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Old 10-26-2011, 09:23 PM   #1
1959apache
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Default 1955-1959 Chevy Truck Front Suspension Pictures

Hey I was wondering if anyone had any photos of the stock front suspension for 55-59 Chevy trucks? Does anyone have a front disc brake conversion and also have photos? I am more focused on the steering components. Thanks in advance!
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Old 10-26-2011, 09:32 PM   #2
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Default Re: 1955-1959 Chevy Truck Front Suspension Pictures

I have a stock 3" dropped front axle with stock leafspring suspension and stock swaybar set-up (hoping to install the swaybar this weekend) and I also upgraded to front axle to a disc brake set-up. The front end is off and I can get clear shots if you need something specific. The whole front end dropped 3.5 inches from the axle swap and the front frame horns currently sit 8.25 inches off the ground. The tie rod had to be mounted UNDER the steering arms...when the tierod ends were mounted through the top the springs sat on top of the tierod assembly. Even with them coming up from the bottom it's still within 1.5 inches. Someone took the two smallest leafs out, so my front end only has 4 right now. I'd like to swap one of them back in on each side to make 5 total for better ride and about 1/2 inch of height. I'll subscribe to this thread and try to post the pics this weekend.
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Old 10-26-2011, 09:34 PM   #3
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Default Re: 1955-1959 Chevy Truck Front Suspension Pictures

Forgot, also had to bend the drivers side steering arm to keep the draglink horizontal to the ground.
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Old 10-26-2011, 11:35 PM   #4
1959apache
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Default Re: 1955-1959 Chevy Truck Front Suspension Pictures

cool buzznut, sounds like the same setup or close to what I have. Post them when you can, I am going to take some pictures tomorrow of my setup.

Anyone else have anything?
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Old 10-27-2011, 12:16 AM   #5
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Default Re: 1955-1959 Chevy Truck Front Suspension Pictures

Might help to know what you're looking to see in the pictures. i have several trucks with stock suspension, and I have an axle with the wheels and steering on it laying in the yard.
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Old 10-27-2011, 12:20 AM   #6
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Default Re: 1955-1959 Chevy Truck Front Suspension Pictures

here's mine with the tie rod mounted below the springs (drop axle and springs) to the bottom of the steering arms... with bias plies, i had to heat and bend the arms inward a bit to clear the sidewall bulge as well as use the newer style rod ends... it may not be necessary with different wheel/tire combos... also the steering link needed bending to keep the drag link level... when doing this, be sure to check for shock clearance... i also sleeved my tie rod to beef it up a bit- i noticed some flex in the stock piece.

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Old 10-27-2011, 12:20 AM   #7
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Default Re: 1955-1959 Chevy Truck Front Suspension Pictures

here's a picture that shows quite a bit of it, shock is missing
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Old 10-27-2011, 12:30 AM   #8
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Default Re: 1955-1959 Chevy Truck Front Suspension Pictures

Quote:
Originally Posted by squirrel View Post
Might help to know what you're looking to see in the pictures. i have several trucks with stock suspension, and I have an axle with the wheels and steering on it laying in the yard.

I am more looking for pictures of the the tie rods and tie rod bar (not sure what it is called) between the tie rods. I have installed mine and it looks to be correct, but the guy I got the truck from did some work that I am questioning. So far what you both have posted has helped me a great dea. Would there be any way to post a picture behind the drop axle and also the inside of the tires so I can see what it is supposed to look like stock?
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Old 10-27-2011, 12:38 AM   #9
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Default Re: 1955-1959 Chevy Truck Front Suspension Pictures

the steering arms are the pieces that come off the spindle, inside the wheel- the tierod is the long piece that connects them... stock, the tie rod would go above the springs (between the spring and frame) and mount to the top of the steering arms- that's the only obvious difference... the rest are subtle tweaks to get everything to function properly...
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Old 10-27-2011, 09:29 AM   #10
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Default Re: 1955-1959 Chevy Truck Front Suspension Pictures

here are a couple more.
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Old 10-27-2011, 12:31 PM   #11
1959apache
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Default Re: 1955-1959 Chevy Truck Front Suspension Pictures

It looks to me that this may work, but would it be possible to swap the tie rod, tie rod ends and the arms over so that they face foward instead of backward? I have a power steering box where the front right spring was supposed to be located, therefore the shocks have been mirrored to be backwards. I am just concerned how low the steering is to the ground and am concerned of it catching on anything.
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Old 10-27-2011, 03:03 PM   #12
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Default Re: 1955-1959 Chevy Truck Front Suspension Pictures

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Originally Posted by 1959apache View Post
It looks to me that this may work, but would it be possible to swap the tie rod, tie rod ends and the arms over so that they face foward instead of backward? I have a power steering box where the front right spring was supposed to be located, therefore the shocks have been mirrored to be backwards. I am just concerned how low the steering is to the ground and am concerned of it catching on anything.
Theoretically the tierod could be forward of the axle, but practically it can't in this application unless you do some major modifications. You would either swap steering arms left to right and create a cross steer setup (passenger side mounted pitman and drag link) or fabricate new steering arms with the tierod locators facing forward - remember that the upper half of the steering arm where the draglink connects still has to be in basically the same location to function properly with the stock drivers side steering box / pitman arm.

I have seen the divorced steering box setup on these trucks, but not sure how everything else was routed in those situations. I'll look through some of my links.

Oh wait, so your pitman arm is forward of the axle? Hmm...you may need different steering arms all together. Didn't early 70 trucks and mid eighties Toyotas have this type of setup? Maybe check thos parts to see if they can be adapted...
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Old 10-27-2011, 06:50 PM   #13
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Default Re: 1955-1959 Chevy Truck Front Suspension Pictures

Look up how Ackerman geometry works, you'd get quite a bit of tire scrub on turns if you keep the tie rod the same length it is and move it ahead of the axle.

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Old 10-27-2011, 08:32 PM   #14
1959apache
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Default Re: 1955-1959 Chevy Truck Front Suspension Pictures

Here are a few pictures of what I took of my setup. I am just concerned with how low the tie rod is (am afraid that it is going to catch on something. I think I have a little different setup than what is normal after looking at your guys pictures. I am going to have to buckle down and see if I can flip this. I will get some better pictures tomorrow
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Old 10-27-2011, 08:50 PM   #15
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Default Re: 1955-1959 Chevy Truck Front Suspension Pictures

looks like someone tapered the holes in the steering arms for modern tie rod ends, but they put the taper in backwards. Might work if you install a dropped axle
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Old 10-31-2011, 09:50 AM   #16
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Default Re: 1955-1959 Chevy Truck Front Suspension Pictures

The setup you have works good with a dropped axle. If you don't have a dropped axle it does hang down lower than the axle does. If you are going to not drop the axle the tie rod needs to be flipped to the top side of the steering arms. You will have to weld the holes up in the arms and drill and tapper ream them from the bottom down.
www.droppedaxles.com
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