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4austin
05-09-2006, 10:23 PM
I'd like to make my 47 M5 a daily driver and will need to do something with front end. Can hardly hold it still. Should I rebuild or install a kit, ie Mustang II. Also would like to install a dual cylinder master cylinder. Any experience is appreciated.

gordr
05-10-2006, 07:57 AM
quote:Originally posted by 4austin

I'd like to make my 47 M5 a daily driver and will need to do something with front end. Can hardly hold it still. Should I rebuild or install a kit, ie Mustang II. Also would like to install a dual cylinder master cylinder. Any experience is appreciated.


Well, it was a daily driver when it new, you know. ;)
It would probably be a lot cheaper to rebuild the present front suspension to as-new condition than to install the Pinto front end. (That's what it is, you know.)
New tie rod ends, new spring bushings, and a king pin kit would go a long way toward tightening up the steering. You will probably find that the cam lever stud in the steering box has flats worn on it. If you drive the stud out, rotate it 90, and replace it, that will take a LOT of slack out of the steering box. That doesn't constitute a proper steering box overhaul, but in practice, it makes a huge improvement.

Combine the above with properly-sized (i.e. skinny) radial tires, and the truck will steer just fine. A solid-axle front end won't ride as smooth as an I.F.S., but on good roads it's quite acceptable.

Old trucks and old cars, when they got "old" in the eyes of their users in their first lifetime, tended not to get much in the way of maintenance or even greasing. People would neglect the front end as long as they could wrestle the beast down the road, and spend the precious $$$ on keeping the engine going, and the tank filled. When the "old vehicle" finally falls into the hands of a collector or enthusiast, the front end is pretty well shot. If said enthusiast or collector has never driven an old vehicle with the front end in good condition, he or she may get the erroneous impression that "they always drove that way." Not so.

Gord Richmond, within Weasel range of the Alberta Badlands

garyash
05-10-2006, 09:39 AM
While you are fixing, don't forget to replace the reach rod (p/n 666822). There are still NOS ones around. There is also the ball stud that can be replaced or turned 90 degrees if it has a flat spot.

The M5 king pins come in two lengths. The older ones (p/n 665297)were used with steering knuckle forging # 100368 and are 5-3/32 long. The newer ones (p/n 677608) were used with knuckle forging #102512 (a service replacement part for M5's) and are 5-19/32 long. The short pins are no longer available, but you can buy the longer ones in a kit from many Stude vendors, along with the bushings, bearings, shims, and plugs. Have an automotive machine shop grind off exactly 1/4 inch from each end to get back to the 5-3/32 length. I think you can use the longer bushings in the old knuckles as long as the grease holes are in the right places (or drill new ones). You can also replace the old style knuckles with ones from any '49-'64 half-ton trucks or '49-'55 3/4 ton truck and use the longer pins as is.

The easiest way to work is to pull the whole axle with knuckles and take it to the machine shop so they can press out the old bushings and put the new bushings and pins in. It sounds like a lot of work, but it will be very much faster and cheaper than installing a whole new front end. You may want to bolt in brakes from a '63 or '64 half-ton truck or a Turner disk brake set-up while you have everything apart.

Gary Ash
Dartmouth, MA
'48 M5
'65 Wagonaire Commander
'63 Wagonaire Standard
www.studegarage.com