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Discussion Starter #1
What have you all done/used to change your rear springs? Have a '97 Bird with one worn and one cracked, and the manual says something about three compressors 120 degrees apart, but all the loaner tools local come as only one or two. Advice?
 

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If you want three, go get two sets of two at Harbor Freight - $10 a set of two.

Second point - whatever you use, put a jack under the lower control arm, jack it up until it starts to come off the jack stand, and hand-tighten the spring there to get it jacked into place.

Not so easy on the replacement, where you DO have to clamp it down.

RwP
 

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I have never used a spring compressor on the rear springs.

Warning: Follow my instructions at your own risk!

1. Jack up the rear of the car fairly high, and support it securely using jackstands under the unibody just forward of the front IRS sub-frame brackets.

2. Remove wheels.

3. Place small jack under outboard end of LCA.

4. Jack up LCA slightly (an inch, or so).

5. Remove sway bar end link at LCA.

6. Remove lower shock bolt at LCA.

7. Loosen a turn or two, but do not remove, the nuts on both inner LCA pivot bolts.

8. Remove the two lower LCA to knuckle bolts.

9. Let the jack down slowly until the spring tension is removed and you can remove the spring.

Installation is the reverse of removal.

I would recommend that you install new spring isolators when you swap the springs.

Jack up the LCA until the car just starts to come off the jack stands to load the suspension when you tighten/replace the LCA bolts.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Great instructions - I may just give this a go. But it looks like the nut on the driver side front LCA pivot bolt is hidden by the fuel tank shield, and the others have some kind of plastic cap? Can I turn the bolt instead, or is that just asking for trouble? Can this all be done with hand tools?
 

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Great instructions - I may just give this a go. But it looks like the nut on the driver side front LCA pivot bolt is hidden by the fuel tank shield, and the others have some kind of plastic cap? Can I turn the bolt instead, or is that just asking for trouble? Can this all be done with hand tools?
The forward nut is aluminum with a plastic cap, and yes you can hold it with a large wrench and loosen the bolt a bit. I modified (opened it up a bit) a large thin 40mm fan wrench, just for that purpose.

Yes, hand tools will work, but you'll probably need at least a 1/2" breaker bar and/or torque wrench.
 

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Great instructions, DLF.

When working on any suspension bolts, hit them with pb blaster the day before you want to do something, and it makes it much easier.

I have two box end wrenches that are extra long that make the knuckle a lot easier. 18mm and 24mm, IIRC.
 
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