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Post Info TOPIC: 65-70 Front Springs


A Poncho Legend!

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65-70 Front Springs


I am thinking when I do my engine swap I will likely need to change front springs. I have a pair here I bought from Mark (Cdnpont) and may try them. I was doing some online reading tonight and found this on a Chevy forum. Has anyone else experienced this, where the replacement has more coils than the original?

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Here is some info from the suspension refurbishment I did on my 68 Impala Convertible (307, PG, No A/C) a couple of years ago. I purchased the MOOG 6192 front springs as recommended and used the OEM lower control arms.

Once installed, the car was nose high. Also the coils did not index well in the upper spring mount when I installed them. But I willfully ignored that fact because I was overjoyed that the front end was going back together!!

Frustrated, I hit up all the forums I could to find out this was a common problem without a simple, affordable solution (coilovers or air ride would fix, but big $$$).

So, I corresponded with another Chevytalk member (mjc1) to discuss his experience with front spring replacement (he had lots of info).

I had fortunately held onto my old springs and the GM part numbers were still legible. So I did a little research to compare my OEM springs specs and the MOOG 6192 spring specs.

Below is some of the email correspondence (edited):

************************* **
Found the old springs. They have a CB code sticker on them, GM p/n 3864715.
Coil wire diameter = .630" (measured)
# of coils = 9
Free length = 17" (measured, not sure what they were new)
Spring rate = 290 lb/inch (per GM spec)

New spring (MOOG 6192) specs:
Coil wire diameter = .640 (per MOOG spec and measured)
# of coils = 9.75 (visual observation)
Free length = 17.5" (per MOOG spec and measured)
Spring rate = 300 lb/in (per MOOG spec)
************************* **

As you can see in the email excerpt above, while the springs are not identical, the only characteristic that is significantly different (in my opinion) is the number of coils: MOOG 9.75 coils vs. OEM 9 coils. I should have paid more attention to this before installing the new springs, but I figured they were replacements so they should fit!

More email correspondence:

************************* **
Good news. I cut the coils (with a 4.5" grinding wheel, not an acetylene torch!) down to 9 coils and the car sits PERFECT. And it is not too stiff! Funny thing... The coil ends on the new springs were not indexed correctly to fit the control arm and frame pockets. I knew that when I put it in but did so anyway.

So the MOOG 6192 had 9.75 turns total (OEM coils have 9 turns). Of course it was sprung in the car as if it had 10 turns. I used the old coils as a guide and cut the "extra" 3/4 turn from the new coil. Now it has the same number of turns as the old one and the ends line up with the control arm and frame.

Result: The stance is much, much better!!!
All Moog had to do was make it like the OEM coil and all would have been well. Don't know why it had that extra 3/4 turn.
************************* **

So, that was my story. My car rides fine. It is not too stiff since the coil spring rate, number of coils, free length, coil wire diameter are similar to the OEM springs.

NOTE: As stated above, I used a 4.5" grinder to cut the coils, not an acetylene torch. The grinder did not impart as much heat to the springs as the torch would have, so I did not affect the spring temper.

If MOOG made the 6192 with 9 coils instead of 9.75 coils, there would have been no problem with the installed ride height and the coils would have indexed properly in both upper spring mount and lower control arm.

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1966 Strato Chief 2 door, 427 4 speed, 43,000 original miles


Poncho Master!

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I used Moog springs on my car. I never counted the coils but the car did sit higher in the front. I raised the back to level it out. I was told Moog only makes one spring now. Just heavy duty. But you should be ok with a big block.

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'68 Parisienne 2+2 Convertible Matador Red (Resale Red but not for sale).



A Poncho Legend!

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That's what I'm hoping for.

I will certainly the compare the old and the new. But first I want to try it with the 283 springs. I know I did that with my 427 automatic Grande Parisienne way back when, but it was a little bit low in the front. That car was loaded though, A/C, all the power options. It likely weighed 400 pounds more than this car does with no options.

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1966 Strato Chief 2 door, 427 4 speed, 43,000 original miles


Poncho Master!

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Talk to norm at mid Canada, I know a number of years ago he said he had a place to get springs close to OE specs.

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1967 2dr Biscayne. L36, M40, G80, K05, F41. #'s.
1967 Impala convert. 283, glide. Parked in the garage since 74 and hasn't moved. Soon to be BB 4speed.

 



A Poncho Legend!

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Hmmm, I hadn't thought of him.

I'm not stuck yet but planning ahead.

I'll talk to Norm in the spring I guess. His voice mail a couple of weeks ago said he's away until spring.

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1966 Strato Chief 2 door, 427 4 speed, 43,000 original miles


Canadian Poncho Superstar!

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When I put the big block in my 70 2+2 rag the nose just kept dropping. I replaced the originals with a Moog spring, and it worked perfectly. I'll get you the Moog part #. I also used the same spring on my 70 Parisienne with the 454, same result.

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70 2+2 convertible
70 2+2 hardtop
70 Parisienne hardtop
72 GMC Sierra

 

 



A Poncho Legend!

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Oh good. I'd like to have a backup plan if the springs I got from Mark don't sit the right height for me.

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1966 Strato Chief 2 door, 427 4 speed, 43,000 original miles


Canadian Poncho Superstar!

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I wish there was a princess auto (read cheap) tool where the rate could be measured with each spring.

Like a basic pressure transducer(scale)attached to a threaded rod coming through a plate. Put the spring over the scale and rod, put on the cap and bolt and tighten down a measured 1" of compression. Take the scale reading and you have the rate.

So you'd just compare the free height along with the rate and you'd have a basic understanding of what you actually have. 

 

I still have the used 350 B springs that Clint sent me way back. I think it's a good bet they'll work in the 65 for the V8.



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67' Grande Parisienne. Ex Ottawa USSR Embassy car, 67- 68.
6977017306_dfca361bfc_m.jpg
 


A Poncho Legend!

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cdnpont wrote:

I wish there was a princess auto (read cheap) tool where the rate could be measured with each spring.

.





I think you just figured out your next project!

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1966 Strato Chief 2 door, 427 4 speed, 43,000 original miles


Canadian Poncho Superstar!

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I used Moog 6322 front springs on both my 1970 big block cars. Worked perfectly.

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70 2+2 convertible
70 2+2 hardtop
70 Parisienne hardtop
72 GMC Sierra

 

 



Addicted!

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I hate dealing with replacement front springs, they are always make the car sit way too high and they are not cut and trimmed to fit like factory springs. because the end is not shaped properly they sometimes rub on a suspension component and occasionally make strange twanging sounds. They also sag within a few years (probably cheaper tempering process). I've had better luck in recent years with using spacers on the original springs. You can buy plastic or rubber 1/4" and 1/2" spacers from AC Delco for front springs.

I start by going through all the bushings as they can lower a car if they are shot. Then I measure the car with new bushings and add spacers if needed (rule of thumb is the spacer will increase the car by about double it's thickness). Here I'm talking about spacer disc that goes between the spring and the mount on the top or bottom side (depends on the car).

A less permanent but much easier trick if you only need a bit of boost is the spacers that sit vertically between two coils. With daily use they will fail after a few years but with our typical use of a classic car they'll probably outlast us. These can't deal with totally blown springs but can be ideal to get a 1/2" or so just to perk up a front end that's showing its age a bit.

Gas charged shocks also raise a car a bit, not noticeable in front but they can raise a car a good 1/2" or more in back. We are lucky with Canadian big cars because they use the chevy fullsize chassis so we can space and cut our rear springs. The A bodies from those same years have coils tapered top and bottom so you can't trim them and spacers here don't stay in place properly.

Note that when working on front spring height, especially if you are dealing with one side being higher than the other that sway bars play a role. Cars with fat bars will tend to equalize left to right imbalances but cars with skinny bars like our big ponchos are more prone to this kind of problem.

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John

Montreal 

16 1969 American Pontiacs

and a 1969 Canadian 2+2 Hardtop



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I still have the stock used front 350 B springs Clint sent me, and they should be perfect in the 65 for the V8 conversion!



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67' Grande Parisienne. Ex Ottawa USSR Embassy car, 67- 68.
6977017306_dfca361bfc_m.jpg
 


Guru

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My car had "new" springs put in before I bought it.

The nose would always hit on the steep laneway when the owner's son in-law would take the car golfing.

It was the only car he had that could fit all the clubs in.

1969 with caps.jpg

I talked to the local spring guru in London and he said he cuts them down all the time.

I decided to cheap out and go with the pucks in the back.

1 inch puck which I think, put it to about 3 inch lift.

So now the car sits high but I have had a lot of people compliment me on the stance.

002a.jpg

My old Grande use to rub the tires with passengers in the back but I loved the worn out "Low rider" stance.

my 1969 Grande (2017_01_29 18_50_35 UTC).jpg

 

 

 



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Randy(Muttwood)



Addicted!

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Maybe a little of topic, but in 1970 a friend had a 1962 safari wagon with a 261 and a powerglide. He bought a 348 and a three speed out of a 1958 Chevy to put in the Pontiac. His buddy said that he would need to change the front springs to carry that big engine. For interests sake he measured the ride height at the front fender before and after. The car actually was an inch higher after the swap. I guess that cast iron powerglide must be quite heavy!

Paul

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I actually would like to ask the Forum.....where do you actually buy your springs and shock absorbers. I was told by a mechanic who did some work on the car for me a few years ago that my car needed both because of age related wear. I haven't changed mine in the almost 30 years I have owned it. I would like to get some high quality replacement ones. So first off which brands are the best and where can I get them. Should I be looking at big block Chevy Impala/Biscayne type stuff? My car has a 427. Would appreciate all advice. Thanks.

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Kevin

1966 Pontiac Grande Parisienne 427/4spd

1966 Lincoln Continental Convertible

1968 Ferrari 365 GT 2+2

2000 Jaguar VDP Super V8

2008 Toyota Avalon XLS



Canadian Poncho Superstar!

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Kevin66427 wrote:

I actually would like to ask the Forum.....where do you actually buy your springs and shock absorbers. I was told by a mechanic who did some work on the car for me a few years ago that my car needed both because of age related wear. I haven't changed mine in the almost 30 years I have owned it. I would like to get some high quality replacement ones. So first off which brands are the best and where can I get them. Should I be looking at big block Chevy Impala/Biscayne type stuff? My car has a 427. Would appreciate all advice. Thanks.


 I stick with Moog springs & Monroe shocks.



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70 2+2 convertible
70 2+2 hardtop
70 Parisienne hardtop
72 GMC Sierra

 

 

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