Premature failure of ball joints and tire feathering

Hi I own a 97 f250 with a problem of a premature upper ball joint failure e very 5000 KLM with outside tire feathering since new. The mechanics have n
ot been able to solve this problem or could not bother to try. I need to r eplace the upper ball joint again an wonder other areas that I should be lo oking at to replace. Can u help me plse.
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On 25/5/19 2:47 pm, Vannessa wrote:

Replace everything between the front and rear bumpers. Preferably with a different brand of vehicle. That should resolve the issue.
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Thx for ur wonderful insight. With my research, some culperts can be... Wheel bearings, tie rods, bushings, an a bent strut. I see ur no better then the other mechanics I have gone to solve this problem. Thx again for ur time.. lol Vannessa
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On 26/5/19 2:59 am, Vannessa wrote:

Thanks for proving your post was just another troll post.
FYI, the above causes are *not* responsible for repeated *ball joint failure*.
Happy trolling.
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On 5/25/2019 5:45 PM, Xeno wrote:

Of the two of you, you're the far more likely troll.
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On 26/5/19 9:25 am, Heron wrote:

Not at all. I've been a mechanic for 50+ years and the *question posed* has the ring of bullshit to it. A balljoint regularly only lasting 5,000 KLM is *abnormal* and should have been attended to when the vehicle was new and under warranty. Some Fords did have a prematurely worn out balljoints but that was at, IIRC, 50,000 Miles and it was on a car, not a truck. Who would put up with crap like that for *22 years* and not be invoking the lemon laws or similar?
As for tyre feathering on the outside, that can be 100% normal depending on how and where the vehicle is driven. It's called camber scrub and occurs where the vehicle is subject to inner urban driving, lots of right angle corners and small roundabouts. Most commonly seen on vehicles with high SAI angles which is pretty much all FWD vehicles. Nothing you can do about it because it is a *built in* non-adjustable angle and provides stability and directionality at highways speeds. Look at the camber angles when the steering is on full lock and you'll get the drift.
The vehicle is 22 years old if it's a 97 model. You can just keep throwing money at vehicles that old if you cannot do your own repairs. My advice on my first post on the topic is valid. You could take it to a dealer, they would be aware of any TSB on the issue, but expect to pay.
If the post was genuine, I would suspect, on the ball joint issue, crappy aftermarket ball joints and/or poor fitting with the tyre feathering issue having nothing to do with it.
I might also note that a lot of people do not know how to assess balljoints correctly. Each manufacturer has their own specifications and Ford, with the Falcons in particular, were quite generous with axial play on the load bearing joint, a quarter inch IIRC. Try to get anything approaching that through a roadworthy check. On the other hand, the non load bearing ball joint should have no play and, indeed, have friction.
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Go to an alignment shop. Not a tire shop. Not a chain store. Go to a place that ONLY does alignments and nothing else. They will likely cater mostly to the racing crowd. Have THEM check your suspension over. --scott
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"C'est un Nagra. C'est suisse, et tres, tres precis."

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Go to an alignment shop. Not a tire shop. Not a chain store. Go to a place that ONLY does alignments and nothing else. They will likely cater mostly to the racing crowd. Have THEM check your suspension over. --scott
Thx Scott I'm from a small town.. there is no specialized alignment shops. Just the tire shops and a chain store. I will try to find someone that knows his stuff at this last tire store I have not been to. Thank you for ur advise Scott. Vannessa
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Vannessa wrote:

Is there a Ford dealer nearby that does repairs? Ford repair people are usually pretty good with Ford vehicle diagnosis and repair.
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Is there a Ford dealer nearby that does repairs? Ford repair people are usually pretty good with Ford vehicle diagnosis and repair.
Hi Paul There are 2. The one that I bought the truck off in one town. Who replaced the ball joint twice while on warranty an who I will not go back to again. The other dealership in the other town has done ALL repairs since with For d parts. Last time there they wanted to take some parts off an check for be nt parts. What parts? The service man didn't know an the mechanic was out when I was there. Otherwise, everything looks solid. My truck has 188 thous and klms. Mostly highway driven an hauling wood.
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So, you bought this used? And the camber is all the way at the end of its travel when they adjust it the way the machine tells them?
I bet a nickel the frame is bent. A real alignment shop will be able to tell if this is the case. They might even be able to fix it. --scott
--
"C'est un Nagra. C'est suisse, et tres, tres precis."

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Scott Dorsey

So, you bought this used? And the camber is all the way at the end of its travel when they adjust it the way the machine tells them?
I bet a nickel the frame is bent. A real alignment shop will be able to tell if this is the case. They might even be able to fix it.
I bought it brand new. Frame? Would u not notice it dog walking down the highway?
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No! No! Stay away from the tire stores! They hire some kid who knows how to take the numbers out of the alignment machine but has no understanding of the suspension geometry, The automated alignment machines make it possible for idiots to do alignments, and unfortunately many of them do.
Find a nearby city, drive there. Do not ask at a tire place, ask at a racetrack. --scott
--
"C'est un Nagra. C'est suisse, et tres, tres precis."

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No! No! Stay away from the tire stores! They hire some kid who knows how to take the numbers out of the alignment machine but has no understanding of the suspension geometry, The automated alignment machines make it possi ble for idiots to do alignments, and unfortunately many of them do.
Find a nearby city, drive there. Do not ask at a tire place, ask at a racetrack.
Hay Scott Ok.. closest city is over 400 KLM away. Once upper ball joint is replaced. . will get it checked as soon as I can. Didn't realize that's how the tire shops work. They just tell me the camber is adjusted as far as it will go an centered my steering wheel so I won't feel like I'm driving of the road . Lol.. I have not gone back
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Vannessa wrote:

That suggests something wasn't made correctly or the suspension or frame has a bent part in it. A twisted frame horn or bent mount would be enough to throw it out. One question that is relevant but unasked so far - which front suspension do you have and is this a 2 wheel drive or 4X4?
The 97 F-250s could have something like 4 different suspension options depending on the actual vehicle. Twin I beam, full independent suspension with A arms, twin traction beam or solid front axle. Is it stock or has it been lifted or altered?
--
Steve W.

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That suggests something wasn't made correctly or the suspension or frame has a bent part in it. A twisted frame horn or bent mount would be enough to throw it out. One question that is relevant but unasked so far - which front suspension do you have and is this a 2 wheel drive or 4X4?
The 97 F-250s could have something like 4 different suspension options depending on the actual vehicle. Twin I beam, full independent suspension with A arms, twin traction beam or solid front axle. Is it stock or has it been lifted or altered?
--
Steve W.

Hi Steve.
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The only parts that have been replaced on it is upper and lower ball joints on passenger side. The lower was changed out once at my request when the u pper had to be done. It tracks straight by tracks on dirt road. When parked an wheels are straight, the camber is noticable when looking at it on pass enger side. All bumpers look straight, doors close an are aligned properly.
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On Wednesday, May 29, 2019 at 12:30:50 PM UTC-5, Vannessa wrote:

ts on passenger side. The lower was changed out once at my request when the upper had to be done. It tracks straight by tracks on dirt road. When park ed an wheels are straight, the camber is noticable when looking at it on pa ssenger side. All bumpers look straight, doors close an are aligned properl y.
I used to own a 1967 long wheelbase Ford pickup truck that had the twin I b eams front suspension. Every time I had to make a hard right turn or a hard left turn the front of the truck felt to me like it was hopping up and dow n. I don't believe the Twin I Beams was one of Ford's 'brighter ideas'
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That suggests something wasn't made correctly or the suspension or frame has a bent part in it. A twisted frame horn or bent mount would be enough to throw it out. One question that is relevant but unasked so far - which front suspension do you have and is this a 2 wheel drive or 4X4?
The 97 F-250s could have something like 4 different suspension options depending on the actual vehicle. Twin I beam, full independent suspension with A arms, twin traction beam or solid front axle. Is it stock or has it been lifted or altered?
-- Steve W.
Vannessa wrote:
Hi Steve. It's a twin I beam, 4x4, stock front end.
OK so the Ford Dana 50 Twin Traction Beam. If it is so far out that with the camber adjuster maxed it still isn't in spec there isn't anything else to adjust. Has to be either the beam is bent or made wrong or the knuckle is machined wrong for the ball joint. I'd probably find another front end in a salvage yard and grab the entire unit. They are very common and the same from 1985 - 1997. Just need to match the gear ratio that you have. Or just get the right side pieces and swap them out.
--
Steve W.

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Steve W. - show quoted text - Vannessa wrote:
Hi Steve. It's a twin I beam, 4x4, stock front end.
OK so the Ford Dana 50 Twin Traction Beam. If it is so far out that with the camber adjuster maxed it still isn't in spec there isn't anything else to adjust. Has to be either the beam is bent or made wrong or the knuckle is machined wrong for the ball joint. I'd probably find another front end in a salvage yard and grab the entire unit. They are very common and the same from 1985 - 1997. Just need to match the gear ratio that you have. Or just get the right side pieces and swap them out.
--
Steve W.

Is there anyway of knowing this is the problem besides seeing a visual difference? Can a wheel alignment specialist figure this out also?
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