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Discussion Starter #1
I would like to put the cut springs back on my car, and have it slammed once again. However, being so incredibly low, is really hard on shocks, so, is it possible to have the shocks shortened, to match the cut springs I have? Seems like it might ride and handle better that way too, and not ruin shocks.

Any advice?
 

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PostSlut
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run rear mustang shocks......they are a bit shorter i believe.
only thing, the full weight of the bird is more than a stang....so that in itself may wear them out faster too.
 

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Dont say this. You are going to make me want to cut my springs again too! Nah... I would scrape too much and would have to replace my ball joints again probably. I think it would be awesome though. I have always though your car looked super good sitting low to the ground.

Big Mike's black car used to be in the Waco area with its previous owner and it looked so awesome to me. It is probably the lowest MN12 I have ever seen in person. IIRC, we cut the springs and put on some shocks at my shop one night. I cant even remember what kind of shocks they are now. I vaguely seem to remember them being yellow, lol.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
hmmmm so hammered ball joints and hammered shocks are basically occupational hazards when running cut springs I guess, eh?

Well, the roads around here that I cruise around on aren't all that bad...I should just do it. As big of a PITA being that low is, it's also two tons of fun :D
 

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PostWhore, The AFDB is on a lil tight.
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hmmmm so hammered ball joints and hammered shocks are basically occupational hazards when running cut springs I guess, eh?

Well, the roads around here that I cruise around on aren't all that bad...I should just do it. As big of a PITA being that low is, it's also two tons of fun :D
Well yes because your car is really low. If the PO wasnt so extreme with the cut you wouldnt have all that trouble. I plan to cut my springs one day and its really going to be a mild a cut as possible.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
so is it possible at all to shorten a set of shocks, and somehow make the UCA sit the same or close to how it would sit stock? Is there any way at all to retain somewhat stock suspension geometry with the cut springs? Is this the purpose "drop spindles" would serve? not that anybody makes them for these....
 

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so is it possible at all to shorten a set of shocks, and somehow make the UCA sit the same or close to how it would sit stock? Is there any way at all to retain somewhat stock suspension geometry with the cut springs? Is this the purpose "drop spindles" would serve? not that anybody makes them for these....
Shorten a set of shocks ?? No.
Upper control arm - No, when you lower the car, this arm naturally sits a little higher
Retain stock geometry - Yes this is called an Alignment, if you lower the car too far, you may not be able to get it within specifications though.
Drop spindles - yes they drop the vehicle without shortening the springs. The hub is usually raised on the spindle to lower the vehicle - I dont know what effect this would have on the upper knuckle - since the spindles are curved to accomodate the Tire / wheel, if you have a tire close to the upper balljoint / knuckle, there is no way this would work.

You wouldnt need shortened shocks - thats just junk they sell for lowered vehicles, you just lose your stroke with a lowered vehicle since you are sitting lower in the shock body at its lowered height.

Lowered shocks are good if you want to Drop your car all the way to the ground - like on the Baggedbirds .. the rear end would drop until the shocks bottomed out resulting in the vehicle sitting 2 inches above the ground - this was corrected with shocks that had a longer stroke ( the 1989's have a shock option that is "longer" than the later years ) and then the car laid on the ground flat. End of story.

Cut stock springs are garbage .. the SC springs are stiff, but when you cut them you might change the spring rate.

You want to lower your car, get a set of lowering springs.

Hope this helps.
 

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There's nothing garbage about cut springs as all you've done is shorten what is in effect a coiled torsion bar, you simply increase the spring rate while shortening it.

You do not increase the load for the rest of the spring, it still supports the car.

Where you run into problems is when you shorten a spring too short and your roads are rough and the shorter spring still compresses the longer distance of those bumps and sometimes they take a sag or set. Or you shorten the spring too short for the application or make it too stiff.

But a shortened spring is still a spring, it's just shorter and stiffer.

I like my cut JJJJ springs on mine. I just cut frt 1 complete coil and rear 5/8 of a coil.
 

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I just cut frt 1 complete coil and rear 5/8 of a coil.
Sounds like a good combo without getting TOO low. I think I cut 1-1.5 coils years ago from my front sport springs on my orange 94 and left the rears alone. People said it looked like a muscle car since it had a rake to it. It really made that front fender gap look nice too. Now you are all making me want to do it again, except with 5/8" cut in the rear for good measure!
 

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But a shortened spring is still a spring, it's just shorter and stiffer.

No .. the springs DO NOT get stiffer when you cut them. They just get shorter.

I cant tell you how many times Ive seen people cut their springs .. they cut them too far, the car has that "raked" look, they start to sag after a while, etc etc ...

cut springs = garbage. Just because YOU have them and they seem to work okay, doesnt mean they are superior to an aftermarket or stock spring.

The ONLY reason you can get away with this with the SC springs is the spring rate is close, but not quite as stiff as the Aftermarket lowering springs.

Try this with LX springs and let me know how that works out.
 

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PostSlut
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No .. the springs DO NOT get stiffer when you cut them. They just get shorter.

I cant tell you how many times Ive seen people cut their springs .. they cut them too far, the car has that "raked" look, they start to sag after a while, etc etc ...

cut springs = garbage. Just because YOU have them and they seem to work okay, doesnt mean they are superior to an aftermarket or stock spring.

The ONLY reason you can get away with this with the SC springs is the spring rate is close, but not quite as stiff as the Aftermarket lowering springs.

Try this with LX springs and let me know how that works out.
I actually cut my rear LX springs........2 coils to be exact.
But, that was to get the ride height back down in the rear.
I wasn't going to cut eibachs. They, with all my weight removal, made the car sit higher than stock in the rear.
Other then me cutting stock height springs(didn't want to destroy eibachs), what other option might you suggest for me as far as the rear springs go? <---serious question.

edit: the ride is actually okay, but I believe that has to do with cutting the springs and the lightness of my car.
 

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No .. the springs DO NOT get stiffer when you cut them. They just get shorter.

I cant tell you how many times Ive seen people cut their springs .. they cut them too far, the car has that "raked" look, they start to sag after a while, etc etc ...

cut springs = garbage. Just because YOU have them and they seem to work okay, doesnt mean they are superior to an aftermarket or stock spring.

The ONLY reason you can get away with this with the SC springs is the spring rate is close, but not quite as stiff as the Aftermarket lowering springs.

Try this with LX springs and let me know how that works out.
Actually, the spring does get stiffer. If you have the weight of the car supported by 10 coils, and you cut a coil off, you now only have 9 coils to support that same load. This means that every coil has to do 10% more work to keep the car up, and so each coil is slightly more loaded in the at rest state than it was before. When you go into a corner, now each coil has to deflect further than it would have before to allow the same amount of travel, and that translates to a stiffer spring rate. If done properly, there is nothing wrong with cut stock springs. Cut them with a cut-off wheel while they are out of the car and unloaded, then let them cool out in the air until they are at room temp before re-installing them, and you will have no problems. When cut springs sag is when people try to cut them while still loaded in the car, or when people cut them with a torch, because the metal gets too hot and it changes the spring rate. Cutting LX springs would work, but would not improve the handling that much because they are so soft in stock form that even with a coil or 2 cut off, they still aren't as stiff as the SC springs. Cut SC springs are very stiff. I have 1.5 coils cut off the SC springs in my 91 cougar, and 2 coils cut off SC springs in the lemons car, both of those cars are way stiffer than my Lincoln with the Eibach springs. In a street car, the nice thing about an aftermarket kit is that it was tested and designed to give a particular ride height, along with a particular level of comfort. When you cut stock springs, to get the height you want, may give you a ride that is too harsh, or not firm enough, depending on what you are looking for. However if stock SC springs, cut to the ride height that you want give you a stiffness that is acceptable to you for both handling and comfort, then there is nothing wrong with it, and no reason to go out and spend $200 on a kit. In the case of my Lincoln, I wanted to keep that luxury car feel, while also slightly lowering the car for looks, and handling was secondary, so I bought the Eibachs. In the case of the lemons car, I wanted it to be stiff as all hell and corner as level as possible, and the ride height doesn't matter because we are on a track and not worried about scraping the front bumper on a speed bump, so I just cut the springs until it was stiff enough.
 

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No .. the springs DO NOT get stiffer when you cut them. They just get shorter.

I cant tell you how many times Ive seen people cut their springs .. they cut them too far, the car has that "raked" look, they start to sag after a while, etc etc ...

cut springs = garbage. Just because YOU have them and they seem to work okay, doesnt mean they are superior to an aftermarket or stock spring.

The ONLY reason you can get away with this with the SC springs is the spring rate is close, but not quite as stiff as the Aftermarket lowering springs.

Try this with LX springs and let me know how that works out.
You need to read up a little more about springs and exactly what spring rate is. Spring rate is essentially how much weight it takes to compress the spring a given measurement. Springs that are 275 lb/in. mean that it takes 275 pounds to compress that spring 1 inch. If you have a 500 lb/in. spring that has 8 coils on it and you cut off 2 of them, the spring rate is going to increase a good bit. This is the reason why you see some cars with cut springs that are extremely bouncy, the spring rate has increased (sometimes substantially) and the dampers they are running cannot control that movement. People forget that springs are supposed to bounce, it is the shock/struts job to control that bouncing action.

On my previous car I cut 2.5 coils off the front SC springs and the car did not bounce at all because I had koni's on it. Of course it rode hard, but I had no bouncing at all because my dampeners were doing their job.

Your claim that cut springs are garbage is laughable. There is nothing wrong with cut springs, of course there is a point where you can over do it... but that can be applied to anything. On my previous car I actually ran Eibach lowering springs and hated it. The car barely looked lowered and in my opinion didn't handle much better if ANY than the stock sport suspension (96). When I put the Eibachs in I noticed that many of the coils were sitting on top of each other (coil bind) and the ones that weren't were VERY close to doing so. This is obviously not ideal... In addition Eibachs are progressive rate, which is good for the ride but gives a very inconsistent handling feel. With my cut sport springs the handling was more predictable (linear rate) and responded MUCH better. It was night and day difference... Don't bash something you know nothing about my friend.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Like I said before, lets not start a debate with one another about the pros and cons of different ways to lower a car, they all have their purpose, they are all different, and that is OK.

I would say the spring rate definately increased with the cut springs...it rode very, very hard...the roads in the area that I lived where horrible. Around here, cut springs wheren't so bad, for the short time I had them, the only issue was harsh approach angles where tricky if not impossible at times. I still might go back to them with some Tokico's all the way around or something...have the Koni's rebuilt at that point to freshen them up a bit.

But that's all later on...right now, my main focus is on a new or rebuilt door hinge, and fixing the metal around the striker. Outside of that, the car is tip top. New low milage motor would be nice, and new paint....but...well, you know how it goes, the list goes on and on and on and on and on and on and on....

Here is a photo of one of the cut springs...I don't remember weather this was front or rear at this point, but it looks like it was cut and then ground down flat, as my stock SC springs that I am currently running do not have the flat spot on them

flat spot on top:


flat spot on bottom:
 

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Don't bash something you know nothing about my friend.

LOL .. sure buddy. Thats a good one. ;)

Ive lowered enough Thunderbirds that Ive lost count, but yet I know nothing on the subject .. by all means, go on with cutting springs .. its your car afterall, not mine.

Hey Earl, the flat spot goes on the Upper mount.
 

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LOL .. sure buddy. Thats a good one. ;)

Ive lowered enough Thunderbirds that Ive lost count, but yet I know nothing on the subject .. by all means, go on with cutting springs .. its your car afterall, not mine.

Hey Earl, the flat spot goes on the Upper mount.
I like how you left out the part about how spring rates don't increase when you cut springs yet you seem to know everything... You've lowered THUNDERBIRDs, i've lowered many many different cars/trucks other than MN12's. Oh wait I do this for a living... Crawl back into your hole.
 

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No .. the springs DO NOT get stiffer when you cut them. They just get shorter.
You are wrong friend. A coil spring is like a long torsion bar that is coiled, the curve is the lever that twist it along it's length.

Stay with me now ....

Say you have a coil spring that is 20 inches long relaxed. That spring is supporting 1000 pounds weight.
Say for sake of argument, that spring has a rate of 200 pounds per inch. It takes 200 pounds to compress it 1 inch. 1000 pounds will compress it 5 inches.

Now, each coil, each part of a coil, every inch of that springs length has to support that 1000 pounds just as the upper and lower mounts do.

In that 5 inches which the 1000 pounds compresses it, the compression is absorbed along the length of 10 full coils (or 360 degree rounds). Each one of those 360 degree coils compresses 0.5 inches then. 10 X 0.5 =5. or 5 / 10=0.5

With that 1000 pounds resting on it, this spring is 15 inches long.

To compress it 2 more inches, we need to add 400 pounds weight or force as it's rate is still 200 pounds per inch over all. That would get it down to 13 inches long.

Now .... cut a coil out, just snip it off. You have in no way weekened the remaining steel, each inch, each coil of the spring is as strong as before. It still takes 1000 pounds to compress each 360 degree coil 0.5 inches. The mounts still must carry 1000 pounds.

Only now there's only 9 coils compressing. So 9 X 0.5 = 4.5 inches. Along the whole of that spring, 1000 pounds will now only compress it 4.5 inches.

1000 devided by the 4.5" deflection yields a rate of 222.222 pounds per inch which is the new rate.

Look back at the top, when it was 10 coils long it took 1000 pounds to compress each coil 0.5 inches and the whole spring 5 inches. Now it stil takes 1000 pounds to compress each coil; 0.5 inches, but there's one less to compress.

Now .... our spring started off 20" long relaxed. Now it's only 18 inches long as we cut one of the ten coils off. It compresses 4.5" with 1000 pounds on it now. 18 - 4.5 = 13.5".

Look back at the top again, it used to be 15" long once loaded with 1000 pounds, now it's 13.5" long. We dropped that load 1.5".

To compress it 2 more inches from here we need to add 444.444 pounds more weight or force. Remember, the steel is the same, those individual coils still have the same rate they started with, there's just 9 of them now. 2 inches devided by 9 = 0.222222 " per coil.

It takes 1000 pounds to compress each coil 0.5" as it has from the start. But to get that extra 2" compression now, we have to spread that 200 over only 9 coils, so each has to be compressed further. 0.222222 devided by 0.5 = 0.444444. X 1000 (weight required to compress 0.5") = 444.444 pounds.

Ahahh! .... but you say we only have that 400 pounds like we had in the start on that dip?

It still takes a full 1000 pounds to compress a coil 0.5", that's not changed. We are going to hit each coil with the 400 pounds now, as well as the mounts, etc. 400/1000 is 4/10 or 0.40 converted to decimal. 0.40 X 0.50 which is what 1000 ponds wotuld compress the coil means each coil compresses a further 0.2 inches, ...
... but we only have 9 coils so 9 X 0.2 is 1.8 inches is all 400 pounds will compress that now 9 coil coil spring ...
... where as when it was 10 coils long that 400 pounds additional would comperess it 2 full inches more over it's length.

I never changed the steel, never changed the wire diameter, never changed the rate of the coils by changing the diameter of the coil. I simply clipped 1/10 of it's length ... I removed a coil. I didn't change anything else.

:)

The cut coil spring is both shorter and stiffer as I stated. If you don't see it now, you won't likely ever see it.

Here are a couple of calculators where you can play some. You can increase the strength and just use 1 inch wire, 10 coils, 5 inch diameter until you get a decent number like 100 pounds per inch rate, then clip coils to just 9 and you'll see that way.

http://www.ajdesigner.com/phpspringrate/spring_rate_equation.php

http://www.pontiacracing.net/js_coil_spring_rate.htm


Cutting a spring too short can overly stress remaining coils in a road going car's suspension subjected to sever bumps as there are fewer coils to absorb the bumps deflection. Just one good reason that off road vehicles have long long coils ....
Later ........... ;)
 

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Sounds like a good combo without getting TOO low. I think I cut 1-1.5 coils years ago from my front sport springs on my orange 94 and left the rears alone. People said it looked like a muscle car since it had a rake to it. It really made that front fender gap look nice too. Now you are all making me want to do it again, except with 5/8" cut in the rear for good measure!
Here, let me help you then ..... :D

Not 5/8" ..... 5/8 of a coil, that's a little over half, but not quite 3/4 of a circle. :D

My '92 Sport stock in 2007 with stock uncut JJJJ springs just after I installed the 16X7s with 225/60-16s.



Same car, same wheels after cuitting 1 full coil in front (I did it in two steps to creep up on what I wanted) and 5/8 coil in back after "careful calculations" (SWAG). I cut from bottom of both, in rear I placed pigtail end of spring towards wheel side of LCA spring bucket.



It's a little stiffer in spring rate, not objectionable. It's about 1.5 - 2 inches lower.
 

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You are wrong friend. A coil spring is like a long torsion bar that is coiled, the curve is the lever that twist it along it's length.
Im not even going to read your stupid math equation.

Heres the facts ..

Nobody who cuts their springs bothers to calculate the spring rate based on the number of un-compresses coils. You dont know how many compressed versus un-compressed coils are present in a cut spring versus a stock length spring. Have you counted ?? I didnt think so.

End of story.
 
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