Hopping Mad over New Hotchkis Springs!! - Team Camaro Tech
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post #1 of 50 (permalink) Old May 31st, 08, 06:56 PM Thread Starter
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Hopping Mad over New Hotchkis Springs!!

Ok, i am about 10 seconds away from throwing my new hotchkis rear leaf springs in the scrap pile and putting the monoleafs back on. Its a good thing i love my car so much or i would have thrown a hammer at the side of it tonight.

I am trying to install the new leaf springs and as God as my witness i spent the better part of 2 hours trying to get the rear upper bushings/sleeves in the framerails where the rear shackles go.
Dear lord someone whos done this please tell me what im doing wrong. I cant get the busings in the hole with the sleeve already in the bushings. I can get the bushings in the hole no problem but then I CAN NOT get the sleeve to slide inside of them. The sleeve wont go in straight from the gas tank side..it has to start at a slight angle due to hitting the bottom of the trunk pan. And it wont friggin go. I cant put the sleeve in from the other side because there is not enough room between it and the quarter panel to get any "umph" into it. My head is about to explode.


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post #2 of 50 (permalink) Old May 31st, 08, 07:04 PM
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Re: Hopping Mad over New Hotchkis Springs!!

Craig: I did mine with a piece of wood as a pry bar to stuff in between the frame rail and the bushing and then just, us the frame rail as leverage to press the bushing in. Dont forget a little greas and torque the bolts after the car is on the ground.

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post #3 of 50 (permalink) Old May 31st, 08, 07:08 PM
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Re: Hopping Mad over New Hotchkis Springs!!

Well your not alone, it took me about 4 hours to remove and replace my rear frame rail bushings. I had to get a piece of threaded rod, run that through the bushings with washers on the outside. I then tightened the nuts and pressed the bushings into the rear frame rails.

Rod
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post #4 of 50 (permalink) Old May 31st, 08, 07:43 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Hopping Mad over New Hotchkis Springs!!

I did use a threaded rod and drew the bushings together. I can get both bushings in the hole no problem at all. The problem is i cant get that damn sleeve to go inside em. I think the angle its going in on is causing the problem. Did you guys put the bushings in and then slide the inner sleeve in OR did you put the bushing in with the sleeve already inside it??


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post #5 of 50 (permalink) Old May 31st, 08, 07:53 PM
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Re: Hopping Mad over New Hotchkis Springs!!

If you got the bushings in already, then start the sleeve in and brace the other side bushing so it docent back out. Tap the sleeve in with a rubber mallet.

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post #6 of 50 (permalink) Old May 31st, 08, 08:38 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Hopping Mad over New Hotchkis Springs!!

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Originally Posted by Skeeter55 View Post
If you got the bushings in already, then start the sleeve in and brace the other side bushing so it docent back out. Tap the sleeve in with a rubber mallet.
I beat the holy %$^& out of the sleeve and it wont go in due to the angle. I guess i will give it another go tomorrow when im not so tired and much clearer of mind.


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post #7 of 50 (permalink) Old May 31st, 08, 08:41 PM
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Re: Hopping Mad over New Hotchkis Springs!!

Craig, been there done that . Make sure to thoroughly grease the inside of the bushings, as well as the outer sleeve. Then, you can try to twist the sleeve as you push it. If that doesn't work (like it didn't for me, lol), I actually used a woodworking clamp....using a small, thin block of wood between the clamp pad and the sleeve. Obviously, you have to have the "non-turning" part of the clamp on the fender side. This will work. But I seem to recall having to press the last portion of the sleeve in (can't recall why), and remember cursing like a SOB...while applying as much pressure as possible to seat it evenly . That damn "grease" they give you almost seems to be like glue, eh? You'll get it, just keep at it!

Learning & Relearning about the cars I grew up with.
69' - Built 350, 750 Holley, Elgin E920P Cam, 283 PP Heads, Long Comp Headers, MSD, TKO-600, 12 Bolt Posi 3.73, Hotchkis Rear, Eibach Front w/Hotchkis Sway, SPC UCAs, 3rd Gen PS, AR TTII's. Still working on it.
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post #8 of 50 (permalink) Old May 31st, 08, 08:52 PM
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Re: Hopping Mad over New Hotchkis Springs!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by thorpe67RS View Post
Ok, i am about 10 seconds away from throwing my new hotchkis rear leaf springs in the scrap pile and putting the monoleafs back on. Its a good thing i love my car so much or i would have thrown a hammer at the side of it tonight.

I am trying to install the new leaf springs and as God as my witness i spent the better part of 2 hours trying to get the rear upper bushings/sleeves in the framerails where the rear shackles go.
Dear lord someone whos done this please tell me what im doing wrong. I cant get the busings in the hole with the sleeve already in the bushings. I can get the bushings in the hole no problem but then I CAN NOT get the sleeve to slide inside of them. The sleeve wont go in straight from the gas tank side..it has to start at a slight angle due to hitting the bottom of the trunk pan. And it wont friggin go. I cant put the sleeve in from the other side because there is not enough room between it and the quarter panel to get any "umph" into it. My head is about to explode.

Is the tank still in? It has been a while since I did mine, but I know my tank was out when I did it because the tank was the last thing I put in back there. I'm not sure if this will have any bearing. In my head, seems like it would. My car however is out in the garage, and I'm in the house.

Craig


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post #9 of 50 (permalink) Old May 31st, 08, 08:55 PM
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Re: Hopping Mad over New Hotchkis Springs!!

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Originally Posted by Brackneyc View Post
Is the tank still in? It has been a while since I did mine, but I know my tank was out when I did it because the tank was the last thing I put in back there. I'm not sure if this will have any bearing. In my head, seems like it would. My car however is out in the garage, and I'm in the house.
I was going to ask the same thing because I wasn't sure the way he worded it in the first post. Yes, I HAD to pull my tank to do it. You hear some guys say they've done it without pulling it, but there was no way possible I could have.

Learning & Relearning about the cars I grew up with.
69' - Built 350, 750 Holley, Elgin E920P Cam, 283 PP Heads, Long Comp Headers, MSD, TKO-600, 12 Bolt Posi 3.73, Hotchkis Rear, Eibach Front w/Hotchkis Sway, SPC UCAs, 3rd Gen PS, AR TTII's. Still working on it.
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post #10 of 50 (permalink) Old May 31st, 08, 10:33 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Hopping Mad over New Hotchkis Springs!!

The first thing i did was pull the tank. I did this a few years ago so i knew it was much easier without the tank in the car.
And yes that damn lube does feel like glue. I tried a C clamp but coudnt get it on it square enough due to hitting the bottom of the trunk pan.
I did have another thought. Im going to get a longer threaded rod tommorow. Im going to get the sleeve started and then put the threaded rod thru it and of course thru the bushings. Put a washer and nut on both ends and use it to draw the sleeve into the bushing. In my overtired delirious mind right now that seems like a good plan. I guess we shall see.


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post #11 of 50 (permalink) Old Jun 1st, 08, 05:03 AM
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Re: Hopping Mad over New Hotchkis Springs!!

I installed the Hotchkis leaf springs and also found the Hotchkis upper shackle bushings difficult to install into the frame rails. However, I noticed the upper and lower shackle bushings look identical but are actually different part numbers and differ by about 15 thousands in diameter. There is NO mention of this in the directions but I assumed the smaller go in the frame rail while the larger go in the spring eye, otherwise it would have been near impossible to install.
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post #12 of 50 (permalink) Old Jun 1st, 08, 06:14 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Hopping Mad over New Hotchkis Springs!!

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Originally Posted by Marktat View Post
I installed the Hotchkis leaf springs and also found the Hotchkis upper shackle bushings difficult to install into the frame rails. However, I noticed the upper and lower shackle bushings look identical but are actually different part numbers and differ by about 15 thousands in diameter. There is NO mention of this in the directions but I assumed the smaller go in the frame rail while the larger go in the spring eye, otherwise it would have been near impossible to install.
Oh man, that is definitely info that should be clearly marked in the directions. With my luck i gurantee i was trying to install them in the opposite positions. And as you guys know those things have very little give/flex to them.


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post #13 of 50 (permalink) Old Jun 1st, 08, 08:16 AM
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Re: Hopping Mad over New Hotchkis Springs!!

Craig you don't need to remove your gas tank.

Just grease the bushings and the outer sleeves. Then install the first half bushing in the gas tank side, second install the sleeve on the other half of the second bushing and install from the quarter panel side.

But you will need to guide the sleeve to mate with the other bushing. Also you will need a couple of pieces of wood 2x2 to give you some leverage to wiggle and set both bushings (gas tank side will need to stay in place and quarter panel side you will pry and wiggle in until it sets.

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post #14 of 50 (permalink) Old Jun 1st, 08, 10:12 AM
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Re: Hopping Mad over New Hotchkis Springs!!

Craig - It sounds like you can get the bushings into the frame rails but can't get the metal (dowl like) sleeve into the bushings once they are in place. It also sounds like if you install the sleeve in one bushing half before installing the bushing in the frame rail the bushing won't go in...

If so, I had the same problem and ended up not using the metal sleeves. I don't remember but believe I used the supplied bolts but may have found some a bit larger in dia. There are not too many shackle/bushing kits that use sleeves and I haven't had any issues arise in about 30k miles... I may have gotten this info from Hotchkis too (I'm not shy about calling) but don't recall for sure, give them a call and ask...

...Dennis

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post #15 of 50 (permalink) Old Jun 1st, 08, 05:44 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Hopping Mad over New Hotchkis Springs!!

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Originally Posted by DjD View Post
Craig - It sounds like you can get the bushings into the frame rails but can't get the metal (dowl like) sleeve into the bushings once they are in place. It also sounds like if you install the sleeve in one bushing half before installing the bushing in the frame rail the bushing won't go in...

If so, I had the same problem and ended up not using the metal sleeves. I don't remember but believe I used the supplied bolts but may have found some a bit larger in dia. There are not too many shackle/bushing kits that use sleeves and I haven't had any issues arise in about 30k miles... I may have gotten this info from Hotchkis too (I'm not shy about calling) but don't recall for sure, give them a call and ask...
I wondered about that. The bushings i took out had no sleeves in them and never had a problem. Im going to get back at it tomorrow as i have the day off. If push comes to shove and i cant get the sleeves in..they will be thrown in the garbage!! Thanks for the help everyone!


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