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Old 07-07-2009, 06:51 PM   #11
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Re: Steering loose (SMB 4x4) drag link ball joint?

OK, I finally got around to fixing this today. It was "easy", if you define "easy" as "I can do it". Getting the rusted parts off & disassembled was a pain. Putting the new ones on was no problem.

Thank you very much, deminimis for telling me which Ford F-Series truck drag link parts to buy. (Without his help I'd probably have bought E-Series van parts.)

I've also put this story on my web site.

Getting the old rusted hardware off turned out to be the hardest problem. To remove the nut from the drag link bolt, I first tried scoring the bolt end with my angle grinder and gripping it with vise grips or a wrench. Still, that didn't work -- I applied a huge amount of force but it wouldn't give.

So, I finally ended up just cutting through the nut & bolt to get it off.

The other end came off fine using a pitman arm puller.

Here are the new & old parts. Disassembling the rusted old drag link also required a huge amount of force. I cheated, adding a long pipe to the end of my vise grip's handle -- but, still it was slow work.

Time to put the new parts on! I realized that I was now missing a nut. The castle nut is a metric thread part not found at my local auto parts store -- so off to Tacoma Screw. They have everything!

Finally, reassembly was easy. The middle piece of the drag link is rotated (with vise grips) to adjust the centering of the steering wheel.

-- Geoff

2004 Ford, SMB 4x4, RB-50
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Old 07-07-2009, 08:43 PM   #12
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Re: Steering loose (SMB 4x4) drag link ball joint?

Twas wondering how this project turned out geoffff. Good to hear it all turned out and you're safely on the road again. Congrats!!

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it amazes me that so many choose stupid....

2007 RB50, 6.0
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Old 07-07-2009, 08:52 PM   #13
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Re: Steering loose (SMB 4x4) drag link ball joint?

Glad it worked out!
It takes a village to raise an idiot.
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Old 06-30-2021, 01:15 AM   #14
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Location: Las Vegas, NV
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Resurrecting an 12 year old thread haha.

@geofff, this thread has been invaluable. I too am looking at replacing my drag link and tie rod ends. I saw the post at the beginning with the ‘03 parts for drag link.

What year is your van? I believe yours is a 2004? Mine is a 2004 as well.

Did you go with the ‘03 drag links that were posted early in this thread?

Which moog tie rod ends did you go with? A 2006 spec sheet was given to me with the moog es2082R and es2083L but based on earlier thread they change in 2004 or after so not sure if the es2082/3 are the right ones.

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