Tie Rod Boots

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  #1  
Old 09-16-05, 08:45 AM
chevyastro4x4's Avatar
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Tie Rod Boots

how do you change the tie rod boot the top one that you put grease in, because mine is totaly shot and i cant seem to get the bolt out so i can take the boot off

this is a 91 pontaic grand am im trying to change


heres a link for a picture of what im trying to get off
http://img215.imageshack.us/img215/2...009e2076cz.gif
 
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  #2  
Old 09-16-05, 10:21 AM
DNT1
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I think you might be talking about the ball joint? if so do not just replace the boot replace the entire ball joint as a unit and if one side is replaced you can almost bet the other is ready to go so replace in pairs. Stay away from the Mcauto parts ball joints, get the OEM joint from the dealer, it is much better constructed and will outlast the taiwan units 2 to 1! If replacing ball joints you will need a set of pickle forks and a good three or four pound drillers hammer that is what you need to force the tapered section of the old ball joint out of its seat and these things can be real real tough. WORD UP: if your car has never had the ball joints replaced the old ball joints will be riveted in place to the A frame instead of bolted! you will have to drill out the rivets! the new ball joints will come with bolts/nuts so the new ones simply bolt in place. To remove the old ball joints first use a bunch of PB Blaster penetrant and then put the pickle fork to it and as a last resort heat the A frame arm around the seat then pop the pickle fork to it. Note and word of caution: Be sure to NOT completely remove the nut on the old ball joint untill the pickle fork has done its job, when the joint does pop apart it will do so forcefully and leaving the nut partially threaded onto the old ball joint will prevent the aframe from suddenly dropping and damaging brake lines/human beings etc. I am not sure that this would be a good first time project for a DIYer, you might want to recruit a helper that has done a few before. I cannot tell exactly what you have by the picture but if that is indeed a tierod end the pickle fork will work on it also but once again do not replace just the boot install a new tierod end complete with new boot.
 
  #3  
Old 09-17-05, 04:35 AM
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I think that IS a tierod, DNT. One of the models with a high-mounted tie-rod. Had to tow something similar recently that had a broken end (wheels pointing opposite directions) and when I looked underneath my first thought was "where the heck is the tie-rod???".

As DNT said, you'll need the proper tool. I've heard them called several different names (such as pickle fork). Proper name would be a tie rod (or tie rod end) separator. There are several types. This particular type looks like an oversized tuning fork. The "tines" get thicker the farther you go towards the handle. It is essentially a two-sided wedge that is hammered (or you can use a pneumatic one and use air) between the tie rod end and the attaching point forcing them apart. The other main type looks like a small gear puller. it grabs the sides of the attaching point and you tighten a bolt that pushes the free end of the tie rod out of the attaching point.

If they are original, don't be surprised if it takes some serious sweat to get it to separate. I don't know if you can even buy the boots separately, so check first. If not, probably a good idea to go ahead and replace the whole end. Not a bad idea considering the age. You'll need to pay attention to how far the end is threaded on so you can ball-park the installation well enough to get it to an alignment machine.
 
  #4  
Old 09-17-05, 06:08 AM
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Originally Posted by the_tow_guy
I think that IS a tierod, DNT. One of the models with a high-mounted tie-rod. Had to tow something similar recently that had a broken end (wheels pointing opposite directions) and when I looked underneath my first thought was "where the heck is the tie-rod???".

As DNT said, you'll need the proper tool. I've heard them called several different names (such as pickle fork). Proper name would be a tie rod (or tie rod end) separator. There are several types. This particular type looks like an oversized tuning fork. The "tines" get thicker the farther you go towards the handle. It is essentially a two-sided wedge that is hammered (or you can use a pneumatic one and use air) between the tie rod end and the attaching point forcing them apart. The other main type looks like a small gear puller. it grabs the sides of the attaching point and you tighten a bolt that pushes the free end of the tie rod out of the attaching point.

If they are original, don't be surprised if it takes some serious sweat to get it to separate. I don't know if you can even buy the boots separately, so check first. If not, probably a good idea to go ahead and replace the whole end. Not a bad idea considering the age. You'll need to pay attention to how far the end is threaded on so you can ball-park the installation well enough to get it to an alignment machine.
ok thanks for all the help but i think i'll just take it in
 
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