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  1. #1

    Default Do I need to remove half-shaft to replace upper ball joint?

    So, I've read posts and looked at my haynes manual and none of the instructions mentions removing the half-shaft (front drive shaft) to access the castle nut for the upper ball joint. But once I got out in the snowy driveway, took the wheel off and took a peak, i see no way to get that nut off without removing the half-shaft. Am I right or am I missing a trick for accessing that castle nut without removing the half-shaft?

  2. #2


    One reason that particular nut has a cotter pin on it is because it shouldnt be real tight, (book calls for torqing to a certain amount then backing off a half or quarter turn) normally you can get either a box end or open end wrench on it and turn, yours on the other hand looks like it's probably rusted on and will require an impact gun or something equally creative to get off, which will probably mean removing the halfshaft to get enough clearance.

  3. #3


    yep, that one looks pretty rusty. a box end and a cheater pipe might work if you soak in in some pb blaster for a bit.


    2011 GMC Sierra SLE 5.3 Z71 4X4 Stealth Gray Metallic / 2004 Chevy Impala LS 3.8 Cappuccino

    Tow mirrors - Diablew Tuned - Flowmaster Regular 40 - Ready Lift 2.5' lift - BFG LT A/T K/Os - Carr Light Wing - TruckLite LED lights - Optima Red Top - 50% Front Window Tint - Line-X bedliner - Airaid MIT - Tekonsha P2 - ARS Billet Grill - Fia custom fit seat covers

  4. #4


    Quote Originally Posted by Sierraowner5.3 View Post
    yep, that one looks pretty rusty. a box end and a cheater pipe might work if you soak in in some pb blaster for a bit.

    Thanks guys...good to know it is theoretically possible, and good to know it shouldn't have been torqued down too hard...I will soak with PB for a few days and see if i can make ti work! I'll post results.

  5. #5


    no problem, good luck!


  6. #6
    Jr. Engineer Jamm3r's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Minneapolis area


    There should be plenty of clearance to get a box-end wrench on it. Cutting torch works too, just put a wet rag over the CV boot to protect it.

    Then it's going to take a pickle fork, 16 pound sledge, and some language to get the ball joint off.
    Minneapolis area - 1997 K2500 regular cab long bed + 8.5' Western Unimount plow + modified transmission + 2nd battery + modified camper charge circuit + 1971 Cayo camper -and- 2004 4x4 Suburban 2500 8.1 + Maxbrake controller + 2nd battery + modified trailer charge circuit + Reese receiver, pulls 30' Airstream trailer

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