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Rear Spring Replacement

ducvw2004

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 22, 2009
Messages
51
Location
Temple
Corvette
2008 C6
Well,

Finally found the time to replace the rear spring on my '81.

I discovered the original composite spring had cracks and de-lamination about a week after I bought the car, so I did a little research and ended up buying a 330lb composite spring with urethane bushings from VBP.

Talked to a few folks and did some read-up on the swap before I started. A friend who has a couple of early 70's C3s had me a bit nervous with his tales of floor jacks being thrown through walls by springs!

In any case, the whole swap only took about an two hours, including putting the car up on the jack-stands. (Yes, I put the heat shield back on)

Not a difficult job, but probably not for a greenhorn.

The bad:
It would have been nice to have an extra pair of hands once or twice, and the instruction sheet from VBP really could use a picture or two.

The good:
:DAhh...it sure is nice to feel the rear of the car turn into a corner at the same time as the front! What a difference a new spring made over the original, tired old GM spring (still had the GM parts label on it!) The ride is smoother and at the same time, stiffer in corners. Definately increases my cornering confidence.

Suggestions:
Make sure you have two floor jacks; I found it a lot easier to align the trailing arm bolt holes, spring bolt holes and all of the bolts, washers and bushings with a jack under the trailing arm as well as the spring.
Air tools were invaluable...there were a couple of bolts that were just a bit stubborn!
Make sure your friends have returned all of the wrenchs they borrowed before you start. I sure could have used a 13/16" wrench....


Can't wait to see what a front end rebuild and a set of swaybars will do!

Dave


Sorry, I know I should have taken pictures...couldn't locate my camera.
 

tonyponykay

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 14, 2009
Messages
60
Location
Baltimore, MD
Corvette
1980 maroon, 1987 vert yellow/black "bumblebee"
nice job

:) nice ! i did the same thing to my 1980 vette and it turned out really well. Such a nicer ride. My old laminate spring was so shot, I don't think it had any laminate even. :W

I'm going to start on my front end soon as well. Got a little Rust to Por 15 after I naval jelly it down and wire brush it into last week. But can't wait to do the job. Kinda worried I never did a ball joint before and can't find a pictorial on it, the manual that I ordered on dvd does't actually go into how to do it, just talks in general terms, and the AIM is just a listing of parts and diagrams. I had found a step by step pictoral but now I can't find it.

What worries me is that the manual says you have to loosen or do something to the upper balljoint before you take the lower balljoint off. Yikes :bash
;help

anyway, I know you luving that 330 lbs spring!! :w:w

tony
 
Joined
Jan 1, 2002
Messages
7,246
Location
Washington, Michigan
Corvette
'67 Marina Blue Convertible
What worries me is that the manual says you have to loosen or do something to the upper balljoint before you take the lower balljoint off. Yikes :bash
;help

You don't have to do anything to the upper ball joint in order to R&R the lower ball joint. Do you have the correct GM Shop Manual?
 

tonyponykay

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 14, 2009
Messages
60
Location
Baltimore, MD
Corvette
1980 maroon, 1987 vert yellow/black "bumblebee"
yep from ecklers on cd

I think so, its from ecklers manual on cd, technical manual for 1980 corvette it says, but its strange that it doesn't have a step by step process for doing ball joints... :confused at least the lower ones, it does for the upper ones. I guess it figures if you can do the uppers you should be skilled enough to do the lowers :chuckle

anyway thanks for the tip that i dont have to loosen my upper balljoints to do the lower ones. I thought that was bizarre but it says that in the manual. Don't understand that.

have fun with that nice vette. :D

tony
 

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