Chassis too high off springs?

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sprie

Active Member
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189
I have a new (Richards) chassis and new springs.

I have had the wheels on for a grand total of 1 day, and it is back on axle stands. At the moment, whilst I do have the diffs on (which are on the axle) I don’t have any of the heavy components on the chassis (i.e. engine, gearbox, body), which presumably will sink the chassis down a bit.

As you can also see in the photo, the gap between the chassis and the springs is large – so large that the leather straps don’t reach and nor does the shock absorber.

Before I try using force to sort this out, I thought I would check. Have I done something wrong or is this as expected?

Do I have to leave the shocks and leather straps until I have all the components sitting on top of the chassis?
 

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Get weight on it surely and the wheels on and it will settle. I just did a chassis swap on another car and when it went together the UCA was touching the coil spring... I had no clue what I had done wrong so left it to the end. By which time it had settled and is now well clear. Don't torque anything suspension wise up until its all settled and under load.
 
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I did what most advocate and used ratchet straps to pull it all together.

The manual gives the correct heights. I'm afraid I haven't got mine here to help out.
 
Don't tighten the shackle and chassis bush bolts until it's fully built up. Otherwise bad things happen. Unless you've poly bushes, in which case just ratchet the axles right then bolt everything up.
 
Have you got the correct spring part numbers fitted, I fitted rears this year 517588 and 589 working well , can’t recall straps that far out
to tension them you can use your bottle jack on chassis and wrap a chain under axle over bottle jack to get the reqd clearance

IMG_3125.png


IMG_3126.png
 
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I have a new (Richards) chassis and new springs.

I have had the wheels on for a grand total of 1 day, and it is back on axle stands. At the moment, whilst I do have the diffs on (which are on the axle) I don’t have any of the heavy components on the chassis (i.e. engine, gearbox, body), which presumably will sink the chassis down a bit.

As you can also see in the photo, the gap between the chassis and the springs is large – so large that the leather straps don’t reach and nor does the shock absorber.

Before I try using force to sort this out, I thought I would check. Have I done something wrong or is this as expected?

Do I have to leave the shocks and leather straps until I have all the components sitting on top of the chassis?
It is common.

As they say^^^^^^^, there are several methods you can use. And under no circumstances tighten the bolts on the shackles until the whole thing is loaded normally, and has settled down.

But it is just as easy to leave the shackle bolts loose until the other stuff is fitted, then fit the shocks and leather straps, then tighten the bolts.
 
The shackles clamp to the inner core part of the bush so if you torque it all up in the wrong position the rubber will fail in no time as it is twisted from the start. With poly bushes the inner cor is free floating and if you torque up in the wrong position the shaft will just move to the new position when loaded up. I have some large washers for my suspension when I get round to rebuilding it, got a new house to sort first though! The probem is I have forgotten what they are for! Deffo something to do with something. I really should write stuff down!
 
The shackles clamp to the inner core part of the bush so if you torque it all up in the wrong position the rubber will fail in no time as it is twisted from the start. With poly bushes the inner cor is free floating and if you torque up in the wrong position the shaft will just move to the new position when loaded up. I have some large washers for my suspension when I get round to rebuilding it, got a new house to sort first though! The probem is I have forgotten what they are for! Deffo something to do with something. I really should write stuff down!
If it’s like mine it’ll be to fill up the space between the bush and the bolt holder. Either my bushes were too short or my bracket was too wide.
Or they are meant to be like that and everyone has washers.
And I got my clearance done by loading everything I owned into the back until the measurements matched the book as I didn’t have a chain lying about.
Seemed to work.
 
If it’s like mine it’ll be to fill up the space between the bush and the bolt holder. Either my bushes were too short or my bracket was too wide.
Or they are meant to be like that and everyone has washers.
And I got my clearance done by loading everything I owned into the back until the measurements matched the book as I didn’t have a chain lying about.
Seemed to work.

That sounds right. :D
From memory, the threaded shackle plates that I used to fit 30 years ago and more had short lengths of tube welded onto the plate on the chassis side. These were to space the plate out a bit from the bush, to ensure good clearance from the chassis itself.

I would guess that, in the interests of cost cutting, the plates are now supplied flat, without the welded on spacers, ans loose spacers are supplied instead.
 
Have you got the correct spring part numbers fitted, I fitted rears this year 517588 and 589 working well , can’t recall straps that far out
to tension them you can use your bottle jack on chassis and wrap a chain under axle over bottle jack to get the reqd clearance

View attachment 304580

View attachment 304582
you got me worried, but i have double checked my invoice, and i have got the same part numbers. I have 4 wheels/tyres from another car, i think i will put these heavy items on top of the chassis and see if that does enough to sink it down a bit. if not, i will try using the bottle jack approach.
 
Ordered full set of 88" shackle plates recently, using the correct part numbers, all came as expected, with the offset tubes where appropriate. If yours were all flat, send them back.
 
I had the mix of shackle plates - some with thread, some without. Some with v small offset, some with longer offset, all as per parts book. So i think that is ok.

I have put the bottle jack on, and squeezed it up on one side with some heavy straps. This moves the spring into the right place, but as you might expect, when i release the bottle jack it moves back (give-or-take) to where it started from.
When squashed up, i could install the leather straps (which i think just fit next to the U bar) and the shocks - but i am still worried that the strain is more than the leather strap (and it's bolt holes) can/should cope with. So for the moment, i have left the bottle jack in place, in the hope that the spring settles a bit. I have 4 big wheels/tyres plus 4 heavy wooden sleepers on the frame too.
 
The shackle plates were another thing I forgot to take pics of. Pics of all sorts of random rust but never any of what I actually need a pic of!
 
The shackle plates were another thing I forgot to take pics of. Pics of all sorts of random rust but never any of what I actually need a pic of!
I just keep the old parts for comparison when the new ones arrive.
Or if buying from a physical parts shop, I take them along with me.

Sometimes I have cut the old parts up so much with a grinder for ease of removal, there isn't much left to compare. :oops:
 
When its all rebuilt and put weight back on, you can then replace the axel straps..
With New Shocks and springs, everyrthing is correct, so Make longer axel straps if needed. Do
not compress the springs to fit the straps or you'll be asking for trouble. Keeping the straps constantly under tension not allowing the springs to work and wheels to follow the ground. Off road, you limit badly the ability to follow the ground.
The chassis ride height will be back to original level, so if the straps were fitted when the springs were sagging you can see bad it was before rebuilding. If you want to refit axel straps, you'll need longer ones .
 
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When its all rebuilt and put weight back on, you can then replace the axel straps..
With New Shocks and springs, everyrthing is correct, so Make longer axel straps if needed. Do
not compress the springs to fit the straps or you'll be asking for trouble. Keeping the straps constantly under tension not allowing the springs to work and wheels to follow the ground. Off road, you limit badly the ability to follow the ground.
The chassis ride height will be back to original level, so if the straps were fitted when the springs were sagging you can see bad it was before rebuilding. If you want to refit axel straps, you'll need longer ones .
Ignore this.
 
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