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Discussion Starter #1
How do you compress and uncompress front coil springs off the car?

I have some Clarke spring compressors that are OK for compressing the front coil spring when the spring is in the car – the spring seat stop prevents the spring from rotating. But how do you release the spring compressors from the coil spring when it is off the car, or when you want to compress new springs to install in car?

I cannot work out a way to stop the spring from rotating. Spring won’t fit in vice –so I cannot clamp it to prevent it from rotating.
 

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You can take small hose clamps, put one on each side of the spring compressor (where it's slip-sliding away) - crank 'em down tight - they'll keep the spring from rotating in the jaws - but be VERY careful and watch for any deformation or movement at the clamps - if you see any step away from the spring - fast.
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
Steve.

The clamps of the spring compressor are not a problem - they hold fast.

I need to apply torgue on the bolt head of the spring compressor to release the compressor (and vice versa when compressing the spring). The problem is how to hold the coil spring so the coil spring does not rotate as a apply torgue on the bolt head of the compressor. I hope you follow what I mean.

See image below
 

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RickyS said:
Steve.

The clamps of the spring compressor are not a problem - they hold fast.

I need to apply torgue on the bolt head of the spring compressor to release the compressor (and vice versa when compressing the spring). The problem is how to hold the coil spring so the coil spring does not rotate as a apply torgue on the bolt head of the compressor. I hope you follow what I mean.
That is an interesting problem - especially without a vice. Could you bore two holes through a 2X4 (their spacing corresponding to the center to center distance of the compressor bolts and their diameter just a bit larger) and have a friend hold that while you torqued the compressor down?
 

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RickyS said:
How do you compress and uncompress front coil springs off the car?
I tend to get a high lift/farm jack and use that to clamp the springs, pull the compressors off and then gradually release it off with the spring pointing away from me and anything damageable.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Jim
Haha. An air impact wrench is next on the tool shopping list.

Steve
I have a large vice, but have not worked out a way to hold the spring in the vice in a safe manner. I like your idea. I think it might work if I clamp the 2x4 in my vice.

Tomarse.
Good idea. But I don't have a high lift/farm jack. But that has given me the idea of wedging the spring under a jacking point on the car and using my trolley jack to clamp the spring - remove compressors - lower jack. Will that work?
 

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RickyS said:
Tomarse.
Good idea. But I don't have a high lift/farm jack. But that has given me the idea of wedging the spring under a jacking point on the car and using my trolley jack to clamp the spring - remove compressors - lower jack. Will that work?
i should think there is a fair chance of it springing off and damaging something unless you are very carefull.
Find a local landrover owner - they generally have high lift jacks ;)
 

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my lowered springs fall out when yu jack the car up... no need for compressors ;)

runs and hides for making sarcastic, unhelpful comments :cool:

G
 

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Discussion Starter #10 (Edited)
Decided that Steve's was the safest method. See picture below.

Also the 2x4 would act as a template when you compress a new spring (or reinstall the old one) and should ensure the compressor is in the right place. I did take some measurements just in case.
 

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Discussion Starter #12 (Edited)
Update.

The 2x4 piece of wood worked OK for releasing the spring compressors, but it does not work for compressing the spring. The threaded bar of the spring compressors bind into the holes in the 2x4 when you compress the spring preventing removal of the compressed spring.

Need to rethink this one. Any ideas? How do you safely compress the spring?
 

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RickyS said:
Update.


Need to rethink this one. Any ideas? How do you safely compress the spring?


i just did it very carefully, 90 or 180degree turns of the spanner at a time

G
 

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a mix of between my knee's (like i said, CAREFULLY ;) :eek: ) and with the spring lying along a drainage channel on the drive with my foot on the spring


maybe if you wanted to do a reverse of your uncompressing with teh 2x4 method, drill out the holes in the 2x4 (or make new ones next to the existing holes) and sleeve the holes with some 1/2" copper plumbing pipe... this would stop the threads from binding in the wood


G
 

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RickyS said:
The threaded bar of the spring compressors bind into the 2x4 when you compress the spring preventing removal of the compressed spring.
Would you not enlarge the holes in the 2x4 so that the compressor bolts can move freely within them. If the bolt thread is 12mm, use 16mm holes.
 

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Discussion Starter #20 (Edited)
Worked out a solution.

I used 2 pieces of wood (4x1) separated by spacer blocks that were slightly wider than the width of the threaded bar of the spring compressors, and held fast in a vice. This simple set up makes it easy to compress the spring relatively safely.

One picture shows spring uncompressed and the other compressed.
 
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