Front Spring Decompressor
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Thread: Front Spring Decompressor

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    Member terrylewisac's Avatar
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    Front Spring Decompressor

    Hello all and thank all of you for all the FANTASTIC info. I'm new to forum and bought my first 73 gt. I have already done quit a bit of work to her and was looking to tackle the front end. I'm stumped by the (redi-rod) have tried searching and talking to local metal shops distributors etc. I have researched threaded rod strengths which made a little more confusing. Please forgive my ignorance or uneducated question. Is (redi-rod) an actual type of threaded rod or a term used in your region? No one her in Florida has heard of this ( like a lot of people refer to a concrete expansion anchor as a red head). I have all the material to fab the tool as I followed the fantastic posts on this issue. Was going to go to hardware store and just get regular 5/8 threaded rod to attempt my first time front rebuild but my family and customers need me alive and with all my limbs in tact as God gave them to me. Can anyone of you wonderful folks help clarify. Thanks in advance for your help. This car has really allowed my son and I to bond and laugh and cry getting greasy and turning wrenches. we hope to have back on the road by next summer

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    OpelGT.com ‹bermoderator kwilford's Avatar
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    A quick Google of Redi-Rod (the term I used for the threaded rod) provides:

    https://www.google.ca/search?newwind...10.Ii1osaAYIEg

    which is just threaded rod. It doesn't need to be fine thread.

    I like the style of Pitman arm puller I spec'd, as it clamps FIRMLY to the leaf spring band. Other types have been shown to work; I just showed what worked for me.

    HTH and good luck.
    Keith Wilford
    Finishing up a bare-metal, nut & bolt rotisserie restoration of my '71 Opel GT

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    Opel Key Master opelspyder's Avatar
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    With the adjustable pitman arm puller, you will use the same thread pitch it is already threaded with, which is 5/8 fine thread. You can back it up with a jamb nut, and you need one more nut for tightening. The jamb nut will prevent the threaded rod from spinning in the pitman arm puller
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    Opel Key Master opelspyder's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by soybean View Post
    True, but it still has that "pucker factor" If I should do it again, I'd go with what the others have used. The Cradle Clamp. Just my thoughts, Jarrell
    Soybean, I donít mean to sound like the resident know it all, but do you know how many front springs I have removed from the GT suspension with the same Adjustable Pitman Arm puller? I would say about 30 in the last 15 years. I even ground down the taper of the arms to clamp better under the center clamp. Itís basically the same concept, it uses two bolts to tighten the puller arms together. Now I do have to replace those bolts every now and then as the heads and nuts start getting rounded off
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    Opel Key Master opelspyder's Avatar
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    What I am saying is this pitman arm pulley is easily available at Amazon or auto part store. Whatís not safe about it? Iím saying Iíve done it 30 plus times with the same puller. We had a traveling spring remover, but that ended when a young Opeler borrowed it and said he messed it up, I finally got it back after paying shipping back and nothing was wrong with it. So after that I never sent it back out.
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    Last edited by opelspyder; 10-13-2019 at 10:38 PM.
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    OpelGT.com ‹bermoderator kwilford's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by opelspyder View Post
    With the adjustable pitman arm puller, you will use the same thread pitch it is already threaded with, which is 5/8 fine thread.
    That might be what you did, but on my spring compressor, the pitman arm puller had a threaded hole larger than 5/8", so the standard 5/8" threaded rod is held in place by nuts on both sides, NOT by the threads inherent in the puller
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    Keith Wilford
    Finishing up a bare-metal, nut & bolt rotisserie restoration of my '71 Opel GT

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    Member Michael A. Smith's Avatar
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    For what it's worth, with the front suspension out of the car, I used a pair of 8-inch "C" clamps and a maple board to squeeze down the spring. You definitely want to use a hardwood board such as oak or maple.
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    Member Michael A. Smith's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Michael A. Smith View Post
    For what it's worth, with the front suspension out of the car, I used a pair of 8-inch "C" clamps and a maple board to squeeze down the spring. You definitely want to use a hardwood board such as oak or maple.
    I went back into my garage notes to see exactly how I did this. I did one side at a time, using two (not one) oak (not maple, although maple should work) boards, 3"x1"x30", placing the two boards together for extra strength. One end of the boards was placed at the center of the spring and the other end placed on the eye of the spring where it connects to the lower control arm. I then used an 8" "C" clamp to compress the spring and boards enough to remove the control arm. My notes indicate an impressive curvature to the oak boards (unfortunately, I failed to fully photo-document the procedure) and that removing loosening and removing the clamp took some care. Further, my notes indicate that I was glad to be replacing the spring with the "Sport" item offered by OGTS, as the replacement spring did not require a compressor for installation, as I was unsure how I could reverse the procedure with the original spring, given the extent of arc of the unattached spring.
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    Member Gordy's Avatar
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    I've removed several of the front leaf springs on GTs and Kadetts. Found it much easier to remove and install with suspension in the car. Having the front end up on jack stands and a good floor jack under one end of the leaf spring holding the leaf spring up. Remove the nut and using a punch remove the bolt. Then slowly lower the floor jack and the tension is removed from the spring. To install, reverse this procedure, connecting one end of the spring and then using the floor jack, raise the other end up into it's mount.
    If I did this task more often I would certainly see the benefit of having or making a spring compressor especially the benefit of being able to assemble the entire front end off the vehicle and reinstalling as a unit. Everything can be assembled minus the leaf spring using the floor jack method.
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    2000 Post Club soybean's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by terrylewisac View Post
    Oh body armor got it lol
    Lol, no there are/were some sort of teflon/rubber pads that were between the springs if I remember correctly. I'll have to look at my notes and they are down at the shed where my parts are. Ok just found the posts, they are in this thread, posts nos 29 to 36. Hth, Jarrell
    Last edited by soybean; 10-17-2019 at 12:45 PM.
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    Member terrylewisac's Avatar
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    OH OK that is what the 4 flat looking pads that were sent from ogts as part of the spring rebuild kit gotcha. they also sent a 2 piece metal bracket i assume that is to replace the spring clamp?
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    Member terrylewisac's Avatar
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    here it is i think i uploaded right
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    Opel Key Master opelspyder's Avatar
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    So I'm going to send out another warning I've learned from experience. Either buy the new stock spring, or use a 1" lowering spring (the 1" does not seem to effect the look, and appears to be what a correct ride height should be) The reason is, once the original spring has been unsprung...it retains memory, so when you go to reinstall it, even after rebuilding all the leaves, the front end will sit up like a 4x4. I've found this to be the case each time I fully decompressed the spring. What you probably should do is have the spring re-arched by a spring place. Every car we restore I install 1" springs all around, and once they are driven....the car suspension settles into the perfect looking ride height. We also use the low pressure KYB shocks.
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    Member terrylewisac's Avatar
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    so are you saying the rebuild will set up like 4+4 and wont settle back down once driven a bit?

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    Opel Key Master opelspyder's Avatar
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    Yep, thatís what I am saying. I did Matt Newmanís GT back in 2007, with original spring. It never settled, so we later put lowering springs in it
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    Opeler jmbinjax's Avatar
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    What Keith said. I put 1" lowering springs all around and trim height was almost identical to what the originals were after 40+ years.

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    Member terrylewisac's Avatar
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    well crap man what am i to do with the rebuild parts then if i have to switch gears now? darn it man no one said learning was going to keep getting more expensive.
    I think I will be asking for advice in advance of purchasing anymore parts don"t need parts i cant or wont use thank you for the advise. crap man she just wants to be fixed.
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    Member terrylewisac's Avatar
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    Quick question is it possible to replace all the front end stuff bushings,ball joints ect on both the upper and lower ca with out removing the spring or am I still faced with the jack on the floor supporting the spring again
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    1000 Post Club kwschumm's Avatar
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    I wonder if the shackle mod would lower the stock sprung spring to sit at the right height.
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    RunOpel dpre's Avatar
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    I have always just used the floor jack to support the spring, then replace those parts. Very nice Opel by the way
    Dan
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