Can springs be removed with fenders in place?

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RIBS

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I rebuilt my front end when the car was stripped, now it’s reassembled and I need to pull springs and cut them down and reinstall…
can I pull the springswith fenders on or do I need space to maneuver prybars, etc…I use the spring perch/shock tower spring compressor…
 

Sheriff41

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You can do it with the fenders on, no problem. You will want to remove the spring cover inside the wheel well.
 
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73 Grande will undergo three phase build process. Phase 1 is to make roadworthy. Phase 2 is interior/exterior restoration. Phase 3 is ++ performance.
And from experience, and not initially good, get a good compressor that captures the spring from the inside. This is the one I used second . . .

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Yes this is the one I am using. I rebuilt it once and spring is too tall. Going to cut it down a bit.
If the springs you bought are too tall they are not correct, likely Scott Drake crap. That was what happened to me. My suggestion would be to either check your original springs for height, even coils, and straightness. Even Eaton say that if these are good, refit them. If the springs are bent or otherwise distorted, buy a new set from Eaton Detroit Springs and do the job right.
When I did my front end, I got caught by the same "one-size-fit-all" BS. I refitted my original springs without any issues what so ever. I did clean them up with a repaint and paint daubs just as they were. The front end was 2" too high when the SD crap was fitted, so they were removed and sent back for a refund.
 

RIBS

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If the springs you bought are too tall they are not correct, likely Scott Drake crap. That was what happened to me. My suggestion would be to either check your original springs for height, even coils, and straightness. Even Eaton say that if these are good, refit them. If the springs are bent or otherwise distorted, buy a new set from Eaton Detroit Springs and do the job right.
When I did my front end, I got caught by the same "one-size-fit-all" BS. I refitted my original springs without any issues what so ever. I did clean them up with a repaint and paint daubs just as they were. The front end was 2" too high when the SD crap was fitted, so they were removed and sent back for a refund.
Actually I bought quality springs, Elgin, from NPD, perfectly sized to my year make model and option list, like AC, PS, PB etc…I cross checked and double checked and after installing triple checked. They are the correct springs. I still have 3 inches of air above my tire to the fender…

I also replaced the entire front suspension other than spindle assembly..that came from PST, another known vendor…I have sent pictures and had conversations with both companies tech groups, they see nothing wrong with install other than odd height…possibly the springs were mis packaged, but the winding count and diameter of winding and thickness of the steel all match specs 100%.

I have the vast majority of the weight in the car, just missing the side glass and carpet and rear seats….

the suspension was loose and light test drives for 4 months.

I can’t put originals back, one side had significant heat and fire damage and erosion…

I did compare before install, the Elgins were 1.25 inches taller at rest, and had an extract winding or so…So it’s possible my original springs were cut down.

anyhow, plan is to cut them to match the ones I pulled out, I imagine front end will still be higher than the past because the new springs don’t have 50 years of use, sag, rust and fire erosion…
 
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Actually I bought quality springs, Elgin, from NPD, perfectly sized to my year make model and option list, like AC, PS, PB etc…I cross checked and double checked and after installing triple checked. They are the correct springs. I still have 3 inches of air above my tire to the fender…

I also replaced the entire front suspension other than spindle assembly..that came from PST, another known vendor…I have sent pictures and had conversations with both companies tech groups, they see nothing wrong with install other than odd height…possibly the springs were mis packaged, but the winding count and diameter of winding and thickness of the steel all match specs 100%.

I have the vast majority of the weight in the car, just missing the side glass and carpet and rear seats….

the suspension was loose and light test drives for 4 months.

I can’t put originals back, one side had significant heat and fire damage and erosion…

I did compare before install, the Elgins were 1.25 inches taller at rest, and had an extract winding or so…So it’s possible my original springs were cut down.

anyhow, plan is to cut them to match the ones I pulled out, I imagine front end will still be higher than the past because the new springs don’t have 50 years of use, sag, rust and fire erosion…
I'm sorry if I came too hard on you. It does sound like you've done your homework.
Personally, I've not heard of, or researched Elgin springs, so no idea where they're from (other than you say NPD) If the Elgin's are 1.25" taller then the windings are wider spaced, so to me, that is not an exact match and cutting them might affect the spring rate and your ride.
Might I suggest contacting Eaton and get the specs for your car as well as the free height, then compare the Elgin's. The guys at Eaton are pretty friendly and helpful.
Maybe it's just me having a burr up my a$$ about springs because I got burned by SD front springs and Grab-A-Track rear springs, which are also likely SD crap.
 

RIBS

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I'm sorry if I came too hard on you. It does sound like you've done your homework.
Personally, I've not heard of, or researched Elgin springs, so no idea where they're from (other than you say NPD) If the Elgin's are 1.25" taller then the windings are wider spaced, so to me, that is not an exact match and cutting them might affect the spring rate and your ride.
Might I suggest contacting Eaton and get the specs for your car as well as the free height, then compare the Elgin's. The guys at Eaton are pretty friendly and helpful.
Maybe it's just me having a burr up my a$$ about springs because I got burned by SD front springs and Grab-A-Track rear springs, which are also likely SD crap.
No worries 😀. When I say I checked and cross checked, i compared Elgin and Eaton specs and part numbers and recommendations based on the car I have. They were identical, I forget the exact part number, something like 8330, but both were the same. Other spring manufacturers and reference tables all listed same part number…since the car is 51 years old, who knows what spring was in it when I bought it, but it had a great ride height and stance. The top of the front tire was actually tucked up in the fender about an inch. I know that’s not standard, Mustangs have a low back, high front appearance. Mine was slightly lower in front…now I have 3 inches of air between fender and tire, so about 4 inches difference…these pics demonstrate the old spring low stance….I actually have more weight in car now with the new spring high look…
 

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RIBS

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RIBS

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I am thinking cut the new one about like this…I know there might be a stiffer ride, but not overly concerned…the pictur is a bit wonky, they were mostly identical other than the extra winding and length, I measured thickness with calipers, etc…
 

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I did exactly what you did and bought the Elgin springs too. Car sits about an inch too high in the front. I am leaving it as it, hopefully they will sag a bit in the future. From the photos yours is worse than mine in the front, but on the second photo the car looks like it is lower than stock ride height on the front. These cars when new had a nose high attitude which we really do not see much today as it seems everyone has screwed around with the ride heights, and the stock cars that are out there have sagging springs.
 

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If you're going to cut your springs, I recommend not doing a full coil at first. Try a 1/2 or 3/4 coil first. You have a good spring tool and you can always cut away more but you can't put it back. If you measure your wheel well height at the center of the wheel then cut 1/2 a coil, drive the car around the block, then measure again you'll have an idea how much each coil removed (1/2 coil height change X 2 = approximately 1 coil height change) will affect the height. Knowing this will allow you to decide how many full/partial coils to remove to achieve your desired height. This works since you have a specific-rate spring vs. a progressive-rate spring. Remember, though, you may want to allow for the springs settling some over time
 
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machattack

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Just a chime in.
Probably should use a cold cut not hot. Use a regular cut off or a diamond cut off wheel. But run water over it while cutting to cool the spring steel. You might get to much drop if you heat it up to much. as you will lose the temper.
 
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