Coil & Shock Replacement Dangers? - Defender Source
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  #1  
Old January 12th, 2015, 10:21 AM
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Coil & Shock Replacement Dangers?

Preparing to replace my coils and shocks within the next couple of weeks. Working with a Designa chassis with D1 axles under the 109. Looking at the project it appears straight forward. But is there any surprise tension or required compression of the old or new coils to replace and re-install?
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  #2  
Old January 12th, 2015, 11:09 AM
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You doing this on a lift or on the ground? Any anti sway bars?
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  #3  
Old January 12th, 2015, 11:51 AM
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I suggest you replace all plates, nuts and bolts. When I did mine a few weeks back I bought every nt and bolt, plus spring plates, shock towers, put disloc cones on rear and anti-sway bar bolts I needed. Replaced all.

As guaranteed they are rusted, and you will break stuff.
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  #4  
Old January 12th, 2015, 11:55 AM
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It will be on the ground; no anti-sway bars to deal with. Talking with some locals it could be as easy as a bottle jack on the frame to get it away from the axle with no spring compressor required.


Quote:
Originally Posted by airbornrover View Post
You doing this on a lift or on the ground? Any anti sway bars?
------ Follow up post added January 12th, 2015 11:56 AM ------

That is great advice Jonesy. Will do. Thanks!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jonesy View Post
I suggest you replace all plates, nuts and bolts. When I did mine a few weeks back I bought every nt and bolt, plus spring plates, shock towers, put disloc cones on rear and anti-sway bar bolts I needed. Replaced all.

As guaranteed they are rusted, and you will break stuff.
------ Follow up post added January 12th, 2015 11:58 AM ------

Jeff, she already sits as a coiler. Just swapping out some worn coil springs. I think I have the older style bolt on brackets. The PO did the original swap.

Quote:
Originally Posted by JSBriggs View Post
Do you have A frame mounts on the frame, or do you need to procure the older style bolt on brackets?

-Jeff
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  #5  
Old January 12th, 2015, 12:08 PM
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If you just have the chassis with no body on top its a helluva lot easier to do than with body on top.
A few cases of beer for your lifting buddies come in handy.

Also make sure you have all the brackets on the chassis. On my D90 chassis there was some bracket(s) at the rear that wasn't built into the chassis. Had to order it from Justin. Without looking at the chassis, I forget which ones. Consider replacing the A arm bearing when its all apart and easily accessible.
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  #6  
Old January 12th, 2015, 12:09 PM
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Sorry for the confusion Jeff. I am just replacing the existing coils with neww...she was already converted.

Good advice on preparing for rust. She doesn't look too bad at a glance but I twill take Jonesy's advice and replace the bits while I have it broken apart.

Thanks!

Quote:
Originally Posted by JSBriggs View Post
I might have mis-read what you are doing. Are you converting to coils, or you have already converted and are simply replacing your old coils with new?

If you are replacing old coils for new, its pretty straight forward, and there are alot of write ups on it. the biggest issue becomes rusty bolts on the retaing ring for the front shock tower, and the nuts on the shocks themselves. if you dont have rust, its an easy job you can do in an evening.

-Jeff
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Old January 12th, 2015, 01:03 PM
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The rear coils will pretty much fall out once the shocks are pulled and the spring retainers are removed. The fronts will likely require placing a bottle or scissor jack (my preference) between axle and bump stop to push the axle down far enough to remove/replace the coil. It is a relatively simple job that can be completed in a half day. Jonesy has it right about the hardware too.
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Old January 12th, 2015, 01:15 PM
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Make sure not to over extend the brake lines. In the front, turning the wheels helps. If you have stock springs this is much less of an issue. The biggest pain is getting the shocks off the front in my experience. I got a giant set of channel locks to hold the bottom of the shock body and a 17mm? or 19mm gear wrench to turn the bottom nut.
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  #9  
Old January 12th, 2015, 01:25 PM
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I've used pairs of ratcheting tie down straps as spring compressors for the front several times.

It shouldn't require too much compression, but take all appropriate safety precautions when compressing any spring.

Yeah, and that old hardware will likely be read for the bin.
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  #10  
Old January 12th, 2015, 01:40 PM
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This is good news. Thanks!
Quote:
Originally Posted by ezzzzzzz View Post
The rear coils will pretty much fall out once the shocks are pulled and the spring retainers are removed. The fronts will likely require placing a bottle or scissor jack (my preference) between axle and bump stop to push the axle down far enough to remove/replace the coil. It is a relatively simple job that can be completed in a half day. Jonesy has it right about the hardware too.
------ Follow up post added January 12th, 2015 01:42 PM ------

Quote:
Originally Posted by evilfij View Post
Make sure not to over extend the brake lines. In the front, turning the wheels helps. If you have stock springs this is much less of an issue. The biggest pain is getting the shocks off the front in my experience. I got a giant set of channel locks to hold the bottom of the shock body and a 17mm? or 19mm gear wrench to turn the bottom nut.
Getting the shocks off may be an issue. They are toast so they have probably been on there long enough to be a pain to get off.

------ Follow up post added January 12th, 2015 01:43 PM ------

Exactly, safety is my concern. I didn't want to start taking fasteners off and run in to some sort of "bear trap" compression/decompression hazard.

Quote:
Originally Posted by UnfrozenCaveman View Post
I've used pairs of ratcheting tie down straps as spring compressors for the front several times.

It shouldn't require too much compression, but take all appropriate safety precautions when compressing any spring.

Yeah, and that old hardware will likely be read for the bin.
------ Follow up post added January 12th, 2015 01:44 PM ------

Harbor Freight is definitely a good friend sometimes. Thanks!
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  #11  
Old January 12th, 2015, 01:51 PM
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Thanks Chris!
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  #12  
Old January 12th, 2015, 02:16 PM
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You can get the rears out by driving one side of the front wheels up a ramp. No jacking needed. Ramp side rear spring will drop out if you go far enough up the ramp.
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  #13  
Old January 12th, 2015, 02:54 PM
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Oh yeah, big ass channellock pliers are usually needed to hold onto the shock body (front and back) to remove the lower retaining nuts.

------ Follow up post added January 12th, 2015 03:01 PM ------

http://www.harborfreight.com/macpher...set-61654.html

I had one of these come apart changing strut springs and almost take my thumb off. I have a proper spring compressor for that task now. However, There's no need for it in this application. The jack will easily push the front axle down far enough to fit a new spring upwards of 2" lift. 3" or more will definitely require spring compression. The back coils will slip right in with minmal effort.
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Old January 12th, 2015, 03:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JSBriggs View Post
I prefer vice grips (12LC)


-Jeff
That'll work!
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  #15  
Old January 12th, 2015, 03:38 PM
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Got it. Big ass channel locks or vice grips are also recommended.

Thanks to everyone for all the advice. I have at least done my due-diligence to keep all associated body parts in tact and functioning for future use while attempting this project. And thanks to Brian for offering local assistance and parts combined with the consumption of beverages!
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