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  1. #1
    Craig in Canada
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    Eurodavid:Your pickle fork method? RR wishbone

    Eurodavid:

    I've read plenty of references to the "Eurodavid pickle fork methods" but google and other searches are only showing me these references and not any posts where you defined them.

    I've found a failed balljoint on my RR wishbone (#18 in below):

    http://www.realoem.com/bmw/showparts...19&hg=33&fg=30

    It looks like a fairly simple balljoint at the hub and bolt torqued at "normal position" at the subframe. I'd like to take a whack (no pun intended) at DIY replacement assuming I can gain tool access to the required spaces. I don't have a fancy BMW ball joint tool and, considering I don't intend to reassemble with the old part, I should be able to use a pickle fork, right?

    Thanks,


  2. #2
    Eurodavid
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    Re: Eurodavid:Your pickle fork method? RR wishbone

    Craig,

    Yes, if you are not reusing it, you can get that thing easy with a pickle fork. Only thing I might recommend is that you shave some of the length off (I took a 5/8s of an inch off mine) the pickle fork's runners, then regrind them to the same slope. That way, there is zero marring if you get close the knuckle. Also, know that is using a pickle fork, the trick in using (and being successful with) them is to go slow. You take the pressure in stages (too many people, who use either pickle forks and/or ball jt tools, go way too fast, and end up breaking either the tool, damaging the ball joint, or worse, both).

    Just work that thing in there, and then whack in 3 min stages. Eventually, you will reach a point where it feels like the pickle fork can't possibly go in any further, and that is the tipping point. On mine, when I've reached that point, I actually was able (a couple of times) to take a rubber mallet, whack the middle of the wishbone arm, and the vibrations set in motion a violent shake where the wishbone popped out with a loud bang. You don't have to do it that way, just tapping that pickle fork firmly but not madly, will cause that ball joint to pop. Be warned, get out of the way when it pops, sometimes it likes to inflict damage on any fingers, knuckles or forearms near it.


    Good luck!

    Eurodavid

  3. #3
    Eurodavid
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    p.s.

    almost forgot, it helps immensely to do this while the car is on car ramps with the wheel still on, and not jacked up with the wheel off. I don't know why (proper pressure on the knuckle and joints, maybe??), but I had all sorts of headaches trying to do it with the front jacked up and the wheel off. Once I did it the other way, i was off and running and have since never looked back. It's kind of sad that I have gotten to the point that I can get the complete knuckle and various arms/tie rods off my car in about 15-20 mins or less ;-(

    Eurodavid

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    UguysR making a simple job complicated-no pickle(m

    fork is needed. Jack up the side and remove the wheel, then put something under the wheel carrier or swing arm (block of wood, etc) and lower that side to push the wheel carrier up a bit to take pressure off the ball joint.
    Back off nut #20 until it is flush with the end of the stud and then give it a few good wraps with a big hammer, mine popped right out.
    Bolt #19 and nut #12 aren't a problem. Repalcement of the #18 wishbone doesn't require alignment as there are no adjustments made during alignment with this part.
    The rubber boot on my ball socket had disintegrated, same problem on yours?

    Same link

  5. #5
    Craig in Canada
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    Re: UguysR making a simple job complicated-no pickle(m

    @JimLev: I suspect our rear spindle areas have...errr...different levels of environmental exposure over their lifetime :-D I would be thrilled if it was that easy. The problem is that if it isn't that easy and I half-mangle the parts trying, I need plans B and C that will definitely work. (this is part of the reason I haven't DIYed "big hammer" suspension work yet).

    I replaced both #18s preventively as part of my 2005 7year 102,000km suspension refresh based on advice received from various sources. Unfortunately it was just the beginning of my OE part sourcing days and I'm not positive what brand I purchased. I was not going for aftermarket or "the cheapest" but it was ordered over the phone and I didn't go through the "Lemforder at all costs" process I go through now. The boot seems intact but I can see the balljoint moving around during a 3&9 o'clock pull. It also killed my two-summer old PS2 on that corner since mid-summer. :(

    @Eurodavid: I plan to achieve "normal position" with a bottle or trolley jack plus whatever doodads I need to make it reach properly. That should achieve the same goal of unloading everything in the area. Good advice - thanks.

    In general terms - why doesn't anyone assemble this stuff with anti-seize in the tapered area where the parts mate? Is this a no-no for some reason? It sure seems like it would make for fewer bangs (both from the hammer and from the parts) on disassembly.


  6. #6
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    The M5 rear subframe with all parts attached (m)

    that I bought was driven year round, those wishbones popped right out. Give it a go, you might be surprised. You also won't muck up the mating surface on the wheel carrier like you will using a pickle fork.

  7. #7
    Craig in Canada
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    Awesome - will do


  8. #8
    Eurodavid
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    You better WATCH it, Jim, or.....

    ...during one of your 3 stage booster shots to the moon with the NOS, you're going to be popping bushings, tie rods, & easy-peasy swing arms like Paris Hilton pops bubble gum!

    Eurodavid

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    LOL, that day may B coming sooner than I expect (m

    I decided that I was thru with taking by 20 lb tank to the local shops and having to wait for them to fill it. Sometimes they are out and waiting for a delivery or their system is down for whatever reason. Now if I had a ski pass thru I could just stick the big tank in which would last ~2 years.


  10. #10
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    Jim, you're not hiding that too well

    even my wife might notice that thing in the garage.

    dave
    03 540i6

  11. #11
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    It's now pushed back in the corner & can't B seen






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  12. #12
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    That's great!



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  13. #13
    Panos
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    Careful Jim! Thats a nice idea but I HIGHLY >>

    recommend that you have that tanked strapped to the wall. If it happens to fall over and you know that regulator/valve assembly off it will turn into a rocket that will penetrate the brick walls of your home and a few neighbors as well before coming to rest. I have a few of those full size gas cylinders at work (some are pure hydrogen) and our safety guy would S@#t a brick if he saw that.

    I am sure you can fab something up but here is a source:
    http://www.usasafety.com/gas-cylinde...port-c-21.html

  14. #14
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    Yes | No

    It is chained but I moved it out for a better pic






    "Drive It Like You Stole It, A Sickness for Quickness"
    The Bottle Rocket "King of Spray" 2 Stage Nitrous Oxide
    Dare to be different and stand out among the crowd of me-to-cars!
    No guts, no glory! Tire smoke, not traction control!
    Zionsville all aluminum radiator to replace the 3 leak prone Nissens Radiators!

    NOS Progressive 2 Stage Controller with port injection
    Snow's Performance Methanol/Water Injection
    Dinan downloads, VAC Under Drive Pulleys
    Dinan Carbon Fiber CAI
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    Electric Cooling Fan w/PWM controller
    NGK Iridium Plugs
    DDE Enhanced Angel Eyes, Smoked Lenses
    Koni FSD's/H&R Springs, BAV Brass Caliper Bushings
    Eisenmann Race Exhaust (from H8-Rain's car)
    ///M5 3.15 LSD
    ///M5 Sway Bars, Front & Rear
    Energy Suspension Polyurethane Sway Bar Bushings
    ///M5 Gauge Cluster Rings ///M5 Lip Spoiler
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  15. #15
    Panos
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    but of course :)


  16. #16
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    Success

    I don't want to speak too soon, but I believe there will be no ongoing drama.

    JimLev: A couple of taps and it came out without a problem. For some reason I had to drive the bolt at the bushing end out all the way with a ratchet (it didn't require that for reassembly) but whatever.... It's done.

    A couple of things that I'll note:

    1/ the advice to lift the suspension at least slightly when you start working is good advice. The leaves a little slack. However:

    2/ I had to drop the suspension all the way in order to insert the new arm in place and have everything line up. There's considerably less play and flexibility in the new part and it was the only way to get it all lined up. That being said, just being in "normal position" carrying the weight of the car this thing must be under significant compression load even when standing still. (!)

    3/ So what's the deal with doing any kind of precision torquing with these ball joints which require counter-holding with small hex tools? I'm not really happy with my torque setting there. I'll torque oil pan bolts and some other stuff by feel, but I want to do suspension by the book. I had to use two wrenches for about 15 minutes to get things set (because the nut didn't spin on freely further than 1/2" or so). Once there I tightened very tight with the wrenches, even giving it a couple of hammer whacks. The torque wrench still simply spun the ball joint, never reaching a click, although it was pretty tight. The target was 104 ft-lb and I know 80 on that wrench very well from lug nuts and I was past 80. One time after the "normal position" (my best approximation, actually) torque at the bushing I threw it on again and I got a click at the right torque, but then it felt too tight. I tried to loosen it just a tiny bit and get it to click but it never would - just spin. So I just counter-held and tightened as far as I could again. What's the deal?

    4/ Assembled with grease on the length of the bushing bolt, anti-seize on all threads, metal "cup" at the ball joint clean and dry.

    5/ Although it's possible, I assume that one should try to avoid spinning the ball joint excessively. It would have been far easier, for instance, to counter-hold the 22mm nut and drive the 10mm hex (instead of the reverse) with an air ratchet to get things mated up at the balljoint. Am I being too cautious? I could have saved significant time if I was able to spin the ball joint without being concerned. Opinions?

    My test drive wasn't very long, but I think I can feel a definite improvement in stability and predictability at the RR. I need to get a chance to do a fast left sweeper to know for sure. I was going to put my snows on as part of the same jacking operation, but I wanted to at least get a test drive in on the same summer tires I had been using up until today. There's a really good chance I'll do the LR too, since it's the same aftermarket brand replaced at the same time (2005). The part I removed was not Lemforder and had no obvious symbols of any sort on it other than a non-BMW part#. Does any one know how to tell Karlyn and some of the other cheapies apart? Once disassembled the ball joint did not feel as bad as I would have thought considering that there was play in it while assembled.

    Yay. My first suspension DIY.


  17. #17
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    Good to hear you tapped it right out. (m)

    I didn't have any problems with the ball turning when I torqued mine.
    I now have to do the other side, that rubber boot on the ball socket is shot too. Wish they sold those seperately.

  18. #18
    Craig in Canada
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    Re: Good to hear you tapped it right out. (m)

    Hmm, I was worried someone would say that about the spinning. The counter-hold is only 10mm, it doesn't seem "right" that you'd still have to be counterholding on only 10mm over 100 ft-lb.

    The only thing I can think of is whether some of the anti-seize rubbed off in the cup area when putting the arm in place. I didn't think it did, I was watching, but that would account for it spinning (and the instructions in TIS to make sure it's dry).


  19. #19
    Eurodavid
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    Good job!!

    Craig,

    I ended up taking both front knuckles off the car (got a little overzealous, hehe, when I was taking everything apart) and when I finally got all the old stuff off and the new stuff lined up to put back on, I immediately noticed those little hex opening that I was somehow supposed to put a hex wrench into while I torqued those massive arms. So, I did the only thing I could think of, lol: I put those two arms on the knuckles first before I put the knuckles back on the car. That way, with the knuckle in my huge vise, I was able to hold that hex wrench in there (with a longer pipe attached, of course) and easily got the torque setting right on those nuts.

    Also, I concur with Jim, in that the few times I've messed with them since I did that job (remember my creak-somewhere-in-the-front episode last year?), I've never had the ball jts spin on me. Hope I am just lucky and don't have to deal with that this coming summer when the new lowering springs go on.


    Otherwise, great job and congrats!! Imho, there is nothing in the world like the peace of mind you get from doing your own suspension work, which arguably, along with the brakes, is the most important thing you can do on a car where your life and family are at stake. I don't think I would feel as secure going down the autobahn at 200kmph if someone else did the work.

    When I get a chance this week, I'll go out and dig up the oversupply of parts I have for the car. I could swear a few of the stuff I have is/was Karlyn, but it might be sway bar links or something. But I'll check, see what kind of notation they have on there.

    Eurodavid

  20. #20
    Craig in Canada
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    Re: Success

    So two things I remain curious about:

    1/ Can I freely spin new balljoints without worrying about any kind of damage? As I mentioned if I could have held the 22mm nut still and driven the 10mm "counter hold" on the ball joint shaft CCW to mate all of the parts together pre-torque I could have saved myself a ton of time. Not knowing for sure I didn't want to spin the balljoint that much intentionally.

    2/ It doesn't sound like anyone else had issues with the joint continuing to rotate once it was getting near the proper torque value but I did. It wasn't freewheeling by any stretch, I'd say more than 80 ft-lbs was required to get it to turn but it never tightened down and gave me a click from the wrench although I was expecting it "any moment now" based on feel. It's tight enough that when I put the wrenches back on I can't budge it tighter at all. My only working theory is that some anti-seize got on the ball joint bevel faces and lubricated it. Other than that I have no clue why. Should I be taking the ball joint apart again to inspect? What if it's clean and dry and I still am unable to torque it properly? ...or is this "quite tight" state good enough?

    I also noticed that the nut which was originally on the ball joint was just a nut. The new nut supplied by Lemforder was a nut with a flat washer-like section. I used the Lemforder nut.

    At the bushing end, the nut which was on the car was one of those jobs with an attached, free-wheeling washer. The Lemforder nut was another one-piece nut with a flat washer-like area just like supplied for the BJ end. I re-used the original free-wheeling nut/washer combo.

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