proper orientation of coil spring compressor - Team Camaro Tech
Brakes, Suspension & Steering Conversion questions, Steering & Handling

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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old Dec 14th, 18, 10:52 AM Thread Starter
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Joe
 
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proper orientation of coil spring compressor

I am removing my front coil springs for an upgrade. I rented the spring compressor from auto store. I was able to get the tool in place; however, I have the head of the tool on the bottom of the spring so its upside down so that the spring is being pulled towards the lower control arm. Is this OK? Or is this going to put more downward pressure on the LCA?

I plan to take it off and flip it but am just wondering what you guys think.

Joe

1967 Camaro RS 350 TH350
1970 Chevelle 454 200 4r
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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old Dec 14th, 18, 10:59 AM
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Michael
 
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Re: proper orientation of coil spring compressor

Not sure what type of compressor you are using but I recommend you read this thread.
See my reply #19
now the front springs....

Good luck and be safe!
Mike

67 LOS SS/RS L35 Hardtop - Original w/UOIT
67 NOR SS/RS L35 Convertible - Restored
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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old Dec 14th, 18, 01:41 PM Thread Starter
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Joe
 
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Re: proper orientation of coil spring compressor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike_S View Post
Not sure what type of compressor you are using but I recommend you read this thread.
See my reply #19
now the front springs....

Good luck and be safe!
Mike
Mike, thanks for the reply, I rented a Powerbuilt #648603 kit #39 (the type you don't recommend)...photo would not upload.

1967 Camaro RS 350 TH350
1970 Chevelle 454 200 4r
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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old Dec 14th, 18, 05:33 PM
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Al
 
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Re: proper orientation of coil spring compressor

This is the only style coil spring compressor I've used in almost 50 yrs. working
on these cars and others with coils springs. I've changed so many sets I can't
begin to remember. You shouldn't be pulling against the control arm or anything
else for any reason. The tool simply squeezes (compresses) the spring. The head
of the bolt has to be down to access it. Use anti-seize on the threads and heavy
oil on the bearing. Autozone rents this same style.
https://www.amazon.com/OEMTOOLS-2703...WYMADEM0YK4H7P
Edit: I wouldn't use that Powerbuilt unit.

Al

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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old Dec 14th, 18, 05:57 PM
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Scott
 
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Re: proper orientation of coil spring compressor

I have this one and like it: https://www.amazon.com/OTC-7045B-Fro.../dp/B000GTJ5I8
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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old Dec 15th, 18, 05:40 AM
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kevin
 
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Re: proper orientation of coil spring compressor

I have never used a spring compressor in all my years of working on cars. a floor jack is all I ever used and I have never had a single problem
I even installed the springs in my 68 without the front end on and the engine out using a floor jack and 2 sand bags
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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old Dec 15th, 18, 06:13 AM
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Don
 
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Re: proper orientation of coil spring compressor

If you choose to do it without a tool please run a chain through the spring to keep it contained. A flying spring can cause some very serious injuries. Don’t assume you will be lucky or that you are too good for anything to happen....

Don
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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old Dec 15th, 18, 03:01 PM Thread Starter
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Joe
 
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Re: proper orientation of coil spring compressor

Quote:
Originally Posted by allanjs View Post
This is the only style coil spring compressor I've used in almost 50 yrs. working
on these cars and others with coils springs. I've changed so many sets I can't
begin to remember. You shouldn't be pulling against the control arm or anything
else for any reason. The tool simply squeezes (compresses) the spring. The head
of the bolt has to be down to access it. Use anti-seize on the threads and heavy
oil on the bearing. Autozone rents this same style.
https://www.amazon.com/OEMTOOLS-2703...WYMADEM0YK4H7P
Edit: I wouldn't use that Powerbuilt unit.
Al, thanks for the reply. I successfully removed both springs today and I did use the powerbuilt. (I also had a jack under the control arm and a ratcheted strap securing the spring to the frame). I spent more than 2 hours just getting familiar and learning how to definitively ensure the hooks were "fully hooked/engaged" and that the threaded rod was parallel to the spring. I was able to get the threaded rod through shock tower hole on top (after smoothing out rough edges). What is interesting to me is that once the tool starts to compress, the inner, non-threaded hook bracket becomes loose because the bottom hooks are pulling the spring against the shock tower...which is exactly how the tool you show works (except you have a fork to press against as well). Is your comment to not use the powerbuilt because it is a cheap made in china brand?

Regardless, it all worked well today. I found out that I can get the model you mention at Oreillys, so will get that one for the install.

I rented the ball joint removal tool, but the receiver tube wont fit between the ball joint and LCA...guess I need to start a new post

1967 Camaro RS 350 TH350
1970 Chevelle 454 200 4r
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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old Dec 15th, 18, 04:31 PM
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Al
 
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Re: proper orientation of coil spring compressor

Joe, Your not understanding how these compressors work. They squeeze (compress)
the spring as an individual unit. You do not press against the shock tower or any part
of the suspension. Hopefully you did not open up the upper shock mounting hole to
the point where the shock rubbers won't fit and compress properly when installed.
The best I can recommend is go to Youtube and search the compressor part numbers
for each style to get a visual. Also search for the tool Scott uses as it's very good also.
I would not use the Powerbuilt for the reason you discovered. I tried one years ago. It
won't keep the hooks in proper contact with the coils. The type I use with the fork
(as you called it) makes up for that evenly distributing the stress on the 2 hooks. If you
don't understand what I'm trying to convey I'll see if I can create a drawing for you.
Edit: You're making me nervous because of the safety involved.
Here's a video on the OEM tool.

Al

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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old Dec 15th, 18, 05:25 PM
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Michael
 
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Re: proper orientation of coil spring compressor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sauron67MM View Post
That's the same one I have. I felt completely at ease and never worried of any sudden unwinding (like I experienced ....and twice the same day with the monkey arm style) when the BB spring was compressed and placing it in the frame using that tool. Plus, the plate design makes it much easier to manipulate the compressed spring into the control arms without marring the arms paint.

Mike

67 LOS SS/RS L35 Hardtop - Original w/UOIT
67 NOR SS/RS L35 Convertible - Restored
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post #11 of 13 (permalink) Old Dec 15th, 18, 06:19 PM
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Scott
 
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Re: proper orientation of coil spring compressor

Quote:
Originally Posted by flat tire View Post
I have never used a spring compressor in all my years of working on cars. a floor jack is all I ever used and I have never had a single problem
I even installed the springs in my 68 without the front end on and the engine out using a floor jack and 2 sand bags
Many of us have done it for decades with a chain and a jack for certain jobs, others have not. Some have changed springs with a jack and chain with no weight on the subframe, no need for sandbags. If one does this all day, everyday, it is beneficial to use tools that increase productivity while maintaining quality control.

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Last edited by Sauron67MM; Dec 15th, 18 at 07:24 PM.
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post #12 of 13 (permalink) Old Dec 15th, 18, 07:44 PM Thread Starter
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Joe
 
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Re: proper orientation of coil spring compressor

Quote:
Originally Posted by allanjs View Post
Joe, Your not understanding how these compressors work. They squeeze (compress)
the spring as an individual unit. You do not press against the shock tower or any part
of the suspension. Hopefully you did not open up the upper shock mounting hole to
the point where the shock rubbers won't fit and compress properly when installed.
The best I can recommend is go to Youtube and search the compressor part numbers
for each style to get a visual. Also search for the tool Scott uses as it's very good also.
I would not use the Powerbuilt for the reason you discovered. I tried one years ago. It
won't keep the hooks in proper contact with the coils. The type I use with the fork
(as you called it) makes up for that evenly distributing the stress on the 2 hooks. If you
don't understand what I'm trying to convey I'll see if I can create a drawing for you.
Edit: You're making me nervous because of the safety involved.
Here's a video on the OEM tool.
27035 OEMTOOLS™ Coil Spring Compressor - YouTube
Please disregard my comment regarding the cleaning the upper shock hole, it was literally 30 seconds to remove minor protrusion/rough finish, no impact to the diameter of the hole and irrelevant to the more important points of this discussion, but I appreciate the comment.

Two follow up items:
1. Would you (or any else reading this) be concerned that the shock tower metal thickness would not be sufficient strength/thickness to support the pressure load of the compressed spring? (2 inches at 450 lbs/inch, so 900 pounds?)

2. The only way for the tool that I rented to worked as you described (which I am agreeing with) is to install it "upside down" so that the threaded rod bolt head is on the bottom within the shock tower and would be pushing against the non-threaded hook bracket (same purpose/function of your "fork"); therefore, causing the spring to compress into itself. As I think this through, my original concern about this orientation (that it put downward pressure on the LCA) is false. Thoughts?

1967 Camaro RS 350 TH350
1970 Chevelle 454 200 4r
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post #13 of 13 (permalink) Old Dec 15th, 18, 08:05 PM
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Al
 
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Posts: 3,045
Re: proper orientation of coil spring compressor

Question 1- yes but the problem you already encountered shows your only gripping 1 side of the spring securely.
Question 2- correct there will be no pressure on the lower control arm and that's how the tool is designed.

Al

my 67' build thread:
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