ride height

Old December 6th, 2016, 05:18 AM
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ride height

Hi All
I just replaced my rear springs and shocks and now the rear sits inch higher on the passenger side than on the driver side. Both springs are the same length.
Is this normal or is there another issue.. any input would be appreciated.
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Old December 6th, 2016, 05:32 AM
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Ed, I know that the late 60s and early 70s A body Cutlass has issues with body lean. I'm not sure how it is corrected though.
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Old December 6th, 2016, 06:05 AM
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thanks for the reply. right now the car won't be going anywhere until the weather gets warmer. maybe it will settle a bit
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Old December 6th, 2016, 06:47 AM
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What car are working with? I think the spring orientation on some of the 60s cars Was critical. Not certain of that though as I have a 71.
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Old December 6th, 2016, 06:49 AM
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71 Cutlass Supreme
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Old December 6th, 2016, 07:47 AM
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You are not alone! My 71 442 also sits almost an inch higher on the right rear. Initially after putting in new rears, it was an 1 1/4" higher, so I put in the old spring on the right side and it brought it down to 3/4" difference now. Maybe the frame is tweaked, but I think 3/4" variation falls within the max side to side acceptable difference. Still annoys me though.
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Old December 6th, 2016, 07:53 AM
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I hear you. Don't think frame is tweaked as it was level before spring change although low. Great looking rides you got there.
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Old December 6th, 2016, 11:22 AM
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Originally Posted by edski View Post
I hear you. Don't think frame is tweaked as it was level before spring change although low.
So if it was OK prior to the spring change, it appears to be either the spring or how it was installed (not as likely, I think). It's easy to remove the rear springs so I woulds try swapping them from one side to the other to see if the lean follows the spring.
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Old December 6th, 2016, 12:26 PM
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Getting back to the frame issue....I had the exact same thing with my '72 Supreme.....For a non related repair I was at my friends body shop, his 80 year old father walked around the car and said "the frame wasn't right"....They put it on the frame machine.....problem solved.
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Old December 6th, 2016, 06:36 PM
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But it was fine before the spring change. Sounds like a spring rate issue or possibly not seated properly.
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Old December 7th, 2016, 04:44 AM
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I think both spring pigtails are to be pointing the same way I forget if it's to the drives or pass side? That's easy to check if incorrect.
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Old December 7th, 2016, 07:43 AM
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thank you all for the input. I will first disconnect the shocks and see how it sits then if necessary i will swap sides with the springs and go from there. Intrigued by the frame issue. where could I have this checked out.
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Old December 7th, 2016, 09:36 AM
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A good alignment shop should be able to check your frame. The thing is they might want to sell you an alignment just to check your frame.
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Old December 7th, 2016, 11:17 AM
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Originally Posted by RetroRanger View Post
I think both spring pigtails are to be pointing the same way I forget if it's to the drives or pass side? That's easy to check if incorrect.
There was a discussion about this a while back and folks who were there said the spring orientation was so the workers on the production line could read the tags on the springs as the chassis was coming down the assembly line. The orientation isn't supposed to affect the ride height.



Disclaimer: this is all from memory and may not be completely accurate.
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Old December 7th, 2016, 03:18 PM
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I am not sure about the discussion, but I believe thee CSM for 70 has them pointing to the left. I will need to check it though when I get home.
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Old December 7th, 2016, 05:04 PM
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Originally Posted by Troys Toy 70 View Post
I am not sure about the discussion, but I believe thee CSM for 70 has them pointing to the left.
It would make no sense to have them both pointing to the left if the orientation affected the ride height - they would both need to point either inboard or outboard to be even side-to-side.
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Old December 7th, 2016, 05:48 PM
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Originally Posted by Fun71 View Post
It would make no sense to have them both pointing to the left if the orientation affected the ride height - they would both need to point either inboard or outboard to be even side-to-side.
They can't both springs are the same they have to have a left and right to both point in or out.

I figured it was to reduce axle wrap up, Iirc the end of the pigtail sat at the backside of the axle, if it was at the front side of the axle wrap could occur easier as the coil is rising away from the axle in the back....I could be way off here tho that's just speculation on my part!
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Old December 7th, 2016, 05:56 PM
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Here are the pages I was referencing. Would it affect ride height, I do not know. This is section 4-1, notice the note in the upper right of the fig. 4-2, And instruction 1.a. on page 4-3




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Old December 8th, 2016, 07:04 AM
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What I ran into is some of the upper isolators aren't made correctly, so they don't seat on the frame. If one side slipped in, but the other hung up, you'd easily get 1" difference. I think the Raybestos isolators were dramatically too small to fit the frame protrusions. I'm using UMI's poly isolators now, but they can still slip out of place while raising the axle.
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