Shop Press

Shop Press is the news and idea hub for everything related to working on cars and trucks, focusing on repair, technology, and wrenching lifestyle.

From the creative minds at:


Hot Off the Press

Technicians vs. DIYers: How well can you gauge tire pressure? (VIDEO)

Description After seating the bead on a new tire, the valve core needs to be installed and the tire inflated to the correct pressure. Some techs can air up a tire, install the core and land right on the target final pressure… but it’s not as easy as it looks. In this...

Smarter, not harder: relative compression testing

Pete Meier, one of our Dorman Training Center instructors, is a pretty smart cat. Since the day I’ve met him, he’s made it clear that the lab scope is one of his favorite tools and that not using one is a mistake. Now I’ve put a lot of miles on my DVOM over the years,...

Can’t break that crank bolt loose? You need a crank socket (VIDEO)

How to test for blown fuses in a car or truck | Fast and easy method Description Crank fasteners are often a real pain to remove. And sometimes, even expensive impact wrenches and large breaker bars struggle to remove them. A crank socket is just the ticket for these...

So you want to restore a classic or build a kit car? Think twice.

For reasons that have more to do with personality than pragmatism, I recently considered anew the possibility of restoring a classic car, or perhaps building a kit car. It’s an itch I’ve thought about scratching since the days when Popular Mechanics regularly featured...

EGR system – ASE practice questions (VIDEO)

Description Under what conditions would the EGR system be expected to be operational?A) Cold engine, full throttle B) Hot engine, idle C) Hot engine, full throttle D) Hot engine, part throttleMore ASE Practice Questions

A low-tech favor you can perform for every customer (and yourself)

In the modern age, it’s plenty easy to pull a vehicle’s service history; even the smallest shops have implemented shop management software. Paper tracking has become less and less important as time has marched on. Similarly, customers are less and less likely to keep...

The rarely seen control arm-mounted trailer ball rears its head

by | Feb 14, 2023

Well, this was a humdinger. Let me explain how I ended up here.

Ball joint stud stuck in lower control arm

Class 0.25 towing capacity, maybe? Photo by Lemmy.

I was popping ball joints free from the lower A-arms so I could swing the CV axles out and replace the hub assemblies on this car. The left side freed up with a few taps. This side? Well, this picture is after the hammer, then the torch, then the big hammer and the pickle fork. Finally I separated the control arm from the knuckle using a homebrewed tool.

This wasn’t the way I was expecting to do it, though. As you can see, the ball stud actually fractured the socket, releasing it. This resulted in the ball joint breaking, rather than the stud end coming free of the lower A-arm and being able to be put back into service. At least in this position I was able to put the ball joint press on it, but it still had some fight left in it. After turning the press’ hex with The Persuader (my four-foot breaker bar) with a three-foot pipe over the handle, it cut loose.

Ball joint in pieces

Well, this is gonna be a fun job, I can tell right now. Image by Kyla Smith-Campbell.

And yes, for all you smartypants folks who will ask, yes, I certainly did remember to take the nut off before I started! On the bright side of the job, the bearings fell right out with very little fanfare, so at least I had that going for me.

Have a good Monday! I hope the rest of the week doesn’t go like this.

The articles and other content contained on this site may contain links to third party websites. By clicking them, you consent to Dorman’s Website Use Agreement.

Related Articles

Shop Press Comment Policy

Participation in this forum is subject to Dorman’s Website Terms & Conditions. Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.

Notify of
Oldest Most Voted
Inline feedback
View all comments

Get Articles In Your Inbox

Subscribe to receive a monthly email summary of our latest Shop Press stories.

Shop Press

I agree to the above privacy statement and T&Cs

Thanks! You're now subscribed.