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Old 12-31-2001, 07:41 PM
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Post front suspension 38 DeSoto

After all the years of reading about street rods I've finally got the kids raised far enough along to have my own. This is my first street rod so I need lots of help from start to finish. Like mostback yard builders I have a skimpy budget but want to get in on the fun just the same. I have a 1938 DeSoto, suicide doors,staight six, humpback slit rear window. I now have the body completely off ready to work on chassis. Don't quite know where to go to from here so I'm starting with the front suspension. Thought about subframing the front with a camaro or nova. I can get one nearby for 75 bucks. Don't quite know wher to measure from to see if it will fit. Or will it be cheaper and easier to put new A arms etc. on without doing a $2500 mustang II suspension like in magazine ads? Would like to have air and power steering too. Am cosidering getting rid of the straight 6cyl in favor of a v-6 or small chevy v-8. Sorry guys, I'm a green horn but haved loved working on it every minute so far! Can anyone help me?

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Old 01-01-2002, 07:47 AM
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Yep first thing you do if your going to change out the front suspension(even the rear end),put the body back on. Next if you have never done it before ,go with the mustangII They can be 12-1500 bucks now ,2500 is a pretty good custom made deal(not mustangII).You need to hang a rear end first and then set the ride heights to what you want the car to look like.Now you install the front end with out springs with the lower a-trays level.But if the body is off you cant know were to put the wheels. Before any finish welding is done on the rear or frontend you MUST put the fenders back on and look at it to see if the tires are centered.Never go by some one elses car or measurements. I also would recommend not using the FAT product. Good Luck and it will be a neat car!!! Keep Us posted.
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Old 06-28-2005, 10:12 AM
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Getting Started

Hey great car! I have a 38 Plymouth Coupe. One piece of advice. If you use a mustang II kit from someone like Fatman Fabrications (They make kits for cars like ours). Make sure you mount the upper control arm mounts back far enough to give you plenty of adjustment for Caster. Take into consideration any rake that you would like to build into the car. Another words if you want the car to sit with a 3 degree rake in the front then you will need at least 5 degrees of Caster. The slots in the upper control arm mounts give you some movement but make sure before you weld them that you can get all the caster and camber adjustments you will need + some. Take your time and get it right.

And GOOD LUCK! Have fun!
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Old 06-28-2005, 10:36 AM
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installing a frame clip

Once you have decided on the clip you wish to use..and the thing to measure is the hub to hub dimension and get one that is close to the original..You can measure the hub to hub on the rear and use that as a reference..have I confused you yet?

Then draw a centerline on the garage floor and two lines perpindicular to that representing the center lines of the front and rear axles..thes lines shoudl be laid down with a sharpy or something so they do not get erased during construction..

Then you can plumb from these lines to make sure you are plumb square and level so to speak while building...

block the car at finished ride height and then roll the clip into place..it will become readily apparent where you need to trim and just how you need to do the splice of the new clip to the old frame..

You can make temporary "struts" to replace the springs while the car is under construction..

I like to maintain the stock ride height of the front crossmember and "channel the car" to the desired ride height..Saves some bucks for one and I feel the ride and handling is better with the front end clip setting at desin ride height for what ever it is that you wind up using..

Study study study..and you can do this..

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