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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Ok, so today i was supposed to drop the body on my car. as i was rolling thechassis outside, i could hear some metal on metal grinding. as i looked around, i noticed the problem, my spring was scrapint the inside of my rim.
A few months ago, i decided i wanted to lower the car before i put the body back on. I ordered vb&p 550 springs for the front, and looked to you guys for how to lower the rear. The info i recieved was to purchace 8" bolts and use those in replacement for the stock 6" bolts. So i did. Ever since i switched, i have had problems with the alignment and not being able to get the halfshafts installed. The tires were way too toe in, i think this had to do woth the halfshafts not being installed. I couldnt get the halfshafts installed because the angle from the diff to the trailing arms was too steep. The diff was too high and the trailing arms sat too low that anytime i put the halfshafts in, i either couldnt get some of the bolts in, or as soon as i started rolling the car the halfshafts would bind up and the lock rings would spring out. I just need to know what i need to do to fix this. any suggestions? anything you guys can do would be greatly appreciated. i can add pics of that would help too. Thanks!
 

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I believe the root of your problem is trying to do anything to the rear suspension with the half-shafts removed. They are a primary suspension component securing the trailing arm/hub-assy in a fixed (horizontally) location. Every other suspension adjustment is made relative to this fixed location.

So...start over. Disconnect the spring from the trailing arms, support the rear frame and use a floor jack to raise a trailing arm until the hub assy is level with the differential side yolks. This will allow you to install the half-shaft while its in a position parallel to the ground. Then install the strut rod. Repeat for the other side.

Next, carefully using a floor jack again (wear protective eye gear when compressing springs), raise one end of the spring until you can thread the nut onto the 8" bolt, give yourself an inch or so of threads past the nut exposed.
Repeat for the other side.

Now you have everything together and can lower the car onto the ground, check the height of the rear end, and make adjustments up or down using the nut on the 8" bolts. Probably easiest to adjust if you reduce the load on the nut by again using a floor jack to compress the spring a little, making the torque required to turn the nut less.

Then go get a four wheel alignment.

Good luck!:thumbsup:
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thank you so much!
After I sat on my transmission and stared at the supspension for about 30 minutes, I came to the conclusion that the halfshafts must be the problem. This whole
project has been a huge learning experience for me,(I'm 17) and as you all know the best way to learn is to mess up the first time and fix it again:) thanks metalkid! Your a lifesaver! I'll let you guys know how it goes and also load some pics of the car when the body is on!
 

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don't forget, the body weight will settle down the suspension. Keep that in mind, there's not much in the IRS to keep it upright other then the spring. The aftermarket springs will boost the reartup - at least everyone I used did. Some claim to sell a steel spring that will use the 6 bolts and have the correct ride height. I tried one and it was more costly and was exactly the same deal, 8" bolts were needed.
I would leave the T arm bolts & spring bolt snug but go back and torque them with the body on. remember to load the 4 spring bolts correctly so you don't break the rear cover ears off.

With the body on, I snug the 4 spring bolts to hold it firm but not to the full 70-75 ft/lb rating. Maybe 30-35. Install the end link bolts, get the car on the ground roll it 10-20 ft to settle the suspension and then torque the 4 bolts with the body weight on it. Best done with it on a ramp lift but you're young so you might just be able to get under there and torque them, I used to be able to that!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks Gary! Yes I was aware that the rear suspension would settle a little once the body was on, but I needed a good three to four inches in order forthe halfshafts to be level. I knew that the body wouldn't compress it that much, so I turned to yu guys. Thanks for all your help! I will start dissasembling the rear today and maybe I can load some pics for you guys to see the progress! Thanks again guys!
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
One more quick question, how vital is the French locks on the halfhaft bolts? I have two but they're bent pretty good and I haven't been able to find them anywhere. Any suggestions where I could
find them? Thanks!
 

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I prefer the French locks over lock washers as I know nothing can bend the tabs back while going down the road. I bought mine with LW's on the half-shafts but put the French locks as I like them much better. By the way most Corvette vendors sell them.
 

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I use the SS French Locks over the steel GM's. They will hold up to the final torque on the bolts without twisting. I stock them but many should have them as well.
When I use Tom's axles, they use grade lockwashers.
 
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