View Full Version : Gotta love the scrapyard...

11-24-2009, 09:28 AM
I am trying to replace the balljoints on my Bronco II. We are at the stage where failure is imminent. I got it stripped down to the point of removing the spindle, the Ford service manual says, "Using a large rawhide or plastic mallet, tap the spindle a few times to loosen it". Well, after using my largest hammer and a piece of sacrificial HDPE, it still hasn't budged. It is on there in such a way that I can't do anything until I remove this damn part. So, now I have to make a tool to remove it.

I spent a little while in the garage working on it yesterday...that is, until I got so frustrated with the filth that I couldn't work any longer, but I was to the stage that was going to take forever, but just for the heck of it I made a trip down to the local scrapyard to see what goodies I could find. (I always go with a project in mind, or I end up leaving with too much crap)

Well, I found a perfect 1/2" steel disk about 7" in diameter, a couple pieces of clean scrap for the pile, and a drill press head that will work perfect for my Van Norman #12, no more hand cranking the Z for a simple hole. Almost left with a Burke Hand Mill, but held my wits since it was in pretty rough shape.

Pictures in a bit.

Paul Alciatore
11-24-2009, 10:22 AM
Sounds likie a pretty good scrap yard. Where is it?

11-24-2009, 10:50 AM
You should rescue that Burke hand mill even if you just put it up for sale. I would think there is someone somewher who would love to save it or at least could use it for parts. The old iron forum over at PM might turn up some interested parties although ads over there *must* go in their "machinery for sale" section.


11-24-2009, 12:03 PM
Heck with that, I figure it weighs in around 150 lbs, which would cost me $45. It doesn't have a table on it...so it would need a lot of work.

This is SE Michigan, I can buy a mill off craigslist for less than what I can buy it at the purchasing scrap rate (0.30/lb).

The yard is hit or miss. Lots of people bringing stuff in, and taking it back out at the same time. It's an ugly day, and the drill press and the mill had just been dropped off. In the summer it's mostly swingsets and crap, this time of the year I can usually find decent drops. There was a lot of 4" OD 3" ID DOM tubing, but I can't think of a use for it.

Got the spindle off, took pics. There isn't a rawhide mallet in the world that would have knocked that sucker loose. Pics once the sun sets, now I've got to try to get the balljoints off, but first I have to make a ball joint separator so I don't kill the tie rods. They need to be replaced, but I don't have the cash right now. Next paycheck I'll do the other side and the tie rods, then take the beast in for an alignment. Til then, it's the redneck tape measure front end alignment.

11-24-2009, 02:25 PM
What scrapyard is it I am always looking for more junk to bring home.

11-24-2009, 02:39 PM
Easy way to remove a spindle if it doesn't come off with well placed whacks, put the rotor back on, mount the wheel, and give it a kick or two on the sidewall near the tread. It will pop right off.



Also regarding the ball joints. Once the spindle is off, crank the knuckle hard to one side, remove nuts and pins and place a solid bar on top of the lower ball joint stud, (I made one up special for this with a hole bored in the end to locate it right) alternate hitting the bar and the top stud with a 3 or 4lb mini maul, it will normally drop out in three hits. Axle housing -has- to be solidly supported.

11-24-2009, 05:11 PM
Turn the spindle so that you can hit the back part of the tapered bore where the ball joint sits. Put the castle nut on loosely. Using a pry bar or suitable stick, put some separation pressure on the spindle and control arm. Strike the back (might even be a little pad there) of the spindle bore SHARPLY (and I mean whack the hell out of it) with a 2 lbs hammer. Might take a couple to get it right. The blow deforms the tapered bore just enough to let the ball joint taper loose. Repeat for the upper. The spring is out or captured, I hope.