I got up this morning with the intention of installing the ball joints today.
Before I started I needed to torque the pinion. I set the pinion rotation at 20 in-lbs but needed the breaker bar to get it tight. I thought it was strange that I could not get it any higher and went in to read the FSM again. On the D30 it states to replace the pinion seal and tighten the gland nut to 250 ft-lbs and says nothing about rotation torque. My 3/8” torque wrench is 100 ft-lbs max so I will have to borrow a ½” ft-lb torque wrench and re-torque it.
I spent some time cleaning up and getting part numbers for a run to the Zone. Before I left I took a few minutes to knock a lower ball joint out of one knuckle with the mini sledge. It was not that hard but I wanted to see how difficult the day would be.
I found the inner spindle seal part number on the Zone's website that I was told was a non-stock item so I headed to the parts house and while I was there I bought ball joints and rented the ball joint press. I used the same press on my Dodge D60 and I do remember it being a tough job but I did it in a weekend.
I got home and pressed the last three ball joints out in about fifteen minutes.
I took a brass drift and knocked the hub bolts out of both knuckles and wire wheeled them clean.
I tried to seat a ball joint but my twenty year old Craftsman impact was too weak so I cobbled up some junk to hold the knuckle and used a breaker bar and finished seating the first lower ball joint.
I moved on to upper ball joint and the knuckled kept slipping around so I decided I would try the shop press using the fittings in the ball joint press kit. I loaded up and headed to my Uncle’s to use the shop press and it took about five minutes to seat all three. If I had more time I would have made a fixture to hold the knuckle and have no doubt the ball joint press and breaker bar would have worked.
I washed them down with wax and grease remover and sprayed two coats of flat black on the inside of the knuckle knowing I would not get enough primer or paint in there after it was together.
Once I started to install the knuckles I noticed the nuts and rubber cups for the lower joints did not match. I had to return the press so I headed back to the Zone to find out why the parts where different. While I was there I replaced the battery in the Nissan under warranty since it was going dead frequently.
I bought a sacrificial 19mm socket I could grind down to fit the split seat. After I modified the socket I realized I need a deep socket so I will have to re-torque the split seats later. I used a hammer and punch to tighten them.
I sprayed WD-40 lubricant in the housing to prevent rust while the D30 sits. I sprayed the cover gasket with Permatex red gasket sealer and installed the cover. I had the pinion tilted down but when I installed the cover I moved my screwdriver to level the housing. After I got back from the garage with the ½ socket I saw oil all over the table. The WD-40 was leaking out and all over the gasket I had just sprayed with gasket sealer. Of course, if it’s going to leak that is the exact spot, so I pulled the cover and luckily brake cleaner cleaned up the gasket and I reinstalled it.
I get pissed when I have to do things twice…
I still had a few hours before I needed to go pick up my daughters so I grabbed the grinder and started cleaning the housing. It took another hour or so but I still had time to shoot primer so I moved it out of view of my neighbor and washed it down with wax and grease remover twice.
I shot two coats of epoxy primer and had just enough leftover to spray the Alloy India axle flanges that I did not think to paint when I sprayed the AMC 20. It was a long weekend but I finished everything as planned. Unfortunately, I am out of the satin black and I won’t receive it until after Thanksgiving. I should have the D30 back in frame pretty soon, maybe the weekend after the holiday.