I swapped the rear axle in my ' 48 Dodge ,with axle from '85 5th Ave, mounted on 205/65/15 's . With the body level, the floorboard to ground measures 16 1/2 '' . What are my options for lowering it a couple more inches ?
hi,to lower the car,theres a few things you can do,remove 1 or 2 leaf springs, (each side) use lowering blocks,or put the spring under the rear end.(though the ride might suffer) if you have coil springs, cut 1 coil off. DO NOT USE A TORCH. im boatbob2
Try a set of 2-3" lowering blocks, you'll need longer u-bolts and you're in business. If you're not happy and still have plenty of frame clearance, pull the 3 and 5 leaves from the springs, reassemble and see how it looks and rides and clears. It is labor intensive to do this in stages but gets you low with a good ride rather than low with a frame to axle clearance problem.
I don't like the "pulling leaves out" deal but if you are ok with it its your ride. I would buy new leaves with the correct arch you need and or start moving making new leaf/shackle to frame mounts. Someone sells dropped spindles for that vehicle. My father and I are working on a 48 Plymouth and he wants to lower it as well. I told him he was nuts after I saw how the car took a few curves flat as a pancake. I rode behind him and the car looked like it handled really well. Told him to put all new bushings in it, new springs, and top quality mono tube shocks. Then he can work on putting lighter wheels on it and modern radials.
Now I need to know how to determin the installed ( level ? ) position of the volare K member . ( as in determining caster ) Do I level the bottom A arm, measure from floor up to k member, remove brakes and A arms , to have room to install the K member on the frame, install member at previous measurement? I guess question is : Is the bottom A arm supposed to level and the the would be the caster at that point would be zreo???
I used a Volare in my Terraplane. There are two points where the Volare bolts to the orginal frame, I don't remember if its front or back but there is one inch difference in heigth from the floor. I set mine up this way and the front end shop had no problum in alinement. I am also using a K-car power R-P steering. Thats two in the front and two in the back mounts.
If you set it up with the bottom A-arm level it should be good to go. The upper A-arm rear pivot point shold be a little lower than the front one -- that controls front end dive when you brake hard. Measure at the pivot points from the floor. Caster isn't detemined by the levelness of the lower arm, that doesn't move. Caster is changed by moving the front and/or rear pivot points in and out (toward/away from the frame). Levelness of the frame will affect it some, since the upper and lower arms are connected to the front clip, but shouldn't affect it that much. Typically the lower A-arm mounts are level.
Just make sure you have the frame leveled the way you want it to sit before welding the K member in. If you can, bolt or tack weld the K-member. Hmmm... I aid takc weld, but what I really mean is weld in such a way that you can get to the short welds and break or grind them loose if you need to. That way you can adjust the K member up or down a little in the front or back if needed while the car is geting aligned. You'll need the welds strong enough to keep it in place, maybe four half inch long welds at each corner. You wouldn't want to drive it much that way, but that's enough to move it around the yard or carefully drive to the alignment shop, then you can strngthen the welds after everything's kosher. That's one reason I like bolting in. If you can bolt in with rubber or urethane bushings that's even better -- reduces vibrations transferred to the frame. Then you can adjust a bit with spacers if needed.
I think I got it all figured out, mainly having problem, transferring the measurements, nothing's flat or square, . I also was thinking of some kind of temporarily welding it in till I could get alignment, checked ..thanks again guys..........
O K , I'm back on this project, need to lower the rear springs. It's a '48 Dodge, springs are under the axle, need to lower three more inches. I'd like to save useing lowering blocks for final adjustment. I want to raise the rear shackles. Do you see any problem with just cutting out the frame area where the shackle is, raise it up to the top of the frame, weld and reinforce it ? Is this possible or practical ???