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off set trailing arms


john wilson

I would like to put offset trailing arms on my 80. what all do I need?:w
offset t arms

I would check oput Vette brakes web site. I don't have it here now, but i think it might be here somewhere on this site. I'll check and get back to you.
do you have a pic of your 80.
i too have an 80 and would like to put some offset T arms.
Offset trailing arms can be beneficial in some cases, but whatever product you decide on be sure that there not thinly constucted off shore metal pieces that will bend and twist even under moderate loads. remember cheaper is not better.


I'm in the process of putting offset trailing arms on my '71. It was such a pain to remove my old ones because the main bolt had frozen. I couldn't get a reciporcating saw in the opening, so I had to use my trusty hacksaw. Three blades later, I finally got them both out. Now is a good time to have the rear bearing assembly rebulit. It's such a complicated process, I shipped mine to Van Steel in Florida. They can also mount on their offset trailing arms and match the rotors for more money. It can be costly, but so is a bearing failure that causes your wheel to fly off. Stainless steel shims are another worthy addition. I bought the heavy-duty trailing arms, because I plan to roadrace once or twice a year. As with everything else, preparation and carefull disassembly is the key. I plan on installing mine as soon as I examine the differential to see if it needs rebuilding. Good luck.--Bullitt

I installed them. I bought mine from VB&P, but they may actually have been made by Van Steele. Anyway, I am die hard do it yourselfer and did the entire swap and rebuild myself. If you are not into frustrating projects, buy yours complete (bearings, e-brake etc). In the long run it may save you some money and time.

I bought mine as just the trailing arm with the front poly bushing already installed. I then pulled the spindle housing from the old ones, bought new bearings, seals, and shims (bought the shims from Van Steele). Then, I borrowed a machined/turned down axle shaft for fitting and spacing the new bearing and shims. I also bought the brass knocker from Mid America to get the old assembly appart.

All in all, it was a pretty big little job.

Good luck.

One more thing about Van Steel. The first rear bearing assembly they built has not failed, yet. That has been about twenty four years, ago.--Bullitt
Pat Goss (Motor Guru) will tell you different. When I was rebuilding mine I contacted him about setting up the shims. He said he had just finished replacing a set of Van Steel arms that had failed in less than 3,000 miles. Van Steel would not honor the warranty.

He did not think much of the ultra minimum clearance used in the Van Steel rebuilds.

Who knows, maybe I put mine together all wrong. At this point, there is only one way to tell.........and I can't wait to try them out!

BTW-Virtually nobody will encourage you to rebuild your own. Van Steel will scare you, Ecklers will sell you the parts, but won't advise you, and most local shops and dealers have long since retired the old timers that use to rebuild these on a regular basis.

I don't think it is rocket science. Van Steel will tell you otherwise. In fact, he will tell you that he uses rocket science grease technology to build his axles that is only available through him and is otherwise top secret. I don't doubt he really knows his stuff, and makes a quality product. However, I don't appreciate anybody that tries to "scare" me from doing my own work.

What you said Chris is true enough. I hope we haven't frightened off John. I believe that which ever way you choose, that the time to replace the bearings are now. My Corvette is 30 years old and I'm sure most everyone will eventually replace their rear bearings in due time. But if you are back there, you might as well take those trailing arms off just once and do it right. On a related subject, has anyone tried the greasable half-shaft flanges? Does anyone feel they warrant the $160 purchase price? Let us know your opinion.--Bullitt
I was told there is a risk of the housing loosing some strength because a hole has to be drilled in it to screw in the grease fitting. Same theory as the greasable vs. non greasable U-joints.

Hey Chris, what problems did you have installing your shims? I'm having some trouble myself. It seems that they won't squeeze in. Thanks for any advice you can lend me.--Bullitt

I guess you are talking about the stainless shims the go on each side of the front trailing arm busing. If so, I started out by the suggestion in the destructions. I measured each set of shims on the original trailing arms, and set the replacement ones up with the same thickness on each side. This may need to change when it goes to an alignment shop.

I had the frame out of the car, so it was a little easier. In fact, I worked from on top most of the time. I drilled a hole in each side of the frame for the long carter key to stick through. I found it very difficult to wedge the new shims up in there and had to apply pry bar pressure to wiggle things around.

No particular trick, I just kind of buldozed my way through.

I feel sorry for the alignment guy, and my check book when it comes time to finish setting it all up.

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