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Old 05-04-2015
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Removing lower ball joint

Hello all, I am trying to remove and replace the lower ball joint on my 1997 Ford Ranger 2.3l 4x2. I removed the camber adjuster on the top one and the spindle is rotating freely around the bottom. The problem is that the lower ball joint stud is not moving and seems seized within the spindle . Can I assume that it is broken off from the rest of it? I tore off the rubber boot to get a better look as well. Any ideas on how I can separate the ball joint from the spindle? Also, my photo shows that the lower ball joint is flush with the underside of the spindle and not showing any retaining clip like the upper one which I removed. Is this normal for the Ford stock part? Thanks for any help you can offer!!

Removing lower ball joint-dsc06642.jpg Removing lower ball joint-dsc06644.jpg

Removing lower ball joint-dsc06646.jpg Removing lower ball joint-dsc06648.jpg
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Old 05-04-2015
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You need a Pickle Fork(Ball Joint Separator), basically 2 wedges side by side that forces parts apart, used for tie rods and ball joints.

Upper and lower are not the same part.

If I remember correctly you will have to remove the upper to replace the lower so should replace both.

And yes it can be very stubborn, the lower ball joint, gets stuck in there very tight
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Old 05-05-2015
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Thanks for the info Ron, I'll be picking one of those up to get that stubborn ball joint off. Cheers, Gary
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Old 05-05-2015
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the upper and lower ball joints are a press fit

with that much rust on the spindle and ball joint bodies , you will need to heat the ball joint itself to break it free from the spindle

use some heat on the ball joint stud to help the pickle fork break it free as well
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Old 05-05-2015
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Heat's a good idea. I've used it on bolts before but never thought to use it on the ball joint. I'll give the pickle fork/heat combo a try once I pick one up. Thanks. Gary
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