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American Iron Offroad Balljoint Deletes

Sj's TJ

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I ask only because my understanding of how things tend to break in there is that the axle shaft stretches and breaks apart the u joint. After that, the two halves of the shaft misalign and rip apart the ball joints.

I have seen this happen in front of me twice. And I caught it early on mine when I broke an axle shaft at the u joint a few years ago. The overlapping shaft ends where just starting to push the knuckle down and pull out the lower ball joint with it.

In these instances, the ball joints were not the first thing to go, but were the victim of the broken axle shaft

That makes sense to me as well and very well could have been what happened. Now, if I had one of these ball joint delete setups and the shaft/u-joint grenade and take the ball joints with them and I was able to carry the rebuild kit with me, wouldn't I be able to make a trail repair without a ball joint press?

That could make that situation not as bad as trying to figure out how to get your rig back to the trailer missing a front wheel. In my situation, I was close enough that my buddy just dragged my 3-wheel ass back to the lot and we got her back on the trailer and the rest is in my build thread.

That's what I'm trying to get at. If they fail on the trail, do these deletes make it so I can repair on the trail and get home? If the answer is yes, then maybe they are worth the $800 ($600 for the ball joints and $200 for the rebuild kit). It sort of depends on how far you want to go with spare parts.

For me, I carry 2 spare short side shafts and 1 long side because I don't want to upgrade by Dana 30 to 30 splines and then the R&P are the weak point. So I carry the shafts and I can have it fix in 30 minutes.
 

JMT

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That makes sense to me as well and very well could have been what happened. Now, if I had one of these ball joint delete setups and the shaft/u-joint grenade and take the ball joints with them and I was able to carry the rebuild kit with me, wouldn't I be able to make a trail repair without a ball joint press?

That could make that situation not as bad as trying to figure out how to get your rig back to the trailer missing a front wheel. In my situation, I was close enough that my buddy just dragged my 3-wheel ass back to the lot and we got her back on the trailer and the rest is in my build thread.

That's what I'm trying to get at. If they fail on the trail, do these deletes make it so I can repair on the trail and get home? If the answer is yes, then maybe they are worth the $800 ($600 for the ball joints and $200 for the rebuild kit). It sort of depends on how far you want to go with spare parts.

For me, I carry 2 spare short side shafts and 1 long side because I don't want to upgrade by Dana 30 to 30 splines and then the R&P are the weak point. So I carry the shafts and I can have it fix in 30 minutes.

You're running stock shafts in the Dana 30 though, right? Why not upgrade to 4340 shafts (27 spline)? Worried about ring and pinion? Worried about ujoints? Seems like the best route is avoid these issues altogether by running the 4340 shafts. I don't see people complaining about breaking ring and pinion in the Dana 30 with upgraded shafts on 35's.

Further, what are you reading out of this post?

https://wranglertjforum.com/threads/american-iron-offroad-balljoint-deletes.41103/post-1225338

Sounds to me like it's not an easy trail fix.
 

Sj's TJ

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You're running stock shafts in the Dana 30 though, right? Why not upgrade to 4340 shafts (27 spline)? Worried about ring and pinion? Worried about ujoints? Seems like the best route is avoid these issues altogether by running the 4340 shafts. I don't see people complaining about breaking ring and pinion in the Dana 30 with upgraded shafts on 35's.

Further, what are you reading out of this post?

https://wranglertjforum.com/threads/american-iron-offroad-balljoint-deletes.41103/post-1225338

Sounds to me like it's not an easy trail fix.

The points you make are great. I have thought about upgrading the 27 spline shafts to 4340. I have heard different about the R&P in Dana 30 on 35s, but I'm sure it's fewer and far between. I currently have a stock pile of stock shafts which could also serve as spares to a broken 4340 shaft I guess.

Based on the trail spare kit:

https://americanironoffroad.com/pro...53505&pr_ref_pid=7395750576289&pr_seq=uniform

It would seem like a super easy trail fix as you wouldn't need to press the cups out of the inner C. Just knock the broken piece out of the knuckle and slide the trail spares in and you're back in business.

I'm not sure if these are still worth the price, but I do like the ability for an easy trail repair if shit breaks even if it's not supposed to break. For me specifically, maybe I do take that money and invest in 4340 shafts and not ball joint deletes.

For the sake of conversation though, is there a consensus if these deletes are stronger than, same strength or less strength than a standard Spicer ball joint? Based on the thread so far, there doesn't seem to be.
 

Jerry Bransford

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Make it easy and stop breaking your factory axle shafts by upgrading them to 4340 shafts. 27 spline is fine and so is 30 spline which does NOT cause any problems for the R&P gears. Both are common upgrades, I did that to my previous TJ with a Dana 30 up front. No more front axle breakages. Their main claim to fame is their strengthened/hardened u-joint ears which don't stretch then break under stress to let go of the u-joint which then breaks potentially breaking the adjacent ball joint.
 
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mrblaine

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So from what I'm hearing, these aren't going to last long on 37s. That makes sense as a TJ axle isn't up for 37s due to many other factors.

I'm on 35s and have busted Spicer BJs before. Will these BJ delete's offer more strength? I like that I can perform a repair on the trail without a BJ press.

Let's say you go on a week long wheeling trip and you want to have as many spare parts at least back at the tow rig. These seem to allow you to replace a broken joint while not having to carry a BJ press in the rig when I wheel. That might be worth the price, it may not be. hat's what I'm trying to gather if that makes sense.

You keep saying you busted them. Spinning tires after a u-joint breaks is not the fault of the ball joint. Or was it a different kind of break that no one has ever seen yet?
 
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mrblaine

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That makes sense to me as well and very well could have been what happened. Now, if I had one of these ball joint delete setups and the shaft/u-joint grenade and take the ball joints with them and I was able to carry the rebuild kit with me, wouldn't I be able to make a trail repair without a ball joint press?

That could make that situation not as bad as trying to figure out how to get your rig back to the trailer missing a front wheel. In my situation, I was close enough that my buddy just dragged my 3-wheel ass back to the lot and we got her back on the trailer and the rest is in my build thread.

That's what I'm trying to get at. If they fail on the trail, do these deletes make it so I can repair on the trail and get home? If the answer is yes, then maybe they are worth the $800 ($600 for the ball joints and $200 for the rebuild kit). It sort of depends on how far you want to go with spare parts.

For me, I carry 2 spare short side shafts and 1 long side because I don't want to upgrade by Dana 30 to 30 splines and then the R&P are the weak point. So I carry the shafts and I can have it fix in 30 minutes.

What brand shafts are you running?
 
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Sj's TJ

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You keep saying you busted them. Spinning tires after a u-joint breaks is not the fault of the ball joint. Or was it a different kind of break that no one has ever seen yet?

That was likely the cause of the break, but my questions about the delete still hold. Are they stronger, same or weaker than a Spicer?
 

Irun

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My strongest possible suggestion is to forget about BJ deletes and just upgrade your front shafts to 4340 which will stop your breakages with 35's.

I'm with Jerry here. Start with a set of upgraded 27 spline axles mated to Spicer u-joints. That's cheaper than the ball joint delete. If those break, then there are other things to think about! ;)

 

mrblaine

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That was likely the cause of the break, but my questions about the delete still hold. Are they stronger, same or weaker than a Spicer?

Doesn't matter, you don't have a ball joint problem, you have an axle shaft problem. I suspect what you are calling a "broken" ball joint is when the lower gets yanked out of the inner C it also pulls the pin out of the upper attached to the knuckle. If that is the case, that isn't breakage, the upper is supposed to pull out.
 
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Sj's TJ

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Doesn't matter, you don't have a ball joint problem, you have an axle shaft problem. I suspect what you are calling a "broken" ball joint is when the lower gets yanked out of the inner C it also pulls the pin out of the upper attached to the knuckle. If that is the case, that isn't breakage, the upper is supposed to pull out.

Gotcha, thanks for the info. Let me ask this about the upgraded shafts. Since they will likely use the same u-joint as what I'm putting in the stock shafts, would it still possible break the u-joint but not the ears on the upgraded shafts?
 

Sj's TJ

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Doesn't matter, you don't have a ball joint problem, you have an axle shaft problem. I suspect what you are calling a "broken" ball joint is when the lower gets yanked out of the inner C it also pulls the pin out of the upper attached to the knuckle. If that is the case, that isn't breakage, the upper is supposed to pull out.
Yes, but that'd be highly unlikely with 35's and good quality 4340 shafts loaded with Spicer 5-760x u-joints.

Thanks for the info, that’s good know. Here is how my knuckle looked after. Seems like it’s just like Blaine said:
9FE40316-25F6-4647-9EFA-0952D1488089.jpeg
 

mrblaine

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Gotcha, thanks for the info. Let me ask this about the upgraded shafts. Since they will likely use the same u-joint as what I'm putting in the stock shafts, would it still possible break the u-joint but not the ears on the upgraded shafts?

Doesn't really work that way. Some shafts are strong enough, some situations are different. What you are trying to do is slow down how much you break stuff. If you get to the point where you are breaking alloy shafts and joints, then you don't have enough axle.