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Old 07-27-2015, 03:15 PM
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Ford 8.8 in Model A frame - spring hanger location

Hey there, I've got a model A frame with a Ford 8.8 rear out of an Explorer. I'm working on locating the mounting position of the rear spring hangers. I have a Model T rear spring. With the spring spread to 45.5" it looks like the hangers need a little more modification to get the proper angle.

I have read that the shackles should be level with no tension/weight on the spring, and at 45 degrees under load/weight on the frame.

If that's the case, I think I can trim the outside edges of the shackle a bit, which will let me mount them further out on the axle. I do have a concern about strength, as I'd be reducing the contact area on the rear end. I also wonder if they should be gusseted, even though I'll have a ladder bar and panhard bar, I'm not sure of the load these will have front to back....

I'm looking for comments or advice from anyone who may have mounted a similar width axle with this type of setup. And I'm happy to answer any questions or take more pics. Thanks!
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Old 07-27-2015, 07:09 PM
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I don't know man.It looks kinda weak.I don't mean to be disrespectful, just my opinion.
I would upgrade to a 4 link rear suspension if it were me.You are at a good place in the build to do so. They are so much stronger and waaaay more stable.
What kind of engine trans are you going to run?
That old setup cant possibly be made to handle well in extreme situations.
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Old 07-27-2015, 08:34 PM
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Hey LATECH, no disrespect taken. Always open to ideas and advice.

I'll be running a very mild small block with a cam to make it sound ******, TH350 with stall converter and shift kit. This is a rat rod, made to sound and look the part but not looking to make 400 ft burn outs. i'm concerned about safety, of course. Not just mine, but others on the road. I'm mainly looking for others that have a transverse spring setup with an 8.8 in a model A frame, and how they successfully did it. As you said, its early in the build and easy to fix any errors. I don't have any local advice, except my dad.....and while he's knowledgeable in engines I lack any engineering or rod experience.

You can see a thread of my build here: First build - 1930 Tudor
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Old 07-28-2015, 07:21 PM
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It would need some Radius arms at least to make it strong enough to smoke the tires without folding the differential up under the car.
Basically an arm, or pipe if you will, that goes from each side of the rear and fastens to the frame, to absorb the force of torque to the rear axle so as to transmit the power to the wheels without the rear twisting up.
Four links will likely be necessary. Look at the rear suspension of any late car with coil over rear suspension and a solid rear axle,like a crown vic for instance.That should get your wheels turning.No pun intended.
Maybe you could simply fab something together.
One to each side of the rear, fastening under the tubes, and one or two over the top of the axle to the frame at a higher point on the frame.
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Old 07-28-2015, 08:04 PM
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I've got these ladder bars I was planning to use. I agree its needed to keep the rear in place. Im putting heim joints on amd getting rod of the thru bolt setup they came with. Right now I wanted to get the spring mounts welded in place so I can put weight on the car and figure out mounting position for the ladder bars.

So step one, get spring mounts tacked with pinion angle close.

Step two, set engine, trans and body on as mock up

Step three, mount ladder bars and final adjust pinion angle now that it's at ride height

Or something like that. Lol
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Old 07-29-2015, 07:21 PM
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Atta Boy.
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Old 07-29-2015, 10:08 PM
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ladder bars

The ladder bars should be attached to a cross member near the center line of the chassis. Similar how the original Model A bars attached to the torque tube. The shape of the spring hanger bracket will not allow enough clearance when the car is loaded, , body weight, gas, passengers. use care when welding, the axle bearings could be damaged, best to strip the rear end, remove axles before welding.
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Old 07-29-2015, 10:09 PM
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Looks like a plan..

Sam
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Old 08-08-2015, 05:53 PM
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Why a T spring instead of an A spring? Either way the set of the shackles would be the same.
Just curious.
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Old 08-08-2015, 08:13 PM
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T spring sets lower, that's why I went with it. I'm also told it gives a better ride on lighter cars....we shall see! I still need to work the brackets down a bit so the rear sits where I want it.
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Old 08-12-2015, 01:58 AM
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Ever thought of putting about a 2" kick up in your frame and then extending your spring cross member further back and run your spring behind the diff.
It will get down lower and probably look better as rat rods go.

0 5 Model A Ford Coupe Sedan Pickup Roadster Highboy Hot Rod Frame | eBay


My advice would be to purchase ready made ladder bar or similar from a reputable hot rod shop.
Run the bars near into the center for triangulation and better stress free movement over bumps etc.
This ebay link comes to mind or places like Speedway Motors or Johnny Law.
At least look at their catalogues so you can see what is available that may work for you.

Model T spring is good as long as your body weight is not going to be too heavy. I am assuming not heavy.

I am thinking spring behind diff using these kind of plates.

1932 41 Ford Car Adjust Rear Buggy Spring Mounting Kit | eBay

You don't need to buy this stuff if you have the skills to make it yourself.
Once on these ebay pages click on "see sellers other items" and check out what else may work for you...
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Old 08-12-2015, 06:44 AM
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weld your self

Welder Series sells weld it your self kits and pieces, My local steel supplier is a lot cheaper for 20 ft lengths of 7/8 DOM steel but even with a plasma, lathe and Milling machine it's not worth it for me to make the small pieces welder series has.
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Old 08-14-2015, 05:39 PM
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Fiftyv8, I considered lowering the frame with a kick up, but decided to try running it with the spring over axle and a model T spring to see where it sits. I can always cut the frame later if I don't like it. Call me strange but I'm trying to keep the ride height higher than your typical rat rod, and more of a traditional look. I also want a back seat and have read a kickup can interfere with that. Maybe a 2 inch isn't enough to cause a problem.

Timothale, I've checked out that welder series website before and it's got some great stuff. Good time saver and nice selection. I may take a second look if I'm not liking the way the spring setup works, and I want to go spring behind or even try a kickup as fiftyv8 suggests.
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Old 08-15-2015, 08:13 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by timothale View Post
Welder Series sells weld it your self kits and pieces, My local steel supplier is a lot cheaper for 20 ft lengths of 7/8 DOM steel but even with a plasma, lathe and Milling machine it's not worth it for me to make the small pieces welder series has.
If nothing else, I like going on their website to get ideas on how to build stuff.
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Old 08-15-2015, 09:24 AM
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welder series youtube

Welder series has some good youtube Video's lots of good tips
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