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 Page 1 of 2 12
Username Post: Complete rebuild of front cross member and suspension        (Topic#218134)
DZAUTO 
Senior Member
Posts: 8425

Loc: Mustang, OK, USA
Reg: 12-25-99
05-31-09 11:51 AM - Post#1708181    

This is going to take a long time to put together -------------- maybe all night.
But here is where we start


And here is where we finish.


The frontend rebuild in the following pictures is from a 57 Corvette which appeared to have never been rebuilt. Also, it is very representative of all 49-54 Chevy passenger cars and 53-62 Corvettes.
First of all, I'm not going to get down into the small details. Either the Corvette ST12 or the 49-54 Chevy passenger car manual have excellent instructions and illustrations. If you don't have one or both of them, then get them, especially if you plan to do most of the work, manitenance and repairs to the car yourself.


For a total teardown and rebuild, one of the first things to do is remove the coil springs. A 3ft length of 1/2in all thread rod with flat washers and nuts is a very cheap tool and works well to compress the springs.




I lock two nuts together on one end of the rod which allows holding the rod securely with a wrench. Although, if desired, just one nut could be welded to one end of the rod.


Once the spring is compressed, the LOWER-OUTER shaft (or bolt if you prefer) can be removed to seperate the spindle support from the lower A-frame.





Prior to seperating the spindle support from the lower A-frame, it may be desired to seperate the spindle from the spindle support. It really doesn't matter if the spindle/support are seperated at this time, or after the support is removed from the A-frames and then seperated on the workbench, it's a toss up.


After removal of the spindles and spindle supports and a little cleaning, these yellow and orange paint markings were discovered on the parts. These paint markings were obviously applied on the parts prior to assembly (probably after final machining of individual parts) and prior to application of black paint (which of course would conceal the paint markings).






Also, after removal of the (stock) spings, this white paint markings was revealed.


This orange paint was also revealed on the cross member.


Once the cross member is completely disassembled, all that remains are the UPPER-INNER cross shafts, which are VERY tightly threaded into the cross member.


Examine the threads on each end of the shafts. If they are worn like this, then the threads inside bushings will also be worn and the shaft/bushings need to be replaced.


There are essentially two ways to remove these shafts. Either with a BIG pipe wrench, which will permanently damage the threads on one end, or, using the tool shown in the manual.




There is no need to search all over trying to find the tool. The tool for removing/installing the the upper-inner shafts is already at your finger tips. The LOWER-OUTER bushing and shaft makes a perfect tool. Screw the outer-lower shaft/bushing onto the REAR of the upper-inner shaft and screw it out of the cross member torward the FRONT. If the upper-inner shaft is still tight in the cross member (ideally it will be), then it may take some muscle to get it to start unscrewing from the cross member.


It's not uncommon to discover that the upper-inner shaft is sloppy loose in the welded-in bushings due to poor past maintenance (failure to keep the suspension joints greased).


If it is discovered that the hole(s) in these bushings are enlarged, then the new shaft will never be tight in the cross member. These bushings are available for replacement from Paragon. To replace these bushings, drill out the spot welds to remove the old bushings and weld in new bushings per the instructions which come with the new bushings from Paragon. NOTICE: THE THREADED HOLES IN THE BUSHINGS ARE TWO DIFFERENT SIZES (as well as the threads on the new cross shafts)! The bushing with the smaller hole goes to the rear of the cross member and the bushing with the larger hole goes to the front!
If needed, this repair must be done before proceeding any further with the rebuild.
If the rebuild is to be done with the cross member on the car, this particular repair may be quite challenging to install and weld in place the rear bushing. Thus, it will be imperative to have access to a welder prior to teardown of the suspension parts.


Another common area of wear is the LOWER-OUTER shaft/bushing. Here is a well worn shaft and bushing. All of these parts are available from the vendors, either individually, or as complete rebuild kits. Sometimes, removal of the old bushing from the spindle support can be quite difficult. It may be necessary to soak it for long periods and/or use heat. But I've never seen one that couldn't be removed from the lower hole of the spindle support.






Once all the parts are broken down, the next step is cleaning, painting and re-assembly of the cross member/suspension. This becomes a personal decision on the part of the owner. The following is what was done to this 57 Corvette cross member/suspension.
First, every part had as much gunk scraped off as possible. Then a VERY strong commercial degreaser was used (oven cleaner also makes an excellent cleaner) and allowed to soak for 15-30min. Some areas required 2-3 applications to get down to bare metal (often much of the parts will have surface rust). Once the parts are cleaned, I soak them in a big barrel of muratic acid (Hydorchloric acid) which is available in gallon jugs at any hardware store (Lowes, Home Depot, Aces, etc) for $5-7/gal. I dilute the acid about 1:3 with water.


After removing parts from the acid, they are THOROUGHLY rinsed off with a power washer (BE SURE to rinse well inside the cross member) using VERY hot water (my hot water heater is turned up to the max). After thorough rinsing, all parts are blasted to finally get them to bare metal.

AFTER ACID DIPPING, AND BEFORE BLASTING


SOME PARTS BLASTED


ALL PARTS BLASTED AND READY FOR PAINT, POWDER COAT, ETC


One process that may be required prior to paint/powder coating, is fitting the bushings for the kingpins into the spindles. The bushings are supposed to be FLOATING, NOT pressed-in!!! At one time, replacement kingpin/bushing kits were furnished with floating bushings. But the last several kits that I've purchased did NOT have floating bushings. A floating bushing, with LIGHT lubrication, should just be a slip fit into the bores of the spindle. None of the recent ones I've bought were!
I've not found a satisfactory methof of reducing the outer diameter of the replacement bushings, so, I devised a simple method of honing the bores of the spindles.
I use a 3-stone wheel cylinder hone and hone the bores IN WATER using an AIR powered drill (please don't use an elec drill!). Submerging the spindle in a 5gal bucket of water while honing works fine. I do it under running water. I continually hone and check the bushing for a slip fit, until a "just right" slip fit is achieved. The bushing should not drop through the bore, but with light finger pressure, it should gently slide through the bore.




After everything is disassembled, cleaned, acid dipped, blasted and any repairs are completed, the parts (per individual preference) are now ready for painting, powder coating or whatever you choose.
These parts were powder coated semi-gloss black. Some areas need to be covered with tape such as spindle ends, threaded areas, etc. Most powder coating businesses will do this as directed.






Now its time to begin assembly of all the finished parts. MOST of the assembly process is covered very well in the ST12/49-54 pass car manuals. Much of what will be covered is somewhat supplemental.

The first parts to install are the new, upper-inner shafts.
NOTICE: THESE SHAFTS HAVE 2 DISTINCT SETS OF THREADS (inner and outer).
The finer, outer threads are for the bushings (big nuts screwed into the upper A-frames), and the lesser defined inner threads are screwed into the bushings in the cross member. New shafts have approximately .008 oversize threads for the cross member holes, thus, they are VERY HARD to screw into the cross member. If the old, removed bushing/shaft are excessively worn, then each of the new bushing/shaft can be used as an installation tool. Only use ONE new bushing/shaft to install each upper-inner shaft, then use the other new bushing/shaft to install the other new upper-inner shaft. Screw the lower-outer shaft into the bushing far enough to allow the bushing to screw onto MOST of the threads of the new upper-outer shaft. REMEMBER, the SMALL portion of the threads which screw into the cross member goes in first FROM THE FRONT! THIS IS CRITICALLY IMPORTANT!!
For installing the new shafts, use an old lower-outer bushing and shaft.




As mentioned above, installing the new upper-inner shafts is a VERY tight fit since they are oversize. Install them dry, do not use any lubricant. These shafts need to fit so tight that there will not be any possible chance of them turning in the cross member bushings.




A breaker bar and "cheater" may be required to get the shafts installed.



Once the shafts are installed most of the way, start measuring each end to assure they have equal length threads protruding from each side. Again, critically important!




Little things, such as installing the new rubber bumpers for the upper A-frames, are good to do now. Spray a little silicon on the end, insert it at an angle into the hole and with a pushing, twisting motion, twist it into the hole.






At each joint, there is some kind of rubber seal which goes over the shaft threads to keep crud out of the shaft/bushing seals. The rebuild kits may or may not come with good seals and Paragon has a kit containing all the needed seals for a complete frontend rebuild.


Prior to installing the upper A-frame, slide a seal over each end of the shaft threads, slip one end of the A-frame over the shaft then slip the other end of the A-frame over the shaft. With the seals in place, it may take some concentrated tugging on the other end of the A-frame to get it pulled over the shaft.


Coat the threads of the shaft with grease, then start each bushing evenly over the threaded shaft until the ends of the bushings contact the A-frame, making sure the A-frame is centered. Where the bushing screws into the A-frame, it needs to be dry, not lubed. Then screw each bushing, a little at a time, all the way into the A-frame, continually checking that the A-frame remains centered.


ALL grease fittings for the front end are straight, EXCEPT the REAR, upper A-frame grease fitting. It is either a 45deg or 90deg fitting (I've observed both styles over the years). Install the upper, rear fitting so that it points downward and slightly outward when the A-frame is in a normal loaded position.


Installing the lower A-frame can be done by either attaching the cross shaft to the cross member, or, by installing the cross shaft to the lower A-frame and then bolting the shaft to the cross member.
I prefer to install the shaft to the cross member first-----WITH NEW GRADE 8 BOLTS!


Similar to installing the upper A-frame, place one seal on one end of the shaft, then slip one end of the lower A-frame over the shaft (the end without a seal) and then slip the other end over the shaft (it's often nearly impossible to pull the other end over the shaft if both seals are installed. I have found it easier to only install one seal, slip on the A-frame, then grease and slip on the second seal over the shaft and CAREFULLY and PATIENTLY poke the seal through the gap between the A-frame hole and the shaft with a screw driver. Apply some grease onto the threads of each end of the shaft and start the bushings onto each end of the shaft, and again, make sure the lower A-frame is centered. So not use any lube on the bushings where they screw into the lower A-frame. The new bushings may screw in very tightly, that's how they should be. Screw them in all the way.


After the upper and lower A-frames are installed on their shafts, install grease fittings, shoot some grease into the bushings and work the A-frames back up and down and shoot in some more grease. Now is also a good time to install the rubber bumper in the lower A-frame if not already installed.

Now it's time to install the springs and the spindle supports.
I prefer to first install the UPPER end of the spindle support in the upper A-frame with the upper-outer excentric shaft and bushings. The upper-outer shaft has a hole all the way through it and one end of the hole has a hex for turning with an Allen wrench. Only one of the upper-outer bushings has a hole for a grease fitting. The hole in the shaft with the hex and the bushing with a hole go toward the REAR. Slip the lock bolt for the upper-outer shaft in position to keep the shaft centered in the spindle support screw on the nut and lock washer loosely. At this time, I only screw on the upper bushings loosely onto the shaft to allow flexibility for positioning and installing the lower-outer shaft. If installing a new lower-outer bushing/shaft, the bushing should already be installed in the spindle support.

The springs only go in ONE WAY, up and down and rotational. The flat end of the springs goes up into the pocket of the cross member and the lower end of each spring is indexed in the lower A-frame with the end of the coil positioned just over the drain hole.
Slip the length of all thread through the lower A-frame, spring and the hole in the cross member for the upper end of the shock and begin pulling everything together.


It can be a challenge, but a seal needs to be installed on EACH SIDE of the lower end of the spindle support for the lower-outer shaft. I prefer to partially screw in the lower shaft then hand one seal on the end of the shaft, then slip lower end of the spindle support, along with the second seal, between the holes of the A-frame and then finish screwing in the shaft. The lower-outer shaft can go in either from the front or rear. From the majority of cars I've observed, and illustrations in the manual, it definitely appears the lower-outer shaft screws in from the rear with the grease fitting facing the rear. Sometimes, after the lower shaft has gone all the way through the spindle support, it may or may not want ot properly screw into the other side of the A-frame. A large C-clamp can be used to squeeze the A-frame together to assist in getting the shaft to properly screw into the other side of the A-frame. Screw the shaft in completely and very tightly, then screw on the lock nut very tight.
Once both ends of the spindle support are scured, the upper bushings can be completely screwed into the upper A-frame and an Allen wrench can be inserted to center the spindle support.
Now the length of all thread can be removed.



The final part of assembly is installing the spindles onto the spindle supports with new kingpins and bushings. Earlier, honing the bores for a slip of the bushings was explained. Each bushing has a hole for grease to enter the bushing. This hole is positioned in the spindle bores opposite of the hole for the grease fitting. When bushings get greased, the grease is supposed to go all around the bushing and then into the inside to lube the kingpin.
To make it easier to assemble the spindle, kingpins, bushings and spindle support, take an old kingpin and cut it in half (I use a die grinder and thin cutoff wheel to cut one).


A test fit of the spindle, bushings, kingpin, thrust bearing and spindle support may be required 2-3 times to get it right. The BOOK instructs to do this one way, I was taught another way. After years of experience, I prefer my way for a good reason.
First, pack the thrust bearings with grease.
Place the spindle with the bushings inserted (lightly lube the inside and outside diameters of the bushings) over the knuckle of the spindle support, slide a kingpin all the way through the assembly until it protrudes from the upper end enough to allow the thrust bearing to be installed between the knuckle and lower end of the spindle. The thrust bearing is installed with the gap between inner and outer races facing down. Once the bearing is properly positioned, tap the kingpin back in all the way. This is where the book and I differ. The book shows inserting a feeler gauge to check the gap. If the gap is more than .006, a shim is needed. I was taught (by a factory trained Chevy mechanic, my uncle) that once the spindle is assembled to the spindle support, it should be somewhat stiff to rotate the spindle. If it rotates easily, it's too loose and a shim is needed. Usually one, and no more than two shims are sufficient. The shims go on the upper end and the thrust bearing goes on the bottom.
If it is determined that a shim is needed, this is where the 1/2 of a kingpin is needed.
Remove the kingpin and pull the spindle off. Insert a shim between the upper bore of the spindle and the knuckle of the support. Slide the 1/2 kingpin in from above (may be necessary to remove the lockbolt from the upper-outer shaft) to hold the shim in place. Insert the bearing in place. It should be necessary to tap the bearing in place using a soft hammer/mallet). Slide the new kingpin in all the way from below, pushing the 1/2 piece of kingpin out the top. Check to see if the spindle is now stiff to rotate back and forth. If the spindle is now stiff to rotate, you're good to go. If it is still kind of easy to rotate, a second shim is needed. Disassemble and install a second shim as above. When the kingpin is inserted for the final time, notice that the flat in the kingpin will be aligned with the hole in the knuckle of the spindle support so that the kingpin lockbolt can be installed.


One side took one shim and the other side took 2 shims.


Everything assembled.


Once the spindle, kingpin, bushings, shims and bearing is assembled to the spindle support and you're satisfied the spindle rotates with the correct amount of stiffness (this is a subjective "feel" thing gained from experienced), it's time to install the plugs and snap rings in each end of the bores.
After installing each plug (the convex side faces outward), but BEFORE installing the lockring, lightly tap the plug to expand it tightly in its groove.








MOST kingpin/bushing kits contain two thin caps. This cap ONLY goes on the top of the spindle bore. It is necessary to gently tap it in place (they do not fit very tightly) and be careful not to deform it or it will never stay in place!


If all the grease fittings have not been screwed in place, do this now and thoroughly grease everything. After the assembled frontend is installed in the car and the weight of the car is on the suspension, bounce the car a few times and go back and grease everything.
I'm sure I've left out something,
Feel free to contact me with questions.




 
56sedandelivery 
Dedicated Enthusiast
Posts: 5250
56sedandelivery
Age: 66
Loc: Everett, Wa.
Reg: 02-26-08
05-31-09 02:33 PM - Post#1708268    
    In response to DZAUTO

WOW! Very impressive. Just one question; how do you keep your hands so clean, or is that a "hand model"? Just kidding! The nephew and I were working on the 51 Business Coupe yesterday, and the front suspension is so grease and Texas red clay encrusted, it's going to be a job to get it clean. Hopefully it'll be in resonalbly good shape once all the crud's off. Butch/56sedandelivery.




 
arnieg141 
Dedicated Enthusiast
Posts: 6355
arnieg141
Loc: nj
Reg: 10-06-08
05-31-09 02:58 PM - Post#1708274    
    In response to 56sedandelivery

TOM I JUST PRINTED YOUR BOOK..EVERY THING I WANTED TO KNOW ABOUT MY FRONT END AND WAS AFRAID TO ASK.. THANKS TOM FROM US ALL

GET ER DONE .. AS I GET OLDER I LIKE FAST CARS I CAN STILL DRIVE. AND VERY SLOW WOMEN I CAN CATCH while still able..arnie garrison


 
DZAUTO 
Senior Member
Posts: 8425

Loc: Mustang, OK, USA
Reg: 12-25-99
05-31-09 03:13 PM - Post#1708283    
    In response to arnieg141

I need to correct some wording errors, but UNFORTUNATELY this stupid site will only allow editing for a very short time.
That's one of the major things that I do not like about CT forum!!!!!



 
arnieg141 
Dedicated Enthusiast
Posts: 6355
arnieg141
Loc: nj
Reg: 10-06-08
05-31-09 03:16 PM - Post#1708287    
    In response to DZAUTO

TOM AS LONG AS YOU PUT IN ADDING THE PHOTO'S .WE DON'T CARE ABOUT SPELLING ARNIE

GET ER DONE .. AS I GET OLDER I LIKE FAST CARS I CAN STILL DRIVE. AND VERY SLOW WOMEN I CAN CATCH while still able..arnie garrison


 
Mike JW 
"6th Year" Gold Supporting Member
Posts: 1265
Mike JW
Loc: Arroyo Grande, CA
Reg: 01-19-06
05-31-09 04:51 PM - Post#1708362    
    In response to DZAUTO

Very impressive, great pictures and information. THANKS. Mike



 
Keith_Knox 
Moderator and "16th Year" Gold Supporting Member
Posts: 5697
Keith_Knox
Age: 76
Loc: Napa, Ca USA
Reg: 04-02-00
05-31-09 07:26 PM - Post#1708487    
    In response to DZAUTO

I am PTing Pat Gizz as he is the moderator and asking him to make this a sticky.

1948 Chevy Fleetmaster Coupe Purchased 6/2010. Stock with rebuilt 52 216 installed May 1966.
1946 Chevy 1/2 ton pickup, stock. Purchased 11/18/17.
1962 Ranchero Purchased 4/2017 221 V8 Automatic.
2013 F150 Crew Cab


 
OldDad 
Senior Member
Posts: 1923
OldDad
Age: 74
Loc: The Great NorthWest
Reg: 06-06-04
05-31-09 08:02 PM - Post#1708507    
    In response to DZAUTO

Tom great information as always. You've done an outstanding job on the photo's and explanation. I think the best manual for photo's is the 49 car manual. I'm filing this in my Tom Parson's tech file as we speak!


The S.O.B. from the factory...
71 1/2 ton, 64 Chevelle SS, 57 2dr Hardtop, 57 2dr Sedan, 57 Corvette, 52 2dr Hardtop, 52 2dr Sedan, and now a 49 Plymouth Coupe, 1930 Model "A", 1934 Ford Truck, all Chevy powered of course.


 
eplantage 
Frequent Contributor
Posts: 2068

Loc: Southern MN
Reg: 03-15-04
06-01-09 06:09 AM - Post#1708648    
    In response to OldDad

Thanks a bunch Tom!

Age: 63 at the moment
1950 Chevrolet Sedan Delivery
1953 BelAir Convertible Project
2002 Heritage Springer FLSTSI
1930 Model A Standard Coupe


 
DrScotti 
Contributor
Posts: 332
DrScotti
Age: 46
Loc: St. Louis, MO
Reg: 09-24-07
06-02-09 04:12 PM - Post#1709808    
    In response to eplantage

Thanks, that is GREAT and well documented!

1951 Fleetline Deluxe
St. Louis, Missouri
www.facebook.com/StLouisVCCA
www.vcca.org


The best thing about the future is that it comes one day at a time.


 
crisman 
Forum Newbie
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crisman
Age: 39
Loc: México City
Reg: 03-12-07
07-10-09 07:46 PM - Post#1732590    
    In response to DrScotti

Thanks for all the time and info you post

I only read the post and want to put my hands on my suspension jejejej

crisman

EN ESTA VIDA HAY QUE SER AMIGO DE DIOS Y DEL DIABLO >:p


 
DavidDeLuxe 
Contributor
Posts: 206
DavidDeLuxe
Age: 31
Loc: Grayslake, Illinois
Reg: 09-20-09
02-12-10 01:09 PM - Post#1861451    
    In response to DZAUTO

Sir, you are a pillar of the CT community, and this post and many like it are the reason I keep coming back to these boards. I'm getting ready to rebuild my '51 DeLuxe Coupe front suspension, and I'll be referring back to this guide. Thanks!

R. David Carlson, Jr.
---------------------
'51 Styleline DeLuxe 2 Door Sedan w. '59 235 & '54 PG trans

'84 Corvette 406ci sbc ACCEL 1000CFM Superram DFI & TH400



 
fbama73 
Contributor
Posts: 303
fbama73
Age: 49
Loc: Indianapolis
Reg: 04-17-10
07-31-10 08:50 PM - Post#1953703    
    In response to DavidDeLuxe

Tom, I greatly appreciate this post. It is and will continue to be a huge help to me.



I really mean it!

My '51 Styleline Spl. build: http://51kustom.blogspot.com/


 
CrazyKliev 
Forum Newbie
Posts: 47
CrazyKliev
Loc: Manitoba, Canada
Reg: 07-30-10
08-04-10 07:45 PM - Post#1955933    
    In response to DZAUTO

Thanks for the hard work for this thread. Huge help!

1951 Styleline De Luxe 3Spd
1952 Styleline De Luxe Power Glide


 
Rusty Heaps 
Forum Newbie
Posts: 71

Loc: Knoxville,TN
Reg: 06-29-11
06-29-11 10:53 AM - Post#2108965    
    In response to CrazyKliev

Wow! I just joined and what do I find right off the bat, but this thread. how fortunate. I just picked up a complete front cross member, suspension, and steering, then to have all the info I need at my fingertips.Thank a million!Great pics too.

I invest my money in precious metals, mostly rust!


 
Styleline 52 
Forum Newbie
Posts: 95

Loc: Petawawa, Ontario
Reg: 06-28-11
10-30-11 07:08 AM - Post#2152594    
    In response to Rusty Heaps

This post on front end rebuilt is awesome

However i am trying at this very moment to instal the upper control arm shaft, from front to rear as mentioned but as i get to the inner shaft thread its just spin. Its not bitting into the metal.....

Any suggestion

Thanks



 
MARTINSR 
Very Senior Member
Posts: 1485

Loc: San Francisco bay area Ca...
Reg: 02-14-02
06-21-12 11:58 AM - Post#2239844    
    In response to Styleline 52

I just posted over in the C1 Corvette forum on this subject but found this GREAT thread and thought maybe someone can answer my questions.

First off, what a GREAT job you did on this How-to rebuild the front end on these cars, very nice and helpful to a lot of people.

My question is just what is different between the 49-54 passenger car front end and a 53-55 Vette? Is it basically every part is identical and will innerchange or are a few different? What about the steering box? As I remember there was something about steering arms at the spindle being different but I forget now.

This is all for a future project that I am collecting info and parts for. Thanks alot to anyone who helps me out.

Brian

Fan of everything that moves human beings.


 
dave501 
Forum Newbie
Posts: 2

Reg: 06-17-12
06-24-12 05:04 AM - Post#2240694    
    In response to MARTINSR

Tom:

When bolting the completed crossmember back onto the frame, are there shims required between the top of the crossmember and the frame? There is some Corvette literature out there that refers to 'tapered aluminum caster shims'. Are these required for a '51 Styleline? Your crossmember rebuild post is awesome, by the way.

Dave



 
DZAUTO 
Senior Member
Posts: 8425

Loc: Mustang, OK, USA
Reg: 12-25-99
07-07-12 08:54 PM - Post#2245590    
    In response to MARTINSR

Brian,
I just now saw your question about the difference between 49-54 pass car and early Vette frontends.
Not much.
The steering linkage is the MAIN difference, and the Vette linkage is somewhat superior over the pass car linkage.
The center steering arms are the BIG differences. The pass cars used a mounting bracket that attaches to the cross member with 3 bolts (2 on bottom and one on top). The Vettes have a bracket that is attached with 4 bolts on the bottom.
The pass car center steering arm is hinged with a kingpin/bushing setup, whereas the Vettes use a big ball bearing (shown below).
The angle of the L&R steering arms (at the backing plates) is different between pass cars and Vettes.
The pass cars have one tie rod (left) that is adjustable and one that is solid.
The Vettes use adjustable tie rods on both sides.
The spindle supports (upright) on 49-52 pass cars and 53-62 Vettes are the same (spindles are the same on all). The 53-54 spindle supports on cars has the knuckle for the kingpin positioned about 1in higher (shown below).
Two upgrades for pass cars are to add the Vette steering parts and add a 53-54 steering column/turn signals to 49-52 cars.










 
DZAUTO 
Senior Member
Posts: 8425

Loc: Mustang, OK, USA
Reg: 12-25-99
07-07-12 08:55 PM - Post#2245592    
    In response to dave501

Dave,
ONLY the late 56-62 Vettes got the tapered shims between the cross member and the frame rails. I doubt that there would be any benefit to adding them to a pass car.



 
whiskey1954 
Contributor
Posts: 804
whiskey1954
Loc: central north carolina
Reg: 12-07-08
07-08-12 05:51 AM - Post#2245652    
    In response to DZAUTO

replacing the solid tierod with an adjustable one be an advantage for alignment



 
jasic 
Forum Newbie
Posts: 1

Reg: 07-18-12
07-18-12 01:13 PM - Post#2249582    
    In response to DZAUTO

Hey,so im doing this same rebuild for a customers 49' and im having troubles getting the lower a arm onto the mount with the new seal grease zerk nut and inner locking nut,is there a trick?



 
pvflash 
Forum Newbie
Posts: 2

Reg: 07-29-12
07-29-12 03:20 AM - Post#2253231    
    In response to DZAUTO

Tom,

I have completely rebuilt the front suspension on a 59 Corvette. I wish I had read your article first!.
My problem(I think) is the passenger spindle is at about 15 degrees up from the floor of my shop. I would think it should be perpendicular. The driver side is almost perpendicular. I did both sides exactly the same. After closer examination the shock/spring tower is app. 1/2 inch nearer the frame than the other side. It does not look like it is bent anywhere. Should both shock towers be the same distance from the frame? What is the solution? Thanks in advance



 
DZAUTO 
Senior Member
Posts: 8425

Loc: Mustang, OK, USA
Reg: 12-25-99
07-29-12 05:28 AM - Post#2253259    
    In response to pvflash

The only thing that comes to mind is that somehow the front cross member is ever so slightly bent on one side (possibly from a wreck in the past). And if it is bent, I don't know how to bend it back. Never done that one before.



 
pvflash 
Forum Newbie
Posts: 2

Reg: 07-29-12
07-29-12 12:27 PM - Post#2253389    
    In response to DZAUTO

Thanks Tom

It was wrecked on that side when I bought it back in 1975. When I was driving it years ago I did not notice a problem with tire wear or steering. However, it will not align as is I am sure. I guess a new cross member. Do you think I should reuse those new upper inner shafts I just struggled to screw into that cross member or get new ones?



 
Keith_Knox 
Moderator and "16th Year" Gold Supporting Member
Posts: 5697
Keith_Knox
Age: 76
Loc: Napa, Ca USA
Reg: 04-02-00
10-16-12 08:26 PM - Post#2280424    
    In response to DZAUTO

What is the weight of the complete cross member with drums on it?

1948 Chevy Fleetmaster Coupe Purchased 6/2010. Stock with rebuilt 52 216 installed May 1966.
1946 Chevy 1/2 ton pickup, stock. Purchased 11/18/17.
1962 Ranchero Purchased 4/2017 221 V8 Automatic.
2013 F150 Crew Cab


 
Part Timer 
Forum Newbie
Posts: 62

Reg: 08-01-11
12-27-12 02:15 PM - Post#2301516    
    In response to Keith_Knox

I have a quick question. I am taking the fro t end apart on my 52. On the lower outer pin are both side right hand threads? I have a real problem getting the front on loose and just want to make sure I am going the right way. Thanks



 
DZAUTO 
Senior Member
Posts: 8425

Loc: Mustang, OK, USA
Reg: 12-25-99
09-19-13 08:21 AM - Post#2383586    
    In response to dave501

.



Edited by DZAUTO on 09-19-13 08:23 AM. Reason for edit: No reason given.

 
Happy Belair 
Frequent Contributor
Posts: 1225

Loc: Central Oklahoma
Reg: 10-29-06
10-25-13 06:55 AM - Post#2393978    
    In response to DZAUTO

excellant thread and series of Pics you have supplied Tom.
Thanks. Between this thread and the owners manuel I will have mostly no problems with my rebuild.
One quick question thou.

on my shock tower one of the shock bushings that is pressed into the upper tower is missing.
I seriously doubt those are reporduced and have looked at the blown up diagrams that are available.

would you have any suggestions.?

The front assembly appears in very good condition and certainly is rebuildible with this one tiny little exception.

I have looked on the one on the other side and cant really tell if it is a press or a weld fitting.

Its the upper shock tower steel bushing that the shock rubber bushing fits into..........

54 Belair 1067DTX, Roman red 327 Turbo350
54 Belair Hardtop, just bod off frame,work in progress
54 210 Station wagon Father in laws pass me down


 
67Spirit 
Silver Supporting Member
Posts: 58
67Spirit
Loc: Washington NC
Reg: 03-03-14
03-07-14 02:19 PM - Post#2433688    
    In response to DZAUTO

Tom,
This post is fantastic! I know it's been here a while, but from a new guy....
THANK YOU!!!!
I just purchased the vette bell crank and I'm getting new adjustable tie rods ... will anything else need to be converted for this swap or will all the remaining stock parts work on my '49?
Tim in NC
http://s1342.photobucket.com/user/mrmach170/librar ...

Tim in NC
49 Styleline Deluxe, w/'54 235 I-6 3sp man
67 Mustang
84 Fiat Spider 2000
96 Chevrolet Caprice Classic (DD)
00 Chev Z-71
04 Sport Trac
http://s1342.photobucket.com/user/mrmach170/librar ...


 
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