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MadElf
10-23-2001, 08:48 PM
Okay... I'm putting together my wish list for the next round of work on my van & I'm looking for info in the best place I can think of.
Here!

I'd like to lower the ride height of the van a bit. We're not talking a lot here. I'm thinking something like 2 inches, maybe 3 at the most. I want to do this front and rear, equally.
Anybody out there know how I should do it?

MadElf
10-25-2001, 07:11 PM
Nobody?
...
And here I thought I could get information on anything here.

How about an easy question? (at least I assume it is)
Anyone know how the lowering blocks they sell for rear leaf springs work?
Any reason they couldn't be used on the front leaf springs also?

Vanner68
10-25-2001, 07:59 PM
Well-
Smiley's was lowered, he put it back to stock. The axle was switched from mounting below the springs to above.
This is why lowering blocks won't work. With the axle below the springs they would raise the van. Remounting the axle above the spring will give you 3" drop and real close proximity to the floor.

Lowering the front this way could make your front axle REAL friendly with your oil pan....

Removing leafs from the springs will drop the van, sacrificing load carrying ability.

They can be lowered, but it's not easy and as far as I know there's nothing close to a kit. Pinion angles and steering drag link angles would have to be sorted as well.

If none of this scares you, go for it! Then let us know what troubles (if any) you had in the process.
I think a low early would be cool, as long as it didn't require massive vehicle re-engineering.

Rich Van Linkel
10-26-2001, 08:01 AM
Madelf,

I lifted my 66 and put some 33 BFG tires on it. (see Sept. in VCVC calendar) I was able to use the blocks you speak of for the rear, but they were too wide for the front springs so I had to make my own out of box tubing. Anyway, the lift was real easy, and only took about an hour and a half to switch.

As for lowering, I'm very curious about that as well. I want to lower my other 66. I've seen several very nice low rider Ford vans. One was even tubed! How do they do it? What's different about their front axle set ups? Does anyone know?

the Bohemian

MadElf
10-26-2001, 04:01 PM
The idea of switching the axles to the top of the spring sounds like it might be within the realms of possibility. I think 3" is about where I would want to be. Definitely no more.
I just went out & poked my head under the van. From what I can tell, the front axle would have to be moved about 8" or 10" toward the rear of the van to get anywhere near the oil pan.
I'd be more concerned about the bottom of the radiator actually. I'd definitely need to re-route the bottom hose for peace of mind, but I think the radiator itself would be safe. (Plus there are bump blocks to keep the axle from going too high)
I think I'd want to add a couple of leafs to the spring to stiffen things up also. With a shorter travel span for the suspension, I'd need the harder ride to compensate. Plus the harder spring couldn't hurt the handling.

Smiley, if you're out there, what problems did you have with the switched axle set-up that made you change back? Or did you just like the stock height better?

BZ
10-26-2001, 07:54 PM
Haven't looked, but wouldn't you need to run a shorter shock?
BZ

68chevyboy
10-27-2001, 02:59 PM
be sure to double check your bump blocks, one of mine came off too easy for comfort, they arent in there real tight. i want to lower my van in front about the same, and i want to jack it up in the back and put some slicks out the side. ever considered chopping the leaf shackles and welding them back together? im going to make extra long shackles in rear and put some lift blocks in. chop the front shackles, and put 14 inch wheels with low profiles on front. i figured that should do it.

[This message has been edited by 68chevyboy (edited October 27, 2001).]

MadElf
10-30-2001, 05:57 PM
I've heard you can lower a couple of inches without changing shocks. Much more than that & I'm sure you would. Doesn't sound like something a trip to the parts store with a tape measure wouldn't solve.