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Replacing leaf springs tomorrow

scotts90ranger

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If you're talking about the nuts stopping after putting them about 2-3 turns, those are lock nuts so they don't fall out, they're fine to use...
 


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Those nuts only turn a certain distance by hand. Then they stop. Will they continue to turn by wrench to tighten more?

Hmm.....This is going to be interesting. I just crawled under the truck to test fitment of grinder cut-off wheel and sawzall blade.

What about cutting through the bushing sleeve ends as opposed to the bolt head just for the locations where that might be easier?
 
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alwaysFlOoReD

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Those nuts only turn a certain distance by hand. Then they stop. Will they continue to turn by wrench to tighten more?

Hmm.....This is going to be interesting. I just crawled under the truck to test fitment of grinder cut-off wheel and sawzall blade.

What about cutting through the bushing sleeve ends as opposed to the bolt head just for the locations where that might be easier?
The nuts are deformed on purpose to make a "locking" nut. Yes, you can use a wrench to tighten.
Try to cut thru the bushing sleeve ends if that works better. Hopefully the blade you have will work.
 

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Ok. Thanks. I had to make trips to the hardware store again yesterday.
But I am starting to work on it now. I will follow up with all of you.
 

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I ran into a couple snags today. I got the shock absorbers and U-Bolts removed from both sides.

I am doing the left side first. When I lower the jack....which is under the lower most point of the rear axle housing.........I can't relieve all the tension
on the leaf spring for it to break free from the riser block. The jack bottoms out and won't go any lower. (with jack stands as a back up, of course)

Can I position the jack just left or right of the rear axle housing on the axle tube? I think this will enable the axle to drop lower and break the leaf springs
free of the riser blocks.

Also, the center bolts on the new leaf springs have a greater diameter than the holes in the old spring plates. So I need to widen the holes maybe 1/16 of an inch.
If I use a cobalt drill bit, will my 7-amp drill have any problem widening a hole 3/16 of an inch deep?
 

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There is no reason I can think of that will be a problem to placing the jack left or right of the pumpkin. Just make sure your jack stands are solidly placed. You may have to lift the frame higher and place jack stands for that height.

The spring plates on the axle are regular steel and cobalt is overkill. That said nothing wrong with using cobalt. BUT, 1/16" is a very small amount to remove and you are likely to get the bit stuck unless you are very light in the pressure applied. Especially as you are about to break through to the other side of the hole. Careful you don't break a wrist...
 

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I have a couple questions

1. When I was trying to separate the leaf spring and riser block, I lowered the axle enough where the brake drum was not far from the concrete floor.
In doing this, could I have pulled the driveshaft downward at too steep an angle and damaged the U-Joints?

2. The hole in the spring plates is 3/4 inch. 13/16 inch drill bit would be just about right for increasing the diameter of that hole. But I think the closest thing I'll find at the hardware store is 7/8 inch. Is that going to cause the new leaf spring to shift around? (There was maybe 1/8 inch play or less in the old spring/plate setup)
Should I consider using a stepped drill bit for this?
 
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alwaysFlOoReD

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I have a couple questions

1. When I was trying to separate the leaf spring and riser block, I lowered the axle enough where the brake drum was not far from the concrete floor.
In doing this, could I have pulled the driveshaft downward at too steep an angle and damaged the U-Joints?

2. The hole in the spring plates is 3/4 inch. 13/16 inch drill bit would be just about right for increasing the diameter of that hole. But I think the closest thing I'll find at the hardware store is 7/8 inch. Is that going to cause the new leaf spring to shift around? (There was maybe 1/8 inch play or less in the old spring/plate setup)
IMO;
Ujoint will be fine.

Slightly bigger hole will be fine. The friction between the spring and spring plate once clamped is what stops movement. Would be prudent to shift axle all the way back or forward before clamping. You don't want to have one side forward and one side back or the truck will dogwalk.
 

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Ok Thanks. I understand.

The first thing I need to do is release all the tension on the spring and break that riser block free.
Will it be ok to lower that axle as low as it will go, so the brake drum is a few inches from the floor? I think that will work. But will the drive shaft be ok?

When I get some time later, I'll walk to the hardware store for a couple drill bits.
 

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i always let the u-joints turn as far as they go when i am doing axle stuff and i never had trouble.
 

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Well. I know if I disconnect the diriveshaft flange from the axle companion flange, the riser block and leaf spring will almost definitely fall free.
But I don't want to do that. I'll get back on it. I'll change the jack stand position and height.
 

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I got the driver side leaf spring removed. I used a combination of MAPP gas flame, grinder cut-off wheel, and sawzall with carbide blade.
For some reason, the rear shackle was easy to remove. It was just heat and a breaker bar to back out the old bolt.

But I can't install the new one until I buy drill bits to bore out the holes in the spring plates and riser blocks.

I also got a nice swollen finger from dropping the leaf spring on it. Just adds to the fun.

I have to go to the hardware now. I'll report back later.
 

Paisano

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You guys are going to laugh at this.
Yesterday I purchased an expensive stepped drill bit to open up the holes on the spring plates. That's all could find at the hardware store. That drill bit was a waste of time. I'll return it for a refund. But I found a 1/2 inch cobalt drill bit in my tool box still in it's wrapping. It is smaller than the hole diameter. I ringed the inside of the hole with that spinning drill bit. Done with both spring plates in 15 minutes.
 

Paisano

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Another question please.

I'm just checking an overview of my method:
When I get the new spring on the driver side.......I should install ALL hardware including U-Bolts BARELY snug..........THEN remove the old leaf spring and hardware from
the passenger side...........install the new passenger side leaf spring and ALL hardware BARELY snug........THEN use ratchet strap or by hand, to pull axle to align
both leaf springs........THEN tighten all hardware on both leaf springs. Is this correct?

How will I know both leaf springs are in alignment? Just a visual check?
 

alwaysFlOoReD

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Sounds reasonable to me. I've never had to drill holes oversize so don't have direct experience.
 

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