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Rear leaf springs on my KR...was ride height

Started by Steve Meltzer, May 12, 2024, 12:02:48 AM

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Steve Meltzer

I'm not sure that I can live with the ride height difference between the lower left side and the right. The angles of the right and left shackles show a difference as well, leading my mechanic and I to believe that we need to do something about the rear leaf springs, if anything is to be done. The difference in height is about 3/4 to 1 inch, the right being higher than the left. The car is a very correct car and within reason, I'd like to maintain that virtue, though I have no plans to show her. Ever. It's a car that I have been driving and plan to continue to do so.

So, my question is, should I have the springs re-arched b/c they are original or should I save them and buy new springs? If so, from who,? And how would I get them refinished in a way that's reasonably close to the original? Any and all suggestions are most welcome and appreciated. Thanks, Steve

Bob Gaines

 I think with your need to get them exactly the same that the re arching will be the way to get the exact ride height you want. There are other alternative ways but I don't think that you will get the exact result you need. It might take a couple try's of re arching then installing and checking ride height. This re arching  will also need someone experienced to oversee the total process so as to the end results you want. That is when you consider all of what you will have to do to make the leaf spring look concours correct as is your concern. You best have a good supply of concours correct straps given you have to take the springs apart to re arch them and the straps are typically only could for one time .The tab that is bent over to hold them together gets metal fatigue when you try and fold them back then fold them over again when you are finished.   
Bob Gaines,Shelby Enthusiast, Shelby Collector , Shelby Concours judge SAAC,MCA,Mid America Shelby

Royce Peterson

The place here in Tulsa is easy. You tell them what you want the end product to be and toss them the keys. By the end of the day or maybe the next day you pick the car up. It is that easy.
1968 Cougar XR-7 GT-E 427 Side Oiler C6 3.50 Detroit Locker
1968 1/2 Cougar XR-7 428CJ Ram Air C6 3.91 Traction Lock


Well, since I've had my '68. April4, 1972. Since the first meeting with other owners, probably the most discussed and disagreed upon topic is the ride height in general and the rear ride height specifically.

I honestly can't remember seeing two cars together with the same rear ride height.

So exactly the "correct" ride height is likely never going to be completely agreed upon.

The only thing that I know for sure is that the "original" as delivered rear posture on the Shelbys was butt down, giving the car a "speedboat" in action pose.

If there is actually a documented number that was stated, "as delivered" I'd like to see that published and standardized.

I'm not sure if a "Concourse dimension" in black and white actually exists where you can take a tape measure and prove it?

In the past there has been issues with re-arching the springs in that it seems to shorten the life expectancy from that point on but that might just be my personal experience? Just something to consider. I only have 50 years of experience with this subject so consider that others likely may know better.  ;)
68 GT350 Lives Matter!

Steve Meltzer

I've pretty much resolved to do something,though I'm not certain what! I'd really like to find a shop here in Houston because of the inherent risks in sending a car to a shop of which you know nothing, and have no control whatsoever, nor recourse if it ain't right.

Anybody know a competent shop here in Houston?

Thanks again everybody. Steve

"Sometimes chicken; sometimes feathers"  and the corollary:
"Sometimes you're the dog, sometimes you're the fire hydrant"

Steve Meltzer

Oh yeah, I meant to remind you, it's not the delta in the ride height front to back it's the ride height side to side. So, when I look at the car from the front, the right side is higher than the left. Ditto the rear deck. Hope this isn't overly redundant. Steve.

Steve Meltzer

Planning to install new rear springs and see if they solve the problem and go from there. Of course, I will save the original springs and perhaps have them re-arched; not sure at this point. I really would like to drive the car and this looks like the quickest, and most effective way to that goal. I will deal with the authenticity and "correctness" questions later. Thanks again, Steve."