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A few minutes ago, I bought a used original on ebay. (He had 3 of them.)
I messaged him first and asked for assurance that the ball wouldn't have any discernible wear. He answered me in a very short amount of time and his answer was "Yes, are all in descent usable shape."
So I made the purchase and then sent another telling him thanks for the assurance but I will be checking that ball very closely.
He replied and said "Sounds good will make sure to check it out and send the best one we have."
The one I'm running is a CPP I bought in late 2009. It's the same as the one Hotrodhandyman bought in 2009 and posted photos of.
These are different than what we've seen fail. There's been no report of this style failing.
However, the photo Bruce showed sure pointed out a manufacturing flaw.
I didn't notice that flaw in mine but what he showed definitely lowered my confidence in the part quality. I'm just feeling like even if it's not critically flawed, it's better to err on the side of safety when it comes to a part that is as critical as this one is.
Here's a photo of the 2009 CPP pitman arm on my car:
The 2009 CPP that Bruce posted in the other thread: