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Old 09-23-2019, 05:44 AM   #1
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Angry Help! 1997 Dodge Roadtrek ball joint, arm discontinued?

Hello everyone,
I have had a 10 day stint that has nearly caused me a mental breakdown on top of my van breakdown. I have a 1997 Dodge Roadtrek and the front passenger arm broke. The disc (sorry Iím a newbie) the mechanic ordered was the wrong one. So he told me he found the right one, but that itís been discontinued so I should feel lucky he found it but that it wouldnít arrive for a week. I donít have my dog, Iím not sure if I still have a job bc Iíve been waiting on this part and I live in my van and I was on a quick road trip when I broke down. Well after waiting a week on the second try of them ordering this part, he said the holes on the disc donít match up? So what am I missing here? I find it hard to believe this part has been discontinued and is actually that hard to find. Iím also worried theyíre gonna charge me labor on their **** ups of ordering the wrong parts, hoisting it up and realizing itís not the right part. I will also state the Roadtrek was made in Canada and Iím currently in the USA. They made it sound like this was also an issue although I donít understand how? Can somebody please help me. I need to get home and Iím scared Iím gonna get stuck with a giant bill due to their lack of effort.
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Old 09-23-2019, 12:04 PM   #2
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A couple of things:

Disc refers to rotor disc and is part of your brake system

Ball joint and control arm is part of your suspension system

Ball joint are mounted on the outboard end of the control arm and allow the wheel to turn left and right. Ball joints can be replaced without replacing the control arm. There is an upper and lower control arm and an upper and lower ball joint.

Chrysler did discontinue the control arm. However, Moog (an aftermarket suspension supplier) does make some that may fit for van. Their listing indicates parts for a 1997 Dodge 3500 but you have to be careful that it for a Dodge Ram van 3500 and not a Dodge truck.

Moog makes two levels of parts. Call them at 888-406-2330 to clarify the exact parts and numbers.
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Old 09-23-2019, 03:48 PM   #3
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I was told that the 3500 doesn’t fit bc my van is a 3600 class rating. Apparently they are drilling holes in it today to make it fit. ��*♀️
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Old 09-23-2019, 04:30 PM   #4
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Thats just plain bogus.

For more technical clarity, these Dodge vans DO have in fact 3 different front axle ratings in 97. You can tell which one yours has by looking at the equipment sticker under the hood above the battery, but I'll bet it has the #4000 Axle.

DJB=3500 Lb. Front Axle---DJD = 3600LB Front Axle---DJE=4000Lb.

You need to make sure that the parts are for the right Axle in your van.

Maybe these clowns you have working on your van are confusing a "Ram 3500 Van" with a 3500# axle, who knows, but I'd be finding a another shop fast before they start drilling!
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Old 09-23-2019, 06:24 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Turbowhiz View Post
Thats just plain bogus.
Maybe these clowns you have working on your van are confusing a "Ram 3500 Van" with a 3500# axle, who knows, but I'd be finding a another shop fast before they start drilling!
I agree. Find another shop!
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Old 09-23-2019, 08:53 PM   #6
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You may want to go to RockAuto.com and use their online application catalog which I have found to be very useful in identifying the correct parts. I know the catalog has the 3500 van and 3500 Ram pickup listed independently.
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Old 09-23-2019, 10:28 PM   #7
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I agree with Booster that Rockauto is a great source of info on parts and numbers, I have the same van as you , and have had breakdowns as well, sometimes, depending where we are when we break down, we are at the mercy of the mechanics, there are some repairs we just cant do ourselves, I have run into the same issue now with discontinued parts, the van is nearly 22 years old, and availibilty is becoming tougher to find certain parts,,,,I try my best to work with the mechanic and know what he is doing or planning,,,,but as in all trades, there are really good mechanics,, and there are some that are not so good, I really hope its a good mechanic, that cant find the right part,,try your best to communicate about the bill, so there are no surprises in the end,,,,take care,,,,
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Old 09-29-2019, 07:07 PM   #8
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Drilling mounting holes in your rotors is just plan dangerous!
Maybe try to find a Dodge dealership in the area.
Might cost a bit more.
But, some of those guys have been working on Dodges way before that van was brand new!
If you have a complete rotor failure at highway speed or when you really really need to stop!!!!
It can be catastrophic!! And I am not exaggerating.
I work at a Dodge Dealership in Naples Florida.
So, I am not just whistling Dixie!
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Old 09-29-2019, 08:46 PM   #9
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I don't know about suspension parts. But I just replaced rotors and pads on my 1995 Dodge 3500 Class B Xplorer. The rotors and pads came from Advanced Auto Parts. Rotors are 2 piece and were in stock.
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