Help with Lowering
I am new here and a novice hotrodder. I have a '63 Thunderbird that I would like to lower a few inches but an unsure about the best/proper way to do so.
I have read things about cutting coils, getting dropped spindles and installing air bags, but I'm really unsure of which is the best way to go. I have never done this so, skill is definitely a factor. I have no problem learning how to do things and I'm pretty handy w/ tools.
Anyway, if anyone could possibly tell me how they've lowered their cars or point me to some tech articles that I could read, I'd greatly appreciate it.
First you have to decide what your goal is.
Do you just want it low, or to go up and down at will?
Are you willing to change the front and rear suspensions?
Do you have an unlimited budget?
How low do you want it? It is probably 2 " lower than new already.
Lowering stock suspension is limited by 2 things. Drive and ride.
The lower control arm pivot and the lower ball joint pivot should be horizontally level. If you go lower than that on a stock suspension, it will not drive well.
Achieving this lowering is best done with new lowering springs, rather than cutting coil springs, which will help prevent bottoming out on bumps.
Dropped spindles are a better idea. Check with FatMan's about availability.
Rear leaf springs are best done with reverse eyes and minimal use of lowering blocks.
At the top of this thread page, click on knowledge base, then type in suspension lowering and click search.
I really just want the car dropped a little in the front. Being able to lower it up and down at will does not really concern me, as long as it rides good after I lower it and don't have any real problems w/ it bottoming out.
From what you mentioned, it seems like dropped spindles would work the best for me. I am definitely concerned about keeping the correct geomety and a good ride. I just wanna clost the gap between the fender well and the top of the tire.
The way the rear sits as of now is fine w/ me. I had the leaf springs reconditioned a while back. It rides and sits good as it is.
My budget isn't huge. I'm hoping I could do it for possibly under $500.
Thanks again for the help. If you or anyone else have anything to add I'd appreciate it.
You can reasonably lower the car by cutting the front coils 1/2 or 1 full coil off the bottom end.
The center of the lower control arm pivot (bolt) to the center of the ball joint pivot should be level. If the car is no lower than that, it should drive ok and not be too bad bottoming out with cut springs.
Park it on level concrete and have a couple of fat buddies sit on the core support to lower the front. Look at the tires and the control arm. Is that good enough height? You decide.
I'd try that first. You are going to end up buying new front springs anyway, so might as well try to cut them. :thumbup:
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