Ball joints on upper and lower control

Any one have any good tips for checking the ball joint to see if they need to be replaced, without the car running or engine in it? Thanks in advance.

The upper ball joints have quite a bit of play. Typically the ball joint is good and the rubber boot is perished. The upper ball joint can have 3/16" of play. The weight of the vehicle keeps it in place.

The lower ball joint is more critical. Normally the lower ball joint is shot, the rubber boot is perished, and the pivot point on the inner lower arm is also bad. The allowance for play on the lower ball joint is much more critical. It is 1/16". Both can be checked with a two post lift.

Ty Royce. I appreciate the information. Have you replaced your ball joints before?

Yes many times. Too many to count. Typically I use rivets these days. The upper shaft gets new kits. The lower control arm is easier to replace given the excellent reproductions on the market.

Which reproductions would that be Mr. Peterson? There are several.

I am only aware of two - these:
Scott Drake C8OZ-A

Scott Drake C8OZ-B

Royce or 70scj4, have either of you removed the rivets to replace just the ball joints on the lower arms? I would like to keep the original lower arms if possible. I have never removed rivets on a lower arm ball joint. Any advice would be great

I had my originals restored by Marcus with the correct boots and rivets as I could not replicate the original correct waffle pattern on the rivets.

I did using a 3/16" drill bit. It’s a pain in the rear. I made my own sets to replicate the waffle pattern on the rivet heads. I do not recommend it, very difficult.

1 Like