Rear Shock Replacement - Can I use ramps? - Chevy Impala SS Forum
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post #1 of 21 (permalink) Old 10-06-2016, 10:37 PM Thread Starter
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Rear Shock Replacement - Can I use ramps?

I'm working on this 1994 Fleetwood Brougham with a blown left rear shock. I've picked up some AC Delco shocks to fit to the car and I've read what materials I have available. I know that if I were to put the car up on a lift I would need to support the axle to prevent damage to the self-leveling system. Unfortunately, it's going to be some time before I can get it on my friend's lift and I need to get this work done.

Is there any reason I can't or shouldn't replace the rear shocks by simply backing the Caddy up a pair of ramps to get room to work under it? Anything I should do with the self-leveling system?

Working on a 1994 Cadillac Fleetwood Brougham...
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post #2 of 21 (permalink) Old 10-06-2016, 11:31 PM
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What in the hayol are you doon under someone else's rearend at this time of night? Is she worth it?

Thread related! There's no way you can get to the upper shock mounts with just ramps. It's barely doable with stands.

And for cristtsake don't put more airshocks on the car. Any car. Bilsteins and Airlift 1000 bladders. Google it. Your 'friend' will thank you later. More later in 3 to 9 hours when I'm up.

\'96SS SOB: SSRI, Herter Tune, Tri-Y II, , 3000 Edge, F/HO bars, METCO extendeds with CV MMC, Bilsteins, currently Vredestein Ultrac Sessanta (315/35 rear). Finally, wait for it... LT-4 knock module!
\'96FWB BUW-Butt Ugly White: PCMPerformance tune, HDFA w/ swissed filter, 1/2 SLP s.s. catback with H- and Flow Super 50s, oem opti rebuilt 3 times, SS Bars, METCO LCA, Airlift 1000, Monroe SS, PowerTrax No-Slip, CTS wheels with +1 rubber. Finally, yes again... LT-4 knock module!
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post #3 of 21 (permalink) Old 10-07-2016, 01:57 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 96 Black View Post
What in the hayol are you doon under someone else's rearend at this time of night? Is she worth it?

Thread related! There's no way you can get to the upper shock mounts with just ramps. It's barely doable with stands.

And for cristtsake don't put more airshocks on the car. Any car. Bilsteins and Airlift 1000 bladders. Google it. Your 'friend' will thank you later. More later in 3 to 9 hours when I'm up.
Not actually working on the car tonight, just gathering information prior to doing the work in the next few days. Which is good because the skies are about to part and the heavens pour down. :P

The OE air shocks were the only things available in budget and we already have them here, so we pretty much have to use them.

Working on a 1994 Cadillac Fleetwood Brougham...
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post #4 of 21 (permalink) Old 10-07-2016, 07:08 AM
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Been a while since I did the rear Shocks but the upper mounts can be difficult to get to. It was very doable for me just tough to get to the top of the bolts to hold them.

I believe this was the reason Bill came up with this kit and others swear by them. If you've got the time to place an order, you may want to consider this to ease the installation and future removal. Maybe you can come up with something like this yourself from the local HW store using some Stainless U-bolts.

https://www.impalassforum.com/vBullet...-hardware.html

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post #5 of 21 (permalink) Old 10-07-2016, 12:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CB700S View Post
...

The OE air shocks were the only things available in budget and we already have them here, so we pretty much have to use them.
If not already installed or packaging all torn up, would seriously recommend returning the airshocks and just getting any number of reasonably priced regular shocks. I hear guys like Monroe Sensatrak (~$30?) for inexpensive alternate to pricey Bilsteins. Not a whole lot of bonafide 'dampening' going on with any airshock design. If the auto-level compressor is still functioning, it can be connected with very little modification to Airlift coil bags (~$70?).

\'96SS SOB: SSRI, Herter Tune, Tri-Y II, , 3000 Edge, F/HO bars, METCO extendeds with CV MMC, Bilsteins, currently Vredestein Ultrac Sessanta (315/35 rear). Finally, wait for it... LT-4 knock module!
\'96FWB BUW-Butt Ugly White: PCMPerformance tune, HDFA w/ swissed filter, 1/2 SLP s.s. catback with H- and Flow Super 50s, oem opti rebuilt 3 times, SS Bars, METCO LCA, Airlift 1000, Monroe SS, PowerTrax No-Slip, CTS wheels with +1 rubber. Finally, yes again... LT-4 knock module!
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post #6 of 21 (permalink) Old 10-10-2016, 02:02 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 4DoorSS View Post
Been a while since I did the rear Shocks but the upper mounts can be difficult to get to. It was very doable for me just tough to get to the top of the bolts to hold them.

I believe this was the reason Bill came up with this kit and others swear by them. If you've got the time to place an order, you may want to consider this to ease the installation and future removal. Maybe you can come up with something like this yourself from the local HW store using some Stainless U-bolts.

https://www.impalassforum.com/vBullet...-hardware.html
I'm not fond of stainless hardware for suspension parts - the stuff is softer than grade 5 bolts for the most part and that's not good for load bearing parts. In general this seems to be a good idea, though...

If I understand the way the car is built right, the problem is getting in over the frame member to get to the nut/bolt head fastening the shock to the frame as shown in the pictures here, right?



Since even with that kit the factory hardware would have to be removed at least once, what's the best way to accomplish that? Stubby wrenches?

Edit: I should mention that I have both battery and corded electric impacts so in theory at least I won't be fighting the fasteners by hand.

Working on a 1994 Cadillac Fleetwood Brougham...

Last edited by CB700S; 10-10-2016 at 02:10 AM.
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post #7 of 21 (permalink) Old 10-10-2016, 07:44 AM
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I replaced the upper rear shock hardware about 18 yrs ago. used grade 8 bolts and locking nuts that have a higher head not rounded off..

I replaced the rear shocks 2 years ago and the removal was easy. did not lift vehicle just drove up /backed up onto my specially made solid oak ramps 6 inches tall.

do not jack up vehicle .

ON other type GM sedans like this I have used after market air shocks it is all the same on how its installed. with air shocks I did use silicone dielectric grease on the air line O rings. shocks lasted 8 yrs until they required replacing .. good ride with heavy loads with the air shocks keeping the vehicle level no U joint angles.
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post #8 of 21 (permalink) Old 10-10-2016, 07:55 AM Thread Starter
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I replaced the upper rear shock hardware about 18 yrs ago. used grade 8 bolts and locking nuts that have a higher head not rounded off..

I replaced the rear shocks 2 years ago and the removal was easy. did not lift vehicle just drove up /backed up onto my specially made solid oak ramps 6 inches tall.
The ramps I'm using for the car are about that tall.


You think these might work?

Quote:
do not jack up vehicle .
Any tips for reaching the upper bolts/nuts on the other side of the flange?

Working on a 1994 Cadillac Fleetwood Brougham...
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post #9 of 21 (permalink) Old 10-10-2016, 08:04 AM
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those ramps should work bigger ramps causes reach issues on the upper bolts.

on the removal of OEM bolts I do not remember how I did get them out.. I remember doing a lot of swearing though.

tools like sockets/box wrenches have a tapered edge so with a low bolt/nut head height it is a problem. you may have to grind down socket/box wrench so you can get solid hold on the hardware. small vice grips on one end of fastener then use socket/or wench on the other end.
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post #10 of 21 (permalink) Old 10-10-2016, 08:10 AM Thread Starter
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Would a flex head wrench like this set help to get the backing nuts off, do you think?

Sears.com


Working on a 1994 Cadillac Fleetwood Brougham...
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