Join Date: Jan 2008
Model: Ford Taurus
Engine: 3.0L 12v Vulcan V6
Rep Power: 0
Problem Solved, Here's How I Did It
Referring to the attached pictures, yes, I used the Taurus/Sable adaptor set from Autozone, looks like O'Reilly's use the same kit.
Pressing out the old ball joints was straight forward, don't forget to remove the circlips.
I used a long "cheater" on my breaker bar. I had to put a lot of pressure on one then a sharp tap with a medium hammer on the hex end of the G-Clamp broke it loose. The receiver "cup" in the set, and visible in the photo, allows you to press the ball joint up into the cup, The small adaptor fits over the threaded end of the ball joint.
Instal new ball joint I & II shows the cone shaped adaptor over the threaded end of the new ball joint. The inside is big enough to accept the boot. I greased the inside and didn't have any problem with damaging the boot.
The other end is where I had the problem. The kit doesn't have an adaptor to install the ball joint. If you try to use an adaptor from the G-Clamp kit, the clamp is not big enough to accept the cone and the adaptor. Apparently some people just use the end of the G-Clamp to press the top of the ball joint. That looked difficult to keep everything lined up and I didn't try it.
I used part of an old bearing I had kicking around my tool box it fitted the end of the ball joint perfectly (see pictures) this enabled me to keep everything lined up and pressed both ball joints in perfectly.
If only the adaptor set had that part, it would have saved a lot of time trying to figure this thing out.
Some of the other Taurus/Sable adaptor kits appear to have another "cup" similar to the removal cup but smaller diameter. That would work well.
Now, listen up anyone from Autozone who can make a corporate decision . . . provide a concentric adaptor that fits neatly inside the existing removal cup and about 1/2 mm shorter. Now you have an inexpensive adaptor that fits the end of the ball joint and keeps it straight and aligned. Pressing it in is a breeze and instead of frustrated angry customers you have satisfied customers who come back and spend money in your store . . . . and this didn't cost you a dime.
Hope this helps some other shade tree mechanics out there, John Kenneth