Archie's Summer Vacation!
Archie is taking a much needed summer vacation. His front end is getting a makeover.
And I don't just mean for the fun of it. One of his upper ball joints fell apart while driving
down the road. As luck would have it, this happened just about 50 feet from home, so I
was able to limp the car into the driveway. Why did the ball joint fail? As I found out when
trying to replace the it, the old ball joint exploded because Brake Masters put the wrong
coil springs in my car a few years ago. That caused the car to sit about 4 inches higher in
the front than it should. They told me it's a heavy car so it would settle down some. Duh.
It never did! And what I didn't realize (but they should have), the springs caused the ball
joints to sit at an odd angle, putting way too much stress on them. This could have
happened at 60 mph and killed me and a few dozen people around me in traffic. But
luckily, the car just needs to be repaired. It turns out that the correct coil springs for
the car are hard to find. The ones I got to replace the last pair are the same exact
spring! So for now, Archie sits in the driveway awaiting some parts. While I have it
apart, I am also going to replace the control arm bushings, stabalizer links & bushings,
shock absorbers, upper and lower ball joints, center link, and the inner and outer tie rod ends.
The broken ball joint!
Here's the driver side without the spring, shock, lower control arm, tie rods, etc.
Here's the passenger side without the spring, shock, lower control arm, tie rods, etc.
The wrong spring!
Lower control arms. It's easier to get a motor out of a car than these damn things!
The other failing ball joint...just about ready to explode like the other one!
Update: Archie's back on the road again! To commemorate a truly huge
amount of work done to the car, I took Archie to this show.
Additional reading: The reason I had Brake Masters replace the springs in the first place
is that the original springs were sagging so bad, after so many years of abuse, that the car
would scrape the ground in driveways and driving through intersections. I must admit, I liked
the car sitting 4 inches too high because it meant I didn't need to jack the car up to work
under it. Of course that changed now that I realize it was a dangerous situation. Speaking
of dangerous situations, while working on the car I managed to smack my knuckle on the
car's steering knuckle. There's gotta be a good joke there somewhere. And if not, then there
definitely is when you hear that I whacked the same knuckle on the
same steering knuckle just a little while later. Ouch!
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