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GMC Owner
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1,464 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Ok so i got the day off work tomorrow to do my balljoints on my truck. i have all the parts and everything ready to go. i want to start tearing the truck apart cuz im doing upper control arms, lower balljoints and lower control arm bushings. and its gonna take a while cuz its just me.
I know i gotta take out my torsion bars to remove the lower control arm, so i ordered a torsion key unloader tool. but it hasnt arrived yet. it says its due for delivery tomorrow, but usually UPS delivers in the afternoon. I was hoping to have the truck done by tomorrow afternoon.

My question is can i just jack the truck up and take the tires off, and then back the torsion bar aduster bolts out all the way without using the unloader tool? or is this a bad idea?

cuz then i figure i can just unload the keys and then start working on the truck, and wait for the torsion bar tool to show up for when i gotta put it back together.

what do you think?
 

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FFR Fabrication
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8,144 Posts
How do you plan on removing the plate that the key would then rest on? I've used a ball joint removal tool to do it and also a 2-arm gear puller. Both worked.
 

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Daddy
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1,360 Posts
...... I've used a ball joint removal tool to do it and also a 2-arm gear puller. Both worked.

Not a good recommendation. I have seen what happens when those gear pullers shatter. It's not worth it, just wait till you get the unloading tool. :shake:
 

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GMC Owner
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1,464 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
How do you plan on removing the plate that the key would then rest on? I've used a ball joint removal tool to do it and also a 2-arm gear puller. Both worked.
oh yea...shit i forgot about that.

hmm i have the balljoint remover....but i think its too big to get up into the slot where you crank up the key to remove the bolt
 

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FFR Fabrication
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8,144 Posts
Not a good recommendation. I have seen what happens when those gear pullers shatter. It's not worth it, just wait till you get the unloading tool. :shake:
If you're in a pinch...it worked fine 2x for me. Broke a C-Clamp though, that was fun. The ball joint tool works fine as well


oh yea...shit i forgot about that.

hmm i have the balljoint remover....but i think its too big to get up into the slot where you crank up the key to remove the bolt
It works...I've done...Used it on Dirt Mafias truck too...
 

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GMC Owner
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1,464 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
yea i used to have a 2 jaw puller.i used it to put in my ford keys, but after i was done the thing was like about to die....i threw the damn thing away.
 

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Bayou Surface Drive, LLC
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7,077 Posts
I use a balljoint press as my TB unload/reloading tool.
 

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GMC Owner
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1,464 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Well i wokeup this morning at 7am. took a shower got dressed then ate some breakfast. then headed out to the truck which was already jacked up with the wheels off soaking in PB blaster from the night before. So i dug into it.

Sway bar end links came off really easy cuz i had just did a sway bar flip and put in new moog end links last weekend. so that was easy. Sway bar ends done.

then i removed the shocks. the bottom bolt was fairly easy, and the top was also pretty easy. its the stupid washers on top of the bushing and under the nut that caused me a tough time. but i got them out. Shocks done.

Then i went ahead and removed the top part of my cognito tie rods (instead of pulling the stud from the knuckle.) Those came out surprisingly easy. they needed some force from my new 24" breaker bar on sale at auto zone.:anitoof: Tie rods done.

Then i loosened the bolt on the end of the CV shaft. I had just done a 3/4 ton cv swap a few weekends ago, so these were pretty easy (compared to last time, when i had to use the impact gun). Just a good tug on the 24" breaker bar and it was loose. CV nuts done.

Now the only thing holding the knuckle to the vehicle is the balljoints.
All i have to do is remove the torsion bars and then i can have at it! What i expected to take 2 days to do (by myself....) now might only take 1 day....granted UPS shows up.

But for now ive hit a dead end. Ive decided i dont want to risk using the ball joint press to remove the load on the torsion keys. so im waiting for my torsion bar remover. Last night it arrived in chicago, and this morning it was in Addision. i live in the far west chicago suburbs, so i should hopefully get it sometime around lunch time, which is when UPS usually shows up.

So yea, ill be browsing the forums. :wave:
 

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Puttin 4 Bird
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5,842 Posts
i've used a big c clamp that comes in the ball joint removal tool case. Used it plenty of times with no problems.

probably the same one mike is talking about
 

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GMC Owner
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1,464 Posts
Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Yea i figure i have the tool coming, i might as well wait for it and do things the right way.:shake:

Also while i have everything else torn apart i inspected my front hub assemblies....the passanger side makes a nice grinding sound, and the driver side is normal. And while i have the front end all torn apart, i might as well replace the damn things right? Drove up to autozone to get some. out of stock.

Drove around to an advanced auto. they had 2 in stock of National brand. The guy said they are OEM replacement. they were 180 a piece. so they better last forever.

I am thinking ups will show up at noonish and then i can get back to work on the balljoints.
 

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GMC Owner
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1,464 Posts
Discussion Starter · #15 ·
got the torsion bar tool. the bars and keys came out pretty easy. started tearin into the front end. the ball joint press that i rented is a pos. so i took the LCAs to a shop to have them pressed in. takin a break for lunch now then im gonna go work on the wheel bearings
 

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GMC Owner
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1,464 Posts
Discussion Starter · #17 ·
yea but the press i had was a pos, the cups were already bent as shit. It only cost me 40 bucks for the shop to take out the old balljoints, put in the new ones, pull out the old bushings and then put in the new bushings.

The truck is all back together, minus for the sway bar end links which ill do tomorrow, i didnt finish til 8:30pm. And i was tired so the truck is sitting in the garage. needs an alignment, but surprsingly its not too bad. the camber is a bit positive. and i think the toe may be off as well.

but overall today was a good day, got a lot done on the truck. Also noticed while i was underneath, that i have an exhaust leak and a broken clamp on an exhaust pipe. so thats gonna get fixed next week as well.
 

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Registered
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4,875 Posts
hmm i need to install my ford keys pretty soon.. anyone got a nice write up for that?

sorry for the thread jack. glad to see everything seems to be going good! my IFS needs some TLC...
 

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Swamper Brotherhood
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3,900 Posts
i can load and unload my bars without a tool... just back the bolt all the way out and try it...
 
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