04-19-2012, 10:45 AM
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: The Wine Country
My Ride: 2003 330Ci
OP, Kroh, and all others:
Originally Posted by kroh
I regret to tell you that you're not the first to come to the conclusion that there must be some easier way that you're not privvy to; this question gets asked a lot. Unfortunately, such easier way does not exist. If you know a friendly shop, they might take a few bucks to put it on the lift and take a few whacks at it with a sledge to get the ball joints free for you-then you can bolt it back together to get it home where you can finish the job.
To be candid, my control arms were about ten years old when I replaced them, and I never did get the ball joints to come loose. I threw in the towel and had a shop do it. (I got some peace from the story about how the first guy assigned to the job couldn't get them free, either.)
First, OP, glad you were able to complete the job.
But, THERE IS A MUCH EASIER WAY TO REMOVE/INSTALL THE INNER BALL JOINTS OF THE FRONT CONTROL ARMS.
I have done this myself! No pickle forks. No mauling of your front cross brace. No prying against parts that aren't designed to be pryed against! No cussing. No cut up or bruised hands. No meltdown!
The pictures are worth 1,000 words. Done this way, let me just say, the job is really easy. Really, really easy.
Original Owner 2003 330Ci ZSP, 3145 lbs, 5-spd, leather, Alcantara wheel, staggered 19" BBS, ZHP FCAs/diff cover/weighted knob, M3 eng + trans mounts/outer RCABs/RCABs with Turner limiters, Group N inner RCABs, Bilstein Sports (E36 M3 rears), H&R Red springs/Sport bars, BMW Performance Rotors, Turner caliper bushings, StopTech lines, Borla, RE pullies/RSM, Stewart WP, M-Technic Trunk Spoiler, Mason pedal/strut bar/end links, B&M shifter, UUC DSSR
Last edited by SLO Town; 04-19-2012 at 10:51 AM.