BMW E46 Fanatics Forum banner

21 - 40 of 46 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
456 Posts
Just ordered these, new FCAB, & inner joints....weekend project coming up.

Question is, can you get a ball joint separator in there or you need a pickle fork for the knuckle side (not the inners).
I had to use a pickle fork. Replaced all the lower control arms wt bushings, upper ball joints, new lollipop brackets, all factory bmw. Been solid for months now. It was pricey, but worth it.
regards
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,910 Posts
Just ordered these, new FCAB, & inner joints....weekend project coming up.

Question is, can you get a ball joint separator in there or you need a pickle fork for the knuckle side (not the inners).
I was able to get the Harbor Freight tool in to drop the arm without damaging the boot. The Joint had only been in there a few years however. I just took my time and didn't go nuts tightening the separator and lots of pounding on the control arm to help it come loose. It was a tight fit and I had to tap the separator into place. https://www.harborfreight.com/3-4-quarter-inch-forged-ball-joint-separator-99849.html You'll need it for the inners anyway.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,910 Posts
With a 20 ton press you should be able to remove anything lol. With the right press tools I could probably do it with my home built 8 ton benchtop press. You still need to remove the "cap" over the bottom of the joint.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
200 Posts
I pressed one of the control arm bushings in about 2mm rotated mis-aligned with the marking points....do i need to remove and re-press it in or can this be adjusted when they do the front end alignment?
Any thoughts?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,104 Posts
The original xi ball joints are offset, E36 ball joints are centered. So you don't have to line up the marks.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
200 Posts
Im talking about the bushings that are offset, not the ball joint.
You can get centered bushings but i am using OEM and they are offset.

The original xi ball joints are offset, E36 ball joints are centered. So you don't have to line up the marks.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
200 Posts
I put them on anyways....i cant even think about pressing it out and in again. what a pain.
Ill see how the alignment sheet looks.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,910 Posts
I put them on anyways....i cant even think about pressing it out and in again. what a pain.
Ill see how the alignment sheet looks.
IDK what that will do to your alignment, my guess the toe will be off along with the caster. That's the nice thing about the e36 bushings and ball joints being centered.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
120 Posts
I put them on anyways....i cant even think about pressing it out and in again. what a pain.
Ill see how the alignment sheet looks.

You should have used me. I press FCABs for various different Bimmers and XIs are the biggest PITA of them all -- partly due to the length of the bushing.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,910 Posts
Just ordered these, new FCAB, & inner joints....weekend project coming up.

Question is, can you get a ball joint separator in there or you need a pickle fork for the knuckle side (not the inners).
I've got the HF ball joint separator and it worked the last 2 times I needed to get the ball joint out of the knuckle. The ball joints weren't that old, took my time and kept increasing tension and pounding on the control arm. You need the separator for the inner joints too.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
158 Posts
I've got the HF ball joint separator and it worked the last 2 times I needed to get the ball joint out of the knuckle. The ball joints weren't that old, took my time and kept increasing tension and pounding on the control arm. You need the separator for the inner joints too.
I was looking at picking up the HF ball joint separator for when I do my passenger Axle. Will this destroy the boot, or can I get away separating without having to replace the control arm/ Ball joint? Thanks!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,910 Posts
I was looking at picking up the HF ball joint separator for when I do my passenger Axle. Will this destroy the boot, or can I get away separating without having to replace the control arm/ Ball joint? Thanks!
It will separate the ball joint without ripping the boot Just take your time. Lube the threads, you'll have to tap it into place, then tighten it and pound on the arm and repeat. It will pop eventually, I've done 2 outers and 4 inners with mine, never failed me. I always leave the nut on even with the top of the stud so the threads don't get damaged.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
158 Posts
It will separate the ball joint without ripping the boot Just take your time. Lube the threads, you'll have to tap it into place, then tighten it and pound on the arm and repeat. It will pop eventually, I've done 2 outers and 4 inners with mine, never failed me. I always leave the nut on even with the top of the stud so the threads don't get damaged.

Nice, thank you! FCP put the passenger Genuine Bmw control arms on clearance for 135.00. so I bought one. Now I'll have a backup if I want to press in a new ball joint. Since lifetime warranty, I may just sell the backup with a new ball joint. Either way, I wanted to let you guys know they are on clearance!
https://www.fcpeuro.com/products/bmw-suspension-control-arm-front-right-325xi-330xi-31126758534oe
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,910 Posts
Nice, thank you! FCP put the passenger Genuine Bmw control arms on clearance for 135.00. so I bought one. Now I'll have a backup if I want to press in a new ball joint. Since lifetime warranty, I may just sell the backup with a new ball joint. Either way, I wanted to let you guys know they are on clearance!
https://www.fcpeuro.com/products/bmw-suspension-control-arm-front-right-325xi-330xi-31126758534oe
That's a decent price but you still have to replace the bushing too. Most people recommend doing these things in pairs. I'm a cheap f'er and will spend the time to replace the outer joint. I can do both sides for about 1/2 the cost of that on sale BMW arm.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
411 Posts
jmo69 - I am planning on picking up the HF separator. Replacing the ball joint. I have never had this much trouble removing it before. Then again I have had the car for 16 yrs. So far I have applied PB Blaster and Hammer. No go. I was thinking about using a propane torch next.
I bought a different separator before reading this post. It wouldn't fit. I tried cutting the stud enough to get it on. But no go. Do see any issue with the HF?
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
200 Posts
jmo69 - I am planning on picking up the HF separator. Replacing the ball joint. I have never had this much trouble removing it before. Then again I have had the car for 16 yrs. So far I have applied PB Blaster and Hammer. No go. I was thinking about using a propane torch next.
I bought a different separator before reading this post. It wouldn't fit. I tried cutting the stud enough to get it on. But no go. Do see any issue with the HF?

If you unbolt the lollipop & also the inside ball joint you can drop the arm down to a different angel and it might be easier to slide the ball joint separator in. You might need to hammer it in place.
 
21 - 40 of 46 Posts
Top