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The Story of my bad balljoint w/ pix

3374 Views 17 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  00Frontier4cyl
Bad Balljoints and UCAs w/ pix

So here is the story of my suspension adventures.

It all started with a clunky balljoint which made a clunk sound when I hit a bump.
Here is my truck as I bought it about a year ago with fabtech uca's, aftermarket shocks, and slight larger (30x9.5/15) tires.

The balljoint did not clunk when I bought it, but this is what caused it to clunk.

As you can see the boot is torn, and the camber was off by atleast +1 degree.

So what am I to do? My alignment was off so I decided to order some new stock control arms off an internet parts website. ( I believe) They said it fit my truck, sweet only 300$ for both.
I got them shortly after and took the fabtechs off and put the ones I got on.

This is what happened.

Uh ohh camber is way off now :(
Aparently I got v6 4x4 uppers I believe, (part# 54525-8B550)
So what do I do? Take those off of course.
So I get them off, this is all in the course of the same day and I was pretty frustrated.
I read the return policy on the website and if you read it you will see, its a PITA.
You have to fill out a form, which I did, and they send you an email saying it will be looked at (which I got)
Then you are supposed to wait like 30 days for it to be reviewed, 30 days to have it processed blah blah blah
so I opt to screw that and buy some new balljoints for the fabtechs and be done with it.

I called up Fabtech to see what balljoints are in them, and they say all of my year nissan arms had hardbody balljoints.
So a trip to Napa and 60$ later I got them. (lucky they had them in stock) I have the part # on the balljoints somewhere too in case I need more.

So I still have to get my alignment closer in spec right? Well I talked to a guy via e-mail who
was interested in my arms on craigslist and he said he needed longer control arms because he had too much
negative camber from his lift. (I know we will chat soon I hope again because you are a member here) So what I do
is research how to lift my truck on where else, ClubFrontier.
So I crank my torsion bars up about 8 turns each which gave me I believe 2" of lift.

This is where I sit now, I have not had an alignment done as of yet. I'm probably going to
crank the bars up another 4 turns, I think I still have room on my bump stops
and If I dont I can cut them.
I'm planning on some new (probably smaller) tires and then having an alignment done to
see if Im any more in spec than before.

Any questions, comments, and discussions are welcomed.
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I actually came across the FAQs for 1st gens and then started browsing and saw the topic. Hopefully that clears up what I was doing. Crossing my fingers on the alignment being somewhat better but if not Im sure I'll do ok, I mean I can live with a slight pull and a 1 degree slope in tire wear. Now on to more mods! :]
Yeah I figured I still had a little more room to lift, I mean I have atleast an inch and a half of thread left on the adjustor bolt. Thanks

And the 30s have got me into some trouble actually, because I didn't know my speedo was off when I bought the truck and got a speeding ticket. I got the speedo checked on a dyno and its showing a 9.5%ish error at 60 mph, so actually speed was near 67. (Got ticketed for 67 in a 55).
As far as acceleration, I havnt known anything else so it is hard to judge. Going up a steep incline I max out at like 60-65 with the pedal on the floor.
Thats why I plan to go to smaller tires because I need new ones anyway.

Edit: Soo stock gear ratio?
So is it safe enough to crank it all the way down? How would you know how far is too far? I don't know if I plan on reindexing the bars any time soon, other things to do. Anything I can do to get more negative camber would be a plus considering my camber adjuster bolts are still maxed in the negative.
Under "Axel" It says CA43 if that helps.
Woah woah woah calm down :] What don't you get? The alignment shop said they couldnt get the alignment in spec because of aftermarket control arms (my fabtechs). My ball joints were bad in the fabtechs too. So I figured I might as well knock both out and get new stock oem UCAs w/ bj. I ordered them and got the wrong part yada yada like it says in the write-up. I will get an alignment within the next month when I get new tires.
Yeah I do ok on the 30s, probably going smaller though. Its a 4cyl automatic so I dont need the big tires. Better gas mileage and less speedo error sounds more enticing than cool tires. I hardly use the truck to haul anything, I need a car haha but the truck is useful and has treated me good so its staying.
Yeah I checked the axel sticky and it seems like mine is not typical. And Im fairly sure fabtech does not sell my control arms, smelsatron already offered to trade his stockers for mine haha. I saw another pair pop up on craigslist before though. I'll be cranking the torsion bars more on monday and hopefully tires and alignment within the next 2 weeks I'll post up pictures after each probably. People think my truck is at the stock height/tires anyway its a small truck compared to most.
Yeah same here I whore the hell out of CL OC/IE. The ones I saw were like 50 or 100$ in shitty condition missing a bushing and a small crack lol. If I can get my alignment back and save a nice 3" front suspension lift I'll be stoked. But Im looking at 330$ for tires and 80$ for an alignment so I've been putting it off. I'll probably go pick up another ball joint down the line too since I ripped one of the boots when I put them in (I had a brain fart and couldn't figure out bolt in ball joints). If it helps anyone understand my dumb mistakes im 18. :thatswck:
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