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rear suspension updated & home alignment on the 82....w/pics

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rear suspension updated & home alignment on the 82....w/pics

 
Old 05-02-2012, 07:52 PM
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SSROADSTER
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Default rear suspension updated & home alignment on the 82....w/pics

Since my RR wheel had a lot of negative camber and I haven't had time to get to the alignment shop, I thought it would be best to update the rear suspension and get things in order before getting the Vette aligned.
So I decided to change out the following: struts, rear spring and bushings in the rear sway bar and spring bolt bushings as well. I also borrowed a Camber/Caster alignment gauge from one of the mechanic's at work. It helped out tremendously.
BTW, I used products from VBP which I already had from the 74, but not installed yet. This is by no means a plug for them, as there are many vendors out there who sell good quality suspensions parts. VBP was my choice and I am satisfied with their products. That being said, now on to the install......
this is the gauge I used....more on that later...

the adjustable strut rods I used...

If you intend to do the struts, now is the perfect time to do the spring, as I would recommend removing the spare tire carrier, rear spring to easily get to the struts.
the rear FE7 9 leaf spring...


w/part #

the original struts removed, you can see where the bushings are worn from 30 years of movement, this is why I could not adjust the RR wheel.


I also found it very necessary to remove the strut rod bracket from the rear for a number of reasons. I couldn't get one strut bolt undone, went to PepBoys and had them use an air gun to remove, and I would have never been able to install the new rods without the bracket removed.


parts from the new struts....

those two round washers from above have to go inside the strut rod bracket with the struts, what a PIA to do....

lining everything up for the install....




mission accomplished....

the alignment gauge.....what I did after everything was back together was use the jack under the bottom of the strut/shock mount (car was on jackstands for the rear) and raise it up enough that the halfshaft was level, I did use a level on the halfshaft for that purpose....

spring and rods installed....



then I attached the gauge to the rear hub and took my camber measurement with the gauge leveled....

look at the gauge and you can see that I dialed in that wheel @ 1/4 degree negative camber.
the alignment specs for the 82 are: 0 degrees + or - 1/2 degree for each rear wheel, I did not concern myself with toe-in at this time.
another view of the gauge....

since I have the rear sway bar, I found it next to impossible to install the rubber cushions for the rear spring bolts, because of the tab needed for the bar, so for now I put the poly cushions in and they seem to be just fine. The ride is better, I am using a 340 lb spring as that is the one I had made up for my 74 BB Vert and will have to replace that in the future. It feels much better in the back end. I just got in sway bar link bushings as mine are totally worned out, so they get replaced this weekend.
the last few pics are from the rear of the Vette before and after the home rear alignment, I still have to make a minor adjustment on the RR wheel as I feel it needs to come in another 1/2 degree or so. But all-in -all, I am happy with the results.
LR before....

LR after...

RR before...

RR after...

So far, so good.................................... Tom

Last edited by SSROADSTER; 05-02-2012 at 08:03 PM.
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Old 05-02-2012, 07:59 PM
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Job well done! Nice right up with the pics.
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Old 05-02-2012, 08:09 PM
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Originally Posted by JimmyS5600 View Post
Job well done! Nice right up with the pics.
thanks....appreciated.........
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Old 05-02-2012, 08:18 PM
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What do you think was the most worn part contributing to the probelm? The strut bushings?

I have the same issue, looks like new struts with bushings would take care of it.
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Old 05-02-2012, 08:22 PM
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Nice job! Pics tell the story well
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Old 05-02-2012, 08:25 PM
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Originally Posted by maxmachz View Post
What do you think was the most worn part contributing to the probelm? The strut bushings?

I have the same issue, looks like new struts with bushings would take care of it.
Yes, the bushings for sure, and maybe my rear spring also as with the FE7, having the steel spring, it would fatigue more than the standard composite one would on the 81 and 82 models.....although my old spring still has a good arc, but it does need rebuilding....
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Old 05-02-2012, 08:27 PM
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Originally Posted by hugie82 View Post
Nice job! Pics tell the story well
thank you hugie, I anxious to see and hear more about your 82 and what you have done with it.......
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