Mazda Trucks 1987-1993 Repair Guide

Upper Ball Joints

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INSPECTION



Pickup
  1. Raise and safely support the vehicle. Remove the wheel and tire assembly.
  2.  
  3. Support the lower control arm with a jack.
  4.  
  5. Remove the clip attaching the brake hose to the upper control arm and disconnect the hose from the arm.
  6.  
  7. Remove the cotter pin and nut from the upper ball joint stud. Using tool 49 0727 575 or equivalent, separate the upper ball joint from the knuckle.
  8.  
  9. Install tool 49 0180 510B or equivalent to the ball joint stud and attach a suitable pull scale to the stud.
  10.  
  11. After rocking the ball joint stud back and forth 3-4 times, measure the pull scale reading while the ball joint stud is rotating. The pull scale reading should be 4.4-7.7 lbs.
  12.  
  13. If the pull scale reading is not as specified, replace the upper ball joint.
  14.  

2WD Navajo

  1. Raise the vehicle and position a jackstand under the I-beam axle beneath the coil spring. Check and adjust the front wheel bearings.
  2.  
  3. Have a helper grasp the lower edge of the tire and move the wheel assembly in and out.
  4.  
  5. While the wheel is being moved, observe the upper spindle arm and the upper part of the axle jaw.
  6.  
  7. One thirty-second inch (0.8mm) or greater movement between the upper part of the axle jaw and the upper spindle arm indicates that the upper ball joint must be replaced.
  8.  

REMOVAL & INSTALLATION



Pickup
  1. Raise and safely support the vehicle. Remove the wheel and tire assembly.
  2.  
  3. Support the lower control arm with a jack.
  4.  
  5. Remove the clip attaching the brake hose to the upper control arm and disconnect the hose from the arm.
  6.  
  7. Remove the cotter pin and nut from the upper ball joint stud. Using tool 49 0727 575 or equivalent, separate the upper ball joint from the knuckle.
  8.  
  9. Remove the upper ball joint-to-upper control arm attaching bolts and remove the upper ball joint.
  10.  
  11. Position the ball joint assembly on the upper control arm and secure the mounting hardware. Tighten the upper ball joint-to-upper control arm attaching bolts to 18-25 ft. lbs. (25-33 Nm) and the upper ball joint stud nut to 22-38 ft. lbs. (29-51 Nm). Install a new cotter pin.
  12.  
  13. Check the front end alignment.
  14.  

Navajo With 2WD

See Figures 1 and 2

  1. Raise and safely support the vehicle. Remove the wheel and tire assembly.
  2.  
  3. Remove the brake caliper and support it aside with mechanics wire. Do not let the caliper hang by the brake hose.
  4.  
  5. Remove the dust cap, cotter pin, nut retainer, washer and outer bearing and remove the brake rotor from the spindle. Remove the brake dust shield.
  6.  
  7. Disconnect the steering linkage from the spindle and spindle arm by removing the cotter pin and nut. Remove the tie rod end from the spindle arm.
  8.  
  9. Remove the cotter pin and nut from the lower ball joint stud. Remove the axle clamp bolt from the axle.
  10.  
  11. Remove the camber adjuster from the upper ball joint stud and axle beam.
  12.  
  13. Strike the inside area of the axle to pop the lower ball joint loose from the axle beam. Remove the spindle and ball joint assembly from the axle.
  14.  

Do not use a pickle fork to separate the ball joint from the axle as this will damage the seal and ball joint socket.

  1. Install the spindle assembly in a vise and remove the snapring from the lower ball joint. Remove the lower ball joint from the spindle using C-frame T74P-4635-C or equivalent and a suitable receiver cup to press the ball joint from the spindle.
  2.  

The lower ball joint must be removed first.

  1. Repeat the procedure in Step 8 to remove the upper ball joint.
  2.  

Do not heat the ball joints or the spindle to aid in removal.

Click image to see an enlarged view

Fig. Fig. 1: Upper ball joint removal



Click image to see an enlarged view

Fig. Fig. 2: Upper ball joint installation

To install:
  1. Assemble the C-frame and receiver cup and press in the upper ball joint.
  2.  
  3. Repeat the procedure in Step 10 to install the lower ball joint.
  4.  

Do not heat the ball joints or axle to aid in installation.

  1. Install the snapring onto the ball joint.
  2.  
  3. Place the spindle and ball joints into the axle. Install the camber adjuster in the upper spindle over the ball joint stud making sure it is properly aligned.
  4.  
  5. Tighten the lower ball joint stud nut to 104-146 ft. lbs. (141-198 Nm). Continue tightening the castellated nut until it lines up with the hole in the stud, then install the cotter pin.
  6.  
  7. Install the clamp bolt into the axle boss and tighten to 48-65 ft. lbs. (65-88 Nm).
  8.  
  9. Install the remaining components.
  10.  

 
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