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Old 11-28-2008, 01:08 PM   #1 (permalink)
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replace your front coil springs

my trial and tribulations with installing new grab-a-trac 620# 1" lowering springs purchased thru moneymakerracing.com. As always safety is the main PRIORITY! So make sure you chock the wheels and utilize jack stands when needed. Since all I was doing was swapping the old springs for new I didn't have to order anything but the springs. Now would be a create time to replace worn spring insulators and any bad bushings in the perch and so on. I started off doing the driver side wheel, and performed the change over one side at a time.

first you want to break the lug nuts on the wheel since it will have to be removed to aid in the spring swap lol. But don't remove the wheel just yet since you need to use it when you raise and lower the car. I placed the jack on the cross member and jacked the vehicle up just enough so I could see the shock in the wheel well and get a wrench on it.



I had issues removing and installing shock nuts/washers on the back side so I had an unused wrench that I cut in half:



This gave me PLENTY of room as long as I had the right height on the jack:



I set the height with the jack so I could have the most room on the inside under the upper control arm and enough room to slid under the front end to perform the needed wrench work. With the bottom hardware removed i removed the top side hardware and pulled the shock out the top.

Now I install the spring compressor designed by Tom or F15Falcon (http://www.fordmuscleforums.compar...ompressor.html). This compressor gave me some issues but it worked out in the end. with the compressor bolted to the perch and mounted to the top I lowered the car all the way down with the jack, spun the lock nut/washer to the bottom and didn't even bother to tighten the nut up.

I jacked the vehicle to the position that lifted the car up a bit so I could get a socket and ratchet on the perch nuts. I removed the perch nuts from the bottom and then jacked the vehicle up to get the wheel off the ground. i removed the wheel and you could see the perch separated from the UCA.



At this point I lower the compressor, this is the big problem with this compressor style. As the perch lowers to the top of the UCA I pulled the spring away from the frame. and it rests with some slack in the coil spring, this slack is just enough to go in and remove the perch just be careful b/c there still could be some compression on the spring.

If you are using the other style compressor that has the arms then at this point the spring should fall right out. If you have issues with the arm style compressor you might not have enough room to tighten the compressor up and will have to install some washers/ spacers and then tighten the clamp on the spring.

So now the old spring is out I had to remove the insulators that are new, this just required a punch and hammer which twisted the piece right out. to reinstall into the new spring I bent the isolator and slid it right into position. I had to pry a little with a bar to get it to fit in the tight spot at the end of the coil spring.

Now is time for the install, get the correct orientation with the spring slide the perch under the spring and as a unit slide them up. with a little muscle I had them in enough that I could get my spring compressor onto the perch. With a arm style compressor you should not have to remove the perch at all so you don't need to worry about this part.



With the spring compressor back on I cranked t up so I could push the perch bolts into the holes. this again required some muscle as the spring pushes out once its compressed. So I had to push on the spring to get it to slip into the proper holes, and installed the nuts so the spring wont pull the perch out and go haywire:



so at this point I reinstalled the wheel and snugged the lugs up. I lowered the car a bit so I could get the perch hardware tightened up. I did not remove the compressor until the perch was 100% tight just in case something let loose. I removed the compressor and reinstalled the shock.

I again found a good spot for the best room under the UCA with my jack and tightened up the shock hardware. I find it a lot easier to tighten the bottom nuts and then the bolts topside as it requires a bit of flex from the shock to get the bolts and the shock holes to line up right. with everything tight and lowered I was finished:



Once the car was lowered she sat pretty high, you need to drive the car to get the tires and suspension to unload itself and get out of bind. from my research I found that new coil springs will tend to settle after some time and weight is left on them. so i would not cut the new springs until you know the settle period is over.

It took me a little over 3 hours to perform this upgrade which included pulling tools out of the shed. Hope this helps someone, as it gets me closer to a perfect front suspension.


.
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Old 10-29-2009, 08:21 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Re: replace your front coil springs

Well written post, Sounds very familiar to the total replacement I just completed on the kids 66 coupe. The problem I have is that the drivers side coil spring area squeeks. The rubber on the coil spring cover is rubbing on the 620 coil springs and there is no play to move the bumper away from the spring. SDviking
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Old 10-29-2009, 08:31 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Re: replace your front coil springs

Very nice but next time separate your sentences after about 25 or 30 in a row, to break it up for ease of reading.

Did you rollerize your spring perches or leave them standard?
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Old 10-29-2009, 01:29 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Re: replace your front coil springs

Quote:
Originally Posted by sdviking View Post
Well written post, Sounds very familiar to the total replacement I just completed on the kids 66 coupe. The problem I have is that the drivers side coil spring area squeeks. The rubber on the coil spring cover is rubbing on the 620 coil springs and there is no play to move the bumper away from the spring. SDviking
then the spring guard piece must be bent or something as you can see from my pictures the new 620s dont come close to the spring. did you relocate your spring perches any?
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Old 10-29-2009, 01:35 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Re: replace your front coil springs

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Originally Posted by FEandGoingBroke View Post
Very nice but next time separate your sentences after about 25 or 30 in a row, to break it up for ease of reading.
Im sorry i only found 4 sentences that run on more them 30 words i will try to remember that the next time i do a tech article
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Old 10-29-2009, 01:56 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Re: replace your front coil springs

Hey You're a Techy, so you're forgiven, but I was generally just being facetious as I could read it no problem just giving you a hard time

Last edited by FEandGoingBroke; 04-25-2010 at 02:54 PM.
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Old 10-29-2009, 05:35 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Re: replace your front coil springs

So if I read the article right, you left the control arms in place when you removed the springs? If you did, this is not the way I designed the compressor and it would have been far easier to remove the control arm from the shock tower. The instructions tell you to do it by removing the control arms. Here are the instructions for the tool:

Spring Compressor Instructions


-The flat plate is for Mustang and Cougar applications only.
-The flat plate is drilled for early and late Mustang bolt patterns, it is not mis-drilled.
1.After safely supporting the vehicle on jackstands, remove the front shocks and dis-connect the upper ball joints from the spindles, as the A arm has to be removed to remove the spring.

*

2. Slide spring compressor down through the shock tower (threaded rod portion up)and attach it to the lower spring seat just as you would the lower part of the shock. Install the flat washers on the studs before the nuts, so they will not pull through the spring seat. Slide the stock shock mount over the threaded part of the rod and attack it to the top of the shock tower with a couple of nuts. The flat plate attaches on top of the shock mount where the shock bolts attach to the shock mount.
-If you opted for the thrust bearing option, it installs on top of the flat plate(Mustangs/Cougars), or on the shock mount(Falcons/Novas etc) at this step:

3. If you are working on a vehicle that uses a stud on the upper portion of the shock, you can omit this next step and simply install the large washer and nut over the stock shock mount. For Mustangs/Cougars that use two bolts to attach the upper part of the shock, slide the flat over the threaded rod and bolt it to the shock mount with the original shock hardware. Install the washer and nut on the rod and tighten until the nut touches the washer. (lubricate the nut and washer with motor oil for easier turning)

4. Begin turning the nut clockwise. As the nut turns, it will begin to draw the spring up towards the top of the shock tower. You only need to compress the spring enough to be able to unbolt the lower spring seat from the control arm. DO NOT ATTEMPT TO COMPERSS THE SPRING COMPLETELY!!!

5. With the spring compressed approximately 3-4 inches, you can now unbolt the spring seat from the A arm, and the A arm from the shock tower. If you are having trouble removing the A arm, the spring may need to be compressed slightly more.

6. Once the A arm is removed, you can now slowly release the tension on the spring by loosening the 5/8” nut. Reassembly is the exact opposite.

-Useage Tips:
-When re-installing the spring, align the studs on the spring seat parallel to the frame rails to make installation on the A arm easier
-On reassembly, when the A arm is re-installed on the car, leave the the studs loose on the shock tower to allow some movement when trying to align to the spring seat.
-A few steps can be saved on removal by using the vehicles weight to compress the spring. Remove the shock, install the compressor, and tighten the nut until it contacts the flat plate or shock mount. The vehicle can then be jacked up and placed on jackstands. The spring will already be compressed as you used the vehicle weight to do the job for you. The other steps of removing the A arm can now be followed.

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Old 10-30-2009, 08:23 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Re: replace your front coil springs

Quote:
Originally Posted by F15Falcon View Post
So if I read the article right, you left the control arms in place when you removed the springs? If you did, this is not the way I designed the compressor and it would have been far easier to remove the control arm from the shock tower. The instructions tell you to do it by removing the control arms. Here are the instructions for the tool:[FONT=[/IMG]-Please][FONT=/>
[FONT=][/font][FONT=][/font][FONT=/>
[FONT=][/FONT][/font][/font][/FONT]
[FONT=][/font][FONT=/>
[FONT=]

[FONT=]the way i stated in my article was the way I removed the spring. Ive done it a couple times this way now. i wasnt going to remove more then I have to. once you have the shorter springs in place you wont need to remove the UCA anyway as the compressor will pull it out of the way, let the arm drop and then you can release the compressor with no interference.
[/FONT]
[/FONT][/FONT]
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Old 04-25-2010, 02:44 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Re: replace your front coil springs

the link for the tool is bad, please post a link where i can get this tool, i have been fighting with this damn spring all day and cant get it reinstalled.
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Old 04-25-2010, 05:52 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Re: replace your front coil springs

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Originally Posted by jennkent5454 View Post
the link for the tool is bad, please post a link where i can get this tool, i have been fighting with this damn spring all day and cant get it reinstalled.
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Old 04-26-2010, 08:23 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Re: replace your front coil springs

Here is the way I use the tool:

Here is the step by step process to re-install the springs using the compressor you bought.

Bolt the compressor to the spring perch and place the spring on the perch:


Place the spring, perch and compressor up into the shock tower:

Slip the upper shock mount on the shock tower and install the washer and nut on the threaded portion of the compressor:

Liberally oil the nut and the threaded rod:




At this point, make sure the spring is seated in the shock tower. You will also need to align the spring perch studs so that they are parallel with the frame rails, failure to do this now will make bolting on the upper control arm more difficult. You can now begin turning the nut to draw the spring up towards the top of the tower. You only need to compress the spring enough to slip the upper control arm in place. I turn the nut three or four times and check to see if the control arm will go in:



Once the upper control arm will slip into place, insert the control arm shaft studs into the holes in the shock tower, and very loosely install the reatining nuts. Leaving the nuts loose will allow you wiggle the control arm around to align with the spring perch studs:

You can now align the spring perch studs and bolt the perch to the control arm:


Tighten the nuts that hold the control arm to the shock tower:

You can now release the tension on the spring:
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Old 04-27-2010, 06:07 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Re: replace your front coil springs

Quote:
Originally Posted by trashline View Post
I'm sorry i only found 4 sentences that run on more them 30 words i will try to remember that the next time i do a tech article
Sorry Brian, That's on me. I usually take care of that.
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Old 05-06-2010, 12:53 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Re: replace your front coil springs

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Originally Posted by jennkent5454 View Post
the link for the tool is bad, please post a link where i can get this tool, i have been fighting with this damn spring all day and cant get it reinstalled.
Me also where can this tool be bought ?
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