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The Scientific World Journal
Volume 2014, Article ID 971679, 10 pages
Research Article

Process Design of a Ball Joint, Considering Caulking and Pull-Out Strength

Department of Mechanical Engineering, Dong-A University, Busan 604-714, Republic of Korea

Received 14 March 2014; Accepted 18 April 2014; Published 3 July 2014

Academic Editor: Yonghui Xia

Copyright © 2014 Bong-Su Sin and Kwon-Hee Lee. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


A ball joint for an automobile steering system is a pivot component which is connected to knuckle and lower control arm. The manufacturing process for its caulking comprises spinning and deforming. In this study, the process was simulated by flexible multibody dynamics. The caulking was evaluated qualitatively through numerical analysis and inspecting a plastically deformed shape. The structural responses of a ball joint, namely, pull-out strength and stiffness, are commonly investigated in the development process. Thus, following the caulking analysis, the structural responses were considered. In addition, three design variables related to the manufacturing process were defined, and the effects of design variables with respect to pull-out strength, caulking depth, and maximum stress were obtained by introducing the DOE using an L9 orthogonal array. Finally, the optimum design maximizing the pull-out strength was suggested. For the final design, the caulking quality and the pull-out strength were investigated by making six samples and their tests.