Ball Joints Too Tight

Disclaimer: Links on this page pointing to Amazon, eBay and other sites may include affiliate code. If you click them and make a purchase, we may earn a small commission.

Kilian

Full Access Member
Joined
Mar 25, 2018
Posts
168
Reaction score
25
Location
Wisconsin
First Name
K
Truck Year
1983
Truck Model
C2500 hopefully converting to K2500
Engine Size
350
In the process of rebuilding a 10-bolt front axle for my 4WD project and have the problem of the new ball joints being too tight on one side. Ball joints are new AC Delco professional or whatever the higher grade is called.

I've followed the instructions in the service manual to first partially tighten the lower ball joint nut (30 ft-lb), then tighten the adjusting ring for the upper (50 ft-lb), then tighten upper nut (100 ft-lb), followed by final torque on lower nut (70 ft-lb).

Right now it's pulling at around 36 lbs or more to move the knuckle. Any tricks to this that I'm missing? The pull effort was in spec of around 25 lb after I tightened the adjusting ring, but got way tighter by the end of the procedure. I'm wondering if I need to use a clamp to make sure that the upper ball joint is pulled into the axle hole completely before tightening the adjusting ring? Thanks for any help provided!
 
Last edited:

fast 99

Full Access Member
Joined
Dec 31, 2021
Posts
1,615
Reaction score
2,181
Location
Spokane, Washington
First Name
Brian
Truck Year
81,85
Truck Model
K20
Engine Size
350
Try loosening and reseat. Are the joints greased? Have run into that before on cheap joints but not AC.
 

CalSgt

Full Access Member
Joined
Oct 3, 2021
Posts
1,503
Reaction score
3,164
Location
CA
First Name
Casey
Truck Year
1980
Truck Model
Chevy K-10 Custom Deluxe
Engine Size
350
I chain the axle housing to a floor jack and use it to put pressure on the lower joint when needed. It helps the tapered studs get seated, and is really helpful when the studs want to rotate during the torquing process.

If you’re building a daily I’d recommend driving down a washboarded dirt road, that’s what the Jeep guys do to break in stiff ball joints

You must be registered for see images attach
 

Latest posts

Forum statistics

Threads
42,029
Posts
907,660
Members
33,521
Latest member
Laqota
Top