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1st Gen Ram Tech'93 & older Rams: This section is for TECHNICAL discussions only, that involve 1993 Rams and older. For any non-tech discussions, please direct your attention to the "General discussion/NON-tech" sub sections.
About 6 weeks ago, I paid a shade-tree mechanic to install new ball joints upper and lower, both sides. A week later, I paid him to replace the center link. Truck felt great for a month, then last week the front end started squeaking and groaning very loudly while turning, and shaking my teeth at 70mph + highway speeds via the steering wheel.
After much looking and wheel turning, I finally found that a lower ball joint and one of the ends on the center link were looking a bit sloppy and were the cause of the noise.
Since I'm sure these parts are supposed to be seated, all I could do was tighten the nuts another 1/4 turn and re-pin. That has stopped the noise and the truck rides great again.
My question is, is there a certain amount of torque applied to seat these parts? The Haynes manual I have does not list torque specs. for the 2WD.
Thanks in advance for any responses.
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i just tightened them as tight as possible and then put the pin in. and from the sounds of it you are talking about the tie rods and not the ball joints. the tie rods connect the center link to the knuckle.
Thanks for posting, fellas! Next chance I get, I'm gonna check everything that guy touched with a torque wrench. I just hope the ball joint on the lower control arm didn't get wasted. The squeaking is gone since I tightened the nuts on the parts in question, but there is still a loud bang when I have the steering cut hard and the front end drops off the driveway onto the street.
This whole thing is a bummer. I thought he had the right tools and would do a good job. Guess I hafta bite the time bullet and do everything myself.
at least if you do it yourself next time it should be easier. from what i have read, replacing the stock ball joints can be a hard job. the tie rods hold the steering knuckles to the center link. the center link is bolted to the idler arm on 1 frame rail and the pitman arm that is bolt to the steering gear box on the other frame rail. if you are trying to figure out what parts are what rock auto usually have fairly good pictures of parts. i sometimes use them to figure out the proper names for parts.
Yeah, I'm counting on those parts being cooperative. Besides going through those parts, I'm planning to replace the control arm bushings. I can't wait to use the new press I just got.
Thanks for the insight to Rock Auto. I just bookmarked that site. I also went through the DIY section on this site and bookmarked a few links there. You can never have enough resources, I say.
For diagrams, I've been using this site.