Hey, I posted this tool in the Garage Tools board, and with the recommendation of cboy I'm posting it here too! Hopefully many of you will find this useful!
It's a leaf spring spreader to make installing leaf springs WAY easier.
I decided to do the threaded rod method, and it worked wonders. About $13 for the tube, allthread, nut, and washer. not bad for a tool that is so incredibly helpful with a difficult task.
I did just as described in this thread. I bought a piece of 5/8" all thread, and a piece of square steel tubing just slightly larger than the all thread. 3/4" I believe. Used a couple whacks of a hammer and steel chisel on two opposing sides of one end of the square tubing. basically making one end of the tube look slightly like an hour glass. The point of this was for the two side walls to fold inward instead of outward when I flattened the end. Then I beat the end relatively equal on the other two sides the create somewhat of a chisel tip on one end of the steel tube. Then I used a grinder on one end of the all thread to accomplish the same thing. Thread the nut onto the all thread, stick the washer on it, and slight it inside the tube. Now you have yourself a handy dandy leaf spring stretcher that will save you lots of time when trying to remove or install leaf springs. Just put either end of the stretcher in the crevice near the eye of each side of the leaf spring, tighten the nut, and voila!
Now here come the pictures.
The first few pictures show both ends of the spring spreader so you can see how they were made.
The next two pictures show how both ends are positioned on the leaf spring itself.
And the last two pictures are a before and after, if you will, of the spreader in action.
The first is before the nut has been tightened. The spreader has been extended just long enough to hold it on the leaf spring. In the second picture, the spreader has been extended enough to spread the leaf spring out at least a couple of inches. I didn't measure but you can tell just by looking that the difference is clear. The nut wasn't even getting difficult to turn at this point. This is definitely a great tool to make and keep around.