Warning Chevy S-10 Owners

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If you own a Chevy S-10 you should see this page!
http://home.fuse.net/rickshaw/rs00013.html
Your life may depend on it!

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If you're are still driving around on the original 12 year old ball joints you are either cheap or stupid. Just put new ones is as the old ones are probably shot anyway.
Rita

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snipped-for-privacy@aol.com posted:

I have no opinion as to the validity of the charges made by "Rosie". However, some might have an opinion about yours.
First, the third line of the text clearly stated the ball joints had been replaced. (Presumably by a previous owner?)
Second, the failure wasn't the ball joints anyways, but apparently with the A-frame.
I don't think "Rosie" is the stupid one.
Spike
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posted:

joints
However,
Spike, I really don't want to get into a pissing contest with you, but please look at the damage to the ball joint and the A-frame. The picture clearly shows ball joint failure. The top half of the ball joint is missing, you know, where the four bolts hold it to the A-frame. If the A-frame were to fail you would have a good chance that the ball joint would be complete and part of the A-frame would be attached to it. While the picture clarity is marginal, there is enough detail to clearly show ball joint failure with damage to the A-arm resulting from being dragged on pavement. The damage is consistent with abrasion, not ripping, shearing, or tearing.

It doesn't matter if it were original or a replacement as the ball joint clearly failed. Whether it be poor design and manufacturing or neglect I can't say.

the
Are you sure? See above and carefully study the picture. This picture is worth a thousand words.

No it isn't nor did I ever say that it was, it is just misinformed and far from accurate.
Rita
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posted:

joints
However,
Spike, I really don't want to get into a pissing contest with you, but please look at the damage to the ball joint and the A-frame. The picture clearly shows ball joint failure. The top half of the ball joint is missing, you know, where the four bolts hold it to the A-frame. If the A-frame were to fail you would have a good chance that the ball joint would be complete and part of the A-frame would be attached to it. While the picture clarity is marginal, there is enough detail to clearly show ball joint failure with damage to the A-arm resulting from being dragged on pavement. The damage is consistent with abrasion, not ripping, shearing, or tearing.

It doesn't matter if it were original or a replacement as the ball joint clearly failed. Whether it be poor design and manufacturing or neglect I can't say.

the
Are you sure? See above and carefully study the picture. This picture is worth a thousand words.

No it isn't nor did I ever say that it was, it is just misinformed and far from accurate.
Rita
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It's obvious that you have never changed balljoints on any vehicle. If you had, you would reaize that it can be done without leaving any "cut marks" from a torch or chisel.
****************************************** I would rather be exposed to the inconveniences attending too much liberty than to those attending too small a degree of it. ~ Thomas Jefferson ~
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What does that have to do with the original post, or anything for that matter? It seems like he/she was blaming the manufacturer of the 91 S-10. If the ball joints were changes when they should have been changed they wouldn't have catastrophically failed. Now, assuming that the ball joints were changed on the vehicle in question one could cast blame the replacement ball joints, not the vehicle. Either way, it's the fault of the driver since they didn't have their vehicle checked for safe operation.
Rita
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snipped-for-privacy@aol.com posted (in response to snipped-for-privacy@webtv.net):

*Once again*, if you read the web-page, it clearly states the ball-joints were previously replaces and the failure seems to be of the A-frame at the point of attachment. I'm curious how you'd propose checking the A-frame's point of attachment for 'safe operation'... X-rays?
Spike
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I guess that if you wanted to check for metal fatigue (one of the usual suspects in control arm failure) you could get it magna-fluxed or use dye penetrant. Both of those procedures, when performed by another party, are fairly expensive (cheaper to replace the A-arms?). I'd guess that whoever replaced the balljoints, failed to tighten the bolts to the proper torque, leaving room for movement and eventual failure. It could also have been caused by putting the vehicle through Hollywood activities (you know, jumping off cliffs, leaping over canyons, etc.).
****************************************** I would rather be exposed to the inconveniences attending too much liberty than to those attending too small a degree of it. ~ Thomas Jefferson ~
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Rich B wrote:

I'm a bit confused here. How does dye penetrant, ot magnetic particle inspection check for metal fatigue? If I understand the practice sufficiently Dye penetrant and magnetic particle inspection is used to detect defects. These practices would detect some form of defect - possibly caused be metal fatigue - possibly by some other mode of failure as well. Examination of the failure zone would confirm metal fatigue, or the actual mode of failure. The use of magnetic particle inspection, or dye penetrant, will only confirm the presence of a defect, not the mode of failure.
Expensive? Neither is very "expensive", for dye penetrant the materials are readily available for a few Bucks (maybe $25). Magnetic particle takes more resources, but can detect defects that are sub-surface - if performed properly.
Oh yeah, me? Dye Penetrant and Magnetic Particle Level III Inspector.
Steve "What Do I Know?" Sharp

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You're right Steve, I screwed up. Those two methods would only reveal the existing cracks. I'm only sightly familiar with the two methods and only used the dye penetrant in the military as a jet engine mechanic. I do, however, believe that this problem was brought on by the current owner or previous owner (or both). I've only seen one other failure like this and it was caused by gross abuse of the vehicle.
****************************************** I would rather be exposed to the inconveniences attending too much liberty than to those attending too small a degree of it. ~ Thomas Jefferson ~
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S-10.
joints
replacement
were
point of

I did read the page and carefully looked at the pictures. You did see the pictures? Just because someone "clearly states" something on a web site doesn't make it accurate or true. I'm sure that this vehicle gave the driver ample warning that something was not right with the steering and would, at least, warrant a visual inspection by the driver. And "reading" the web site, I clearly can conclude that I wouldn't want to be on the same "expressway" with this moron doing "70" with a poorly maintained vehicle. Also, this person clearly admits that, "The wheel fell off from the bottom out and the top in-ward, the A-frame dug into the pavement". The damage demonstrated in the picture clearly supports abrasion damage. The ball joint, itself, would be safe and snug, as it shouldn't have "dug" into the pavement if it were A-frame failure. But, for some reason the ball joint is only half complete. Where is the other half of the ball joint?
Rita
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I guess I didn't explain a few things on the web page that I'll explain here and up date the page asap. First of all the truck was going in 'reverse' when this happened at a very slow speed. The damage to the control arm (lower A-frame) was done from the ripping of the ball joint out of its socket (so to speak) the A-frame dug into the pavement but was not dragged down the road. The truck came to an immediate stop after the break. Also just a year ago the front end was aliened. If the ball joints where that bad the alignment would not have been made or stayed in alignment for that long. Also there was NO warning of this about to happen. No noise, no pulling to one side or the other NOTHING!! The break took place across the holes for the bolts and or rivets on the A-frame. Yes there is rust, however this vehicle has no more rust that I can see than any other S-10 I've looked at in the last three weeks....and I've looked at many of them to check this out. The ball joints where replaced by the owner before me. I got the truck in 1998. Like I said a year ago it was out of alignment and needed an idler arm before the alignment could be done to it. The ball joints where tested (how I don't know) but all seemed ok, they changed the idler arm and did the alignment. All was ok. And the truck has been in alignment for a year now. As far as the cutting torch, I will know that you can remove a rivet without leaving any cutting marks on the steel. I have worked as a pipe welder for fifteen years at a ship yard. However it does take a good torch-man to accomplish this. I was saying that there are no signs of one being used. No discoloring of the steel or any cut marks or any sign of a torch being used. I was saying that "if" one was used it could explain the metal fatigue. I understand that the proper way to remove them is with an air chisel. However they where removed the break took place across the holes where the bolts go. There is VERY little steel at that part of the A-frame. This has to be a weak point...look at one and see. Remove the ball joint and you will see that the A-frame has about 3/4 of an inch of steel then a hole for a bolt, then about another 1/2 inch of steel, then a large hole for the ball joint to go though, then another 1/2 inch of steel, and the other hole for the next bolt, then another 3/4 inch of steel. Not much support. And this is where the break took place at. Looks to be a piss poor design if you ask me! That's one hell of allot of weight to hold up. Also silver metal was showing at the break where it sheared off! The rust is surface rust and it does not go deep into the metal.
I also will add that this truck has NEVER been mistreated. It is a four wheel drive truck. But has hardly ever been off road. And when it was it was only on hard ground on farm land...not going though mud, rocks or any kind of abuse. I've taken very good care of this truck. I'm I looking for a lawsuit...NO! But if this has happened before (God knows it could have or has)... it surely can happen again to someone. I have shown this to five mechanics and all are in disbelief that this happened. But all agree there is not much steel on the A-frame at this point where the break took place and that rust does not seem to be the cause of it. All I'm trying to do is bring this to any S-10 owner attention. If you have one of these trucks you better have it checked out! And even then you won't know for sure if this can happen to you!!!
Thank you, the "moron" that drives the speed limit in a truck that she believes is safe.
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That last post was from me...sorry it says it was from CaptainRick....forgot to change the name. Rosie Baker

here
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than
at
arm
(how
without
No
used.
However
go.
it
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CaptainRick....forgot
You do seem to have a problem keeping your story straight. Needn't worry, your name has about as much credibility as you story. We understand.
Rita
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(You do seem to have a problem keeping your story straight. Needn't worry, your name has about as much credibility as you story. We understand.)
Just how has my story changed? Do you think I'm lying about this or do you own Chevy stock or what? And if you knew me you would know my name has credibility! More so than what that comment just did to your name. Some I think would call you a "BITCH" Two people use this computer this is why I did not notice the name change on the one post.
All I'm trying to let people know is that this happened! And it CAN happen again. Be it neglect, bad design, bad ball joints, no grease in joint, or an act of God...IT HAPPENED ! When I get this taken apart I'll take some more close up pictures of it that hopefully will show better detail of what may have happened here. And I'm not saying that it was not from neglect! As far as I know a grease job should last a year!? As long as it's not been though high water or off road driven hard. And this truck was not. The last grease job was about a year ago when the front end was aliened. Maybe this joint was not greased....I just don't know. I do know that the control arm looks like a piss poor design to me. If you take the ball joint off of the control arm and look at the control arm end where the ball joint goes you will see that there is not very much metal there. With the holes for the bolts and the big hole for the ball joint. It makes for a very weak place in the control arm ...if you ask me anyway. Maybe I'm wrong? But you have the side of the control arm about 3/4 of an inch of steel then a hole for a bolt, then about a 1/2 inch of steel, then the large hole for the ball joint, then another 1/2 inch of steel, then another hole for the bolt, then another 3/4 inch of steel. And that's it. Sounds weak to me! And to see this break across them sure seems to show that it is weak there.
All I can say is "Have your S-10 checked!"

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RosieBaker wrote:

How can it be bad design? Any vehicle with a-arms for suspension has the same design, so why are there not more cars/trucks out of the millions on the road with cracked a-arms? My S-10 was hit by another car right in the drivers side wheel. My upper and lower a-arms both bent, but neither ball joint broke and the a-arms didn't break. These were still the factory ones though, but they had about 160,000 miles on them at the time, greasing them every 3000 miles helps. You keep saying get your S-10 checked out, exactly how do you want people to do that? Do we find a jet engine mechanic with million dollar tools that can detect metal fatigue? Thats about the only thing that could detect metal that is about to break but has no outward signs of cracks. Now if you get under to grease the joints every 3000 miles and inspect the joints you stand a good chance of noticeing small cracks before they turn into big ones. But telling everyone to take their S-10 to the local parts swapper won't help anything.
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A YEAR? Why do you think the manual calls for a "Lube Oil and Filter" every 3,000 miles? LUBE includes lubing the ball joints, all steering linkages and any other grease fittings on the truck, in 3 month/3,000 mile intervals. This is regardless of driving conditions, unless you don't qualify for severe duty, but the intervals NEVER go above 6 months, and that's REALLY pushing it...
I'll agree with others in this thread, sounds like neglect...
wrote:

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"Mike Levy" wrote

I would respectfully disagree with this. If a ball joint or front suspension part that can be greased was greased properly 'once'....I see no reason why it could not easily go 1 year without being regreased. I see as many, or more problems with 'overgreasing' components and wrecking the seals on said components. Or components that are 'never' greased at all. There are plenty of 'sealed' front end components that go years without additional grease. But in reality, they are no more 'sealed' then the component that happens to have a grease nipple attached to it.
I won't grease components that have seals all swelled up by an excessive amount of grease. So often, on the oil change, not every component gets grease.
Ian
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snipped-for-privacy@levyclan.us posted:

Ummm... It doesn't.
And I'd be willing to bet a very large pctge of vehicles never get their ball joints greased, whether the cause be neglect or service fraud, and lets not forget the "lubed-for-life" or "sealed" ball joints which simply have the zerk fittings replaced with plugs.
As long as the ball joints haven't been submerged, lubing once a year is nowhere near neglect.
Spike
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