: Front Coil Help?
Jan 26th, 99, 03:38 PM
I just ordered new front suspension rebuild and new coils. My question is, has anyone replaced their front coils and was it difficult. I plan on renting a coil spring compressor, but want to do this right and safe. Any help will be appreciated.
Jan 27th, 99, 09:32 AM
I did the entire front end of my 69 and although it was very messy it wasn't very hard. I didn't need a spring compressor to replace the springs but I used a 1" shorter springs. Be careful when working on the A-arms as you need to pass thru the subframe to access the mounting bolts. Tape your socket to the extension or you''ll likely spend an hour or two fishing for it. The new subframe bushings will do wonders for your car's rigidity. I used rubber replacements cause its a daily driver.
Jan 27th, 99, 12:49 PM
Thanks for the tape idea, If you wouldnt of said anything I sure would of lost one and been fishing. Ive never done one before and its good to hear that its not that tough. Ill let you know how it turns out.
Jan 27th, 99, 01:56 PM
I highly recommend an internal spring compressor for doing the job. Coils springs have way too much stored energy and can be very dangerous. I just redid the front suspension on my 70 camaro and had a coil spring compressor break on me, (the threads pulled out) and believe me the dent in my garage wall from a launched spring is enough to make me a believer. It flew about 10-12 feet and got stuck into the sheetrock about 3 inches deep. That could have been my head about 2 seconds earlier. Can't say enough about safety. Better safe than sorry, or dead.
[This message has been edited by Scooter (edited 01-27-99).]
Jan 28th, 99, 07:07 AM
One more note, if you need to use a spring compressor do not rely on it for safety as Scooter says. After I removed the front shocks I ran a thick rope thru the center of the spring to keep it from going anywhere. I then placed my jack below the lower ball joint. I then backed the castle nut off til it was only held on by a few threads. Using a pickle fork I then popped the ball joint loose. I then used the jack to push the a-arm up enough to take the pressure off the castle nut, removed the nut, and very slowly lowered the a-arm. The spring all but fell out once I removed the rope. Let me know if you have any more questions.
Jan 29th, 99, 03:49 PM
Well so far Ive removed the passenger side upper and lower A arm and spring, no problems used a spring compressor and the floor jack underneath. It was a greazeee mess. I then removed the drivers side but am having problems with the upper ball joint seperating with the pickle fork. Im going to apply a sledge and see what happens. Getting the old bushings and ball joints out was not fun, took me awhile. The new springs showed up today but still waiting for the new bushings ball joints etc. I still have some bead blasting to do on the A arms and paint.
Feb 15th, 99, 02:32 PM
I rebuilt the entire front end on my '69. The springs came out easy as noted by the other guys (my were sacked and I didn't even use the compressor but better safe than sorry). One area I recommend checking if possible is the body mounting pads. Many '69s are rusted badly and you can put all great stuff in the rebuild and the subframe will still squirm around and even trash the new mounts. I welded new metal in mine, added all poly bushings and then subframe connectors. Good luck.
By the way, I did once witness a spring pop out of a compressor - it literally cleaned off 20 feet of workbench and then punched a hole in a steel garage door!
Feb 26th, 99, 03:33 PM
Just finished the front end today, and everything came out great. I wanted to let everyone Know that i appreciated all the help and insight.
Mar 15th, 99, 11:52 AM
Just a comment. For anyone who is changing springs and plans to use a floor jack to jack the lower A-frame into position to connect the ball joint, don't try to do it without the engine in it! The spring is so stiff that without the weight of the engine on it you'll just raise the car. In this case you'll need the spring compressor to reassemble. Don't ask how I found this out?? LOL ( I always wrap a chain around the spring whenever I remove or install it.)
[This message has been edited by BobK (edited 03-15-99).]
Mar 19th, 99, 05:16 AM
Would any of you care to tell me what
brand/model number/part number of the spring
compressor that you used? I have done the
bad thing (what was I thinking?) and tore down a front end that was without the engine and tranny. Now I need to locate a *good*
spring compressor for the re-install. Thanks.
Mar 29th, 00, 12:16 PM
I assume you sed some type of spring compressor. which type? and if you purchased it, where from?
I am stripping a frame, and will be in the same position.. No engine when I reassembling the suspension. Although I guess i could reinstall the engine first, but I rather do that last.
any leads on a good spring compressor, and a source, would be appreciated.
[Just a comment. For anyone who is changing springs and plans to use a floor jack to jack the lower A-frame into position to connect the ball joint, don't try to do it without the engine in it! The spring is so stiff that without the weight of the engine on it you'll just raise the car. In this case you'll need the spring compressor to reassemble. Don't ask how I found this out?? LOL ( I always wrap a chain around the spring whenever I remove or install it.)]
Mar 29th, 00, 05:40 PM
Kevin & Bob are absolutley right. Wrap a chain around that spring. It's hard to look cool in our camaros with no teeth and half a face. I'm like you guy's, were's a good spring compresser? Have already checked snap-on, Mac, and some specialty tool shops here in northern cal. but no luck.
Mar 29th, 00, 05:58 PM
You can make a very cheap spring compressor that is easy to use.
Get a piece of 5/8" all thread and two nuts. Run it thru the upper shock hole and down thru the lower A frame shock hole. Use a large washer on the bottom hole. You can use this "spring compressor" to install or remove the spring. It works great, spray a little wd 40 on the threads to make it easier to turn the nuts.
There is no way the spring can get loose with this method. I can measure the rod length I used if you need the info.