: 3in1 ball joint press

10-25-2007, 11:34 AM
Has anyone used one of these cheap 3in1 ball joint presses from Harbor Freight? If so what was the concesus?

10-25-2007, 12:22 PM
Yes. It's duplicate to the set that Autozone loans. Dunno the quality of the metal but the only thing useful for a late model is the C-clamp itself...the rest was of dubious usefulness--wrong size spacers etc for the truck, and the upper ball joint presses out the other direction so I had to make an adapter anyway. The lower ball joint on the late models comes already installed in the steering knuckle, YMMV there.

IIRC it's made for Big-3 style joints and you get to fiddle with it in order to work on Yota stuff.

...of course, Autozone didn't have the full kit, either.

Anyone else?

10-25-2007, 12:34 PM
I have used it on a '97 Camaro, and it worked OK. ;) Quality doesn't seem so great. I imagine if it were used daily, it probably wouldn't hold up. :2cents:

10-25-2007, 01:43 PM
tricky to use and fit in a wheel well but the bigger ones don't break. I prefer that over a BFH.

10-25-2007, 02:05 PM
I should have made myself more clear on the application. I want to replace my upper ball joints on an 02 Taco.

10-25-2007, 03:39 PM
I should have made myself more clear on the application. I want to replace my upper ball joints on an 02 Taco.

Oh :p.

Skip it, get the adapter from Total Chaos or make your own, or borrow the big socket I found that more or less fits, and then get a big C-clamp and press it out. IIRC you'll also need a cup to support the other side of the C-clamp and to catch the ball joint as it presses out. If you're around Saturday or Sunday and somebody has some tube and plate scrap we could just make one that'll work with any C-clamp.

Definitely easier to just make your own than try and rig up that thing so it works.


10-25-2007, 05:26 PM
How about assembly? I can get them out with a hammer and a 7/8 deepwell. I'm more interested in putting it all back together without fuss or ultimatly not breaking it.

10-25-2007, 08:01 PM
I used the larger advanced auto parts kit to get my uppers out. You might need to make another cup thats the right size only a few of the parts are the right size for a tacoma. A breaker bar helps alot with this to tighten it. If you've got a welder all youll need is: 7/8 deep socket?, weld cap on right size pipe and then a heavy duty c clamp that has about 8 Inches of thread, you might need something to wedge in to keep in straight on the spindle as well. Problem with a c-clamp is pushing out, most have that handle on it that will hit the fender so a hex end would be best like the advanced kits have. I would pick one up just in case you need it, they're free anyway as long as you return it in good shape.

I didn't take any pics when I did mine but I've probably got an answer for any question you have. Did you get a kit or just putting in oem replacements? These are a major pain in the @$$ if your trucks older and rusty.

I think if you use a hammer of a fork you'll have to replace them.

10-25-2007, 08:08 PM
God I wish I had the money for a uni ball kit. Just doing OEM replacement until I can SAS or the whole truck dissentigrates.lol

10-25-2007, 11:32 PM
I put a slug back in, not a ball joint, so I didn't have that damn stud sticking out. How about a piece of tube? As long as it's square and fits over the stud and around the base of the joint it should work, right?

I'm almost 100% certain the ring spacers aren't tall enough to clear the stud to press teh joint back in.

Teh. It's getting late. Yeah, try some tube or something...like the 7/8 deepwell, all it has to do is clear the stud.

10-27-2007, 10:32 PM
Used the renta version of the Ball Joint C clamp press from Checker Auto Parts. It actually worked pretty well. Other than it took three people to manipulate. Would have only taken one if a good vise was availlable. Eh, like I tell the kids 'you get what you get and you don't throw a fit'.