Front Suspension rebuild, suggestions ?
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Thread: Front Suspension rebuild, suggestions ?

  1. #1
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    Front Suspension rebuild, suggestions ?

    Hi guys ,
    earlier this week i had some parts of the front suspenion damaged,
    and i also noticed that allot of small parts could use a replacement.

    So i want to rebuild most of the front suspension , springs,shocks, lower and upper control arms , and all of the smaller stuff.

    I was looking at the internet for some kits and this is what i found already :

    http://www.mustangsplus.com/xcart/19...build-Kit.html

    https://www.mustangsunlimited.com/it...sp?T1=FEKS7+01

    http://www.opentrackerracingproducts.com/products/
    The roller spring perches look like a great part from them

    anyone has experience with these products ?or can you recommend other products?
    Keep in mind that i am not looking for the worlds best suspension/most expensive

    I just want a smooth ride for cruisin around.

    Greets !
    1970 Mercury cougar Xr7 ( under construction = finished now ! = not really finished now....)

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  2. #2
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    Re: Front Suspension rebuild, suggestions ?

    Both of those kits come with urethane strut rod bushings. There are stories all over the web of broken strut rods due to their use.
    http://www.stangnet.com/mustang-foru...appens.441214/

    This is the setup that I have and have been very happy with for nearly 10 years now:
    Stock upper and lower control arms
    Open Tracker roller spring perches
    15/16in front sway bar with urethane bushings
    ASR-6 Global West Adjustable Strut Rods http://www.globalwest.net/1967-1968-...ion-parts.html
    1/4in '65/'66 Mustang style alignment shims installed between FWD bolt of upper control arms to rotate upper ball joint aft for increased positive caster (1.0"-2.0").
    Shelby upper control arm mod
    KYB gas adjust shocks (all four corners)
    Stam-Bar 5/8in rear adjustable sway bar

    All in all, it's a fairly inexpensive set up for the impressive driving and handling improvements it made. I didn't do all of this at once. Each mod was done one at a time over a few years.

    One of the things I noticed was the near elimination of bump steer aft installing the roller spring perches.
    With the increased positive caster, the car drives like its on rails at freeway speeds.
    Last edited by Seafoam jcode; July 21st, 2013 at 02:59 PM.
    '68 Seafoam Green Std Cougar, 302-4V
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  3. #3
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    Re: Front Suspension rebuild, suggestions ?

    I would steer clear of poly and bottom of the barrel kits... Here is a quality kit and here is a helpful video.

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  5. #4
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    Re: Front Suspension rebuild, suggestions ?

    Chuck,

    I rebuilt my front suspension on my 67 standard Cougar last winter. Here is what I used, hope this helps:

    Restoration Car Parts:
    - Cougar Front Suspension Kit from Restoration Parts Source http://restorationpartssource.com/st...uct128771.html Note: If you rebuild your cougar Strut rods (which is what I did, you will have to elongate the lower control arm holes). Although this was not difficult, it was a pain in the aXX.
    - Master Power brakes Front Disc Brake Conversion kit. ( Although this kit works well, I am not happy with the power booster as it is too small especially compared to the power booster that the car originally had on the vehicle with power drum brakes)

    Mustange Plus:
    - Grab -A-Trak 620 Front Coil Springs with 1/4" Polyurethane Coil Spring Insulator Pads
    - Grab-A-Trak 1" Front Sway Bar with Poyurethane bushings
    - Grab-A-Trak Front and Rear Shocks
    - Grab-A-Trak Make it new power steering Rebuild Kit

    Rare Car Parts (http://www.rareparts.com/)
    - 67 strut rod articulating bushings

    West Coast Classic Cougars
    - Rear Leaf Springs 43015
    - Insulator Pads 42183
    - Leaf Spring Shackle (Rubber) 5888

    Mustang-Magic (www.mustang-magic.com)
    - Scott Drake 66 15x7 Styled Steel Wheels with 4 1/2" backspacing
    - Scott Drake 67 black cougar caps (I know not part of the suspension but they look great on the wheels and car! Thanks Rhonda and Paul!!!)

    Tire Rack (www.tirerack.com)
    Front - 205/60/R15 BF GoodRich Radial T/A
    Rear - 225/65/R15 BF GoodRich Radial T/A

    Roger Kraus Racing (www.rogerkrausracing.com)
    Tire Mounting, Balancing and Alignment. As noted in Seafoam jcodes reply, and the guys at Roger Kraus, you should run at least 1.0" positive caster even though the specs call for only 1/4" positive caster. Also, to maintain full lock to lock turn radius, we installed 7/32" spacers on the front wheels.

    The car handles like a dream, no more guessing where the car will track on cement, grooved pavement, uneven asphalt etc.. The 620# front springs with the 205/60 tires dropped the front end about an inch. Rear leaf spring setup keeps the stock ride height but since the car originally had a nose high stance with the stock suspension, these changes really look good.





    Now what would I do differently after

  6. #5
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    Re: Front Suspension rebuild, suggestions ?

    Hi Coachjack,

    Thanks for the info about your setup ,

    got a lot of parts lined up , still making some choices at the time
    A lot of the parts you mentioned are good for me

    Just want a nice cruiser and seems like your setup is good for it!

    Cheers
    1970 Mercury cougar Xr7 ( under construction = finished now ! = not really finished now....)

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  7. #6
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    Re: Front Suspension rebuild, suggestions ?

    Glad to help Chuck,

    What I would do differently now that I changed both my front and rear suspension:

    - Front Suspension kit that Don refers to in his post from West Coast Classic Cougar looks to be an exact fit. No elongating lower control arm holes to get the original strut rods to fit.
    - As I mentioned in my previous post, The power booster from Master Power Brakes Front Conversion kit is severly lacking. I should have paid more for a better booster or better yet the SSBC kit ( yes I know, it costs a lot more)
    - I wanted the Cougar styled steel wheels ( 4 1/4" backspacing ) but the wait time was over 3 months. This would have alleviated using a 7/32 spacer up front.
    - Unless the Mustang shop is very knowledgeable about Cougars ( like Paul at Mustang-Magic ), you should stick with Cougar specialty shops like West Coast Classic Cougars.

    Coach Jack

  8. #7
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    Re: Front Suspension rebuild, suggestions ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Don Rush View Post
    I would steer clear of poly and bottom of the barrel kits...
    Chuck,
    Are you still planning on going with the polyurethane bushings and pads? Even though they're much more robust than rubber and will last forever, are you willing to put up with the constant squeaking of the poly stuff? If you're just building this for racing, then nevermind!
    Last edited by desertdave55; July 30th, 2013 at 08:18 PM.

  9. #8
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    Re: Front Suspension rebuild, suggestions ?

    Quote Originally Posted by desertdave55 View Post
    Chuck,
    Are you still planning on going with the polyurethane bushings and pads? Even though they're much more robust than rubber and will last forever, are you willing to put up with the constant squeaking of the poly stuff? If you're just building this for racing, then nevermind!
    Polyurethane sway bar bushings and end link bushings are the only places that I use it. I've drilled a hole through the sway bar bushing "U" bracket and threaded in a zerk fitting. I drilled the hole all the way through the polyurethane bushing to the center and then I rifled the hole in the bushing with a Dremel tool. About once every two years I grease it with a grease gun and have no squeaking issues. The grease travels through the bushing to the sway bar and follows the rifling grooves surrounding the bar.
    '68 Seafoam Green Std Cougar, 302-4V
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  10. #9
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    Re: Front Suspension rebuild, suggestions ?

    Note if you use the Grab-A-Track 620# coils, you have to use their coil spring (polyurethane) insulators as their web site states:

    "Mustangs Plus’ Polyurethane Coil Spring Insulators replace the factory rubber insulators. The factory insulators do not fit Mustangs Plus 620 and 750 coil springs because the Mustangs Plus coil spring wire is a larger diameter than factory."

    Everything else on my front end is rubber except the swaybar and I too modified my bushings and brackets as Seafoam Jcode pointed out. The rear suspension is all rubber.

    And to make sure you have all the correct hardware, you should purchase an AMK Master Chassis Fastener kit.

  11. #10
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    Re: Front Suspension rebuild, suggestions ?

    Thanks for the tips so far guys ,

    a list so far of what seems good to me

    Don's kit
    http://www2.cougarpartscatalog.com/suspkit-70ps.html
    +
    Tie rod adjusting sleeves
    +
    Strut rod bushings ( what is your opinion on these ? )
    ==> new bushings oradjustable strut rods?
    adjustable strut rods costs allot of money , worth it ?

    Shock tower reinforcement plates
    http://www2.cougarpartscatalog.com/towerbrace.html

    Export brace
    http://www2.cougarpartscatalog.com/07041333.html

    Grab a track springs
    http://www.mustangsplus.com/xcart/19...l-Springs.html
    + pads

    Shocks ( dont really now what's good and what's not, so open for suggestions on these!)
    http://www.mustangsplus.com/xcart/19...ont-Shock.html

    One thing what looks great are these
    http://www.mustangsplus.com/xcart/19...-Bearings.html
    Gonna ask don if its possible to remove them from his kit so i can get these instead.
    (as far as my experience goes.. these should be much better then the ones with rubber )

    some smaller parts are missing ,still got to find them because i don't know all the names
    of these parts in english.

    Brakes will be upgraded after the suspension is done

    Cheers
    1970 Mercury cougar Xr7 ( under construction = finished now ! = not really finished now....)

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  12. #11
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    Re: Front Suspension rebuild, suggestions ?

    KYB GR2 shocks are good and they are cheap. I agree with the roller perches, use them myself. Think you linked the wrong year springs but people seem to like the 620's.

    I am wondering about springs myself as the collectors of the Hooker headers I am installing currently sit even lower than what I took off. I have the Shelby drop and would not want both the spring and the drop to lower the car, I would want what I have currently or slightly higher. Like the 1" or 1/4" isolator choice, question is which ones to get if I were to order springs (and what springs).
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  13. #12
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    Re: Front Suspension rebuild, suggestions ?

    As they say, one thing leads to another, I just ordered the 515's with 1" isolators (since I have the Shelby drop), $89 out the door with free shipping (free shipping ends today). Maybe doesn't help to Belgium but thought I would mention it.
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  14. #13
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    Re: Front Suspension rebuild, suggestions ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Chuck View Post
    Strut rod bushings ( what is your opinion on these ? )
    ==> new bushings oradjustable strut rods?
    adjustable strut rods costs allot of money , worth it ?


    Shocks ( dont really now what's good and what's not, so open for suggestions on these!)
    http://www.mustangsplus.com/xcart/19...ont-Shock.html
    I was told by my alignment tech that the stock strut rods didn't have enough adjustment to get the positive caster that I wanted and to get the wheel centered in the wheel well. I installed 1/4in shims between the aft bolt of the upper control arm and the shock tower to get the additional caster. This brought the wheel forward in the wheel well and the strut rods were adjusted to move the lower control arm aft slightly to center the wheel.


    I have the standard KYB gas adjust on all four corners of my '68. They're nice shocks. I have Bilstein sport shocks and struts on my '85 Mustang and LOVE them. I would really like to buy Bilsteins for the Cougar, but since the KYB's are in good working order, it's hard to spend the $$$. If I needed new ones, I'd opt for the Bilsteins.
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  15. #14
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    Re: Front Suspension rebuild, suggestions ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Seafoam jcode View Post
    I was told by my alignment tech that the stock strut rods didn't have enough adjustment to get the positive caster that I wanted and to get the wheel centered in the wheel well. I installed 1/4in shims between the aft bolt of the upper control arm and the shock tower to get the additional caster. This brought the wheel forward in the wheel well and the strut rods were adjusted to move the lower control arm aft slightly to center the wheel.


    I have the standard KYB gas adjust on all four corners of my '68. They're nice shocks. I have Bilstein sport shocks and struts on my '85 Mustang and LOVE them. I would really like to buy Bilsteins for the Cougar, but since the KYB's are in good working order, it's hard to spend the $$$. If I needed new ones, I'd opt for the Bilsteins.
    Shims on the forward UCA bolt you mean and aft with the wheel too. Positive caster is like a bicycle fork, UCA back, LCA forward, the opposite of what you have described.
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  16. #15
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    Re: Front Suspension rebuild, suggestions ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Seafoam jcode View Post
    I was told by my alignment tech that the stock strut rods didn't have enough adjustment to get the positive caster that I wanted and to get the wheel centered in the wheel well. I installed 1/4in shims between the aft bolt of the upper control arm and the shock tower to get the additional caster. This brought the wheel forward in the wheel well and the strut rods were adjusted to move the lower control arm aft slightly to center the wheel.


    I have the standard KYB gas adjust on all four corners of my '68. They're nice shocks. I have Bilstein sport shocks and struts on my '85 Mustang and LOVE them. I would really like to buy Bilsteins for the Cougar, but since the KYB's are in good working order, it's hard to spend the $$$. If I needed new ones, I'd opt for the Bilsteins.
    Hello there, I have heard of Bilstein but dont know anything about them. How do they compare with Konis, performance, and price?
    Thanks for any info.
    Mike
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