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D2 - Steering knuckle seperation - how to break the ball joint bond?

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Top and bottom ball joint boots have splits in them and given that the vehicle is now 16 years old with 280,000km it's time to replace them. I've stripped it all down now (wheel, brakes, CV shaft off, etc) and just have the knuckle attached to the diff through the ball joints.
 
What's the hot tips for separating the steering knuckle (i.e. breaking the ball joints tapered/rust bond)?
I'm always weary of the BFH method.
I've tried an air hammer with a ball joint separating fork and a manual one and can't get in very far before the tip of the fork fouls somewhere on the knuckle.
Special separator tool (yes, I know there is a genuine Land Rover one, but is there a more accessible alternative?)? The one I have here for ball joints/tie rod ends seems to be a bit too small.
My pullers, including a decent hydraulic one, just don't seem to able to fit on properly on the bottom ball joint and the top is inaccessible to them.

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In my case it was just a 'pickle fork' and a bloody big hammer. It didn't fit well and it wrecked the ball joints, but since I was replacing them anyway that wasn't a problem.

Your next bit of fun will be getting them out of the axle! :)

it might be worth having a look at this: 

 

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Just did this job. My lower ball joint nut twisted off and for the top one I used a grinder. This left me with two broken ball joints in the axle yoke to press out and two broken tapers in the knuckle to press out. A fairly tough couple of hours but doable so I wish you an easier time than me. My only problem now is the Lemforder ball joints didn't come with nuts...!!! I've got one to fit the top but can't find out what thread the bottom one has, always something.

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On 11/17/2018 at 11:14 PM, bear said:

Hi, Have a look here for the parts numbers

http://new.lrcat.com/#!/1232/35470/35580/2694/35619

HTH,

Griff

 

On 11/17/2018 at 7:54 AM, jalmassi said:

My only problem now is the Lemforder ball joints didn't come with nuts...!!! I've got one to fit the top but can't find out what thread the bottom one has, always something.

Upper nut - NY214043

Lower nut - NY216043

You can likely find suitable replacements at a local bolt and nut specialist.

I didn't think of organising new nuts when I ordered the replacement ball joints - just assumed that they would be included. They should arrive by the end of this week, hopefully they're in the box too but I'm pretty sure I went with Lemforder brand so unlikely...

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Thanks all for the advise and guidance. Managed to break the taper by swinging a 4.5kg sledge hammer to hit two 4lb mallets that were held on either side of the taper by a second person like anvils. Took a few swings but all four eventually gave in.

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