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Old 08-23-2008, 02:05 PM
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missing the obvious!

I am missing the obvious here.......Re assembled the front suspension, went to let the frame down and when the tires start to take the weight of the frame, the lower and upper control arms move upward on their bushings so far that the frame hits the ground. What am i missing? What keeps the travel of the arms to a minimum? Their are no springs in it since their were none when I took the suspension apart. I have replaced the lower control arm bushings and shocks to both sides. The tires also have lots of negative camber. This is an AMC Pacer front suspension.
Thanks in advance for any help you can give me.

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Old 08-23-2008, 02:26 PM
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Try installing the springs.
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Old 08-23-2008, 06:21 PM
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I'd have to say install the springs too. That's what "limits" the travel of the suspension.
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Old 08-23-2008, 08:23 PM
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I am going to install the coil springs Monday when I can get a spring compressor from one of the local auto parts store. Please note however that the vehicle had no coil springs in it when I disassembled it and the alignment and ride height were perfect. The only thing I can suspect is the lower control arms bushings were so badly stuck in their position that the lower control arms would not move? That is the only thing I have changed! But could the bushings have been so bad to hold the weight of the car and a chevy small block?!
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Old 08-24-2008, 12:54 PM
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How 'bout the shocks? If they were installed they could have bottomed out and have been holding up that amount of weight.
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Old 08-26-2008, 07:07 PM
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Had to be the shocks. The bushings couldn't have been that tight! There should also be some rubber bumpers somewhere.

I just pulled my 75 Pacer service manual out. The travel limiting bumpers are mounted on the top of the shock, so in essence the shop limits upward travel. There should be a big rubber busing that goes under the regular shock bushing. I bet that was thrown away a long time ago though!
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Old 08-26-2008, 09:43 PM
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thanks for replies

thanks for replies..i installed new shocks but did not notice anything that would stop upward travel. I installed the springs which obviously helped and the ride height is not bad..but i now have an issue with TONS of negative camber! I know the lower control arm eccentric bolts have something to do with camber but I don't know how that all works and how it could fix about 2 1/2 inches of negative camber!!!! (anyone know the degrees of camber that would be) suggestions on how to fix this problem? THANKS!
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Old 09-02-2008, 04:17 PM
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missing the obvious!

apologize if I'm going too basic, never know who you are talking to. Also, not a pro on the pacer.
First off, the lower control arm should set level with the floor. This gives you full up and down suspension travel. If the frame end is below the wheel end, the springs are too short, or you may be missing a spacer (some cars have spring pads). Huge negative camber is usually springs too long and the frame end is higher than the wheel end. Often happens on engine swaps where the new engine is lighter than the cast iron boat anchor. (I'm assuming here that everything is in it/on it/ full of fluid, etc.)
If we are talking all stock parts and lower A frame is level, then it should be within adjustable range. If not, something is installed improperly.
2 1/2 inches sounds like a lot, but depending on the spindle legth, an adjustment on the control arms concentric could be magnified 3 or 4 times at the outer edge of the tire. Let us know more specifics if this doesn't help.
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Old 09-02-2008, 04:23 PM
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Oops, didn't answer the question. Generally a concentric adjustment is nothing more than an off center bolt. As you rotate it the A frame will move in and out. 0* is what you are shooting for. (most cars are zero to 1/2 degree positive). You can use a simple level to set the camber, but do it off the rim, not the tire.
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