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Front end rebuild question

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  • Front end rebuild question

    Hey guys,

    While I have my Lark's engine out for rebuilding, I figured it would be a good time to rebuild the front suspension too.

    But then it occurred to me: do I have to have the engine weight in the car to make it all work right? I know some cars need the engine weight in order to set the proper preload on suspension components, but since the Stude isn't a ball-joint front end, does it matter?


    Clark in San Diego
    '63 Lark Standard

    Clark in San Diego | '63 Standard (F2) "Barney" |

  • #2
    yes and no. You can do all your work with the weight off the suspension, but you shouldn't tighten down the big bolts that hold the rubber bushings in place until the suspension is "settled" in its normal position. When you tighten those bolts, the rubber is locked in place, and the movement of the control arm actually twists the rubber. For longest life, the rubber should be set so that it is untwisted at normal ride height.

    Also, it may be problematic to get the kingpin back together without the weight of the car to help you, but if you have a spring compressor that shouldn't be a problem.

    good luck,


    55 Commander Starlight
    55 Commander Starlight