In this brief article, we highlight a few suspension service tools, along with guidance tips for specific vehicle applications, as well as must-know wheel fastening tips.
Mobile hydraulic press
As with many tools, components, system designs and techniques, there’s “old school,” and there’s “new school.”
When it comes to servicing suspension bushings, ball joints and wheel bearings, traditional methods of separating interference-fit bushings, joints and bearings typically involve pickle forks and hammers, manual or hydraulic pullers, scissors/clamshell ball joint separators and the like.
A “new school” approach (this one from Schley Products) involves an all-in-one mobile hydraulic press system that apparently does it all with a minimum of fuss. The 11000A features an air-powered hydro pump with foot control.
Honda/Acura ball joint tool
Schley Tools has introduced a unique lower ball joint service tool specifically for Honda/Acura applications. The new tool allows removal and installation of the lower ball joints on the car, eliminating the need to remove the steering knuckle and using a stationary press.
The tool features two main parts that attach to an air hammer (remover and installer tools). The installer tool couples with one of three different sizes of installer heads that drive the new joint into place without damage.
The tool system covers 1991-97 Honda Civic, 1990-2002 Accord, 1988-91 & 1996-98 Prelude, 1995-97 Odyssey; and 1988-95 Acura Legend, 1992-2001 Integra and 1996-2003 TL.
Pivot-jaw ball joint separator
The “scissors” or “pivot-jaw” type ball joint separator features two forged halves that share a common pivot point. A cupped-out seat engages on the opposite side of the joint from the stud and the driver side of the tool jaw engages the stud tip. As the captive threaded bolt at the opposite end of the tool is tightened, the jaws that capture the joint compress, popping the interference-fit joint out of its home. The tip of the adjuster bolt features a ball bearing to prevent the stud from digging into the tool’s drive end as the bolt is rotated.