Changing knuckles. We can do whatever we want with knuckles off.

Is the noise caused by the knuckles?

I honestly didn’t think I could take it apart so much with an amateur DIY.

Around last year, I started to hear some strange noise coming from the bottom that was in tune with the axle.

The sound seems to be getting a little to loud. But I can’t for the life of me figure out where the sound is coming from.

One possible cause of the axle rotation noise could be dragging brake pads, but it’s hard to think of that as the cause of the noise since it’s been properly maintained and the pads are worn out evenly.

Another possibility is the hub bearings, but as far as the hub bearings are concerned, they were grease up last year.

So I was suspicious of the knuckle. Knuckles have bearings, and I remembered a mechanic I trust once told me that if the knuckles are distorted, they make a strange noise like a bearing.

I’ll take out anything that gets in my way.

Once the tires are removed, disconnect the harness from the ABS sensor connector, 12mm bolt and clip.

Next, remove the brake. The brake can be loosened by putting on a spectacle wrench and hitting the wrench with a hammer with a gun. Don’t forget to remove the 10mm connected to the shielding plate.

Now remove the cap in the center of the hub with two levers.

Remove the snap ring and ring using snap ring pliers or other tools.
Remove the six 14mm bolts, remove the hub cover, remove the two screws holding the lock washers in place.
Remove the lock washer and turn the lock nut with a screwdriver to remove it.

Pull out the rotor with your thumb on the opening to prevent the outer bearing from rolling down toward you.

By the way, since it is not possible to turn the two screws that fix the lock washer by ordinary force, it is convenient to loosen and tighten it easily if you have a screwdriver that has a square core and can use a monkey.

A hammer driver is a must!

Always use a hammer driver for the screws holding this steel plate in place.

I tried to loosen it using a screwdriver and a monkey as well as a lock washer, but I suddenly licked it.

Even if you use a hammer driver, you can’t fail if you tap it lightly at first, and after the bit and the screw are firmly bitten, you can tap it harder and harder.

When you get used to it, you will be able to loosen and tighten it easily. On the other hand, if you don’t have a hammer driver, you should never touch this part.

The ball joints have to be removed in order.

The order of separating knuckle and ball joint is tie rod end, lower arm and upper arm because of using on-board jack.

First, pull out the pin for each arm.

Next, loosen the nut of the tie rod end (19mm), upper arm and lower arm (24mm). At this time, just loosen the nut and leave the nut still attached.

You need to use a thin-walled type ratchet box or a spectacle wrench to turn the upper arm nut, otherwise the knuckle will not be able to get in the way.

Next, tap the knuckles to separate the tie-rod end in order to insert the vehicle jack.

The joint of each ball joint is tapered so that it won’t come off too early even if you loosen the nut.

I know you should use a puller to loosen the nuts, but I heard that using the puller will damage the dust boot, so I didn’t use it.

If you use a hammer to hit the knuckles, you will have a stronger impact on the knuckles than just hitting them.

I don’t know how many times I hit the knuckles, but I hit the tie rod end 10 times, the upper arm ball joint 20 times, and the lower arm ball joint 50 times………

Two car jacks are useful.

As soon as the tie rod end falls off, don’t detach it and start to drop the lower arm. The reason for not separating the tie rod end is to prevent the knuckle from moving when the ball joint is jacked to the lower arm ball joint.

Put an on-board jack over the nut part of the lower arm ball joint and lift it up moderately, then tap the tapered part to drop it off.

Once it is down, lower it enough so that the jack and nut don’t separate, and now put another jack between the lower arm and upper arm.

I cut off the tie rod end at this point and set up another on-board jack.

This creates tension between the upper arm ball joint and lower arm ball joint to knock down the tapered part of the upper arm ball joint.

This will prevent the lower arm ball joint from sticking into the knuckle again due to the tension between the upper arm and lower arm.

Once both nuts are down, remove the nut and separate the ball joint from the knuckle by raising the jack between the upper and lower arm.

Once the upper arm ball joint is removed, pull the drive shaft out and pull the lower arm ball joint.

Are the knuckle bearings rusty?

When I removed the knuckle, it was surprisingly full of rust.

The rust that must have come from the knuckle bearing is all over the drive shaft and has turned an ochre color.

When I was performing the hub bearing grease before, I noticed a lot of rust coming out of the drive shaft…….the cause was the knuckle bearing.

If the knuckle needle bearing is this badly damaged…is this what’s causing the noise?

But if it’s not, you’ll be disappointed later on, so grease up the replacement knuckles and install them without any unnecessary expectations.

But if the rust is this bad, the shaft where the knuckle bearing was hitting the knuckle must have been badly damaged. I think. It’s nothing to see, but I felt that I should have a replacement driveshaft for this kind of condition.

The knuckle assembly must be crimped tight.

The knuckle is inserted into the lower arm ball joint while inserting the drive shaft in the reverse procedure of removing it and fitting the tapered portion of the upper arm ball joint.

It’s the same with the tie-rod end, but if the tapered part is not seated properly, it’s a ball joint, so the nut and bolt will turn together and cannot be tightened.

So, once the knuckles are in and the nut is temporarily tightened, insert the jack between the upper and lower arm and gently open it up.

Crimp the lower arm ball joint and lower arm and hit the knuckle with a hammer just to make sure the tapered part is in place so the nut can be tightened securely.

After that, remove the jack and the upper arm will be pushed downward by the torsion bar force, so tap it with a hammer and tighten the nut like the lower arm ball joint.

In the picture, the tie-rod end is already assembled, but it’s hard to get the jack in, so you might want to do it last.

You have to do it right or else…

If this knuckle and ball joint are not attached properly, it will go “clunk” while cornering. You’ll hear a startling sound (I’ve been there).

Sometimes you can tighten the nut down tight even if the tapered part isn’t properly engaged. That’s why it’s a good idea to hit the nut with a hammer before tightening it down.

Vibration is the best way to attach and detach iron and steel.

Restoration is the same torque as demolition.

I know it’s best to use a torque wrench and tighten it with the specified torque in various places, but I always try to restore it with the same method and the same degree of force as I did when I removed it sensibly.

If the item is loosened with a lever, tighten it with a lever. After loosening the screws with a hammer, tap them with a hammer to the same degree. The screws loosened with a hammer driver are tightened with a hammer driver.

There is no problem in this way.

Lock nut and washer holes

After inserting the rotor into the drive shaft and the outer bearing, the lock nut and lock washer are put in, but at this time the screw hole in the lock nut and the hole in the lock washer don’t always match.

In this case, you need to loosen the lock nut and turn it in the direction of the lock washer to adjust the position of the hole.

The point is that over-tightening the hub bearings is probably not a good idea. Regularly.
Once the lock nut is tightened with ~kg/cm of force, it is loosened completely and then tightened again with ~kg/cm of force to align the holes in the lock nut and lock washer in the loosening direction….

But I always turn the rotor while pushing in the outer bearing with my fingers, and if it’s not loose, I put in the lock nut and tighten it by hand using two screwdrivers! Then try turning the rotor and loosen it once and tighten it up again, put the lock washer in and if the holes fit, put the screws in and if they don’t fit, fit it in the loosening direction.

There doesn’t seem to be any problems with this kind of procedure.

Impressions after knuckle replacement

When we got it back up and running, I had a moment of “It’s fixed! I thought that it had not been fixed after all. It’s a pity.

But it is true that the volume of the strange noise is reduced overall. It seems that the knuckles were partly responsible for the noise.

But interestingly enough, after replacing the knuckles, there was a change in the ride quality.
It used to make a thumping noise when the car picked up dents on the road but now it doesn’t sound so much anymore. I realized that rear end comfort and steering feeling is not something that can be made by just a shock absorber and alignment.

However, due to the budget and DIY reasons, I had to use used parts.

Well, but I was originally hoping to drive it for over 300,000km without replacing parts, and I’m trying to get rid of the noise that I can’t stand. I thought so.

Now I’m going to replace the drive shaft.