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AUII lower ball joints. I think I've been d**k 

 

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 Post subject: AUII lower ball joints. I think I've been d**k
Posted: Thu Mar 13, 2008 7:27 pm 
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Took the ex cab over the pits last week (yes it has been retired from service finally) and of the few things that needed replacing were the lower ball joints.

Its an easy enough job and one I have decided to do myself. This is where it all starts to get interesting. Dropped the lower control arms and pressed the ball joints out (geniune ford items).

The really interesting part was when I got a new pair of genuine ball joints they literally fell into position in the lower controll arms. I thought to myself this can't be right and measured them up. Sure as s**t the new genuine ball joints where 0.2mm smaller in diameter than the old joints.


Took em back to ford for a please explain and was given 2 different explanations.
The head of spares said that somewhere along the line (between AUII and AUIII) they may have changed the size of ball joints but the current size is the only ones they stock, the only other different ones he can think of are for the EB falcon.
If that's not a crock of s**t then I was really blown away by what the head of service had to say. He said that aftermarket ball joints were fitted at some stage thus expanding the mounting hole in the lower control arm. Now I have to find the same sized aftermarket ball joint to press into the whole. Genuines are just too small and they drop.

Went back to my mechanic and told him the crap that ford fed me and he said its the first time in 20 years that he has heard that. He told me to get some aftermarket ones and see what happens.

This is where it gets real interesting. All aftermarket ball joints are the same size as the current genuine (smaller) replacement joints. That really p****d me off big time. Does any of this sound right to any of you cause this is the bermuda triangle of ford spare parts to me.

According to ford and the aftermarket industry and I am left with 2 shagged lower front control arms which need to be fixed by Tuesday. Rang up fraud for some prices and got quoted $675 each (fleet operators price). Rang pedders and they don't do exchange front controll arms, only rears.

Rang up MacArthur Parts plus and found some for $175 each, but who knows, what if they have the old school larger ball joints which may need replacing? Then I'm f**k.

Failing all that my only other option would be to get my controll arms sleeved and spline the sleeves to accept these new style smaller ball joints. A lot of f**k around for not much gain, plus theres the belief that it wont be dead accurate. I might pay my mate (former employer) a visit and see what he says about repairing my supposedly rooted control arms.
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Posted: Thu Mar 13, 2008 7:42 pm 
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If it is only rooted ball joints, then you can get away with a sleeve made at your local engineering establishment. As long as the tolerances are adhered to, then there will be no issues. No need for knurling. Just make sure a tool-steel is used, and not mild steel-too soft.

 

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Posted: Thu Mar 13, 2008 7:45 pm 
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hmm interesting story. i haven't heard of there being any problems in the ball joints.

are you aware of them being replaced in the cab or the arms being replaced prior to now?

if i remember i will ask around tomorrow when i am in the office lol

 

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Posted: Thu Mar 13, 2008 9:34 pm 
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I've replaced the left ball joint a few times and I've replaced the right lower control arm assembly once. That was complete with bushes and a ball joint already pressed in. That was a factory item from ford and the new ball joints they sell don't fit it.

And thanks Kwaussiekid, I was thinking along those lines but unless you have a 3d model or a genuine unused item for reference then how can you be 100% sure of the tolerances.
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Posted: Thu Mar 13, 2008 9:52 pm 
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another ford woe.....

ford is really starting to turn me off......... i'm still not happy with their service.

 

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Posted: Thu Mar 13, 2008 10:02 pm 
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You should have heard the head of service talking down to my old man. I was checking out the new mondeo in the yard and could hear him yelling at my old man saying that the only way to fix the prob was with aftermarket ball joints. I was going to storm in there and knock the C*** out. I heard this from 50 meters away and no customer desrves to be spoken to like that, even if they f**k it themselves and are trying to lie their way out of it. That is when wit is called for not abuse.
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Posted: Thu Mar 13, 2008 10:34 pm 
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are the au control arms differrnt to the EF

in the EF the ball joints arnt in the control arm theyre in the upright spindle thingy..

 

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Posted: Thu Mar 13, 2008 10:46 pm 
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Ford had problem with the AUII lower arms not being machined properly back when they were new.
I remember that we had to inspect them and if found OK, paint a red stripe on the lower arms.
Get onto the Service department/ warranty clerk, give him your VIN number and see if it comes up as one on the list.

 

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Posted: Thu Mar 13, 2008 10:54 pm 
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Thank f**k for that. Finally someone who admitted there was a problem with them. And it came from an internet forum. Halleluhja
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Posted: Thu Mar 13, 2008 11:19 pm 
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cjh wrote:
Ford had problem with the AUII lower arms not being machined properly back when they were new.
I remember that we had to inspect them and if found OK, paint a red stripe on the lower arms.
Get onto the Service department/ warranty clerk, give him your VIN number and see if it comes up as one on the list.


Just out of interest. What did you do with the faulty ones? Repair them or just bin them? Mine was one of the last of the AUII's
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Posted: Thu Mar 13, 2008 11:24 pm 
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would have the problem been listed as a tsb

cause if it is you should jam the control arm wrapped in the tsb up that spareparts managers sphincta

 

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Posted: Thu Mar 13, 2008 11:33 pm 
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what a tsb?
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Posted: Thu Mar 13, 2008 11:43 pm 
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technical service bulletin
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Posted: Wed Mar 19, 2008 5:46 pm 
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Well after hearing conflicting theories from fitters, mechanics, parts suppliers and even engineers I went to Repco, bit the bullet and bought a pair of complete new arms for less than the cost of a single arm from Ford.

Whilst there, a cab driver was trying to flog off his old arms for 50 bucks each. They were the same as mine (stretched holes) but they were repaired by welding a nice thick bead around the inside of the hole and filing it back to the proper dimensions. That sounds a bit dodgy but apparently it is accepted practice, and more accepted then boring and sleeving at that. Especially when you see how little meat there is around the holes for the ball joints.

My only other option was to find oversized ball joints or joints from another vehicle which would fit my purpose but to no avail. All the parts suppliers around my way only have part numbers, not dimensions. So glad its all sorted and hopefully I can bring the pro stock ex cab out for a harry's meet finally.
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Posted: Wed Mar 19, 2008 7:28 pm 
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ford cars are great. their service department isn't

 

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