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  1. #1
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    Default Need to pop out ball joint from 3ph top link

    I have an old AC model B tractor that had a home made hitch on it when I bought it.

    The lift arms work well, the only issue is that the bracket on the tractor where I need to hook the top link is too narrow. The edges of the ball joint on the top link are the problem.

    Does anyone know how (if its possible) to pop the ball joint out of one end of the top link? This would allow that end to squeeze nicely in the bracket. My first thought was simply to hit it pretty hard with a mini sledge hammer, but It seems like without bracing the outer edge of the link in some way that method will never work. Is there a trick to it? Is it even possible?

  2. #2
    Veteran Member D7E's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need to pop out ball joint from 3ph top link

    Cant you just make the ball narrower with a grinder ?

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Need to pop out ball joint from 3ph top link

    Yea, I suppose so. I've heard of that method before. My only issue is that I don't have access to a grinder. I do have a power drill, so maybe I could grab one of those kits with a circular grinding pad for use with the drill?

    Either way I figured the cheapest option would be to pop out the ball joint If it were possible.

  4. #4
    Elite Member gwdixon's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need to pop out ball joint from 3ph top link

    You live on a farm. You have a tractor. Buy a grinder. They are cheap.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Need to pop out ball joint from 3ph top link

    Quote Originally Posted by dcwatson84 View Post
    Yea, I suppose so. I've heard of that method before. My only issue is that I don't have access to a grinder. I do have a power drill, so maybe I could grab one of those kits with a circular grinding pad for use with the drill?

    Either way I figured the cheapest option would be to pop out the ball joint If it were possible.
    You pop it out and you lose the swivel function it provides. Its hard to imagine a situation where that would be good. Find a way to narrow it or widen the space it must fit in.
    larry
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  6. #6
    Super Member greg_g's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need to pop out ball joint from 3ph top link

    Quote Originally Posted by dcwatson84 View Post
    the bracket on the tractor where I need to hook the top link is too narrow. The edges of the ball joint on the top link are the problem.
    That sounds like you're trying to fit a Cat 2 toplink into a Cat 1 bracket. If that's true, the pin holes won't be the same diameter either. Why not just buy a new Cat 1 toplink? They're not expensive.

    //greg//
    USN (Ret)
    Former Chinese tractor owner (x4)
    Current John Deere owner

  7. #7
    Veteran Member D7E's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need to pop out ball joint from 3ph top link

    Quote Originally Posted by greg_g View Post
    That sounds like you're trying to fit a Cat 2 toplink into a Cat 1 bracket. If that's true, the pin holes won't be the same diameter either. Why not just buy a new Cat 1 toplink? They're not expensive.

    //greg//
    It does happen where they dont fit occasionally even using same catagory , I know i have top links all different widths . Some of my old JD's are the worst and have flanges on the sides of the ball .

  8. #8
    Super Member greg_g's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need to pop out ball joint from 3ph top link

    Ok, then perhaps over time the distance between the two halves of the tractor bracket has narrowed; either with excess paint, rust, or some kind of crushing occurrence. Perhaps then another solution is to grind away excess from inside the bracket, rather than from the outside of the swivel ball. If your AC bracket is anything like some I've had, you should be able to get an angle grinder disc in there to remove enough to permit insertion of the toplink ball.

    //greg//
    USN (Ret)
    Former Chinese tractor owner (x4)
    Current John Deere owner

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Need to pop out ball joint from 3ph top link

    You can't use it without the ball. Listen to the advice in the thread.

    Quote Originally Posted by dcwatson84 View Post
    I have an old AC model B tractor that had a home made hitch on it when I bought it.

    The lift arms work well, the only issue is that the bracket on the tractor where I need to hook the top link is too narrow. The edges of the ball joint on the top link are the problem.

    Does anyone know how (if its possible) to pop the ball joint out of one end of the top link? This would allow that end to squeeze nicely in the bracket. My first thought was simply to hit it pretty hard with a mini sledge hammer, but It seems like without bracing the outer edge of the link in some way that method will never work. Is there a trick to it? Is it even possible?

  10. #10
    Veteran Member
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    Default Re: Need to pop out ball joint from 3ph top link

    DCWATSON84, I read your other thread about the same topic. I think your best bet will be to actually set up the tractor in a semi-correct fashion to use the 3 pt hitch. The bracket on your tractor is under the PTO output, and looks to be nearly lined up in the same plane as the lift arm attachment points.

    If you try to use this geometry, the implement will try to tilt more than lift. I'd hate to see you take an implement to the lower back with that overhanging rear seat they have.

    As mentioned in the other thread, check out these guys:
    Three point hitch for Allis Chalmers B & C tractor

    They make a 3pt conversion, and they use that top round bar to mount the top link bracket. Call them and order just the brackets, or take the picture and tractor to a local welding or fabrication shop. (I'm assuming you don't have a welder if you're missing a grinder, but could be wrong.) Have them cut you a set of brackets to match the correct top link spacing and have them weld it on. I'd honestly be surprised if it was more than $50-$75, and then $4 for a can of Allis-Chalmers color matched spray paint .

    I don't think it's a good idea to pop the ball out and try to use it that way, for the reasons already mentioned. Plus, if it were truly a home conversion to 3 pt, to use 3pt implements already there, whomever it was that did the conversion would have made it to use a normal top link, don't you think? Those things, combined with the geometry issues of using that setup, makes me really encourage you to just fix it correctly. If you just put a correct top link bracket on, it won't be expensive, and you can still use everything else on your hitch. Good luck! Tell and show us what you end up doing.

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