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Old 03-29-2020, 07:06 PM   #1
biggieou
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Default 1962 Thunderbird Ball joint Question

Hey everyone, trying to find ball joints for 62 convertible. Ordered some from Summit, but they are one piece and not for the car. The ones on the car are multiple pieces, with the top cap being integral with the control arms. Were there multiple types used?
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Old 03-29-2020, 07:58 PM   #2
alt63bird
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Default Re: 1962 Thunderbird Ball joint Question

Why not go direct to those vendors that specialize in post-'57 T-birds like The Bird's Nest, Pat Wilson, etc? I wouldn't go to Summit for T-bird-specific parts, especially if you don't know what to look for: trust me, I've been around Vintage 'Birds for nearly 40 years (I'm not even 60 yet!) and my first place to go to are those who specialize in them. Support those who support the Vintage T-bird community:
http://vintagethunderbirdclub.net/links.htm
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Old 03-29-2020, 08:23 PM   #3
biggieou
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Default Re: 1962 Thunderbird Ball joint Question

Because I live 10 minutes from Summit. I appreciate the links, need to look through and see if there’s one like mine.
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Old 03-29-2020, 11:29 PM   #4
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Default Re: 1962 Thunderbird Ball joint Question

Not to belabor the point, but I agree that going to a great place like Pat Wilson's is a good strategy. You probably wouldn't have received the wrong part from them.



Larry's Thunderbirds may not be quite at the level of Wilson's but they're pretty good and you'll be a big step ahead using them instead of more pedestrian parts sellers. Even Mac's will be better than run of the mill places, as far as old car parts are concerned. I've actually had decent luck with Mac's. If you're buying a water pump, no big deal - but it anywhere, but with T-Bird specific parts it's worth paying for a specialty vendor's expertise or at least focus of inventory. Regardless, best wishes on your project!
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Old 03-30-2020, 07:03 AM   #5
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Default Re: 1962 Thunderbird Ball joint Question

As Alan said, go to the experts! Pat Wilson has folks that play with those Birds. If the sales person on the phone don't know it he/she will get someone who will. Never got a single item from them that was incorrect and never felt like I was talking to "Suzy down the street" when trying to sort an issue. Time and money well spent!
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Old 03-30-2020, 12:58 PM   #6
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Default Re: 1962 Thunderbird Ball joint Question

Seems to me NAPA should have it or could order it. They have a lot for older cars. Got my rubber brake lines and wheel cylinder kits there for my '55 Ford. All were in stock.


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Old 03-30-2020, 01:56 PM   #7
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Default Re: 1962 Thunderbird Ball joint Question

Thunderbirds and Lincolns didn't have the run of the mill stuff like Fords & Mercury cars did. The early Thunderbirds are more popular so a lot more stuff is available for them than for the Lincolns and later T-birds.

Kanter Auto supplies suspension stuff that is hard to find sometimes. NAPA does have a "Rare Parts" line so it's worth checking even if they have to order it.

Last edited by rotorwrench; 03-30-2020 at 02:03 PM.
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Old 03-30-2020, 09:53 PM   #8
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Default Re: 1962 Thunderbird Ball joint Question

Quote:
Originally Posted by biggieou View Post
Because I live 10 minutes from Summit. I appreciate the links, need to look through and see if there’s one like mine.
Does Summit sell Model 'A' parts?
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Last edited by alt63bird; 03-31-2020 at 07:48 AM.
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Old 03-31-2020, 12:11 PM   #9
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Default Re: 1962 Thunderbird Ball joint Question

For Hot Rod Model As I suppose.
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Old 03-31-2020, 04:11 PM   #10
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Default Re: 1962 Thunderbird Ball joint Question

1961/62 BIRD upper ball joint design was unique. However, it does not mean some service replacement designs won't work -
Attached Images
File Type: jpg BALL JOINT - UPPER ILL - 1961-62 BIRD.JPG (30.8 KB, 20 views)
File Type: jpg BALL JOINT - UPPER - 1961-62 BIRD.JPG (44.7 KB, 9 views)
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Old 04-01-2020, 05:20 AM   #11
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Default Re: 1962 Thunderbird Ball joint Question

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Originally Posted by KULTULZ View Post
1961/62 BIRD upper ball joint design was unique. However, it does not mean some service replacement designs won't work -
Thanks for this. Definitely unique. Sometimes I shake my head and wonder what in the heck was Ford doing.
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Old 04-01-2020, 11:50 AM   #12
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Question Re: 1962 Thunderbird Ball joint Question

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Originally Posted by biggieou View Post

Sometimes I shake my head and wonder what in the heck was Ford doing.
Well, it wasn't that so much as the 61 BIRD and LINC were uni-body and all was a new system/design. The 63 BIRD got a design upgrade.

Are you just looking for a quality replacement or have actually started taking it apart?
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Old 04-02-2020, 08:18 AM   #13
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Default Re: 1962 Thunderbird Ball joint Question

Quote:
Originally Posted by KULTULZ View Post
Well, it wasn't that so much as the 61 BIRD and LINC were uni-body and all was a new system/design. The 63 BIRD got a design upgrade.

Are you just looking for a quality replacement or have actually started taking it apart?
A lot of guys seem to think when they work on a Ford project they need ball joints,shops have used the "ball joint Scam" for decades to make a profit hoping KULTULZ will share the correct procedure for checking them.
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Old 04-02-2020, 08:40 AM   #14
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Default Re: 1962 Thunderbird Ball joint Question

easy enough to google I am sure there are plenty.
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Old 04-02-2020, 08:56 AM   #15
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Talking Re: 1962 Thunderbird Ball joint Question

Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffB2 View Post

A lot of guys seem to think when they work on a Ford project they need ball joints,shops have used the "ball joint Scam" for decades to make a profit hoping KULTULZ will share the correct procedure for checking them.
You should be as (or more qualified) to describe the method(s) Jeff ...

One should follow the specific year OEM SHOP MANUAL. There is way too much incorrect info on the net, especially on most U-TUBE videos.

If I started it would start a fire-storm of posts saying this and that. Getting too old for all that BS ...
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Old 04-02-2020, 09:54 AM   #16
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Default Re: 1962 Thunderbird Ball joint Question

Quote:
Originally Posted by KULTULZ View Post
You should be as (or more qualified) to describe the method(s) Jeff ...

One should follow the specific year OEM SHOP MANUAL. There is way too much incorrect info on the net, especially on most U-TUBE videos.

If I started it would start a fire-storm of posts saying this and that. Getting too old for all that BS ...
Probably true ! I worked for both Montgomery Wards and Sears in the late 70's and early 80's in Sacramento the Bureau of Automotive Repair shut down some of their shops for those scams and limited them to tire & battery sales for six months plus and fined them. It's been so long since I did the checking my 74 year old brain can't remember the right way the old guy that was our alignment man at Uniroyal always stressed lubing them before doing the check.
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Old 04-02-2020, 12:34 PM   #17
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Thumbs up Re: 1962 Thunderbird Ball joint Question

Quote:
... the old guy that was our alignment man at Uniroyal always stressed lubing them before doing the check.
Correct, and also lube all front end components as when you shake the wheel, the first thing you look for is wheel brg adj, then linkage integrity before going to the ball joints and they have to have grease to get the proper reading.
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Old 04-02-2020, 01:25 PM   #18
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Default Re: 1962 Thunderbird Ball joint Question

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Originally Posted by KULTULZ View Post

One should follow the specific year OEM SHOP MANUAL. There is way too much incorrect info on the net, especially on most U-TUBE videos.

Sounds like great advice. I will contribute something generic, however, from my oem '65 T-Bird shop manual that was apparently important enough for the manual to state in bold print: Don't mistake loose wheel bearings for worn ball joints.
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