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It hadn’t been going too badly if I am honest. The other evening I decided to tackle the rear wheel bearings and it all went rather swimmingly with the half shafts coming straight off along with their bolts then the problem was instantly obvious with the bearing locking nuts being loose to the touch. I tightened them up and Bob’s your Uncle problem solved.

With that done I decided to tackle the track rod ends next on the front steering bar. There was one on each of the bars to be done but I thought start at the front and work my way back it wont take long. Turns out Brian decided it was time for a rematch after me winning the first one of the rear ball joint and my god did he put up a fight. The first track rod end came off of the hub easy enough but would not move off of the steering rod so I decided to remove the whole arm and tackle it off of the motor itself. This is where the real problems began, the nut came away easy enough but I could not get the whole track rod end out of the steering box arm for love nor money. To make things a little more interesting I didn’t have the room to whack a hammer on the end to shock it out because of the steering guard and even on full lock it didn’t come away clear enough to give it a good whack.
After hitting my own hand and thumb a few times I gave up and decided to buy a ball joint splitter to help out but seeing as all of the shops were now closed it would have to be bought on Sunday morning.

First things first though it was Sunday morning after all so we took advantage of the warm day heading off to a car boot sale. Wifey and I fancied a bit more of a lazy day for a change so we meandered around the sale and to my amazement I came across a chap selling tools who had two types of ball joint splitters for sale brand new so a deal was struck for the pair costing me a grand total of ten quid! This saved me a trip to the shops and is the second time in two visits I have found what I needed at this car boot…someone must be helping me out from somewhere!
When we got home Wifey headed back out to visit her mother whilst I insisted that I had to sort out Brian (score to me I got out of an in laws visit!) and I set to attacking the stubborn arsed track rod end hitting my bloody left thumb with a hammer straight out of the gate (Devil getting me back for the in law thing).

A few good whacks with the fork type of splitter and the arm was free. Using a rather large hammer again I managed to quickly persuade the old track rod end that it’s time was up and off it came quite willingly! After counting the turns off and fitting the new one I decided that seeing as the arm was off I may as well replace both ends or I may be doing the awkward job again before long. This does mean I have to buy another pair for the next arm but for the cost at least I will know it’s all been done and that’s some good peace of mind.

Next jobs then will be track rod ends on the other bar along with replacing the trailing arm bushes and bolts. There is also the sediment filter bypass to resolve and a good service but I really do think that is all that sits on the list for now. No no I am lying the lift pump might want looking at but I will see how the filter bypass does first.
Don’t you just love owning a Land Rover!

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