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Old 08-22-2012, 11:19 PM   #1
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Rear springs... HELP!

ok, I got some new rear springs, and according to the haynes manual, I put the spring compressor on, compress the springs, take the compressor off, put it on the new spring, install it and take the compressor off. done.

now, here's the problem. I put the spring compressor on, and tighten it down, the screw is hitting the body at the top. I had to put a jack in between the body and the lower control arm to spread them far enough to actually get the old spring out... now, I can't get the new spring back in! the closest I can come, the top of the spring sets about 1/2 an inch outside on one edge of the upper well... something keeps lifting the control arm up. I have disconnected the top of the shock.

both sides of the car are off the ground also.....


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Old 08-23-2012, 10:26 AM   #2
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The correct way is to remove the bolt that attaches the lower control arm to the knuckle. This drops the arm and allows removal and installation of the spring without a spring compressor. That said removal of the bolt if often difficult on older cars as it rusts to the bushing in the control arm and usually has to be cut out causing other assorted problems.

Here's two things to try in addition to what you are doing. Remove the bottom shock bolt and let the shock hang loose. Remove the upper control arm (the short boomarang shaped one) bolt from the knuckle. Sometimes this allows the lower control arm to drop a little lower. You usually don't have to compress the spring too much to get it back in. Try compressing fewer coils to give yourself a little more clearance. Some members prefer using an internal spring compressor to avoid some of the clearance problems your experiencing. If your lower control arm bolt does come out (don't count on it) its by far the easiest way of removing and replacing rear springs.
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Old 08-23-2012, 04:05 PM   #3
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No need for a spring compressor on the rear.

Remove lower shock mount bolt.
(remove rear swaybar endlinks if applicable)
Support lower control arm with floor jack under the spring pocket.
Remove lower control arm bolt at hub.
Carefully lower the control arm down with a floor jack.
Spring completely unloads and comes right out.
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Old 08-23-2012, 04:36 PM   #4
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ok, problem solved. I didn't remove the control arm, I used the internal spring compressor, stuck a 2" (I would suggest anyone else trying this use a 3") x 1/2 piece of black gas pipe on the end of the bolt (between the end and the shoe(?)) which 'shorted' the top of the screw so it didn't hit anything on the top. made the job take almost no time at all :)

of course, now I found that one of my shocks is shot, and I can't get it loose, even using an impact wrench!
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