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Old 03-09-2003, 01:38 AM
Registered User
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: Port Harcourt, Nigeria
Posts: 28
Question Lower Ball Joint's, 1993, 230E

Hello Again,
Guys need some help here, we have had a pretty good run so far with our 1993, 230E. Of course we had a fuel problem when we first imported the car to Nigeria. You guys helped then so I am asking again now!

Can a local dirtfloor Nigerian repair place, replace the lower ball joint on this car?? They do a lot here with very little real tools, but pressing out the old and pressing in the new sounds like a lot of hammering on my subframes....... Remember we are in the Jungle, have you seen this done before???
Beautiful Car!
Wish It Ran Beautiful!
Help Please!
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Old 03-09-2003, 03:02 AM
Registered User
Join Date: Apr 2000
Posts: 412
There is no way that they are going to hammer the ball joint out on this vehicle. I used a standard ball joint press on my car with a little help from some other hand tools. The joint is pressed in at a slight angle and can be difficult without some type of press. They will damage something. Most would recommend sending the arm out, which may require a coil spring compressor.
1990 190E 2.6
1996 Grand Voyager 3.3
1985 Mustang GT 5.0 5 SPD
1982 Suzuki GS 750T
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Old 03-09-2003, 11:19 AM
Registered User
Join Date: May 2000
Location: Greenville, NC
Posts: 533
Just had mine done on my 1993 300 (w124) by a reputable tech.
$644.00 US; Requires a spring compressor & press tool. Replaced a-arm bushings also while a-arm is off. Included a front end alignment afterwards. 6+ hour job.
1993 Mercedes Benz 300D 2.5 205K (ex wife's)
1984 Mercedes Benz 300SD 320K (SOLD)
2004 Mercedes Benz C240 75K
1995 GMC Sierra 2WD 5.7L 188K
1983 Mercedes Benz 300SD 239K (SOLD)
1987 BMW 325i 220K (SOLD FOR SALVAGE)

609 Certification
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Old 03-10-2003, 11:14 AM
csnow's Avatar
Registered User
Join Date: May 2002
Location: Mass
Posts: 1,127
IMHO, this job can potentially be done with primitive tools.

I use a vice and big hammer to knock them out, and also to knock the new ones in. This works very well, and is actually much faster than setting up a press. Also gets out any pent-up aggression.

The arm itself is quite tough, and it would take some deliberate effort to damage it in this process.

Hammer installation requires a pipe or large 12-pt socket of the proper diameter, as you do not want to be striking the relatively weak center of the balljoint base {same deal even with a press}.
It helps to grease the pressing surfaces, and put the new balljoints in the freezer first (contraction), though you may not have access to refrigeration.

The tricky part is the alignment, since removing the arm will disturb the camber/caster settings.
If the position of the eccentric bolts is marked and repositioned very carefully, you would come out close.

It is actually possible to R&R a balljoint without removing the CA (and springs) from the car.
I know this is blasphemy, and potentially dangerous, etc. so I won't provide any directions, but if I were a jungle mechanic, I would do it that way.

Also, if they actually need to replace the CA bushings, the install orientation is different for the front vs. the rear ones, and even well-provisioned American mechanics are often unaware of this MB nuance.

All that said, a careful dirt-floor mechanic with primitive tools has the potential to provide good results in this case.

Best of luck.
1986 300E 5-Speed 240k mi.
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