Squarebirds, Rocketbirds, and Fifties/Sixties Ford Discussion Forum

Squarebirds, Rocketbirds, and Fifties/Sixties Ford Discussion Forum (http://squarebirds.org/vbulletin/index.php)
-   1958 To 1960 Squarebirds - General Technical Discussion (http://squarebirds.org/vbulletin/forumdisplay.php?f=14)
-   -   removing front suspension (http://squarebirds.org/vbulletin/showthread.php?t=19215)

chris58 07-26-2015 03:00 AM

removing front suspension
Hi all, is they're a guide somewhere as to the do's and don't's of removing the front suspension. Using spring compressors, removing power steering etc. Is it pretty straightforward.
Thanks Chris.

toddgilroy 07-26-2015 07:08 AM

Chris - I did this back in the winter and started with the shop manual. It provides very detailed instructions, but I also read through several threads here on the forum for tips & tricks from other members who have done this.

Just search on suspension...Dave Dare (~simplyconnected) recaps the process in several of the threads, including this one: http://www.squarebirds.org/vbulletin...ght=suspension

Dakota Boy 07-26-2015 09:01 AM

X2 on the shop manual method.

One thing I don't think it mentions; remove the rubber bumper from the upper control arm first. It makes it easier to get the lower ball joint back into the spindle when you are near the end of the job.

The shop manual mentions some "special" (probably unavailable) tools for pressing out the ball joints from the spindle. A brass hammer and a little MAP gas will also work.

simplyconnected 07-27-2015 05:40 AM

Squarebird ball joints are not pressed in, they each have three rivets that must be drilled out then chiseled off. New ball joints should come with three cap screws with washers and nuts.

Spring compressors are not necessary and they won't fit between the spring and frame.

I like the idea of reconnecting the ball joint studs without the upper bumper. All my cars had engines so the lower joint studs went in without any problem. - Dave

bygrace 07-27-2015 02:19 PM

Upsidedown ball joints?
This thread seems to have some people knowledgeable in ball joints. I'm afraid I' m not going to be doing my own work, but I've begun to wonder about the shop that will. Here's the scoop:
Our '60 Bird just tore out a hole in the control arm around the lower right ball joint. The ball joints were put in by a local shop about 5 years ago. Looking at the damage and the undamaged one, I see that they are bolted to the TOP of the control arm. This leaves the car's weight hanging on two bolts! Looking closely at my Ford shop manual reprint, it looks like the ball joint pictured has no bolt flange visible on top. If it is on the bottom, it would put the car's weight on the ball joint bolt flange, which seems to make more sense. Bottom line, did the shop screw up? Does the bottom ball joint go in from below (bolt flange under) or from above (flange on top?

simplyconnected 07-27-2015 03:35 PM

Mike, just about every lower ball joint I changed would only go in one way including Mustang ball joints that press in from the bottom because there are no bolts.

Page 8-8 in your Shop Manual shows the lower joint as it mounts from the bottom. Look at Fig.8 and Fig.9.

I'm going to stick my neck out and say, top joints normally mount from the top down and lower joints normally mount from the bottom up. There are exceptions where some early lower joints are sandwiched in the middle of the arm but again, there is only one way they fit.

Lower ball joints (and shock absorbers) mount through and bolted from the bottom so that the bolts do not bear suspension pressure. They are there to hold the ball joint assembly square to the lower arm.

Tell your mechanic that the tire pulls UP on the joint stud as the spring pulls down on the joint housing. It only makes sense to enter the lower joint from the bottom. I see pictures of other Ford cars that typically show the lower joint mounted from the bottom. - Dave

jopizz 07-27-2015 04:00 PM

1 Attachment(s)
As Dave mentioned ball joints should go in from the bottom of the lower control arm and the top of the upper control arm.


toddgilroy 07-27-2015 05:17 PM

1 Attachment(s)
Sorry the photo is a little blurry...my upper ball joints were still the original joints (riveted in place), and you can see they go in from the top.

bygrace 07-27-2015 05:35 PM

Upsidedown ball joints?
John and Dave:
Thank you! Frankly, I just wasn't ready to challenge the garage that put these in ON TOP 5 years ago without some better verification. The shop manual reprint is fuzzy, but it does say enough to make me think they were (are) wrong. I just visited some of members rebuild picture sites, and found better pictures that clearly show bolt flanges on the bottom. With them on top, The bolts just pulled through. It coulda killed us! Trouble is, I had it towed to the same shop so now I have take it elsewhere or try to "Correct" the mechanic. Wish me luck.

jopizz 07-27-2015 06:52 PM

Probably a good move not giving them a second chance to screw something up.


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