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Re: '70 GT - Tie Rod Ball Joints & Electrical Questions - 2nd P

To: Robert Allen <>
Subject: Re: '70 GT - Tie Rod Ball Joints & Electrical Questions - 2nd Posting
From: Susan and John Roper <>
Date: Thu, 09 Apr 1998 15:13:09 -0500
Robert Allen wrote:
> >From:  On Behalf Of Gary Davis
> >I didn't receive any responses to my initial posting so I'm trying again.
> >
> >1. Because the tie rod ball joint boots were trashed when I got my car, I
> >intend to replace them (I.e., tie rod ball joints) in the near future
> (parts
> >are ordered).  Manuals suggest replacing the whole enchilada if the boots
> are
> >torn so that's where I'm headed.  Any advice before I dive in.  I've read
> >Haynes and Bentley and it seems fairly straight forward.  Please help me
> from
> >making a major screw-up.
> Okay, my two cents worth. First off, some definitions. The steering racks
> have a total of four ball joints; two on each side; an inner and outer.
> The outer ball joint is also called the tie-rod end and are the simple
> joints that connect to the steering arm that is part of the brake mounting
> plate for each front wheel. The tie rod ends are mounted via a tapered peg
> and hole and secured by a (often castellated) nut.
> Removal of tie-rods ends can be pretty damn difficult as the nut has been
> squeezing the peices together for all of these years. Some times it will
> take heat and extreme pressure to separate the tie-rod end from the steering
> arm.
> My advice is to loosen the tie-rod nut. Then, using a BFH, wack the end of
> the steering arm a couple of times and see if the tie rod end will pop
> loose. If it doesn't, give up. If you're gonna replace the tie-rod ends
> anyway, then have at it with pickle forks or tie rod pullers.
> Otherwise, loosen the ring clamp on the steering rack boot gators and
> unscrew the steering link from the still-connected tie-rod. Count the
> rotations and use the same number -- as a guideline -- when reinstalling.
> Once you've seperated the steering link from the tie rod end you can remove
> the reamains of the steering rack gator. This will expose the inner tie rod.
> Separating the steering link from the rack differs according to the age and
> type of car. There is usually some sort of jam-nut arrangement that is
> holding the jooint together plus a tabbed-washer keeping things from
> rotating. Naturally, if this come loose you're day will take a diversion so
> make sure you udnerstand how it should go together and stay together.
> When you get that apart, you should find a nylon (white plastic) cup at the
> end of the steering rack arm. Don't be surprised if this cup is cracked -- a
> major cause of internal play on one effected side of the steering rack.
> The nylon cup is a $12 part on a TR6 but, apparantly, is N/A on a 'B'. There
> may be shims under the cup but it should be reassaembled 'loose' with a lot
> of grease. The grease contributes quite a bit of stiction when everything is
> bloted up. There should be a spring under the plastic cup.
> Ideally, all is well. Regrease the inner tie rod joint. Observe that it will
> be just about impossible for that joint to ever get grease without
> dissassembly. Consider that the only purpose of axle oil in the steering
> rack is to lubricate the pinion/gear assembly and it probably will do
> nothing for the actual inner tie rod.
> Conclude that if the rubber gator is cracked, the steering rack is going to
> quickly fill with road dirt and dust. Also, without the gator, all the oil
> will dribble out. Deduce that cracked-gator cars should be avoided.
> Replace the rubber gator. Do not snug down to the steering link. Rotate the
> link into the tie rod end. Do not snug down the gator to the steering link.
> If you've dissasembled the inner tie rod end and repacked with grease, you
> toe-in is going to be off. So figure on setting toe-in in any case when the
> job is done. Then cinch up the gator to the steering link.
> If you do not remove the tie rod end from the steering arm and if you do
> clean and repack the grease in the inner tie rod, and you do a decent job of
> toe-in, this job will still keep you in the garage all afternoon.
> Bob Allen, Kansas City, '69C/GT
I agree re hammer wacking, but understand the theory.  You want to
deform momentarily the hole that the tie rod end goes into, enough to
eject the tie rod end without damage to the steering arm.  It does
work.  John

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