Exactly, early Ford transverse springs need to be stretched out to install.
Funny story on this one. Back around 1979 I was working in a full blown restoration shop. I was putting a spring on a 36 Ford Roadster. First off, I was a moron, just a kid with little experience. I was using a 2 ton porta-power as this tool to spread the spring. During the process I broke the porta-power, snapped one of the end fittings right off! So, I grabbed the 4 ton and started at it again. The problem was the spring was too short! Here I was jacking that spring out flat and I mean FLAT. I was hanging out over the top of the spring looking to see it it was lining up with the shackles. Luckly I wasn't over the top of it when the thru bolt gave way and the leafs went flying everywhere! We are talking they flew up to the roof of the shop about 20 feet up! Dented the wood up there! One spring hit me in the knee pretty hard. I was doing this behind a beautiful 40 Ford Convertible that we had just painted. The springs rained down on the trunk of the 40 and then slide down the tops of the rear fenders onto the floor.
That same say I had a recoat problem with the wheels on the 40 and they wrinkled up and we had to have them sand blasted again.
On the way home that day my boss said "You learned a couple good lessons today". I replyed with "Nick, I will be in this trade my whole life and I will tell you someday I will make that painting mistake again, the spring, I will NEVER make that one again!".
From then on I rapped a chain around the spring when I installed them just in case.
Give those springs a LOT Of respect. The day this happened an old timer in the shop told of a kid he knew when he was a young man who died with a leaf hitting him in the neck.