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1984 300D
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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I bought One Lot of Mercedes Tools at and Auction. In the lot was a real Mercedes Lower Ball Joint Separator 116589093300.
The Mercedes Lower Ball Joint Separator rarely comes up for sale and the cost quite a bit if you buy a new one.
Another thing is once you have it what else can you do with it?

I was curious as to what other Tool had similar design features and would cost less and be used for other projects besides Mercedes Lower Ball Joints.

I did a lot of internet searching and found the OTC 8149 (supposed to fit Cars and Light Trucks) and OTC 8150 (heavier Trucks) Pitman Arm Separators had similar construction.

I found that the various Sellers and even OTC references to the size that either of Pitman Arm Tools would handle was very Vague.
I emailed OTC and they only partially answered question.

In the Mean time I bought a OTC 8150 on eBay. But, this turned out to be too large to fit as a Lower Ball Joint Press.

I found one of the Sellers on Amazon had the OTC 8149 for $19.99+$6.83 Shipping (Tradervar). And I ordered it.

So today I overcame My initial problem of not being able to separate the upper Ball Joint without damaging the Boot and was able to move onto the separating the lower Ball Joint from the Lower Control Arm.

The OTC 8149 Pitman Arm Press was a tighter squeeze to get it in position than the Mercedes Ball Joint Separator was but I got it into a good position and it quickly popped the Ball Joint out of the LCA.
One of the differences between the 2 tools that could cause an issue with some Ball Joints is that the OTC Tool has a pointed piece on the End of the Screws; the Mercedes Tool is flat.

In My Case the shaft of the Lower Ball Joint was center drilled so the point of the OTC 8149 fit right in. (only back off the Shaft Nut enough so the Nut is loose but leave it on the Shaft so the shaft will not swell when it is pressed off).

About 4 years ago when I replaced the Lower Control Arm Bushings the Ball Joint had been removed so it was in no way rusted in place.
When I am done with my Ball Joint Boot replacement issue I am going to see if the OTC will fit the Pitman Arm

The Mercedes Tool is the smaller one.
 

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Interesting you were able to get the lower ball joints out without removal and pressing out in a shop.
Did you remove them 4 yrs ago with a similar tool?
How do you plan on reinstall the new joints?
 

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1984 300D
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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
Interesting you were able to get the lower ball joints out without removal and pressing out in a shop.
Did you remove them 4 yrs ago with a similar tool?
How do you plan on reinstall the new joints?
Remember I only separated the Ball Joint from the Lower Control Arm.
When I did remove a Ball Joint besides the Steering Knucle being removed the Wheel Hub and the I believe the Brake Shield had to come off also. I used the Mercedes Manual Method which is to turn the Steering Knucle upside down and secure it in a vice and I used a large Socket as a Punch and a 2 pound Hammer and beat the Lower Ball Joint out of the Spindle.
If that does not work then you need to find another method or consider taking it to some one to have it removed.

If the picture comes out OK I beat the Ball Joint off with a Hammer. But, you need to locate a source of a new Nut For the Ball Joint as you can tear the nut up.
You loosen the Nut and back it off about 1/8 th of an inch and suport the Lower Control Arm underside. I used the Hydraulic Jack because I was in a hurry and I took the risk of damaging the Jack. A sturdy Jack Stand would be a better choice.
I did that when I was removing the Lower Control Arms to change the Bushings and I did not want to damage the Joints using one of those Pickle Fork type Tools.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
How did you keep the spring from killing you? I have to do this job and have been putting it off because of that.
Depending on what you are doing you do not need to compress the Front Spring.
In the Pic with the Hydraulic Jack I was eventually to remove the Lower Control Arm. For that you do need to compress the Front Spring.

If you are going to Change the Lower Ball Joint (the large one pressed into the Steering Knuckle/Spindle) you do not need to compress the Spring. In that case the Lower Control Arm is supported by a Jack Stand and the Weight of the Vehicle keeps the Spring compressed enough to remove the Steering Knuckle.
I just finished doing that Yesterday when I changed the Grease Boot on the Steering Knuckle.

The problem I had was with the Upper Control Arm Ball Joint. The Tool I wanted to use to separate it would not slide in without damaging the Rubber Boot.
I ask for advice on that on the other Forum I hang out and people said if I Jacked the Car up in a manner that would put more of the Vehicle Weight on the Front of the car and If I had Both Wheels off the Ground and the Lower Control Arms supported there would be enought room to get the Tool and and not damage the Boot.
I did not follow their instuctions and made a Tool to separte the Upper Ball Joint from the Steering Knuckle.

After that the rest of the Job went OK and I did not have to use any sort of Spring Compressor; although I have 2 Homemade Spring Compressors that I made to compress the Front Springs if I needed them. However, you Arms and Wrists get a serious work out compressing a Spring and there is no point in doing that if you do not have to.

If you need to remove the Lower Control Arm like if you were going to replace the Lower Control Arm Bushings you are going to need to Compress the Front Spring.
For that the Strut Type Spring Compressors are not going to be strong enough and yes, can be dangerous.
 

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Depending on what you are doing you do not need to compress the Front Spring.
In the Pic with the Hydraulic Jack I was eventually to remove the Lower Control Arm. For that you do need to compress the Front Spring.

If you are going to Change the Lower Ball Joint (the large one pressed into the Steering Knuckle/Spindle) you do not need to compress the Spring. In that case the Lower Control Arm is supported by a Jack Stand and the Weight of the Vehicle keeps the Spring compressed enough to remove the Steering Knuckle.
I just finished doing that Yesterday when I changed the Grease Boot on the Steering Knuckle.

The problem I had was with the Upper Control Arm Ball Joint. The Tool I wanted to use to separate it would not slide in without damaging the Rubber Boot.
I ask for advice on that on the other Forum I hang out and people said if I Jacked the Car up in a manner that would put more of the Vehicle Weight on the Front of the car and If I had Both Wheels off the Ground and the Lower Control Arms supported there would be enought room to get the Tool and and not damage the Boot.
I did not follow their instuctions and made a Tool to separte the Upper Ball Joint from the Steering Knuckle.

After that the rest of the Job went OK and I did not have to use any sort of Spring Compressor; although I have 2 Homemade Spring Compressors that I made to compress the Front Springs if I needed them. However, you Arms and Wrists get a serious work out compressing a Spring and there is no point in doing that if you do not have to.

If you need to remove the Lower Control Arm like if you were going to replace the Lower Control Arm Bushings you are going to need to Compress the Front Spring.
For that the Strut Type Spring Compressors are not going to be strong enough and yes, can be dangerous.
Thanks for the info, I have to replace both the upper and lower ball joints. Good to know I won't have to compress those bastards.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks for the info, I have to replace both the upper and lower ball joints. Good to know I won't have to compress those bastards.
To replace the Upper Ball Joints you need to replace the Entire Upper Control Arm. When you Torque the Bolt that goes through the Chassis/Body/Upper Control Arm the Car should be sitting as it normally does with the Wheels on the Ground.
Take a good look at the Tip of the Torsion/Sway Bar as it is a common area where rust can cause the tips to break off. There is 2 possible repairs for the tips.

For more details see the Repair Links
DIY Links by Parts Category - PeachParts Mercedes ShopForum

PeachPartsWiki: Do It Yourself Articles - Mercedes Vehicles
 
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