Front Springs Install Question - Chevy Impala SS Forum
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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 08-03-2004, 07:17 PM
91L03HO
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Ok folks, FIRST, I have done a search over and over and I still need an answer, so AutocroSSer, and others please, chime in.

Front end has been completely removed, all new ball joints, tie rods (Inner/Outers), center link, ect., the whole shebang.

I have the upper and lower a-arms installed, but NOT tighten down to torque specs yet till car is sitting on its own wheels. Spindles are on the lower ball joints, with castle nuts hand tightened only.

I am now at the point to install the springs, with new isolators (on the top). Know about the indexing with holes and flat ends up on the lower A-Arms.

Is it necessary to use a compressor, or can this be done with floor jack, straps? I looked at it and it looks as if the ONLY way to do it IS with a compressor. If a compressor IS needed, which is best to use, an internal or external one?

I want to be safe, but if a compressor is not needed, whats the best way to do it?

I appreciate everyone's reply, and thanks in advance!

Dave
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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 08-03-2004, 07:48 PM
AutocroSSer
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Which springs?

Stock(ish), you'll want/need a compressor. Shorter and/or stiffer springs, you might not. My Global Wests that have been (slightly) cut do not need a compressor, but then their "free standing" height (i.e. standing up, out of the car) is about 4" shorter than stock!

And an internal compressor is the only one that'll fit (throw the spring loosely up in there and try to imagine it with stuff hanging 2" off the outside of the spring and you'll see why an external compressor is definitely a "no go")
post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 08-03-2004, 07:51 PM
91L03HO
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AutocroSSer,

Thanks for the quick reply, and I put them up in there and I understand now why you need the internal compressor. Thanks!!!

Dave
 
post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 08-04-2004, 12:01 AM
CMoney
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Yeah I foolishly had to take my external spring compressor back and buy the internal one after I realized there was no chance in hell you could get an external one to work. The internal one was about twice the cost to.
post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 08-04-2004, 01:18 AM
coprice
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Schucks rents the correct internal spring compressor...
George
post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old 08-04-2004, 05:54 AM
CHV_FRK
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I also have in the past undone the lower control are to frame bolts and attach both upper and lower ball joints. Basically done it from the back side. it's definatly a little trickier, but it's possible. And like autocrosser said, it's even easier with lower springs. Good luck.
post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old 08-04-2004, 07:18 AM
91L03HO
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Thanks for all of the reply's! Fortunately, Autozone rents tools and has an internal compressor.

I do have another question however, do you want to torque the A-Arm bolts with the shocks on or off when it is back on the ground?

Dave [img]graemlins/.gif[/img]
post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old 08-04-2004, 11:58 AM
Kevin Varnes
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I think everyone has their own favorite method of installing front springs. When I recently did the front end on my Crown Vic I assembled the spring to the LCA while it was off the car and compressed the spring with an internal compressor (quite a bit). Then I lugged that assembly under the car and put it up on the floor jack. I slowly lifted the assembly up and in with the floor jack. I put the frame mount bolts in first and then the ball joint.

It shouldn't really matter if the shocks are on or off when you torque the A-arms since they do not support the weight of the car. Might as well just put the shocks in while the car is up and then lower it down and torque the bolts.
post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old 08-04-2004, 12:23 PM
mrthump77
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I rented the Autozone internal compressor to install my Hotchkis springs. They went in easy enough. We went in through the spindle side. The only thing was that they took some fighting/jiggling around to get them off of the coils after they were in and expanded.

I think I might of put them on a coil to far/close. Good thing about AZ, the loaners are free. You pay a deposit and get it right back 100%.
post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old 08-04-2004, 07:42 PM
91L03HO
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Well, I rented the internal compressor from Autozone, and springs went in without a hitch. I taped the isolators to the top of the spring to keep it into place, made sure ONLY one hole in lower A-Arm covered.

Kevin, if you search you will find that you do NOT torque the A-arm bolts UNTIL car is resting on it's own wheels.

What I was wanting to know IS do you torque them with shocks installed or uninstalled.

Thanks for the reply's guy's!

Dave
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