I took apart the joint on tie rod to change out my drivers side axle seal. I used the tie rod separating tool (pickle fork) but it didn't separate the joint. I then put the castle nut on the last threads of the spindle and banged it out. Now I've got the new seal in and the rest of the work done. All that is left is to put the tie rod joint back together. It won't go back together. The threads on the castle nut are now screwed up, thanks to using it to break apart the joint. So now it is stuck partially up the threads and won't come off, nor tighten up (the threads turn along with the nut).
I have tried pounding the top of the steering knuckle with a 3 pound sledge, I have tried jacking up the A-arm in hopes that the pressure would pop it in... you don't get any pressure from that, I have tried to clamp down on the boot with vice grips to hold the spindle in place -it just ruins the boot, I have tried clamping below the boot with vice grips, but the threads just spin, I have tried to hold the end of the threads with vice grips and turn the nut, I have tried to compress the knuckle back together with a c-lamp, but it keeps slipping off, I have also tried jamming a small screwdriver in the hole where the cotter pin goes, it bent the screw driver.
Unless anybody has any better ideas, I am going to have to cut off the castle nut and look for a replacement. Currently none of the stores around here have what I need. If things are bad enough, I think may have to get a new tie rod end.
Does anybody have any extra castle nuts and cotter pins? It's a 21mm castle nut.
Busted up castle nut
My best, failed idea