I am assembling a new chassis for a 52 Chevy pickup. I am having trouble finding a coilover that fits the bill. I am looking for the wisdom of others who have gone before me. I have a set of Strange coilovers for the front. No matter which direction I mount the shock, the shock collides with either the lower control arm or the frame-mounted upper coilover/shock mount. I will include 2 sets of pictures, one where I connect the shock at the lower control arm and then cannot attach the upper mount. The other, where I start by connecting the upper mount and then the shock cannot be moved into position to connect to the lower control arm because it is constrained by the upper mount (4 pictures in all). I prefer to NOT grind the upper frame mount to obtain the required clearance. I would prefer a different shock/coilover where the eyelet-to-base is a little longer and perhaps where the diameter of the largest part of the shock/coilover is a little smaller diameter. I tried to find out if remote reservoir coilovers might be a little thinner and also if there might be an option to have a little longer eyelet. I welcome a dialogue with any of you Stovebolters who might help me solve this dilemma. Many Thanks!
I am not familiar with Strange coilovers as I have QA-1 coilovers on my '51, but have you tried turning them upside down? I understand that most coilovers can be mounted in either direction. It may give you a bit more room? Worth a try before buying a new set? Good luck!
Thanks Charlie... In this picture, I have the passenger side "upside down" and the driver side "right side up". In the upside down position, the head of the shock is hard against the back of the lower control arm. The good news here is that it looks like a set of JRis will solve this problem, with a longer distance between the mounting hole and the head of the shock, and with a slightly thinner profile (smaller diameter head) . I will know for sure when I receive the JRis and try them out. Stay tuned, and thanks again for offering your experience to us rookies.
Agreed that the QA-1s are probably not the right fit for my application, but I DO admire your engineering and metalwork. Since I have no experience with mechanical work, I decided that assembling from new parts was easier than restoration or fabricating myself. So I am starting with an Art Morrison frame specifically built for the 52 Chevy pickup, and all the "goodies" to make it a rolling chassis. As of this evening, Art Morrison is going to help me switch from the Strange coilovers to the JRis, to see if they are a better fit for the frame. I really do not know if I will ever finish the build, but I am accomplishing my goals of learning the various systems that comprise a vehicle. Thanks again for caring to reply. See you again when I next get stuck.
I've never used Strange coilovers - why do they have such a bulky upper cover? I've cut the dust covers off shocks before to make clearance; would that help in your case? If so, get out your die grinder and cutoff wheel...
Here's two cents worth of coilover advice from "coilover". We do a lot of scratch built chassis' and adapting IFS systems to existing factory frames. The horse is already out of the barn in your case with a completed aftermarket set up but the best money one can spend is to first "build" it on a computer and have the simulation put it through all it's paces. Disclaimer, I CAN'T do this but know people that can. The simulations are endless and can range from full suspension travel to check for any interference points to how the set up will react to various loads being carried. Here is a photo of what the computer indicated had to be done to a 56 Ford car frame for a Fatman MII ifs to work with no interference points. Zero problems when done in real time. A search will locate computer simulation services.
When I enlarge your full frame picture it looks like those upper brackets have plenty of room to create a little clearance for the shocks by grinding. That would be my first option. Turning them upside down will probably eliminate all the dampening action by moving the fluid inside of the shocks away from the orfices that meter the fluid. Another approach would be to grind away some of the weld that holds the upper mount to the frame, tip the mount out and down slightly to clear the top of the shock, and reweld it. Since you're starting with a blank canvas where suspension geometry is concerned, getting it right the first time is pretty unlikely anyway. Jerry
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Switching from Strange coilovers to JRi coilovers solved my clearance issues at both the top and the bottom of the mounting points. See the enclosed picture of the different geometry of the two coilovers. Thank you all for your advice and guidance.