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Old 05-19-2015, 08:45 AM   #1
Larry Jenkins
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Default Re arching front spring

Les Andrews red book talks about how to re arch each front spring leaf by hand in a vice. Seems like a good idea.

Les's book also shows the relaxed assembled spring length and height.

Does any one have a chart showing the individual spring leaf lengths, so when you are working on a particular leaf, you will know when it has the right arch?

Better ways? Thank you!

Larry Jenkins

Last edited by Larry Jenkins; 05-19-2015 at 03:02 PM.
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Old 05-19-2015, 02:51 PM   #2
1930artdeco
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Default Re: Re arching front spring

I took mine into a spring shop and the charged me 100 to redo it. Brought the front end up and improved the ride and steering.

Mike
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Old 05-19-2015, 03:25 PM   #3
Dan Ewing
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Default Re: Re arching front spring

For sure, take the spring set to a spring shop. You may want to take the specs and tell them the CL to CL spring perch measurement when assembled. They should be able to do an excellent job.

I had both my front and rear springs reworked.
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Old 05-19-2015, 03:37 PM   #4
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Default Re: Re arching front spring

Sorry, I didn't answer all of your questions...

The Model A Ford As Henry Built it has a excellent spring chart. But if my memory serves me right, it only shows the centerline-to-centerline dimension of the spring perch holes in the spring ends of the assembled springs and the height of the spring set.

I am sure the spring drawings will have the correct arc and length dimension for individual spring leaves. Someone may have copies of the drawings, unfortunately I do not.
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Old 05-19-2015, 04:00 PM   #5
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Default Re: Re arching front spring

I re arched my front spring in my hydraulic press. I tried it in the vice but I guess I am too weak as that did nothing. I first did the longest spring taking about 3 inches out of the length to get it to specs. Then I did the others so each one had a little more arch than the one below it. The center bolt then pulls them all together. Don't bend it in the middle where the center hole is. Stay out about 4 inches on each side. It wasn't that hard to do and the car sits up where it should and also seems to ride better.
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Old 05-19-2015, 04:27 PM   #6
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Default Re: Re arching front spring

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I did mine in a vice and it was easy and came out to right dimensions much easier than I thought it would. It does take quite a bit of pressure, but if you just work your way down the spring a couple inches at a time it comes out good.
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Old 05-19-2015, 04:55 PM   #7
Chuck Sea/Tac
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Default Re: Re arching front spring

I've been told that re-arching the spring is a short-term fix. That doesn't seem to be what you guys are saying. How many miles are on these rearched springs?
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Old 05-19-2015, 05:50 PM   #8
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Default Re: Re arching front spring

I figured the re arching would sag over time so I over did it slightly. I have about 500 miles on them and so far no sag.
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Old 05-19-2015, 06:14 PM   #9
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Default Re: Re arching front spring

if someone wants me to re- arch a spring they can go somewheres else. to do all that labor to just retwist the metal for what i consider a temporary fix i'm putting in a quality new spring.
it think its penny wise and dollar foolish
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Old 05-19-2015, 06:17 PM   #10
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Default Re: Re arching front spring

I was told that re-aching doesn't hold up for long also. Thirty some years ago I went ahead and re-ached the front springs on an old WW2 army jeep and owned it for 20 plus years afterwards then sold it. I was looking at it a few weeks ago at a friends house that now owns it and the arch is still as good as it was the day I done it. Maybe not all spring steal is the same.
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Old 05-19-2015, 06:48 PM   #11
Larry Jenkins
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Default Re: Re arching front spring

I think my spring is original. The two spring clips have riveted ends on both sides, No "nuts and bolts."

The center bolt had been changed and was broke at the thread line. The bottom, or main leaf, still assembled to the remaining leaves, measures 31 3/16" center to center on the shackle bolt holes.

Going to disassemble the spring and try to re arch the main leaf to Les Andrews 30 5/8" dimension to the holes center to center dimension. Then see how the remaining leaves fit and do each one from the bottom up for a good fit.

Comments most welcome..

Larry Jenkins
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Old 05-19-2015, 07:04 PM   #12
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Default Re: Re arching front spring

Go for it. It doesn't cost anything but your labor and that is part of the fun of owning these old cars, working on them and trying to make them better. If it doesn't work go to plan B and buy a new spring.
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Old 05-19-2015, 07:49 PM   #13
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Default Re: Re arching front spring

I did mine three years ago and have put about nine thousand miles on it since then and it looks just fine. I forgot to mention in my other post that to get extra leverage I used a large crescent wrench and short length of pipe.
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Old 05-19-2015, 08:26 PM   #14
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Default Re: Re arching front spring

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gold Digger View Post
I was told that re-aching doesn't hold up for long also. Thirty some years ago I went ahead and re-ached the front springs on an old WW2 army jeep and owned it for 20 plus years afterwards then sold it. I was looking at it a few weeks ago at a friends house that now owns it and the arch is still as good as it was the day I done it. Maybe not all spring steal is the same.
while i dont doubt at all what your results are i think it all comes down to re-arched springs are more prone to "remembering" their flatter state IF you hit a big enough bump/dip/etc. so in the last 20 years i dont think your ww2 jeep saw the same action it saw the previous 40 years or more.

like most of our model A's thier not going to be driven down rutted dirt roads at speed, thru cornfields, haul 6 people, etc so there arent any major bumps for the springs to get flattened again (besides occasional speed bumps)

Kinda like a kinked slinky, kink it once and you can bend it back but most likely it will kink again in that same spot and get weak.
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Old 05-19-2015, 09:24 PM   #15
Larry Jenkins
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Default Re: Re arching front spring

Ron.. Would you mind giving me a more detailed description of the method(s) you used to re arch your front spring leaves?

You mention a large Crescent wrench and a piece of pipe. Where did you start; what increments did you move the wrench; did you start at the center of the leaf and work up or the other way around?

Details would help me a lot.

And thanks so much for all the other great responses. Mitch is right on.. I just don't have a barrel of money.

Larry Jenkins
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Old 05-20-2015, 05:43 AM   #16
Ron Lachniet
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Default Re: Re arching front spring

It's been three years and I have a short memory but I will try to explain how I did it. I took a large piece of cardboard and drew the correct dimensions on it. Then I took each leaf and started tweaking them in my vice about every two inches with the large crescent wrench and added pipe on the handle for leverage. I don't think it matters which end of the leaf you start from, it is just important to try to keep the arc uniform. As I did each leaf I matched them to the pattern on the cardboard. If I recall it didn't take long and it was chance to clean up and re-lubricate the spring. I hope this helps and it works out for you.
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Old 05-20-2015, 06:11 AM   #17
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Default Re: Re arching front spring

The way I did the springs on the old jeep was to weld a couple of pieces of steel on a heavy piece of flat steel about 4 inches apart and another piece of steel to set a small bottle jack on just the right distance down. I marked the springs with soap stone every 2 inches before I disassembled them for reference points. This worked real well and didn't take any ferret at all to bend. I remember having to de-arch some to get it to fit back in the spring eyes.
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Old 05-20-2015, 08:55 AM   #18
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Default Re: Re arching front spring

I just put on a new front spring, $130 plus a few hours of work. My spring was sagged and the metal does fatigue. Spring steel is a spring and over time (80 years) will lose it ability to function properly. While I understand some folks like only original parts on their car springs take a lot of abuse and should be replaced when weakend.
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Old 05-20-2015, 10:38 AM   #19
BILL WILLIAMSON
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Default Re: Re arching front spring

Do spring shops heat treat the leaves, after re-arching them?
Bill W.
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Old 05-20-2015, 02:13 PM   #20
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Default Re: Re arching front spring

Bill: Not sure but I seriously doubt it.
Paul in CT
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