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Update: SPRINGS and Kingpins installed! (57 GHawk) -Progress!

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  • Front Axle / Front Suspension: Update: SPRINGS and Kingpins installed! (57 GHawk) -Progress!

    After all the issues with my upper control arms (NOS all the way around, yet chased problems and eventually stripped out, and all the hassles of replacing THAT arm and its bushings.. see previous post), I FINALLY got the pin-bushings in, top and bottom (funny, four days on upper Right; on afternoon on the other THREE). AND, got the front springs installed this weekend!

    Thanks to Doofus and Steve Winzar for advice on how to do this. I included a photo combining the advice from both of them. I did assemble the entire kingpin assembly FIRST (no spring), and especially as this is the first (hopefully only?) Studebaker front end I have rebuilt, this allowed me to make sure the finished assembly moved up and down "freely", if "firmly". I must say with less 'pride' than "even a blind squirrel finds and acorn now and then', in my case, BOTH kingpins lined up so well with the lower supports, I simply pulled them over a bit and slid right into the keyways! (SHOCKED!). I'm guessing it helped a lot that I had all undistorted NOS control arms, kingpins and pin-kits, a stiffer 62GT front cross-member I riveted and welded (professional welder!) in for my cracked-beyond-repair one. So, about as close to factory assembly line condition as you can get. (that is the fun part for me! Want it just like it rolled off the line.... A mechanical engineer born 50+ years too late?)

    After confirming the whole assembly moved up and down freely, I removed the four lower control arm bolts and dropped the arm, borrowed a INNER SCREW spring compressor (not the newer McPherson strut spring type that is EXTERNAL), and partially tightened it up enough to place it in BOTH the upper and lower "retainer" areas, with access to the compressor screw via a long extension through the shock holes. Was able to compress the spring slowly, use a jack TO SUPPORT the arm (doing this by myself) and keep everything place, and use long bolts to start pulling the lower arm back up. I didn't have any "full thread" long bolts, so in the photo you see my two-step process, longer bolts, tighten, screw the spring compressor up some more, jack up the arm some more (lifts the frame, NOT compressing the spring). Got to where I could put in the NEXT set of two fully threaded bolts, and with these alternately threaded bolts, and compressed spring, until I could get all four Grade 8 bolts back in place. IMPORTANT NOTE: was VERY helpful per Steve's tip, to pre-tape the rubber on the springs. Even then, the first spring was not fully seated on the bottom, and ended up tearing the rubber before I could get it back in place. SECOND spring got a few extra wraps of electrical tape around the rubber!! Anyway, thanks guys for your advice and PMs!!! Couldn't have done it (with all fingers intact?) without you! (yes, DID have a chain through the spring until it was full captured and partially bolted.)
    NOW, front backing plates and springs, and I just may get the front tires on before spinning it around to the front to make way for a kid's car for the Minnesota winter. Engine will have to wait to get mated up to tranny and dropped inClick image for larger version

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ID:	1756052 next spring I guess....

  • #2
    Great stuff Barry- well done, I'll bet you're pleased.
    Thank you for your kind regards, I am glad to be of help.
    The method you used works, doesn't it... it just means a slow and steady pull up with patience being a virtue.