Alfa Romeo Forums banner

1 - 20 of 23 Posts

·
Premium Member
1974 Spider
Joined
·
48 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I fairly recently purchased and had installed the Classic Alfa suspension upgrade which consists of lowering springs, shocks, and a few other items. The car, a 1974 Spider, is still at the garage as there are numerous things being addressed. I received a call today from the mechanic who said the rear springs seem to be a little short in that, on a test drive and with the car going over bumps, he believes the car lifts off the rear springs slightly and then bangs back down making a big racket.
Are there spacers or anything to eliminate this? Is this in any way common or were they possibly put on wrong, or can it be something else causing the noise/separation he described?
Thanks, Ned
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
11,678 Posts
I received a call today from the mechanic who said the rear springs seem to be a little short in that, on a test drive and with the car going over bumps, he believes the car lifts off the rear springs slightly and then bangs back down making a big racket.
If the CA lowering springs are shorter than the stock springs when they are at rest, then of course they are going to come loose at full droop if the limit straps haven't been shortened. Your mechanic needs to cut 2 X the difference in spring length from each strap and re-drill the holes for the plates that tie the two ends of the straps together. It's odd that the mechanic didn't figure that out - is he familiar with Alfas?

Are there spacers or anything to eliminate this?
I guess you could put spacers in there whose thickness equaled the difference in length of the stock and lowering springs. But then you wouldn't be lowering the car.

can it be something else causing the noise/separation he described?
Sure, it could be a million other things. But the mechanic's theory of the car lifting off the rear springs when going over bumps makes perfect sense. It's just embarrassing that he didn't also see how to prevent this and do it while he had things apart.
 

·
Premium Member
1974 Spider
Joined
·
48 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
If the CA lowering springs are shorter than the stock springs when they are at rest, then of course they are going to come loose at full droop if the limit straps haven't been shortened. Your mechanic needs to cut 2 X the difference in spring length from each strap and re-drill the holes for the plates that tie the two ends of the straps together. It's odd that the mechanic couldn't figure this out - is he familiar with Alfas?



I guess you could put spacers in there whose thickness equaled the difference in length of the stock and lowering springs. But then you wouldn't be lowering the car.



Sure, it could be a million other things. But his theory of the car lifting off the rear springs when going over bumps makes perfect sense. It's just embarrassing that he didn't see how to prevent this while he had things apart.
Thanks Jay. You're probably right that the mechanic is a little over his head. I'm in a small town in Missouri now and they certainly haven't seen any of these cars before. Just to be clear, he should cut the limit straps and this may/should clear this up?
Ned
 

·
Push hard and live
Joined
·
10,895 Posts
The REASON the limit straps are there is to prevent the spring from ever coming loose between the upper and lower spring seat. Shorter spring requires shorter straps, which you can do by cutting and drilling.
 
  • Like
Reactions: darnellsgarage

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
11,678 Posts
Just to be clear, he should cut the limit straps and this may/should clear this up?
In a word, "yes". As DPeterson and I wrote, the existing straps can be carefully shortened by cutting and then re-drilling the holes. Of course, if you cut them too short, they can't be readily lengthened (though they can be replaced), so some careful measuring is in order.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
40 Posts
Yes, shorten the straps by double the amount of lowered ride height. So if you bought the springs that lower the height by 1.5", you need to shorten the strap by 3".
 

·
Premium Member
1974 Spider
Joined
·
48 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
I thank you all for the responses. I'm not a mechanic but I'm certain you guys are right and this will straighten things out. There have been a few issues where things got away from this garage but they are honest and are willing to try. As I said, I'm in a small town- we retired to where my wife's sisters live- and this garage is the top of the bunch here.
When the car is finished- it's been one year next month and counting- I will post some pictures.
Ned
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,033 Posts
Shortening the straps makes perfect sense, if you think about it beforehand! Wouldn't it be a kind and sensible thing to help the enthusiast out by adding a letter with performance springs to be sure to check the strap length? I wouldn't have thought about that I'll be the first to admit.
 

·
Premium Member
1974 Spider
Joined
·
48 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
That certainly would have been a nice marketing move in my opinion but, again, I'm ignorant of most things mechanical.
Some would say they may as well instruct the mechanic to loosen bolts counter clockwise as to mention this strap move. I have to assume American cars lack this axle strap but I don't even know that.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,033 Posts
I bought this performance kit from ClassicAlfa and they sent some instructions along with it I'd like to post to help others.
I have not installed it yet and corresponded with Harvey-Bailey. It is no longer in production because there were cheaper knockoffs that caused H-B to quit making them. ClassicAlfa has always been top notch dealing with.
I would like to know if anyone else has installed this?
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
40 Posts
Shortening the straps makes perfect sense, if you think about it beforehand! Wouldn't it be a kind and sensible thing to help the enthusiast out by adding a letter with performance springs to be sure to check the strap length? I wouldn't have thought about that I'll be the first to admit.
It was in the fitting instructions with my Alfaholics handling kit.
 

·
Premium Member
1974 Spider
Joined
·
48 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
Neville and Dr. G, I didn't even look but took the box unopened to the garage. They probably didn't pay any attention to see if there was something in there or not which they certainly should have. After all these cars are not Fords or Chevys that they're used to
 

·
Push hard and live
Joined
·
10,895 Posts
Good judgment comes from experience.
Experience comes from bad judgment.

The world of modifying cars just has too many variables for everything to come with instructions. That's where "the parts guy" used to fit in. I was the Parts Guy for many years. Long after I moved on through life, the consumer's demand for ever lower prices resulted in The Parts Guy being replaced by a computer and bar code scanner. A Parts Guy would automatically know what additional info you needed without you asking.

Mourn the loss of The Parts Guy. They still exist, but are an endangered species.
 
  • Like
Reactions: goats

·
Premium Member
1974 Spider
Joined
·
48 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
Agreed. I'm old enough to remember that a parts guy at a dealership was a good job because of the knowledge needed with that position.
Ned
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,033 Posts
Absolutely correct. All the Parts Guys in capital letters have disappeared from my local parts store when NAPA took over.
 

·
But Mad North-Northwest
Joined
·
11,444 Posts
I bought this performance kit from ClassicAlfa and they sent some instructions along with it I'd like to post to help others.
I have not installed it yet and corresponded with Harvey-Bailey. It is no longer in production because there were cheaper knockoffs that caused H-B to quit making them. ClassicAlfa has always been top notch dealing with.
I would like to know if anyone else has installed this?
What in the heck is that thing? Is it supposed to help locate the axle left to right? That's what the trunnion does.

The axle needs to be able to twist as the suspension moves. Unless I'm misunderstanding how that's set up, it seems like all that's going to do is restrict the twisting and hurt suspension performance.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
11,678 Posts
What in the heck is that thing? Is it supposed to help locate the axle left to right? That's what the trunnion does.
Dr.G's Harvey-Bailey link wouldn't constrain the axle left-right; it would just keep it from twisting around the centerline of the axle. The trunion constrains the axle in two ways, both from moving laterally (e.g., "left-right") as well as from twisting around the axles. So why an Alfa with a trunion would also need the H-B link is a mystery to me.

Dr.G: How did Classic Alfa describe the Harvey-Bailey part? It might make sense if you eliminated the trunion arm, added a panhard rod for lateral location, and then used the H-B link to prevent twisting. Perhaps that set-up would result in a lower the roll center. But in that case, you'd think H-B would have bundled a panhard rod along with the anti-twist link.

Do you get one or two of these H-B links in the kit? E.g., was there just the one for the right side as shown in your photos? Or was there a pair, one for the right and one for the left?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,033 Posts
LOL, I wish I could answer your questions Tom, but I have been working at medicine so many, many years the part sat on my shelf. But guess what, now I'm not and can assemble SPINACI.
You remember SPINACI right?
1674830


So I welcome your thoughts and it only mounts on the right side Jay. You guys are the racers and understand suspensions, not me.
 
1 - 20 of 23 Posts
Top