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Old 01-24-2009, 05:06 PM
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Four link suspension

I'm looking for some advice on this subject. I have a 56 F100 Ford truck which is nearly complete. I've been thinking about going with the four link suspension kit in the rear. CPP has nice kit under $1,000 which comes with the coilover shocks, etc. I currently have the stock leaf suspension with a Ford 9 inch rearend. My goal is to be able to lower the rear slightly as well without sacrificing the ride. Before I spend the cash for this kit, I thought I'd hear some opinions on the four link system. Pro and cons.

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Old 01-24-2009, 07:19 PM
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I run a 4 bar in the rear of both my 32 Fords ... riding on coil springs in a fabricated coil spring mount system.



I like them. I had a very similar setup under my 56 Ford F-100 Big Window pickup years ago and it also rode great.

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Old 01-24-2009, 09:03 PM
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Triangulated four link or parallel?
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Old 01-25-2009, 09:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aosborn
Triangulated four link or parallel?
Great question? The kit I'm looking at appears to a parallel four link. I heard the parallel is easier to install, but may be wrong. What is the difference in application, or performance and ride? The set up in Deuce's picture is the triangular set up? I know his set up took much modification to the frame etc. which I'm not planning on getting into.
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Old 01-25-2009, 11:24 AM
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For a street car, the parallel (in plan view) 4link is undesirable UNLESS the upper and lower links (in side view) are also parallel. If this is not the case, there will be suspension bind during cornering.

Deuce's setup is a triangulated 4link and...with its rubber bushings...is a very sweet street setup!

An inexpensive alternative which will meet your needs is that which is called a 4bar . This will not bind in cornering and is relatively easy to install. I would recommend that, if possible, you angle the 4bar up from the rear with a tangent equal to the center of gravity height divided by the wheelbase to avoid excessive squat when accelerating.
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Old 01-25-2009, 02:49 PM
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I agree with BillyShope, but if going to all the trouble of new rear suspension I would go for the triangulated setup. Much better for the street. Even the parallel 4 bar will exhibit some binding while cornering or on one wheel bumps. I always like to install on one end of every link/bar an end that will swivel, like a Johnny Joint or something similar.

My personal favorite though is a three link with a panhard bar for freedom of movement.

Andy
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Old 01-26-2009, 07:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aosborn
I agree with BillyShope, but if going to all the trouble of new rear suspension I would go for the triangulated setup. Much better for the street.
I got the impression that he was more inclined to go the kit route, which is why I suggested the 4bar. Like you, I prefer the 3link. There's no reason to build a 4 legged stool, when 3 legs are sufficient. It's the KISS principle. And, unless a triangulated 4link kit is available, the 3link is much easier to fab.

Quote:
Originally Posted by aosborn
Even the parallel 4 bar will exhibit some binding while cornering or on one wheel bumps.
Andy
I don't follow you on this. Lines through the upper and lower pivots...right and left...remain parallel throughout suspension travel in cornering. You always have bushing bind, of course. Can't get away from it, even with a 3link.
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Old 01-26-2009, 08:40 AM
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Billy is right here. I am looking for a kit and ease of installation. I don't have the resource to do a major modification to the frame, etc nor the costs of having someone do that. My main purpose is to get rid of the leaf springs and the pin type system that is in it. It was nice 50 years ago, but needs to be updated. My other purpose is to lower the rear of the truck slightly. I've already done what I can with the leaf system to lower it. The 3 bar may even work for me as well. I appreciate everyone's advice. Gives me something to think about.
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Old 01-26-2009, 09:50 AM
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I don't follow you on this. Lines through the upper and lower pivots...right and left...remain parallel throughout suspension travel in cornering. You always have bushing bind, of course. Can't get away from it, even with a 3link.
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The point I was trying to make was that all types of link suspensions will bind to a degree without some type of swivel joint in at least one end. What I find consistently is that jam nuts come loose on links with urethane bushings on both ends. That indicates to me that the bushing has reached it's deflection limit and is twisting the whole end, causing the jam nut to loosen. If an end is run in that condition too long, it will beat the threads out and could cause an unsafe condition. I don't recommend heim joints to be used on the street typically, but there are some other great alternatives.
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Old 01-26-2009, 07:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aosborn
The point I was trying to make was that all types of link suspensions will bind to a degree without some type of swivel joint in at least one end.
Yes, this is the "bushing bind" I mentioned.

Quote:
Originally Posted by aosborn
I don't recommend heim joints to be used on the street typically, but there are some other great alternatives.
Very good advice! Heims are fine for throttle linkage, but their value in suspension links is questionable, at best.
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Old 01-27-2009, 12:23 PM
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4-link

Hey I offer a fully adj. 4 link set up for the 56 f-100
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Old 01-27-2009, 05:52 PM
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I used a four bar kit from Art Morrison for the rear of my 1935 sedan. With a properly placed panhard bar and the right coil-over springs it works very well, rides decent and is very strong. I added a sway bar kit from Welder Series and it really helps to control the body roll when cornering. It hooked up pretty good on the several occasions I got to run at the dragstrip as well.
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