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post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-17-2008, 12:46 AM Thread Starter
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BJ Spacers?

Hey guys, I started tearing down my truck today. Knocked out the studs on pass side bj. Been reading through a ton of threads for the bj spacer install, but I am stuck. I'm having trouble popping the bj out to make the UCA cuts. Does anyone have some time to lend a hand tomo (Sat) or Sun? From what I've read, it should probably be an hour or so for someone who knows what they're doing. We can go get some eats & broos afterwards or I can do some cash. Whatever works. Thanks

Last edited by djlarroc; 08-20-2008 at 01:25 PM. Reason: deleting info
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post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-17-2008, 03:41 AM
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Originally Posted by djlarroc View Post
Hey guys, I started tearing down my truck today. Knocked out the studs on pass side bj. Been reading through a ton of threads for the bj spacer install, but I am stuck. I'm having trouble popping the bj out to make the UCA cuts. Does anyone have some time to lend a hand tomo (Sat) or Sun? From what I've read, it should probably be an hour or so for someone who knows what they're doing. We can go get some eats & broos afterwards or I can do some cash. Whatever works. I'm in the Littleton/Lakewood area. Thanks, Alex (3 zero 3) three 5 nine- 1 five two 5.
Sorry, your talkin ball joint spacer- pre Taco, correct?
BJ/TRE/Pitman Arm pullers help. If you have one that fits- snug it down
With 1 or two good swings with a BMFH hitting the outside of a knuckle, control arm, pitman arm, yada- whatever something likewise is pressed into. It should pop right out.
No workie? Add a little heat to expand the metal around and try again.
Still doesent work? Get pissed, plan on replacing it, and beat the crap outta it head on until its free

'''
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post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-17-2008, 09:41 AM
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Yeah, what Chris said ... (and yes, Chris - it's a 1st gen 4Runner)

Are you having trouble getting the big stud out of the spindle itself, or getting the BJ out of the upper arm? Mine just fell out of the upper arm (and dropped the rotor and spindle on my knee OUCH) ... and we all know how rusty my truck is!

Pitman arm puller comes in really handy - all the balljoints on our trucks use the same size.

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post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-17-2008, 10:28 AM Thread Starter
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Yeah tc, I'm having trouble knocking the bj down and out. I also thought by knocking the 4 studs out, it would drop the hub & bj down, but nope. Do I just bang on the top of the bj til I get it out like the studs? I read somewhere else to remove the cotter pin from the bolt, then remove the large caster nut? Well I removed the cotter pin, but tried to remove the caster nut and the wrench started slipping a bit so I stopped. I don't want to strip that. Do I even need to do that? Also, where is the best place to position the jack? I have a jack under the LCA and a jackstand right under the hub. I also put a small block of wood between the upper bumpstop and the UCA.

I went and rented some ball joint puller kit from advance last night, but that's not helping either. Sorry guys, I'm just not very good at this stuff...
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post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-17-2008, 11:06 AM
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You shouldn't be pulling the ball joint unless you are replacing it.

how big of a piece of wood do you have in there? You'll need something bigger than 3/4".

Its all about angles. When the UCA is up high enough, the balljoint tries to fall out straight, whereas when the UCA is too low, the ball joint is trying to fall out at an angle, and it jams.

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post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-17-2008, 04:10 PM Thread Starter
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Well I just got back from some errands so I'm going to give it another try. The piece of wood I have is about 2". Here's some pics.





So.. to get this straight... all I have to do is separate the bj from the UCA? I don't have to remove the caster nut, or tie rod ends or any other stuff? And so I don't even need that bj remover kit either? Thanks
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post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-17-2008, 08:08 PM
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When I first looked at this thread, I thought it was looking at a ghetto body lift in the second pic....
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post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-17-2008, 08:55 PM Thread Starter
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LOL!!! No, I do have a body lift, but it's body blocks.

Anyways, I figured it out guys. I'm sorry for wasting space to use up this thread. I'm a dumbass. I had the jack under the hub! I couldn't figure out WTF. I jacked up the frame in between, moved the jack from the LCA and voila, the ball joint comes free from the UCA. A couple of whacks with the pickle fork, and the ball joint is free. A few mins w/the cutting wheel, adjusting the bj spacer, new bj and I'm done!

Again apologies for not using my brain better.
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post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-17-2008, 08:56 PM
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Hahaha! That's a good one... Don't worry, I've done much more stupid things while working on my truck. And I have 2 dents in the side of my truck to prove it. At least nothing was damaged.
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post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-17-2008, 09:19 PM
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post #11 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-17-2008, 11:55 PM
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LOL!!! No, I do have a body lift, but it's body blocks.

I'm sorry for wasting space to use up this thread. I'm a dumbass. I had the jack under the hub! I couldn't figure out WTF. I jacked up the frame in between, moved the jack from the LCA and voila, the ball joint comes free from the UCA. A couple of whacks with the pickle fork, and the ball joint is free. A few mins w/the cutting wheel, adjusting the bj spacer, new bj and I'm done!

Again apologies for not using my brain better.
No wasted space man! Grats to you for doing it yourself!!
I almost had you doing some extra work, from what I thought I read of your first post At least now you know how to get the "can be a real bitch" side of the joint apart

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post #12 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-18-2008, 01:03 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks everyone! Yeah, luckily the only thing damaged here was my pride, but I'm good now.

I actually had decided to sell the rig a few weeks ago in favor of a 3rd gen, I had a butt load of parts I hadn't even installed. I really didn't want to sell it, so decided to keep the truck and install the goodies. Here's some shots of the work I did.

Cuts in UCA


This was necessary to remove so the spacer will fit in. I grinded the edges and made it smoove.


BJ spacer installed along w/new ball joint




Wrong way to jack it up for install!


Right way to jack it up for install


Result, about 1.5" lift or in my case 1.5" more travel w/t-bar relax


My fender was at 14" before install


Shot of old shocks, to be replaced this week
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post #13 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-18-2008, 10:20 PM
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Great thread! I'm anticipating doing the same thing on my truck late this month or sometime next month (maybe at WfW HOW?) so pics and such help a lot! Did you do new balljoints on top and bottom? I'm thinking I need to do those when I've got it all apart.

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post #14 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-19-2008, 01:03 PM Thread Starter
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Hey Brian, I did new ball joints on top only. I have them for the lowers, but was too damn tired haha. I will maybe do them later this summer.
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post #15 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-21-2008, 03:01 AM
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Gotcha. If I can swing it I'll probably get all four, but only install the uppers if there's no time for all of them.

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