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Discussion Starter #1
I am installing new front coil springs on my 1970 Nova, everything is apart, I just bolted the lower control arms back on. I was wondering how to go about getting the new front springs in. Thanks
 

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Many years ago I bought a coil spring compressor tool ... like the one shown ... SAFE and efficient ... I consider it to be one of the best tools buys I ever made ... :D

I think they are 35 dollars or so now but my auto parts store has a loaner program ... and they have one you can borrow with a deposit ...

Deuce ...
 

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Discussion Starter #3
once you get the spring compressed and in the top pocket, doesnt sumthing like that become difficult to remove from the spring?
 

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Not really ... :)

You do not use the compressor at the end of the spring. You use it on the next to the last coil ( on each end ) ... :thumbup:
 

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boatbob2
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spring compresser

hi,harbor freight also has the same type of tool,as stated in the above post,but it fits on the outside of the spring (takes 2 to do 1 spring... im boatbob2
 

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1976 Ranchero GT
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boatbob2 said:
hi,harbor freight also has the same type of tool,as stated in the above post,but it fits on the outside of the spring (takes 2 to do 1 spring... im boatbob2
That type of spring compressor is for struts and wont work with most old Chevy a arms. The compressor pictured fits inside the spring out of the way of the a arms.
 

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gilliganspl said:
once you get the spring compressed and in the top pocket, doesnt sumthing like that become difficult to remove from the spring?
On mine I just drop the shaft out the shock hole sometimes it can come out through the top as the threaded shaft goes where the shock normally goes..

Sam
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I just borrowed an internal spring compressor from autozone that looks similar to what is pictured above, but it has no instructions. The top looks the same, but instead of having the same thing at the bottom it has a curved plate. How do i work it?
 

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Discussion Starter #10
OK i figured out how to use that compressor but now i have a problem. After compressing the spring and using a little pushing/pulling and holding I managed to get the spring in. Unfortunately with the spindles bolted on I went to decompress the spring and the top piece does not fit through the hole in the lower control arm, or through the coils...what now?
 

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1976 Ranchero GT
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When I did my camaros springs I had to kind of disassemble the compressor inside the spring to get it out threw the lower control arm.
 

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Car? Truck? Who Cares
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I had to take a grinder to the shock hole in the lower control arm.

Ya don't need to remove much---just enough to get the tool out.

Bryan
 

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I just installed a set of coils in my mustang11 frontend using the same kind of compressor that is pictured here. I assemble the compressor inside the coil after it was in place. After everything was connected I disassembled the compressor and removed it. Just a little twisting and turning.
 

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boatbob2
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spring compressor

Like i told you in a previous post. junk that compresser and go to harbor freight or northern,and get the compresses that fits on the OUTSIDE of the spring. you woill need 2,one for each side. someone said its made for struts,that may be so,BUT,it works just fine on regular springs too.. im boatbob2
 

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1976 Ranchero GT
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boatbob2 said:
Like i told you in a previous post. junk that compressor and go to harbor freight or northern,and get the compresses that fits on the OUTSIDE of the spring. you woill need 2,one for each side. someone said its made for struts,that may be so,BUT,it works just fine on regular springs too.. im boatbob2
On my camaro the strut type compressor would not work. I own two sets of those. I had to go out and buy the other type because of how the spring is recessed into the sub frame their is no room on the outside of the spring for the strut compressor to work. I think the nova frame is similar to mine.
 

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boatbob2 said:
Like i told you in a previous post. junk that compresser and go to harbor freight or northern,and get the compresses that fits on the OUTSIDE of the spring. you woill need 2,one for each side. someone said its made for struts,that may be so,BUT,it works just fine on regular springs too.. im boatbob2
Will not work on a chevy where the 1/2 of the compressed spring is in a pocket of the frame and where there is about 3" of lower A-Frame all around the circumference of the spring.

With the spring in these cars the are only 3 of the 10 or 11 coils exposed.

Bryan
 

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I bought an internal compressor from Harbor Freight, and it was dodgy to use to say the least. After I used it a few times the threads on the rod began to go away.I chucked it eventually but could not find anywhere selling anything similar, so I got me another from HF.It´s still in it´s packaging, I´ll use it only when absolutely necessary, "made in China".
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Yeah the Nova subframe is like teh camaros and the strut type spring compressors will not work...tried those first.
 

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Get in, sit down, hang on
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I built my own.

Two 1/2" thick plates and a threaded rod ...

The bottom one gets a 5/8" UNF threaded hole, while the top plate gets a non-threaded (chamfered both sides) hole.

5/8" Diameter UNF (fine-thread) Grade 8 all-thread rod, lubed with anti-seize at the top.

Threaded rod goes down thru center of spring, where it is threaded into the bottom plate ... which is positioned between the coils as low as possible. there is also a nut at the bottom of the rod which is tightened against underside of the lower plate to prevent the rod from turning.

The threaded rod extends through the upper a-arm, and the non-threaded plate is dropped into place. Install a Grade 8 flat washer, followed by 2 Grade 8 nuts.

The lowest nut is threaded on and begins to compress the spring. The second nut is there as a "safety" and is periodically moved down to follow the first nut. This "safety nut" is there so that if the threads start to strip on the "primary nut" the safety nut will prevent the top plate from taking your hand off at the wrist. :sweat:

After you get the nuts on the ball joints tightened up, it's just a matter of disassembling and removing your tool.
 

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I just did this myself on my '70 Nova. I kind of played it by ear and got it done without a spring compressor. And even though I made it work, it was a major PITA (not to mention unsafe) and I would never recommend anybody do the same.

But I can see how using a compressor would be tough on this car, since practically half of the spring is embedded in the frame rail with no clearance on either side.

My springs are stock height, though. I think if you cut a few coils off to lower the car, or used lowering springs, you might be able to slide it up into the pocket and use a jack on the lower A-arm to compress it until you can bolt together the spindle. With springs at stock height, they are too long to do this since the angle of the lower A-arm is too large for the bottom of the spring to seat. I say "might" here because I'm only guessing... that and a friend of mind said he was able to do it, but when I hear somebody say "But my friend/buddy/coworker/cousin/brother said..." I take it with a very large grain of salt. If you try this, be sure to chain the spring to something in case your jack decides to roll out from under its load, or some other catastrophic thing happens.
 
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