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  #31 (permalink)  
Old 04-22-2007, 11:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oldguy829
Grouch. taking a keen interest in your project.
i have a 41 Pontiac. Virtually identical frame/suspension as your 49 Olds.
I remember your thread where you were trying to find information about that Pontiac. It reminded me of the frustrating time I had trying to find details about this Olds. I guess we're adrift in similar old boats.

Quote:
Originally Posted by oldguy829
I am more terrified than your are of doing a subframe. I have also rejected the MustangII.
My nephew sent me a 3-page fold-out from Summit, featuring a very good looking '49 Olds. It has a Mustang II kit under it. The bumper looks like you could barely get your fingers under it (far too low to suit me; I don't want to be terrified of speed bumps and litter). There are no photos of the build, but the guy had to have cut the frame. If I have to cut the frame, I'm not interested in doing a kit. The stock S10 has been abuse tested at loads similar to and exceeding what the Olds will put on it. None of the kit makers can match that testing.


Quote:
Originally Posted by oldguy829
I chased a pacer suspension until the dimensions and that unique upper spring mount frame configuration reared its ugly head.
I kept hunting for suitable '70s front ends for a while, too, but finally decided any that I found would either (a) not have parts available just anywhere, or (b) be from a much lighter vehicle, or (c) require the same cutting, modification and fabrication that a front end from a later model small pickup, e.g., the S10.

Quote:
Originally Posted by oldguy829
My car is also finished, and tearing it apart and starting over is daunting. I'm seriously considering just rebuilding it with some later model parts. (olds kept those stupid knee action shocks until mid 50's. Pontiac changed to tubes in 49). I'm trying to ***** the merits of all the work and risk (if I do it) of a subframe, to a rebuilt front end from around 1952 - 54.
(Would those *** represent the word a_s_s_e_s_s? Stupid censor software attacking legitimate words. I despise software nannies).

I had left my Olds outside, sinking into the ground, for a shameful number of years. It was "finished", but not drivable. It needed a full frame-off rebuild. That's when I decided I would attempt to update some features and correct what I consider design flaws in the original (all the glittery costume jewelry tacked all over it, for one thing).

If you're considering a rebuilt front end, why stop at '52-'54? From my point of view, once the decision is made to not do a museum quality restoration, you might as well push the running gear as close to current parts and design as possible.


Quote:
Originally Posted by oldguy829
Near as I can tell, the big difference in the suspensions is the later anti dive technology, which I believe is tied into the caster set up. I'm tyrying to learn more about all of this, and maybe figure out a modification to the older setup to add that technology.
I'm pretty much going through a crash course in front suspension details, too. So far as I can see, there is nothing wrong with the Olds' lower control arms, coils and crossmember. The upper control arm is part of that blasted shock and does not appear to incorporate any anti-dive angle. (I haven't actually measured yet). The pivot line of the shock appears to be parallel to the pivot line of the lower control arm.

Quote:
Originally Posted by oldguy829
Are you going to do journal entries with every tiny step documented for us no-nadas?
I've been trying to, but the last entry I made was about the rotisserie I built for the frame (to be used later for the body, too). There hasn't been any interesting progress since then, just grunt work and trying to figure out the options for the front end.

I don't have a side shot of the suspension in my journal, but here's an overhead shot of the front from when I was disassembling everything:

http://hotrodders.com/journal_photos...1566844750.jpg

(Yeah, that's over a dirt floor). You can see that the pivots of the control arms are parallel in that plane. I have to measure to see if they are parallel when seen from the side. The MII suspension uses 3 degrees of anti-dive angle on the upper control arm pivot, according to what I've read. I'm still looking for the angle on the S10. May have to just calculate it from measuring the difference in distance between upper and lower, front and back.

Quote:
Originally Posted by oldguy829
I have been able to find nearly nothing that covers frame/suspension upgrades to the setup in our particular cars.
Same here. I'm still slogging at it and everything I discover will get posted. Maybe if we get enough heads, eyes, and busted knuckles on them, we can work out some good solutions for these neglected old GM sisters. Our two cars are not the only ones with the bumpy frame to survive.

The basic structure is the same: Two dissimilar-sized triangles that pivot near-horizontally at their bases and have a near-vertical pivot at the points opposite those bases. A modern spindle that maintains the fixed distance apart of those points, at about the same angle and with about the same steering arm, would take care of the kingpins and drums. An upper control arm has to be mounted so its pivot is in the same location (x, y, z) as the existing pivot on the old shock, reach over and down to clear the hump in the frame just as the old arm does, and provide a mount for the upper ball joint for the new spindle. Somewhere in the mess, a modern shock has to be mounted.

If all that works out, then anti-dive and upgraded steering can be tried. Whee.

It's gonna happen, one way or another -- clip, frame swap, combo Volvo-Olds-S10 or something.

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  #32 (permalink)  
Old 04-23-2007, 02:38 PM
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s10 to 49

Sorry, I haven't figured out how to chop quote and respond, hope this insn't confusing.
I'm looking at the pontiacs up to 54 because they take the same spindle as the 41. Tells me I can change control arms without screwing up that aspect.
Havent chased it down, but it appears the 55 and up was a completely new design, so parts wouldn't be bolt on changes.
Looked at a 50 pontiac this weekend. It has a different upper mount, and a domed section that replaces the shock on ours, so a tube shock can be fitted. Looked like the upper control arm is the same, but it may be a touch longer.
Lower A is identical, except for an added lower shock mount.
Checked the specs and it is still a zero caster setup. Not sure exactly what the "anti-dive" technology is, but I assumed it was setting the suspension in at a positive caster angle to more effectively deal with weight shift.
If that's all it amounts to, it seems like tapered shims between the shafts and the frame/crossmember mounting areas would do the job.
Our setups are so similar I'm sure a solution for one would help the other.
YES. A-s-s-e-s-s is a dirty word on the hamb. (but maybe I dropped the last S , in which case, I was cussin)
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  #33 (permalink)  
Old 04-23-2007, 02:41 PM
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s10 to 49

excuse my little slip there, this isn't the hamb. Shows I've been spending too much time on the other side of the tracks.
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  #34 (permalink)  
Old 04-23-2007, 07:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oldguy829
Sorry, I haven't figured out how to chop quote and respond, hope this insn't confusing.
There's a handy 'button' below each comment, labelled "quote". That quotes the whole comment, but you will then see how quoting works. Each quoted section begins with an opening bracket: [ then quote=username then a closing bracket: ]. To end a quoted section, you use an opening bracket, a slash, the word quote, and a closing bracket. (It's a whole lot simpler than the description).

Quote:
Originally Posted by oldguy829
I'm looking at the pontiacs up to 54 because they take the same spindle as the 41. Tells me I can change control arms without screwing up that aspect.
Ok, I see, that route avoids major cutting and fabricating.

Quote:
Originally Posted by oldguy829
Not sure exactly what the "anti-dive" technology is, but I assumed it was setting the suspension in at a positive caster angle to more effectively deal with weight shift.
If that's all it amounts to, it seems like tapered shims between the shafts and the frame/crossmember mounting areas would do the job.
IIUC, anti-dive comes from the fact that the upper control arm pivot is not parallel to the lower control arm pivot. It appears to me that as you hit the brakes and the body puts a torque across the upper and lower ball joints, it tries to settle on the lower control arm but rise on the upper.

I'm no engineer and it's a long time since I had to deal with vectors and force lines in physics, but I visualize a weird scene with 2 pole vaulters on a bent pole. The end of the pole is bent back a few degrees with one vaulter hanging on there and the other one hanging on where the pole is still straight. The tire contact patch is where the pole gets planted. As the pole reaches vertical, the lower vaulter is sticking out like a flag and his direction at that instant is forward. The upper vaulter, on the bent part, is still headed slightly upward. (I could very well be completely wrong with that visualization).

Quote:
Originally Posted by oldguy829
Our setups are so similar I'm sure a solution for one would help the other.
Yep. I think running the shock up the middle of the coil, as you described for the later Pontiac, should be fairly simple. It may be that the upper control arm for that later Pontiac or another GM with similar suspension can also be adapted to fit. That would leave spindles and steering to deal with.

While the S10 spindles look like a good fit, it is front steer versus the Olds' rear steer. Just swapping them left to right would likely cause some weird geometry problems. I haven't found a closer match in a double wishbone than the S10 for track width, weight, wheelbase and parts availability.

Measuring further on the S10 today, I found that not only is the upper control arm angled upward toward the front, compared to the lower, but it is also set at a different angle with respect to the centerline of the vehicle (view from above). Going about it piecemeal could be a lot more trouble than treating it as a clip or doing a full frame swap.

Any chance of you getting a photo of that '50 Pontiac's upper control arm? I'm going to search for illustrations.

Quote:
Originally Posted by oldguy829
YES. A-s-s-e-s-s is a dirty word on the hamb. (but maybe I dropped the last S , in which case, I was cussin)
A misspelling like that would likely never disturb a moderator. Computers are literal idiots, though.
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  #35 (permalink)  
Old 04-24-2007, 03:43 PM
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oldguy829:

Here is a site that has some info on '50s Pontiacs, in case you haven't already run across it:
http://www.members.tripod.com/starchief57/articles.htm

I couldn't find anything specific about suspensions or frames (except later model Pontiacs). It looks like technical information online for your car is as scarce as it is for mine.
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Old 05-15-2007, 10:06 AM
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re: S10 to '49 Olds?

Grouch. It's been a while, what's up with your Olds?
Here's where I am.
Located some front clips for 49 - 54 Pontiacs. Got excited, then sobered up. For all the work involved, I'd still have the king pin, zero caster setup I have now, just tube shocks. My suspension is tight. Putting a salvage suspension in there could run $650.00 just to refurbish it. Not including any brake work. Not worth it.
Decided to just replace the hubs and drums and add a power booster.
This would give me 2 1/4 x11 drums and shoes, compared to the current
1 3/4 x 11, plus 1 1/16 wheel cylinders compared to 1 ".
Found a nice booster/MC/pedal setup in a Chevy Metro. 7" booster fit nicely on the firewall, by mounting it outboard of the steering column. Just had to heat and bend the pedal to bring it directly under the steering column.
Since this is a metric MC, I ran new hard lines from the flex lines to the MC and just reflared the MC end with metric fittings. This particular unit has a single line for the rears and separate lines to the front wheels. Took it for a test drive (with the old brakes still on it) just to see if the improvement was significant. It was. Stopped good with easy pedal pressure, but severe rear wheel lock up. (note to self - next time pick an MC from a disc/disc car not a disc/drum car - so I will have to put residual valves on the front lines, or swap MC's). So, the next step was to fix the brakes. Got my 52 Pontiac hubs and drums in last week. Glitch 1. All the wheel studs were left hand threads. Had to use a buddies press to get the old ones out without damaging anything. Glitch 2 (expected) - all the bearings and seals have to be replaced, along with shoes, wheel cylinders, and hardware. Add in the used hubs/drums and wheels studs, MC and plumbing and I'll be about $600
into this brake job. [point is, I'm not saving any money over a subframe job, just work and mistake avoidance. Where you are on your build, I wouldn't even consider going this route]. Glitch 3. Had the drums turned, and they are crap. One wouldn't turn enough to be good, the other had severe hot spots.
So, I am back to square one with the front suspension and brakes.
I'm hunting a new set of drums, hoping for better luck, but also re-examining the whole s10 subframe thing. Very frustrated. Hope you are making better progress. don
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  #37 (permalink)  
Old 05-15-2007, 10:47 PM
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I'm having some frustration, too, but for a different reason: I've had little time to work on my Olds. Frustration may be too strong a word for my situation -- the Olds has been just hanging around in the back of my mind while I've worked on yard, garden, truck, tractor, prepping my wife's car for paint, rebuilding a mower deck, cleaning my shop, fencing and transferring some tapes to computer.

Just eyeballing the S10 suspension after taking off the fenders, etc., I don't see anything that will prevent using it on the Olds. My next step will be to make a mock-up of it. IF I go the same route as my nephew did with his S10 -- B-body spindles and tubular upper control arms (they have to be shorter than stock because of the difference in the spindles) -- then it may be possible to alter the Olds frame to accommodate the new parts instead of whacking it off and grafting. Hard to tell, yet, which way will make the most sense. I'll know as I get farther into it. At least the expense is spread over the time it takes to get everything ready for new parts.

Meanwhile, I'm putting wheels on my rotisserie so I can roll it outside to sandblast the frame. I made too big a mess trying it inside the garage. Found a couple of hubs laying around from a Corsica I was cursed with some years ago. Just need to cobble up 2 more wheels and it will be ready to go.
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Old 05-16-2007, 09:15 AM
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http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v378/kustomscaraudio/earlytin.jpg

You're 49 has the same setup as my 41, right. Upper control arm is mounted to the shock. You are thinking about stripping everything off the frame and using the upper springmounts that are already part of the frame to accept the S10 stuff? That would be slick. Wish you were closer, I'd come by and help. I may try to get out to a yard today and see what you are working on.
Have no clue what the S 10 looks like.
You going to post to your journal? Love to see the pics. don
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Old 05-16-2007, 08:21 PM
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I went thru the same deal on my 55 Pontiac, trying to decide with the front suspension. It's very close to the earlier Olds/Pontiac suspension. I had an old Hotrodders Digest article that someone posted for the conversion .
I bolted up 1958 Pontiac lower/upper arms-first year of the ball joint for Pontiac - but before the widetrack. The mounting bolt pattern was the same for both years even though the 55 uses an upright and spindle with kingpins. If the lower arm mounting dimensions were the same, you could convert to ball joints as well. I had to make a mount for the upper arms. I removed the springs and with the frame level, made the lower controls level also to dictate the upper mounting . I also included anti dive into my upper mount I made also. IIRC about 10 degrees (The front mounting bolt higher). I went with 63 spindles (62 was first year of tapered bearings for Pontiac) and bought a disc brake kit.
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Old 05-16-2007, 11:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oldguy829
You're 49 has the same setup as my 41, right. Upper control arm is mounted to the shock. You are thinking about stripping everything off the frame and using the upper springmounts that are already part of the frame to accept the S10 stuff? That would be slick. Wish you were closer, I'd come by and help. I may try to get out to a yard today and see what you are working on.
Have no clue what the S 10 looks like.
You going to post to your journal? Love to see the pics. don
The lower control arms look like they will be more trouble than the upper ones. They may be reason enough to simply cut off the front section of the Olds frame and graft on part of the S10. It might be easier to fabricate the radiator mounts and other frame-to-body mounts than to duplicate the mounting structure for the S10's lower arms. Position and attitude are all it looks like it takes for the uppers.

In the attached photos, you can see that the S10 as coils that fit into sockets in the frame, just like our old iron. The lower control arm mounts with one end into the crossmember.

I'll be updating my journal to include these photos a little later. I don't have the cab or bed off the truck yet, nor the engine out of it.
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Old 05-17-2007, 08:44 AM
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re: S10 to '49 Olds?

Man, it looks like there is a solution in here somewhere. Grouch, I see the problem with the lowers. I don't have parts to set side by side, but it seems like our frames are different from newer models. The A mounts are forward of the spindle, creating a trailing effect. The S10 doesn't seem to have that same angle, but it's hard to tell in pictures.
Cheiftan - Do you have dimensions for the 58 lower A's, including distance between the mounting bolts? Using the center of the mounting and the center of the lower ball joint, can you get a good guess on far forward one is from the other? (hope that question makes sense). Fabricating/locating an upper mount would be a small job compared to the alternatives.
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Old 05-17-2007, 09:33 AM
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The only dimension I have off hand is the one for the mounting bolts- 1 7/8" between each pair of bolts. The control arms were symetrical between both sides, I didn't think there was any offset. About the only differance I saw was the bracket for the sway bar link.
It pushed the wheels out maybe 1/2" and when I was measuring the suspension for mock up , I took the springs out and got the lower arms level, it raised the centerline of the spindle a few inches , which is ok since I wanted to drop it some anyway. You could use 58-70 b-body Pontiac spindles. I chose the 63 for the tapered bearings. If the 58 upper wouldn't work, you could get some adjustable ones made up to work for your stock location maybe to get alot of caster. The b-body spindles have the same upper ball joint taper as the 64-72 a-body.
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Old 05-17-2007, 05:14 PM
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From the centerline of the lower shaft to the center of the lower ball joint is about 18 1/4". The mounting bolt pattern is 1 7/8" apart on each shaft and the mounting width to each pair of bolts is 8 1/2". They almost look identical to my 55 arms except the ball joints and the spring pocket is shallower. I had to take some off the bottom of the spring to make up for it. I took some extra off the spring and dropped the front end about 4-5" including the drop from the higher spindle centerline .
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Old 05-17-2007, 09:33 PM
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re: S10 to '49 Olds?

Chieftan, any chance you did a journal on this somewhere? I think I am getting the idea, but this is my first swap so some things are still fuzzy.
the dimensions you gave for the lower A seem to match mine, but of course I have a kingpin mount on the steering knuckle. So, help me sort this out.
I have no experience with this, so go slow.
1. Why did you have to build an upper A frame mount?
[I assume I have to, to get rid of the upper knee action shock, but was there more to it, like changing caster etc. ] this is one of those fuzzy areas... I would have to build the upper mount to move the upper A back a bit, maybe 1 inch, to create about 3* of caster, right? By raising the front of the Upper A, the upper and lower are no longer parallel. Instead of moving the spindle straight up and down, in a hard stop the upper would rotate up and back? Creating anti dive?
2. Do you have a picture or discription of the upper mount?
3. You changed the spindles to get roller bearings instead of the old ball bearings, right? [also benefited from higher center point, equalling lower front end. Or did you also change to get a disc brake kit?]
Reason I ask. I just located a complete 58 front end, hub to hub, and wondered what the downside was of just using the whole setup.
4. I think the steering linkage on your car is still the old adjustable ball in socket setup that I have, right? [Mine is tight, so if it bolts up the same I won't have to redo that part. ]
5. I'm not sure I can word this correctly....On my 41, The lower A is a triangle with the base mounted to the crossmember and the point is where the steering knuckle is mounted. Instead of the base being parralel to the frame, it is mounted at a backwards angle. The front of the A frame is about even with the front of the tires and the back of the A is about perpendicular to the center of the spindle. [Front of the A's are further apart than the rear of the A's.] Is this how the geometry on yours is set up? [If not, my wheels won't end up in the middle of the opening] I know later Gm's are the opposite of this.
Reason I'm after these details...The front end I found is 450 miles from here. Hate to drive that far and see it doesn't fit.
6. I assume your frame spring perch has the upper shock mount built into it.
[mine doesn't] Is this stamped into the frame, or bolted/riveted on where I could take it off the 58 and use it on mine?
Enough for now. Your answer is going to look like a shop manual. sure appreciate any help you can give. don
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Old 05-18-2007, 06:19 AM
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1. I had to build a differant upper mount for a few reasons, the 55 upper arm is similar to yours- a 2 piece thats rivited together . But mine has an upper shaft thats bolted to the frame. With the differant upper arm , the bolt pattern on the shaft was differant and I built because it uses shims to adjust the alignment instead of the adjusters inside the upper control arms shafts on yours and the adjusting cam on mine where the upright and upper arm bolt together. I got the anti dive angle from a Firebird frame I actually had sitting here that I decided not to use.
2. The upper mount for now is a piece of angle iron I had. It's bolted flat to the frame . I have to make some gussets for it, but until I get it on the alignment rack and get set, i'll finsish welding it up.
3. I wanted the tapered bearings, since I had to buy everything I went ahead with the tapered bearing spindles. The same guy makes disc brake kits for the 58 spindles aswell.
4.My steering is the hollow tube draglink that the parts fit into like yours. I did have to shorten the inner 3" to make up for the differance of the longer steering arms of the b body spindles and had to retaper the spindles to make the tie rods bolt in from the top.
5. My 55 had the same control arm angle, nearly 60 degrees towards the rear.
6. My upper shock mount was bolted on. I may weld a flat plate over the hole and mount my shock to that. The shock design changed. My 55 arms the lower shock mount was a single stud with bushings. The 58 arms have the more popular 2 bolt mount on the lower.

Here's the article

http://www.pontiacsafari.com/L1Garag...Conversion.pdf
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