Chevy Impala SS Forum banner

1 - 15 of 15 Posts
T

·
Guest
Joined
·
0 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Where have you guys gotten the tools to remove the bushings and ball joints from the front A arms? Dal told me to ask Kent-Moore tools. I just sent them an e-mail for a price quote. I have a feeling their prices are gona be insane.
 
T

·
Guest
Joined
·
0 Posts
Discussion Starter #2
It is generally not worth buying the tools unless you intend to go into business doing suspensions.

AutoZone will loan you the ball joint tools, but I haven't seen the bushing tools at an AZ. OTC makes a fine ball joint press that retails around $150, probably a lot less than Kent Moore wants. I don't think Kent Moore sells the bushing tools for our B-bodies any more, we're too old.
You can make bushing tools from short lengths of pipe - that is about all the Kent Moore tools are. Use threaded rod (Acme thread if you can get it, otherwise NF thread) with the different size tubing and an assortment of washers and a thrust bearing to push the old bushings out and new ones in. That’s what I have done for years and it works fine. You just need to be a little creative.
 
B

·
Guest
Joined
·
0 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Transistor, Read My Post On How And What I Used To Do This Project At This Link Below. I Just Finished This Entire Project Last Week (Front And Rear, Upper And Lower Controls Arms And Front Ball Joints). My Post Also Shows Pics Of My " Home-Made Bushing Removal Tool And The Parts List.
The Items In The List Fit All B-Body Bushings For Sure! I Used This Homemade Tool Throughout The Whole Bushing Upgrade Process....Mike
Bushings And Ball Joint Removal And Replacement

The Ball Joints Are Simple! Just Drill The Head ONLY Off The Rivets That Hold The Ball Joints In, Pull Them Out And Bolt The New Ones In. The Ball Joint Press And Flywheel Puller I Rented From Autozone (Free When You Return Them, Save Your Reciept!). Make Sure You DONT Drill To Deep On The Ball Joint Rivets Or You Could Ruin The Control Arm. Just Drill Enough In The Center Of The Rivet And Chisel The Rest Of The Head Off.
 
T

·
Guest
Joined
·
0 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
awesome... thanks allot guys

Ill have to post pics of my 91 when I get finished with it.
 
T

·
Guest
Joined
·
0 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
How did you use this tool with the upper control arm bushings? There is a rod that goes through them
 
T

·
Guest
Joined
·
0 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
One upper inner bushing has to be removed using some other tool in order to get the shaft (what you call a rod) out. See the link for one method.

Car Craft B-body front suspension rebuild

An air chisel makes the job easy, but unless you already have one......
 
B

·
Guest
Joined
·
0 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Just in case someone needs this now or later...
In my new home town there was no AutoZone at the time (there is now), so I had to order a ball joint press. I got the SPX/OTC one. part number 7249. SPX/OTC 7249
thetoolwarehouse.net price of $86.92 was the lowest I could find with the exception of a couple of "scammers" that added really high shipping & handling charges.
The SPX/OTC is a really nice set.
The one AutoZone rents (OEM brand) is also good.
The one Harbor Freight sells has much fewer threads per inch on the screw and I have also seen a picture of a bent Harbor Freight ball joint press "c-frame" somewhere on the web, so I would avoid that one, expecially when quality tools can be borrowed for free or purchased for not that much more.
I also use the threaded rod, washers, short piece of exhaust pipe, socketes bushing installation/removal method. I have been doing it that way for so long that I actually prefer it over using a hydraulic press. At first I drill the old bushings and pull a part of it out with needle nose pliers.
When pressing bushings/outer sleeves in or out, I always use "c-clips" and "c-pipes" (c-pipe not needed on b-body LCAs) to keep the ars from getting bent. I make these out of 2" plumbing pipe.
CAUTION: Be very careful when sawing into an old outer bushing that is still in the control arm. On press fit parts it is almost impossible to see where the bushing ends and the control arm begins.
You don't have to saw all the way through the bushing. Just saw a little bit and then collapse it in with a hammer and a punch.
Tim
 
R

·
Guest
Joined
·
0 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
When I remove the ball joints from the spindle assembly I use the Two Hammer Method. I remove the cotter pins from the ball joint stud and loosen the nuts 1 turn only upper and lower.
Let the lower control arm hang with jack under the frame.
Using two heavy ball pean hammers smack each side of the spindle that surrounds the ball joint stud at the same time. Give a good hard hit. This shocks the tapered fit of this assembly and causes it to release. Move a second jack under the lower control arm closer to the ball joint and lift the weight of the car. Finish removing the nuts.
Using this method won't damage the ball joint seals and is very easy this way.
I just finished the upper control arm bushings.
Other than a retaining bolt that was rusted solid to the inner pivot arm, it was a piece of cake.
 
B

·
Guest
Joined
·
0 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
Transistor, In Order To Get 1 Of The Upper Sleeves Out, You Need To Get a "Wheel Puller" And Put It On The End Of The Shaft And The Lips Of 1 Of The Bushings And Pull It Out!....Mike
 
O

·
Guest
Joined
·
0 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
I removed my upper control arm bushings with a mallet and a chisel.

Wasn't all that difficult, but I'm sure some of the other methods I'm reading about here are alot less work.

I'm trying to figgure out how to remove the Lower A arm bushings, and I think I'll whip up the device pictured on the sport truck website.
 
B

·
Guest
Joined
·
0 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
RPOB4Z and RyanSS,
The Harbor freight tool may very well look like the AutoZone tool in a catalog picture. I have held the Harbor Freight tool in my hand and it was not the same (unless they have changed it, but I doubt that). One major difference was that the forcing screw on the Harbor Freight tool has fewer threads per inch than the others. That is a sign that they most likely used inferior material and/or inferior heat treatment in China. Even if it were to hold up, the fewer treads per inch means lower mechanical advantage: It takes more torque to achieve the same axial force.
I too have used the AutoZone tool (OEM brand) a few times and I have never had problems with it.
I have the SPX/OTC set and the quality is apparent from the moment you touch the case. Also, the breaker bar never comes to play. All 1/2" Craftsman rachet, baby. I also happen to like that Made in USA sticker on the c-frame.
I have never used the Harbor Freight tool. Based on how it looks I would not recommend it. However, it could possibly work fine.
With tools, you can usually buy a quality one right away or waste your money on a bad one first and then buy the quality one later. Your choice.
Tim
P.S. If someone out there has the Harbor Freight tool, I would be very much interested in finding out if I'm wrong about the threads/inch. The forcing screw on my SPX/OTC has 7 threads per inch. (Count how many "crests" fit in an inch. Place 0" on one crest and the next crest counts as thread 1.)
Tim
 
B

·
Guest
Joined
·
0 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
I was wrong about the threads/per inch on the Harbor Freight tool. It also has 7.
I am certain that the last time I looked at it (maybe about 2 years ago) it was different. Either they have changed it or having lots of sex with models and cheerleaders really does cause memory loss. :D
However, the quality of the Harbor Freight tool is clearly lower than that of the SPX/OTC.
Tim
 
1 - 15 of 15 Posts
Top