Ball Joint and general suspension/steering mystery.

If the ball joints are worn, what would the symptoms be. Could a slightly worn lower ball joint cause a reverberation back and forth in the steering
wheel? It only occurs at 30-40 mph and there is no pulsation in the brake pedal. The steering is otherwise straight and trouble free. This is occurring on a 97' Chevy C-1500 2wd 305. I have replaced the shocks, upper control arm bushings, wheel bearings and race, tie rod ends (all), idler arm, pitman arm. What else could it be? The upper ball joint requires a lot of force to make it move, however the lower one moves quite easily, but is not pryable with ample force. Give me some suggestions guys.
TM
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I had a similar symptom once ---- turned out to be what they called "belt-slippage" on the front tires (i.e. almost like a bent wheel) New set of (better quality) tires, problem solved instantly.
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I'll address all in this reply to save bandwidth,
The tire issue is a non issue in my case at least. I took the truck to a dealer, they took four new tires and rims off a 2006 and placed them on my truck, still had the shimmy.
What is weird is I pulled a trailer with slightly heavier than the normal tongue weight than I would customarily pull and the shimmy wasn't there while towing the trailer loaded down. I believe I have answered my own question. Taking the load off of the lower ball joint seem to have resolved it, do you concur?
So, I will be off to the parts house to buy the lower ball joints. Is there any particular brand I should stay away from or look for?
Thanks for all of your responses.
TM

slightly
steering
brake
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set
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there
I've made a practice of using either Moog or Genuine GM. I've used some of the aftermarket stuff in the past and they didn't hold up nearly as well. Lifetime guarantees are one thing, but when you have to crawl back inside the fender well in a year and a half, the guarantee just does not seem so appealing.
--

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I have seen cars with ball joint problems.that have few symptoms under normal conditions, but at some speeds and at some conditions of body roll, they can go into almost uncontrollable vibration. So, yes, it is possible.
This is not meant to say that this is your problem. As another poster has mentioned, tires can also do strange things at times.
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On 3/6/06 7:32 PM, in article 7w4Pf.657$ snipped-for-privacy@newsread3.news.atl.earthlink.net, "TM"

Could be the problem.. With all you've done so far, I'd go ahead and change them regardless..
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TM wrote:

Difficulty in steeering, wandering, harsh ride, "clunking" sounds on bumps and rapid tire wear.
Check the joints as suggested in a repair manual and follow those guidelines, but generally, if they have over 50,000 miles on them, they probably are worn out, at least the load bearing one will be.
Budd
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