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Front coil spring removal


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Hi all,

Would I be correct in saying that I could remove the front coil spring by:

1) slightly loosening the lower arm pivot bolts

2) pushing up the bottom arm slightly, by using a trolley jack or similar, to compress the spring some more.

3) Undoing the lower ball joint and the anti-roll bar link, swinging the hub out the way.

4) slowly lowering the jack to allow the bottom arm to fall away, allowing the spring to escape.

Confirmation or correction appreciated.

Naturally I don't have access to the special GM tool shown in the manual - but then who does  :lol:   

Thanks in advance.

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Thats one way, it is possible to leave the lower ball joint, top & bottom arm  and hub, removed all in one.

Place a jack under bottom arm pivot bolt, you will need caliper, etc detached, along with anti roll bar. 

Needs to to be supported under jacking points, about a foot high.

A good stable jack is needed to slowly lower the arm, slowly extending the spring. 

As haynes manual says, refitting is the reversal of removal.

If you are doing it the other way, what are you using to remove hub from ball joints?

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either way is possible to remove spring although it will still be under some tension as the arm doesnt go quite low enough.hold the spring very firmly with a big towel and just prise it out from its seat. or a good tug!

i do it ians way and separete the lower joint (or any joint for that matter) with the’ hammer on the side’ method .not a tapered splitter unless the complete joint is shot.

never done it as a complete assembly with stub axle and top arm as one but will still work but just more bulk in the way to get the spring past.

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The whole front subframe, was off my Manta, so was not possible to jack it up. As the springs were to be replaced, I cut through about 3/4 of the spring, very slowly with an angle grinder. I then levered the spring until it snapped. If you intend to refit the same springs, then I do have a pair of spring compressor clamps you can borrow ( am 5 miles away), but am not 100% sure, if there is enough room to fit them on?

 

 

 

 

Picture 040.jpg

Picture 115.jpg

Edited by Manta Mal
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Gentlemen,

Many thanks for all your replies, much appreciated and the contents duly noted.

Mal, many thanks for your offer, but I do already have two sets of conventional coil spring clamps, I just wasnt sure that I would be able to get them into that space to work safely. Hopefully I can have a go later and post a photo with the spring missing :thumbup

Thanks again.

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2 hours ago, IanMc said:

Gentlemen,

Many thanks for all your replies, much appreciated and the contents duly noted.

Mal, many thanks for your offer, but I do already have two sets of conventional coil spring clamps, I just wasnt sure that I would be able to get them into that space to work safely. Hopefully I can have a go later and post a photo with the spring missing :thumbup

Thanks again.

You be very careful with this spring job, you are dealing with great pressure here, a mechanic in South Wales was all but killed with a front coil spring, after it hit him, it went straight through the garage wall, so be warned my friend.

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33 minutes ago, Julian said:

You be very careful with this spring job, you are dealing with great pressure here, a mechanic in South Wales was all but killed with a front coil spring, after it hit him, it went straight through the garage wall, so be warned my friend.

Yes thanks Julian, a very timely reminder  :thumbup

I work in the Lockout Tagout (safe isolation) business, so I am constantly telling people to consider all 'what if' scenarios. As you say coiled springs of that size have enormous potential energy when under pressure/compression.

Thanks for your comment, much appreciated matey. Rest assured I shall proceed with all necessary caution.

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The correct GM spring tool is a bar that fits under the lower arm with two long hooks like the normal spring compressors. The idea is you compress the spring onto the lower arm and remove it as a complete ass, once off the car undo the spring clamps slowly.

There was a pic somewhere on one of the build treads i think it was Derek from NZ so you might be able to find it

Andy

 

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11 minutes ago, andyc said:

The correct GM spring tool is a bar that fits under the lower arm with two long hooks like the normal spring compressors. The idea is you compress the spring onto the lower arm and remove it as a complete ass, once off the car undo the spring clamps slowly.

There was a pic somewhere on one of the build treads i think it was Derek from NZ so you might be able to find it

Andy

 

Thanks Andy.

I actually have a picture of the GM and the number of it in my Haynes manual.

As you would expect the manual tells you the procedure, which is just as you describe.

I was hoping to get the spring off tonight, but sadly other things have taken priority.

Have a good evening everyone.

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The easiest and safe way to remove coils springs is to use 2 or 3 lengths of sufficiently strong chain (a good ironmonger will supply) about 40-50cm long to hold the spring in compression.  Spring compressors, as in the illustration above, are great but they don't fit between suspension arms.  Jack up the lower arm to compress the spring using the weight of the car, get the chains around as many coils as possible, using suitable bolts to secure the chains, then lower the arm.. You will still need to separate the ball joint but the spring stays compressed (and a lot shorter) to remove it.. You will, of course, need a set of spring compressors to compress the spring before removing the chains - don't even consider loosening the chains while the springs are compressed.

The same goes for removing rear coils- they a amazing long when not compressed - without undoing anything other than the top shock mounts.

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17 hours ago, malbasys said:

The easiest and safe way to remove coils springs is to use 2 or 3 lengths of sufficiently strong chain (a good ironmonger will supply) about 40-50cm long to hold the spring in compression.  Spring compressors, as in the illustration above, are great but they don't fit between suspension arms.  Jack up the lower arm to compress the spring using the weight of the car, get the chains around as many coils as possible, using suitable bolts to secure the chains, then lower the arm.. You will still need to separate the ball joint but the spring stays compressed (and a lot shorter) to remove it.. You will, of course, need a set of spring compressors to compress the spring before removing the chains - don't even consider loosening the chains while the springs are compressed.

The same goes for removing rear coils- they a amazing long when not compressed - without undoing anything other than the top shock mounts.

An interesting and clever idea - many thanks for sharing  :thumbup

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Another take on the above idea, I used D clamps when the springs were compressed just to safeguard against any unforeseen problems when removing the springs. Belt and braces job.

 

Edited by Mike.
Edited.
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