Harbor Freight ball joint separator

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Harbor Freight ball joint separator

Postby jasonw86 » Wed Dec 24, 2014 10:59 am

I picked up one of these a couple of years ago for around $15 (they are now $25) and my pickle fork has been unused ever since. http://www.harborfreight.com/3-4-quarte ... 99849.html

Hands down the best part about this tool is that is doesn't do damage to the boot like a pickle fork usually will.

First, take the tool apart and insert the main part in the joint you want to separate. Here I am removing the manual steering gearbox on my MPG+ P'up

Next, reassemble the tool. It is a good idea to take off the castle nut and reinstall it backwards. Put it on so it is flush with the threads on the ball joint. This will help prevent thread deformation on the nut and also the ball joint threads.

Now, tighten the separator using a 3/4" socket or wrench. The idea is to use the separator to apply pressure to the ball joint and a hammer to finish the actual separation.

The ball joint separator is capable of doing the job without the hammer, though it's life will likely be much shorter due to galling of the threads and deformation of the fork portion of the tool.
This boot is 30 years old and should mate up nicely with the power steering gearbox that is going in.
1984 diesel LS long bed 4x4
1983 diesel 4x2 long bed
1984 diesel 4x2 short bed MPG Plus
1984 diesel 4x2 automatic longbed
1982 diesel 4x4 LUV mikado shortbed
1986 gas LS 4x4 Trooper II 2 door
1984 turbodiesel 4x2 automatic longbed

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Re: Harbor Freight ball joint separator

Postby puttputtinpup » Wed Dec 24, 2014 9:41 pm

Sounds good! I may just drop by there and get one just in case I need to use it someday!

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Re: Harbor Freight ball joint separator

Postby Halden » Sat Dec 27, 2014 7:20 pm

Very nice. I've found a large 4 pound mallet generally does the job nicely if you just whack the knuckle, but I can see this is much easier especially in tight spaces. I literally just did the ball joints on my pup the other day. This would have helped.
It's not pronounced "Ih-soo-zoo", it's pronounced "It-screws-you"