the ordeal for me is to keep the castle nut on when separating the joints. I was separating the ball joint without the castle nut and damaging threads.

I was at Belle Tire getting an alignment and they said my nut was still loose. So, they said they tightened it. Anyway, I should check it again and either replace the ball joint or get the threads fixed.
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Old 01-07-2011, 01:47 AM
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Re: Ball joint bad? Castle nut spinning!

all the castle nuts i have delt with all have pins take the nut off and see if there is a whole through the threaded rod...
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Old 01-07-2011, 02:39 AM
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Re: Ball joint bad? Castle nut spinning!

Quote:
Originally Posted by justincredible View Post
all the castle nuts i have delt with all have pins take the nut off and see if there is a whole through the threaded rod...
Yes, there is the hole for the cotter pin. Yay, for the 555 piece harbor freight cotten pin set.

But the castle nut was stuck on the damaged threads halfway and was spinning the ball joint.

I probably should have changed the ball joint but that's a bit more work and snow is coming down and the ball joint itself isn't bad. Or I should have rerun the threads but I have to get a tap die set.
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