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ransom
ransom UltraDork
7/4/13 6:23 p.m.

So... a while back I posted about my then-new-to-me 2001 Dodge B2500. I dig it. Much easier to deal with than my extended-cab F250 4x4. BUT... Front suspension needs freshening. I won't get into the possible trans issues yet

Anyhow, getting off to a rocky start, I put it on stands, pulled the LF wheel, and went to get the caliper out of the way. 11/16" socket doesn't want to go on, 3/4" is loose... I think to myself, "huh..." and wonder whether Dodge has been going international, even though the B series hasn't changed much since inception. So I grab some metrics sockets. 17mm won't go on, 19mm is sloppy loose. I eventually coax an 11/16" box wrench on there with some gentle hammer taps, then promptly crack it at the ring while trying to drive it with a hammer (note to self: urethane mallet or deadblow for that sort of thing, not metal on metal)

What the berkeley is going on here? Is it actually metric and oddball 18mm? Is it SAE, but 23/32"? And since I don't have anything remotely the right size and will have to go buy more tools, what about the ball joint stud nuts and tie rod ends? Three sizes!? 1-1/16" or 27mm? 1-1/8" or 28mm"? 1" or 25mm?

Also noticed on the RF (for when I get to that), the upper caliper bolt was clearly replaced with something much larger after (the head is huge, somewhere in the inch-or-so range) presumably some sort of Previous Owner misbehavior... But I don't expect anybody to tell me what that one is

I've hosed all the fasteners down with WD-40 (I loaned out my weasel pee and never got it back) and am going to go ride my bicycle. I can come back to this tomorrow afternoon or on the weekend...

moparman76_69
moparman76_69 Dork
7/4/13 6:31 p.m.

It might be an 18. Not sure if they went metric on the trucks at that point since I haven't had anything that new. I will tell you an 18 is necessary to work on any 80s turbo cars or anything neon though.

Ranger50
Ranger50 PowerDork
7/4/13 6:32 p.m.

Could be an oversized caliper bolt, far too common. Bunch of hamfists that don't deserve touching a vehicle.

I have all those size wrenches, in SAE, in my tool box, they aren't in yours? 18mm isn't oddball, GM uses it on everything.

Just wait until you have to buy the ball joint socket for the upper one.....

moparman76_69
moparman76_69 Dork
7/4/13 6:34 p.m.

lol they still used the weird screw in ball joint on stuff that new?

Ranger50
Ranger50 PowerDork
7/4/13 6:34 p.m.
moparman76_69 wrote: lol they still used the weird screw in ball joint on stuff that new?

Until they quit making them.....

ransom
ransom UltraDork
7/4/13 6:56 p.m.

Having played mostly with old BMWs and VWs, I don't have many larger sockets or sockets those didn't use (they're at least odd enough that they don't come in most sets, I think).

I did find a little info (of unknown accuracy) suggesting that it's going to be mostly metric but also some SAE... Guess I'm going to be buying a bunch of wrenches. Always good for next time, but kind of a pain.

I already have the upper ball joint socket. I thought I was done buying new tools for this job

The real fun will probably trying to turn that socket hard enough to get the ball joint out... I have this funny feeling that something about the mass of socket and ball joint and the fact that it's threaded into a rubber-mounted pressed sheet arm mean that it's going to give my impact wrench trouble, and I'll end up trying to figure out how to keep it on square with a giant cheater bar...

Ranger50
Ranger50 PowerDork
7/4/13 7:01 p.m.
ransom wrote: The **real** fun will probably trying to turn that socket hard enough to get the ball joint out... I have this funny feeling that something about the mass of socket and ball joint and the fact that it's threaded into a rubber-mounted pressed sheet arm mean that it's going to give my impact wrench trouble, and I'll end up trying to figure out how to keep it on square with a giant cheater bar...

When I replaced them on my Dakota, they came out like butter. YMMV and do NOT use an impact on them unless you want to just replace the arm too.

ransom
ransom UltraDork
7/4/13 7:07 p.m.

In reply to Ranger50:

Thanks for the heads-up! Fingers crossed they don't fight too hard...

mtownneon
mtownneon New Reader
7/4/13 9:24 p.m.

Yes, the caliper bolts are 18mm.

Junkyard_Dog
Junkyard_Dog Dork
7/4/13 9:52 p.m.

Please post pics if it looks even remotely as badass as this. I love Dajibans!

Vigo
Vigo UltraDork
7/4/13 9:54 p.m.
So I grab some metrics sockets. 17mm won't go on, 19mm is sloppy loose. I eventually coax an 11/16" box wrench on there with some gentle hammer taps, then promptly crack it at the ring while trying to drive it with a hammer (note to self: urethane mallet or deadblow for that sort of thing, not metal on metal)

17 wont go on, 19 is loose...

So WHY didnt you try 18 right then and there? Did you think about how this looks before posting?

Also, ive been a mechanic for a long time and i honestly dont think using 'soft' hammers does anything much different from hitting something metal less hard with the same hammer. It WILL make a difference when you are hitting something softer or brittle that can shatter or have nasty marks left in it, but hitting hard metal with a softer hammer is just like hitting it less hard with a metal hammer and may end up damaging said 'soft' hammers.

ransom
ransom UltraDork
7/4/13 9:57 p.m.

In reply to Junkyard_Dog:

Heh; same color, no windows, full 3/4 ton "stance", stock steel wheels.

Er, easier to hotlink than describe. Let's just say a little less cool, a little more functional:

ransom
ransom UltraDork
7/4/13 10:06 p.m.
Vigo wrote: 17 wont go on, 19 is loose... So WHY didnt you try 18 right then and there? Did you think about how this looks before posting?

I'd never come across an 18mm fastener before in 20 years of hobby wrenching (spark plugs excluded, IIRC), admittedly on a limited set of makes. I had never seen an 18mm fastener, I do not own an 18mm wrench, ergo I came in to ask what I was dealing with, a funny tweener metric size, or a funny tweener SAE size. With my limited background, I didn't have enough info to reach a conclusion. Reasonable?

Also, ive been a mechanic for a long time and i honestly dont think using 'soft' hammers does anything much different from hitting something metal less hard with the same hammer. It WILL make a difference when you are hitting something softer or brittle that can shatter or have nasty marks left in it, but hitting hard metal with a softer hammer is just like hitting it less hard with a metal hammer and may end up damaging said 'soft' hammers.

Maybe you're right. Though I was working pretty gently, the damage was probably done in coaxing the 11/16" wrench onto the bolt. It just didn't let go 'til I'd hit it a half dozen or so times.

Streetwiseguy
Streetwiseguy UltraDork
7/4/13 10:07 p.m.

"Odd" 18? Not anymore, my friend. They are everywhere.

While you are out, pick up a 15 as well.

Ranger50
Ranger50 PowerDork
7/4/13 10:16 p.m.
Streetwiseguy wrote: "Odd" 18? Not anymore, my friend. They are everywhere. While you are out, pick up a 15 as well.

Agreed.

GM is 8, 10, 13, 15, 18mm. Ford is the same but replace 18 with EITHER 17 or 19mm, but mostly 17mm. Chrysler is much like GM, but they throw in some SAE headed metric bolts or vice versa in for a good berkeleyup along with that damn 7mm crap. Imports can count on being 8, 10, 12, 14, or 17mm. Don't forget about all that "new" external Torx crap on top of the regular old Torx crap.

novaderrik
novaderrik UberDork
7/4/13 10:24 p.m.

just buy a big socket set and a big wrench set in both SAE and metric, and in 3/8" and 1/2" drive and in deep and standard sockets....

buying more tools is always a good idea, as long as you don't buy them from the bargain bin at Harbor Freight....

NGTD
NGTD Dork
7/4/13 10:35 p.m.

VW uses 18's too

Stealthtercel
Stealthtercel HalfDork
7/4/13 10:58 p.m.

Can I just say that "I've hosed all the fasteners down with WD-40 (I loaned out my weasel pee and never got it back) and am going to go ride my bicycle." deserves to go in the magazine.

Kenny_McCormic
Kenny_McCormic SuperDork
7/5/13 12:16 a.m.

In reply to Ranger50:

Don't forget 21mm on Toyotas.

petegossett
petegossett UberDork
7/5/13 5:56 a.m.

Well at least you can be pretty confident it's not a Whitworth.

ebonyandivory
ebonyandivory HalfDork
7/5/13 7:42 a.m.

I have three 18mm sockets and one box wrench... Hyundai Tiburon.

Mazdax605
Mazdax605 SuperDork
7/5/13 8:34 a.m.

Plan on replacing the wheel bearings as well while you are in there. When I had my 2000 2500 Ramwagon they were an almost yearly wear item. I think my father just had them done as well now that he has had it for a year plus.

ransom
ransom UltraDork
7/5/13 9:57 a.m.

In reply to Mazdax605:

Wow... Good to know.

ransom
ransom UltraDork
7/5/13 9:58 a.m.
petegossett wrote: Well at least you can be pretty confident it's not a Whitworth.

In reality, I knew that wasn't an option. But the word "Whitworth" certainly crossed my mind as I sat there puzzling...

ransom
ransom UltraDork
7/5/13 10:22 a.m.
novaderrik wrote: just buy a big socket set and a big wrench set in both SAE and metric, and in 3/8" and 1/2" drive and in deep and standard sockets.... buying more tools is always a good idea, as long as you don't buy them from the bargain bin at Harbor Freight....

See, that's part of why this now simple thing baffled me so much. I have four sets of sockets that span this range (admittedly two are cheapie HF impacts), and none contain an 18.

It's pretty clear from the responses what's actually going on, but you can see where I developed the (wrong) idea that 18 was a pretty oddball size.

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