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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Am new to the forum and thank you all for the wealth of information.
Am working on a 1994 escort LX (1.9) that we picked up for racing and need to replace the clutch. I'm having a very hard time getting the outer CV shafts out of the hubs. Got the axle nut off no problem and followed haynes' suggestion to hammer on the axle stub to push it back from the hub - won't budge. Unfortunately this only resulted in mushrooming of the outer section (thankfully not threaded) of the axle and i had to hit it with an angle grinder to get nut to go back on (yes, i should have left the nut on to protect). I figure I'll borrow an axle press tool from autozone once i get the right linkage apart but have read various things about what all needs to be disconnected. Haynes says to just remove the ball joint. Others here suggest the lower bolts on the strut. I've also seen tie rod removal noted. So which is it? If possible, I'd prefer to not throw off the alignment. I pulled the upper bolt from the ball joint thinking it would separate and drop the control arm but the ball joint wouldn't budge - do you really need to remove the ball joint for this to come apart (i.e., the two lower bolts on the ball)? Thanks so much.
 

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I tried to get the ball joint to drop out of the spindle, but unless you have a wedge shaped item to hammer into the pinch slot - that ball joint wont want to move.
For me it was much easier to take the nuts/bolt off of the lower control arm. One is a stud, the one closer to the end of the arm is a bolt. I think they all take a 17mm wrench. I have done this to all 3 of our family's 2nd gen. Escorts. then the spindle can be moved around. I dont take the tie rod ends off. I just turn the steering wheel to move the tie rod end away from the rack, so I can maneuver the axle shaft out of the hub - once the thing is freed from the hub.
However....... Before you disconnect the lower control arm from the ball joint, you should try pressing or hammering the axle shaft back into the hub; just half an inch should do. The axle wont come all the way out until you undo the lower control arm from the ball joint 'arm'. The splines can get rusty, which is likely why it is stuck.
I think a large 3 jaw 'puller' would help push the axle end back inward. Of course you put the hub nut on backwards, to form a flat surface. Dont neglect the use of your favorite penetrating fluid. I would spray into where the axle emerges from the hub, and keep doing it from time to time; several times a day. Put the 3 jaw 'puller' onto the hub so as to press on the end of the axle, tighten it down to where you think the 3 legs are ready to break...and let it sit overnight.
On my 92 Escort, one of the axles took the penetrating oil soak, the 3 jaw puller tightened onto the axle, and finally (after a day of sitting with plenty of pressure on the end of the axle) I hit the back end of the threaded 'puller' shaft with a sledge hammer. The axle sprang loose from the hub.
Before I put it back together I scraped out the splines on the axle, and inside the hub with a triangular file. I got a lot of rust out. I greased the splines before putting it together.
 

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Autozone has this as a loaner tool:

OEM Front Wheel Drive Hub Puller



Item 27037: OEM Front Wheel Drive Hub Puller Use with OEM Slide Hammer 27033 Fits most domestic and import vehicles with independant front wheel suspension Yoke and bolt are threaded 5/8" x 18

Look for YouTube videos showing you how to use it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks for the replies - sounds like i'm off to autozone. Is the axle able to slide partially back out of the hub (before I release of the ball joint) because there's play in the linkage or does the shaft somehow telescope to become shorter? And i take it there's no need to release any other linkage; or take off the brake rotor?
 
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