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drop arm ball joint rebuild

Has anyone ever rebuilt their drop arm ball joint? I got a tie rod kit from DAP and it includes 3 new tie rod ends and a rebuild kit.

The documentation with the kit is pretty lame, it doesn't really show where each rubber seal / washers, etc., go. I'm hoping when I take the old one apart I can see how it goes back together.

I've never messed with ball joints except to remove them, but I basically know what the general idea is. Any hints / tricks / advice would be greatly appreciated.


thanks in advance,
Dave
 

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Dave,
The rebuild is pretty simple if you have a press. The only tough part I have encountered was getting the upper section (one with the large hole in it) out of the forging. I have had to pound pretty hard with a punch cause there is nothing really to use to press it out. At least this is the case on the replacment I have done. I drilled a hole in the flat retaining plate (disk) and tapped it for a grease zerk so I could grease it and (hopefully) keep water out.
 

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i know i need to replace the joint .my question is how do you know you need to replace the arm? i removed the lower retaining clip then the plate and spring and the seat for the ball.the 2 metal parts that the ball set in are very easy to put in and take out after i cleaned off the rust on them and the rust off the inside of the arm they slide around in there, i would say about a 1/16 of an inch of room (maybe a hair more)on the inside.my guess is this is way to loose and its time for a new arm $?by the way does any one know what size the nut is holding the arm to the box?thanks
 

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It's time for a new arm. The inserts should be a tight fit and need drifting out of the drop arm and the new ones pressing in with a vice.
The nut varies in size depending on the steering box
 

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whoops didn't quite finish, why i pressed the submit button I don't know!!
It's only the collar that goes in first that is a tight fit. The outer one is held in place by the really squat spring and just drops in so if the top insert is tight things are O.K. Hope that clarifies things
 

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thanks for the info mike! thats what i was guessing, the top collar was just way to loose and came out to easy.any body see any problems with putting a zerk on the new ball joint?why or why not
 

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What's a ZERK?

If you mean a grease nipple then it's a fine idea.
 

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Dave, what did you ned up doing here? did you use the rebuild kit or replace the drop arm? Can you share any details about it - any special tools needed?

thanks
charles
 

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This is covered in the shop manual pretty extensively. Also follow the procedure by the book on re-connecting the drag link and tie rod and aligning the steering box and all that.
 

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wicks said:
This is covered in the shop manual pretty extensively. Also follow the procedure by the book on re-connecting the drag link and tie rod and aligning the steering box and all that.
This is part of the problem - i have a pdf for '96 and above and it does not show any of the drop arm stuff. I am purchasing one, but it will be a few days before it comes. I'd like to get this done before a trip on the 20th so i probably won't be waiting for it.

Could you just tell me two things please

1. Do they recommend replacing the arm or rebuild the joint
2. if rebuilding the joint, can I do it without a press?

thanks
charles
 

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Replace the arm. RDS has them.

It is a PITA to rebuild.

BTW the bearcrap ball joints suck, the boots cracked in a year.
 

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evilfij said:
Replace the arm. RDS has them.

It is a PITA to rebuild.

BTW the bearcrap ball joints suck, the boots cracked in a year.
Thanks Ron

A couple more questions if I may

1. do you know which ball joint I need for the other end of the tie rod? Either RTC5869 RH or RTC5870 LH?

2. Are the balljoints (and the one on the drop arm) on the RDS site these "bearcrap" ones you speak of? If yes, whats a better alternative - i'd rather not do this every year :)

I'll have to see if I can rent a puller.

thanks
charles
 

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No the ones george sells seem ok. The DAP one are crap. Genuine is best but I could not get them in time when I did mine so I used the ones george sells. George knows which ball joint it is, I forget.

Ron
 

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evilfij said:
No the ones george sells seem ok. The DAP one are crap. Genuine is best but I could not get them in time when I did mine so I used the ones george sells. George knows which ball joint it is, I forget.

Ron
Right you are. I gave them a call and George took care of me. The LH/RH choice is very simple as it turns out. When sitting in the vehicle, if you want the one on the right hand side, its the RH, otherwise the left is the LH.

duh :)

charles
 

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Keith can make you a puck to go into the pitman and run a 3/4 bolt thru. I got tired of rebuilding my ball joint and smashing the zirk fitting off of the bottom. This would probably require a new drag link with a heim joint at the pitman end but you could still run the stock ball joint on the axle end. He even welded a bracket for the steering stabalizer if I decide to run one again. The other benefit is that it does away with that piece of junk wishbone that connects the pitman to the drag link and steering stabalizer.
 

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Guy's, blew the Ball joint out of the top of the Track arm yesterday wheeling...Dooh! (hey speakerwire and Hose clamps got me out of the woods you alwasy can patch toghter a Rover!) Best prices? I assume I need a whole assembly since the ball came out the top .... Andy
 

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What happened? Did the track rod smash into a rock or a hard place or was it on its way out anyway?

Is the circlip groove OK in the drop arm? If it is then a drop arm kit will have all the bits you need.
Steering & brakes - I always go for the best quality followed by the best price Origional equipment manufacturer but not always in a Landrover box.

Any photos of the field expediant repair?
 

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Field repair

OK here's the improv field repair..its not pretty but it got the job done... There isn't much left of the socket, parts wise...I'm thinking it could use a rebulid kit? If it comes with all the inserts that retain the ball in the socket??? PS I hit a berm pretty hard continued on trail (downhill) for a bit stopped, pulled over, off trail, then when I started up had no streering...sigh....(the jeeps in my group made it through with no issues...double sigh)
 

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It all looks a little crusty.... could be that the drop arm balljoint was due for renewal anyway.
 
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