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Old 12-13-2017, 09:29 AM   #201 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by whitneyj View Post
Budget is nonexistant, so CO's are definitely out, even FOA's. Funds are so low right now (medical bills from the newborn and lots of other "shit, that wasn't supposed to happen") that $50 each from RockAuto isn't much of an option. I have a large amount of steel plate, and drop, at my disposal so I'll just build my own. I'm just drawing a blank on how to build them as simple as coil buckets are...
http://i53.tinypic.com/314zgpv.jpg
http://i53.tinypic.com/v7efj6.jpg
Made one for a ranger a while back with similar budget, used 1/4" plate cause it's what I had. With the f150 coils don't use pipe to retain the coil, unless you're going on the outside of the spring because of the pigtail at the top.

the ballistic ones look neat, but overcomplicated and kinda weak. They do see a shitload more force than a solid axle coil spring

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Old 12-13-2017, 09:41 AM   #202 (permalink)
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http://i53.tinypic.com/314zgpv.jpg
http://i53.tinypic.com/v7efj6.jpg
Made one for a ranger a while back with similar budget, used 1/4" plate cause it's what I had. With the f150 coils don't use pipe to retain the coil, unless you're going on the outside of the spring because of the pigtail at the top.

the ballistic ones look neat, but overcomplicated and kinda weak. They do see a shitload more force than a solid axle coil spring
I’m not following what you’re saying about the F150 pigtail. You mean the end of the coil goes straight for the spring retainer? The plan is to capture the outside of the coil like Ford did, maybe use my 3” dimple die actually just for shits n giggles...

My goal is to imitate Ford’s design with the addition of a threaded adjuster like the AutoFab ones.
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Old 12-13-2017, 10:28 AM   #203 (permalink)
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Iím not following what youíre saying about the F150 pigtail. You mean the end of the coil goes straight for the spring retainer? The plan is to capture the outside of the coil like Ford did, maybe use my 3Ē dimple die actually just for shits n giggles...

My goal is to imitate Fordís design with the addition of a threaded adjuster like the AutoFab ones.
yeah, go on the outside, the one I made pictured went inside the spring as ranger coils don't have the pigtail end on the top
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Old 12-13-2017, 10:32 AM   #204 (permalink)
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yeah, go on the outside, the one I made pictured went inside the spring as ranger coils don't have the pigtail end on the top
Thatís the plan, however, I was going to run the bumpstop on the inside of the coil-similar to how XJís are. Guess Iíll see what things look like when I get it together. I can mount the bumpstop on the inside of the frame rail too.
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Old 12-13-2017, 11:31 AM   #205 (permalink)
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One nice thing about TTB (or any IFS, for that matter) is that the bumpstop will always hit exactly the same spot, rather than a solid axle where it'll hit differently during flex vs. both sides fully compressed. Makes it easy to get really tight clearances to things and use every bit of available travel.

Not really immediately relevant but I'm guessing you're quickly approaching that point, so I figured it'd help to include that in your thought process if you haven't already.
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Old 12-13-2017, 03:10 PM   #206 (permalink)
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Skip the adjustable bucket, those look flimsy as hell. The jack bolt for adjustment is a proven winner.
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Old 12-13-2017, 05:05 PM   #207 (permalink)
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One nice thing about TTB (or any IFS, for that matter) is that the bumpstop will always hit exactly the same spot, rather than a solid axle where it'll hit differently during flex vs. both sides fully compressed. Makes it easy to get really tight clearances to things and use every bit of available travel.

Not really immediately relevant but I'm guessing you're quickly approaching that point, so I figured it'd help to include that in your thought process if you haven't already.
I noticed that right away actually and was pretty excited about it. I notched the frame for an additional 1Ē due to that. Iíve always hated setting up bumpstops for the reasons you mentioned, but with the TTB/IFS I have tons of options and theyíre all fairly simple. Iím going to try and pull off how stock XJís bumpstops are inside the coils. The only drawback I remember was pulling the coils was more of a pain since the axle has to be dropped considerably more.

I saw you posted and was dreading what I missed that you were pointing out

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Skip the adjustable bucket, those look flimsy as hell. The jack bolt for adjustment is a proven winner.
Thatís what Iím going with. I donít like the bolt on deal for a few reasons.
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Old 12-13-2017, 07:24 PM   #208 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by whitneyj View Post
Iím going to try and pull off how stock XJís bumpstops are inside the coils. The only drawback I remember was pulling the coils was more of a pain since the axle has to be dropped considerably more.
On my XJ I used 2.5" x .25 DOM for the bumpstop post inside the spring and got a two-piece shaft collar from McMaster for the top of it, as an adjustable spring seat. Just slide it up or down the DOM and tighten it down wherever the ride height needs to be.

I know it's not quite the 'shit laying around the garage' solution, but they worked really well and never once slipped when I had them tightened down.

https://www.mcmaster.com/#8386k25/=1ao9xbw

The jackbolt from the top would probably work fine too but might be more difficult to incorporate the bumpstop post.
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Old 12-14-2017, 06:38 AM   #209 (permalink)
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On my XJ I used 2.5" x .25 DOM for the bumpstop post inside the spring and got a two-piece shaft collar from McMaster for the top of it, as an adjustable spring seat. Just slide it up or down the DOM and tighten it down wherever the ride height needs to be.

I know it's not quite the 'shit laying around the garage' solution, but they worked really well and never once slipped when I had them tightened down.

https://www.mcmaster.com/#8386k25/=1ao9xbw

The jackbolt from the top would probably work fine too but might be more difficult to incorporate the bumpstop post.
And seeing as how your XJ probably weighed as much as my stock-ish Blazer that would probably work well. I love that McMaster-Carr gives the print for it as well, so I could probably just make one from some axle tube/DOM I have laying around so this is a very viable option, as well as an easy one. I think I like this more than the jack bolt honestly...

So the spring itself seated against the collar? Or was there an additional spring plate between the two? More for my own curiosity as with the Ford springs I'd have to build a plate to grab the "pigtail" end of the spring anyhow.
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Old 12-14-2017, 08:18 AM   #210 (permalink)
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And seeing as how your XJ probably weighed as much as my stock-ish Blazer that would probably work well. I love that McMaster-Carr gives the print for it as well, so I could probably just make one from some axle tube/DOM I have laying around so this is a very viable option, as well as an easy one. I think I like this more than the jack bolt honestly...

So the spring itself seated against the collar? Or was there an additional spring plate between the two? More for my own curiosity as with the Ford springs I'd have to build a plate to grab the "pigtail" end of the spring anyhow.
Take a look at some super-duty coil buckets. They use a tube in the middle to locate the coil. You could do something similar and stick a bump-stop on it. You could use some plywood rings (or if you want to sound professional call them "shims" to set the ride height then do something more permanent once you've gotten it dialed in.

I don't like bump-stops on coil buckets because they're a great way to bend buckets and twist frames. It works for low speed use but having a bump stop you can't hit hard kind of defeats the point of the TTB. If you wanted to break shit when you bottomed out hard you could have kept the GM IFS or bought a Toyota.

If it were my build I'd move the bump stop back, give it a contact point on the radius arm and beef up the arm to take it but I also wouldn't have gotten into that situation in the first place
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Old 12-14-2017, 10:53 AM   #211 (permalink)
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Take a look at some super-duty coil buckets. They use a tube in the middle to locate the coil. You could do something similar and stick a bump-stop on it. You could use some plywood rings (or if you want to sound professional call them "shims" to set the ride height then do something more permanent once you've gotten it dialed in.

I don't like bump-stops on coil buckets because they're a great way to bend buckets and twist frames. It works for low speed use but having a bump stop you can't hit hard kind of defeats the point of the TTB. If you wanted to break shit when you bottomed out hard you could have kept the GM IFS or bought a Toyota.

If it were my build I'd move the bump stop back, give it a contact point on the radius arm and beef up the arm to take it but I also wouldn't have gotten into that situation in the first place
That's a good idea with the "shims". I may look into that. I have a bit to build on the buckets still before I worry about building any adjustability or make anything permanent.

I doubt I'll bend my coil buckets as A) it's 1/4" plate B) this is just a daily driver/winter beater. It'll never purposefully see anything go fast C) I beat the SNOT out of my last XJ with that style bumpstop and all I did was start to buckle the 16 gauge sheet metal it was made out of. D) it won't twist the frame where the buckets are mounted as it's right in the middle of my overbuilt crossmember that welds inbetween the frame rails. E) Because I'm going to will it not to.

I thought about using the radius arms for the bumpstops, or at least to hold the shocks, but I like the bumpstop in the coil idea for less shit all over the place. I'd have to build a lot more stuff to make that happen and frankly I'm running out of scrap metal
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Old 12-14-2017, 06:37 PM   #212 (permalink)
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So the spring itself seated against the collar? Or was there an additional spring plate between the two? More for my own curiosity as with the Ford springs I'd have to build a plate to grab the "pigtail" end of the spring anyhow.
I just let it sit right on the collar. The bottom spring seat was also just flat. Never caused me any problems, although that was with XJ springs.

Had to dig deep for this pic...
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Old 12-15-2017, 08:10 AM   #213 (permalink)
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I just let it sit right on the collar. The bottom spring seat was also just flat. Never caused me any problems, although that was with XJ springs.

Had to dig deep for this pic...
I perused your XJ threads but couldnít find a decent picture. Thanks for digging

Iím contemplating either cutting that ďpigtailĒ off the Ford spring so itíll mount similar to an XJ, or if I have to buy springs I may just go with a 4-5Ē coil identical to an XJ with an appropriate spring rate. However Iím trying to avoid that...

I found a few chunks of DOM I could turn into a locking collar so that idea is on the table. I like the simplicity and ease of adjustments that offers.
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Old 12-15-2017, 08:18 AM   #214 (permalink)
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I found a few chunks of DOM I could turn into a locking collar so that idea is on the table. I like the simplicity and ease of adjustments that offers.
Single split with pinch bolts ( like a bump stop can), make it way the fuck too long to start with then cut it down until it's just right.
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Old 12-15-2017, 08:43 AM   #215 (permalink)
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Single split with pinch bolts ( like a bump stop can), make it way the fuck too long to start with then cut it down until it's just right.
I believe that's exactly what I'm going to do if the buckets I built need any additional height.

That said, lower coil bucket retainers are done. They serve a two purposes: holding the coil buckets and they're a fish plate for where I added 2" to the beams. I turned the head of a 5/8" bolt down to 7/8", cut a bevel into it, and welded it into the 7/8" hole of the 1/4" plate. I'll be turning the bottom of the lower coil buckets on the lathe for a better flat bottom as there's a lot of rust scale on them...

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And then I got started on the coil buckets:

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This is where I'm at currently. They're ready to be tacked onto the frame and mocked up, but there's some fancy boy speed holes, dimpled gussets, and bad welds that'll happen before they're final welded.There's only 1/8" of clearance all around the coil so I fully expect it to rub. I'll keep my eyes open for a set of 4-5" coils to replace these 5.5" coils someday, but I don't see this being an issue either way.

If shop time happens tonight I'll tack these in, cycle everything, and build the bumpstops. I'll probably go with Dodge Caravan rear bumpstops as they're dirty cheap and "progressive".
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Old 12-18-2017, 07:57 AM   #216 (permalink)
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Very small update: Coil buckets are welded up as is everything on the frame aside from some overhead welding. I for the life of me could not dial it in and get a decent bead going or even any puddle control. I'm waiting on my buddy to heal up (threw his back out) so he can weld it up for me. Pipefitters are welders in their own league. It's a true talent/art form watching them TIG.

I eyeballed the coil buckets on both sides and nailed the passenger side one, but I did have to move the driver's side (1/16" only). That's the luckiest I got all weekend...

The welds on the buckets are actually very good, the pictures are just very good at showing my cold lap starts... The difference taking your time to REALLY clean the metal, dial the wire feed in, and get your positioning correct for your entire bead is astounding.

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Then I stripped the knuckles down and had intentions of getting them put back together so I could get the steering figured out and on it's own weight-but SOMEONE lost the lower ball joints he bought several months ago... Once those are found I'll get the knuckles back on (loosely so the alignment is easy later) and get the hubs/brakes together for the steering, brake lines, and sway bar. Once I have it set down on its own weight I'll worry about the bumpstops. According to my calibrated tape measure the front should sit exactly 1" higher than it did with the GM IFS, so I may not need the split collar to adjust height.

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Old 02-19-2018, 10:04 AM   #217 (permalink)
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Well it's been 2 months almost to the day since I've updated last, might as well show something for it... I had to step away from the Blazer for a bit to help out a few laid off buddies who didn't have wheels for various reasons and therefore couldn't get jobs: engine swaps, water pumps, whiskey soaked nights... etc. Worked out well for me as one of those buddies is a pipefitter and hands down the best welder I know. So for trade he did all the overhead welding on the frame for me, lots of misc drilling/grinding/bitch work-nothing of which I have pictures of.

So onto the pictures!

I had two options for the steering: lengthen all the factory Ford stuff and build a pitman arm or build a swingarm setup. The factory Ford stuff had the nicety of being all off the shelf, easily accessible parts but I didn't like the drop the pitmain would have been at. Moving the steering gear box wasn't on my list of options either. Lastly, using the factory Ford stuff still gives me all the funky steering characteristics of piss poor geometry. So swingarm it was. My original goal was to build the swingarm using the factory GM pitman arm/idle arm setup. To pull this off I just had a build a bracket...

I needed the tapers for the pitman arm and idler arm

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Turned them down in the lathe to 1.125"

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The pitman arm is 26*'s to the ground and the swingarm bracket needs to be parallel for a few reasons, clearance and simplicity being the primaries.

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Some moron lost the hardware from the factory GM pitman/idle arms but just happened to have some lug nuts off a Dodge Cummins Dually that fit... I don't have pictures of the finished product, but I cut the washer off and face cut the flange off the nut. Gives me lots of thread engagement on the arms now.
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Old 02-19-2018, 10:23 AM   #218 (permalink)
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I started the swingarm bracket/connecting tie rod as just 3/8" flatbar, more so because I wasn't sure what else to use. Well I hate it and cannot for the life of me figure out how to finish it off so it's aesthetically pleasing. I kept going on the brackets for the draglinks however and will revisit the connecting aspect of this later.

I'm going with 3/4" heims with a 2" mounting width. The inside brackets are inline and dead center with each other and the opposing brackets obviously have to be offset to the opposing sides otherwise the draglinks would try to be in the same place at the same time (making an X). Nothing super special about what's going on here.

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You'll notice the tapers aren't mirror imaged of each other. This is primarily due to GM's connecting tie rod having this same offset and also due to the pivots for the draglinks need to be in the same plane as their beam and radius arm mount. (big thanks to @vetteboy79 for that info. I would have overlooked the difference of their radii swing)

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Nothing is complete without dimples.

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So the brackets are 80% finished, I just need to open the holes up for a tube to slide through for the tapers. I'm holding off on finishing that until I hammer out how the connecting aspect of the connecting swingarm bracket will connect... I could use 3" OD tube but that's extreme in my opinion, and heavy as hell. My newest idea is to ovalize 1.5" or1.75" to 3" wide and ~1" tall, holesaw where the tapers go and weld my brackets to that. But I don't know how to accurately and evenly ovalize that tube with only a 20 ton HF shop press.... So I may keep the flatbar and just build off of it with dimpled 16 gauge, but the only way I can see that happening is the outcome will look hobbled together and everything very "after the fact"- which it essentially was
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Old 02-19-2018, 12:43 PM   #219 (permalink)
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damn man thats a lot of work
looking good tho
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Old 02-19-2018, 04:00 PM   #220 (permalink)
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damn man thats a lot of work

looking good tho


Thanks! And it is, yeah, especially for a beater

I may end up cab swapping this down the toad versus just let it rot. Weíll see how I like everything, thatíll decide if I can swap it, run it until itís junk, or sell it.


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Old 02-19-2018, 05:22 PM   #221 (permalink)
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Where's the scary steering thread when you need it?

Cleanest way I've found to make oval tube is to cut tube in half then extend it with flat bar. It'll end up bowed, tight in the middle, just tack the middle and squeeze the ends before tacking them.
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Old 02-19-2018, 06:44 PM   #222 (permalink)
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Where's the scary steering thread when you need it?

Cleanest way I've found to make oval tube is to cut tube in half then extend it with flat bar. It'll end up bowed, tight in the middle, just tack the middle and squeeze the ends before tacking them.


I mean, I COULD just leave it as is and mount it up

Iím not following what youíre saying on how to make ovalized tube... the only way Iíve seen it made was in a very large break press. I was thinking of using my 20 ton press and just pressing sections a little at a time every 3Ē or so to get a more uniform shape. Otherwise Iíll just add dimpled sheet to the flatbar and make it look as terrible as I can.


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Old 02-19-2018, 06:54 PM   #223 (permalink)
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take your 1.5" tube, make it into two C shaped bits
then weld in two pieces of flat bar to make the flats of the oval tube
"___
(___)
Like that^
Using the press on round tube always seems to make it more hourglass shaped.

Last edited by [486]; 02-19-2018 at 06:55 PM.
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Old 02-19-2018, 07:13 PM   #224 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by [486] View Post
take your 1.5" tube, make it into two C shaped bits
then weld in two pieces of flat bar to make the flats of the oval tube
"___
(___)
Like that^
Using the press on round tube always seems to make it more hourglass shaped.
Hm. I sort of like that. Iíll sleep on that. Thanks for the knowledge and advice.
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Old 02-19-2018, 07:39 PM   #225 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by whitneyj View Post
Hm. I sort of like that. Iíll sleep on that. Thanks for the knowledge and advice.
similar to how I made these.







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