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Suspension & Braking
Have some questions about suspension or brake setups for your E46 BMW? Get all your answers here!

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Old 06-21-2013, 12:39 PM   #1
DrkSide_RbL
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Removing Control Arms...Success!!!

After a whole day of Hammering and using a pickle fork this damnn thing still would not budge!!! Aaaarrgghhhh!!! Finally gave up and let the car sit overnight soaked with wd-40.

Woke up the next morning smarter and bought a ball joint tool from harbor freight. Best $20 spent. Took less than 5 min to pop off without using any muscle.

For anyone doing this job. BUY THIS TOOL. Its worth saving the time and effort.

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Old 06-21-2013, 12:41 PM   #2
Mango
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Pickle fork worked fine for me. two seconds. you just weren't using a large enough hammer.
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Old 06-21-2013, 12:50 PM   #3
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Good work.
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Old 06-21-2013, 12:54 PM   #4
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Ugh those outer ball joints can be a In the worst cases I've had to torch the crap out of it to get them to pop loose.

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Old 06-21-2013, 12:58 PM   #5
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Gotta love harbor freight! I just picked up a fuel pressure gauge the other day for 20 compared to 45 at autozone. I'm gonna grab that tool next trip. I hate pounding parts of my car with a 5lb lump hammer for 20 minutes, always feel like something's gonna break
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Old 06-21-2013, 01:14 PM   #6
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That tool is definitely handy. I've never had much luck with pickle forks. Might just be me. It's certainly a tool you'll use over and over.
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Old 06-21-2013, 01:19 PM   #7
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nice post!

next time, PB Blaster is stronger.

and using a quality pickle fork makes a difference. I switched and it made all the difference.
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Old 06-21-2013, 01:50 PM   #8
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I used the same tool when I had to do the tie rod and FCABs.
Very very handy tool.
Although the control arm needed a single tap to separate the ball joint once the tools was real tight, its a single tap vs continuos pounding.
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Old 06-21-2013, 01:59 PM   #9
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I hate pounding parts of my car with a 5lb lump hammer for 20 minutes, always feel like something's gonna break
I use a 10lb sledge for 5 minutes, and feel like I'm going to knock the car off the jack stands. I'll get one of these tools for my next "pickle fork" job.
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Old 06-21-2013, 04:42 PM   #10
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Re: Removing Control Arms...Success!!!

More pictures...Before and after with the Meyles installed

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Old 06-21-2013, 04:45 PM   #11
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Re: Removing Control Arms...Success!!!

Trust me I used the right hammer and I definately have the strenght. I was lucky enough not to have to result in having to use a blow torch. It was crazy!!!
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Old 06-21-2013, 04:45 PM   #12
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Had the same problem with mine. They are a bitch to pop out with just a pickle fork... I too let it soak over night and the next morning I was able to pop them out...
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Old 06-21-2013, 06:41 PM   #13
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I'm thinking about doing this job on my ZHP, control arms are now 4 years old. Debating whether to go again with the ZHP arms or the meyle HD's. Replaceable ball joints are a big plus IMO.

Good work OP
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Old 06-21-2013, 07:30 PM   #14
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Debating whether to go again with the ZHP arms or the meyle HD's. Replaceable ball joints are a big plus IMO.
Are you really going to be able to tell the diff driving? I think not. Go with cheapest.
And will you really press out old ball joints and press in new ones rather than just buying new CA's again?
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Old 06-21-2013, 07:38 PM   #15
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I'm afraid what I'd find if I actually looked under the hood or got underneath to take a peek at my winter-beater '91 Honda Civic DX 4-door (cuz you'd have to rip my pants off to get at my wallet to actually spend any hard-earned loot to repair or replace anything on my beater. Hondas run forever,...I have no steering, braking or suspension issues (at least I don't think so) with "Eileen" (named after "Com'on Eileen"..cuz she keeps going like the Energizer Bunny..., ..'cept maybe for a MAJOR POWER issue when going up steep hills which brings a trail of frustrated drivers behind me untl the peak arrives,..I usually hum this song when going up grades),...... so I'll assume everything is all good with Eileen. (I'll save my loot for maintenance on something worth it,..like Sabrina, my 325ci, which, thankfully, I haven't had to spend much due to low kms.)



....(wish BMW's were like Hondas maintenance-wise. I'm afraid of what is to come in the future once kms get higher....) :sigh:

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Old 06-21-2013, 08:36 PM   #16
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Ugh those outer ball joints can be a In the worst cases I've had to torch the crap out of it to get them to pop loose.
Like mine..!
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Old 06-21-2013, 08:56 PM   #17
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WD-40 isn't the right stuff for this. PBlaster works way more efficiently.
A ball joint separator is very helpful. I didn't even dare thinking to start this job before buying one since I couldn't afford to spend more than one weekend doing this. I also piled a bunch of other tools just in case, including an engine support bar.
Since you have the separator already, you'll find the upcoming tie rod replacement job much easier.

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Old 06-21-2013, 09:16 PM   #18
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Pickle fork worked fine for me. two seconds. you just weren't using a large enough hammer.
+1 Or he swings like a girl. I got mine off with the large pickle fork end on the Advance Auto Parts kit and a 5 lb hammer. I smacked the ever living **** out of it.
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Old 06-21-2013, 09:45 PM   #19
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Old 06-21-2013, 09:54 PM   #20
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+1 Or he swings like a girl. I got mine off with the large pickle fork end on the Advance Auto Parts kit and a 5 lb hammer. I smacked the ever living **** out of it.
Pretty closed minded response for a young engineer. Guy comes up with a better mousetrap, and you tout how good your old mousetrap works.

The truth comes knocking at the door, and we say "Go away, I'm looking for the truth." So it goes away, puzzled.
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