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Installing Air Bags On My '56 Buick

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Century, Nov 22, 2009.

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  1. bonesmsd
    Joined: Sep 19, 2005
    Posts: 276

    bonesmsd
    Member
    from Redding Ca

    Right- I will work on lower bars and shock mounts tomorrow. Don't want to piss of the neighbors with more noise tonight.
     
  2. Century
    Joined: May 28, 2009
    Posts: 177

    Century
    Member

    Looking good. What are you putting behind the 322?
     
  3. bonesmsd
    Joined: Sep 19, 2005
    Posts: 276

    bonesmsd
    Member
    from Redding Ca

    Turbo 350 with a Bendstens's adapter
     
  4. Hooligan63
    Joined: Mar 1, 2009
    Posts: 1,343

    Hooligan63
    Member


    There's been people bagging customs since '59,and Air Ride Technologies hasn't been out that long. Like someone said,there's companies out there that offer equal or better components for a lot less cash. Hit up Gambino's for some info and prices. That yeah you can support a H.A.M.B.'er too.
     
  5. Century
    Joined: May 28, 2009
    Posts: 177

    Century
    Member

    I'm finally getting back to this. I went out to the garage today to put things together and ran into a problem.

    I fitted the brackets to the bag, stuck it in the spring pocket (already trimmed), and jacked up the lower a-arm to air out the bag. At this point there was no air line connected to the bag. I found that when the bag is aired out (not sure if it was completely aired out) it rests on the bracket plate. Mind you, the plates are regular suicidedoors.com plates.

    Basically, when it is deflated, the rubber spills over and touches the metal plate.


    Here is my setup:

    [​IMG]


    Here you can see the line it left in the bag:

    [​IMG]


    Same on the bottom:

    [​IMG]


    Inside the top cup:

    [​IMG]


    Bottom:

    [​IMG]

    The bag movement is fairly straight - no crazy angles.

    Any ideas?
     
  6. kustombuilder
    Joined: Sep 18, 2002
    Posts: 7,754

    kustombuilder
    Member
    from Novi, MI

    i don't like it Alex. perhaps a larger diameter mounting plate that will not allow the bag to "spill over" the edges. you could maybe even find or make something that will simply go between those mounts and the bags and not allow this condition. those marks on the bag tell me it is rubbing pretty good on the sharp edges of that bag cup.
     
  7. Captain Freedom
    Joined: May 6, 2009
    Posts: 262

    Captain Freedom
    Member
    from Upstate SC

    Weld the plate to the inside of the pipe, grind off the outside edge of the plate.
     
  8. caddy man
    Joined: Mar 23, 2007
    Posts: 191

    caddy man
    Member
    from usa

    I kind of agree, I've got a 50 caddy with ART, and I've got a 68 Caddy with Slam Specialties, and I like the slam specialties a little better, not saying ART isn't good stuff, because it is, but it is a little more expensive, but they may have a kit for your car.
     
  9. I dont know what he said... but its hard to argue with
     
  10. StanDaManTX
    Joined: Feb 27, 2009
    Posts: 597

    StanDaManTX
    Member
    from The South

    how did you fix the "bag rubbing problem"?
     
  11. Snickern
    Joined: Sep 1, 2009
    Posts: 46

    Snickern
    Member
    from Norway

    Hi

    Any progress? I have got the kit from kustombuilder, but i am not sure if i am going to mount it now, or wait until winter, i might mount just the rear now, and do the front later, i only have about 3 inches clearance from the trans to the ground, but it works ok. My rear springs are from a 07 VW transporter T5 (might call it california here?) but they are way to stiff, bounces all over. in front i have cut down 65 impala springs - works great. Now i am waiting for more brake parts from old buick parts. got really great brakes on one side ........ not on the other..
     
  12. Snickern
    Joined: Sep 1, 2009
    Posts: 46

    Snickern
    Member
    from Norway

    I Think i have sorted out the rear, if any interest i can post some pics from my cell tomorrow.

    I dont think i am going to do the front before the winter, cruisin season is only 3-4 months so i want get most out of it. i figure with opportunity to raise the rear, it will be driveable over most of the poor roads here.

    What i hve done is to make 2 inch tall brackets on top of the rear bag, and aprox 1/2 inch bottom bracket on top of existing bracket, switched to an strait connection for the air, so i could run it strait up in the trunk. i am going to make som hold down strips for the bottom bracket tomorrow, then it will be securly in place. and smooth out the edges of the brackets so no rubbing on sharp edges because of spill over from the bags. with 2,5 inch brackets it will only spill over i tiny bit when aired out i think, i will ride on stock bumperstops, maybe trim them down 1/2 inch if nessecery - I think it will be low enough for me.

    The only thing to fix if going orginale again, is the bottom bolt for the spring, and a hole in the trunk.

    Sorry Century for posting about my own car n your tread, but hopfully it can be for some help for you or others:)
     
  13. SKRTCHSR
    Joined: Feb 1, 2007
    Posts: 483

    SKRTCHSR
    Member
    from Cincinnati

    Bigger pants:D
     
  14. Century
    Joined: May 28, 2009
    Posts: 177

    Century
    Member

    This thing is on the home stretch... ran into another problem.

    Area in question is the front lower mount. I attached a cup to the bottom of the bag (as seen in the pictures above) and placed it in the original spring location (lower a-arm). Since a cup is not a spring it obviously has some play in there. There are multiple places where it could 'sit' - closer to the wheel or farther. Depending on where it's seated, it can get very close to the spring pocket (too close). I have already removed a lot of metal from the spring pocket, so grinding more is not the answer.

    Any insight from those who use the stock setup with a cup?
     
  15. Snickern
    Joined: Sep 1, 2009
    Posts: 46

    Snickern
    Member
    from Norway

    Is your problem how to secure the lower cup, or is it not enough room? My plans is to do like Bonesmd and cut away the originale plate in the lower a arm, and replace it with a solid plate, mounted below the a-arm. if you dont want to do that, you could easy weld on 2 nuts on the lower cup, and mount it tru the holes for the shocks.

    Hope i did understand your question, and answered on the right subject.

    Post some pics - looks like a nice car.
     
  16. Century
    Joined: May 28, 2009
    Posts: 177

    Century
    Member

    I put everything together for a test run. I included pictures of all my brackets in this post, along with their measurements. Note, the measurement is only the spacer, not including the plates.

    As I previously mentioned, I was having trouble getting the front lower brackets to stay in place. I grinded away at them until their matched the contours of the spring perch. Thus far, they are still coming pretty damn close to the spring pocket when fully inflated, so I'll have to come up with something. Creating new steel plates to replace the ones currently riveted in there is a last resort. Any ideas?

    Front upper bracket, 30mm:

    [​IMG]

    Front lower bracket, 74mm (needed an extension to clear the a-arm):

    [​IMG]

    Rear lower bracket, 32mm:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Rear upper bracket, 45mm:

    [​IMG]

    Assembled:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Rounded edges with a grinder:

    [​IMG]

    Old garden hose:

    [​IMG]

    I slid the hose over the air line to protect it in certain places:

    [​IMG]

    Trimmed and hammered out spring pockets:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Aired out:

    [​IMG]
     
  17. Century
    Joined: May 28, 2009
    Posts: 177

    Century
    Member

    The passenger side rear would not go down all the way due to the exhaust, so I unbolted it at the header temporarily. I only took off one side and this thing is crazy loud. Will it quiet down at all if I straight pipe it all the way to the back?
     
  18. hooligan909
    Joined: May 19, 2009
    Posts: 121

    hooligan909
    Member
    from San Diego!

    Any progress man? and are you using the stock tranny/drive train? I just herd the closed driveline would give problems when bagging these cars. Any truth to that?
     
  19. Century
    Joined: May 28, 2009
    Posts: 177

    Century
    Member

    Not that I can see. And yes, I'm on the home stretch. I did not like the cup sitting in the front lower a-arm, so I made a plate. This is much easier, safer, and guarantees the bag won't hit the spring pocket at some point in travel.

    I'm currently trying to install shocks (similar to bonesmsd's application).
     
  20. joel torres
    Joined: Mar 22, 2009
    Posts: 824

    joel torres
    Member

    by Rounding the edges with a grinder does it seem safer i think im going to have to do this i dont like the contact my bags make my car is not on the road yet so i haven't damaged anything yet please show pics on shock relocating as i haven't tackled that part great thread
     
  21. Century
    Joined: May 28, 2009
    Posts: 177

    Century
    Member

  22. Century
    Joined: May 28, 2009
    Posts: 177

    Century
    Member

    So I can't figure this out for the life of me. I ditched the lower cups for plates over the a-arm. I drilled a hole in the plate at a location that I determined was safe at all heights. I made an exact copy (same location) for the passenger side. My upper cups have allthread dead center going up to the top shock hole, and are the same height on both sides.

    I put everything together and pumped it up. The passenger side inflates completely straight but gets a bit close to the side of the spring pocket closest to the cabin (doesn't touch). On the drivers side, the bag inflates at a big angle and touches the inside wall of the spring pocket closest to the headlights. Not only are they inflating at different angles, but they lean to opposite sides of the car. All hardware is identical on both sides.

    I unscrewed the bottom of the drivers side bag and moved it around on the plate to try to find a better spot. It hits the wall of the spring pocket in every position.

    Any ideas?
     
  23. 58 Delpala
    Joined: Sep 25, 2009
    Posts: 334

    58 Delpala
    Member
    from NC

    I would guess that the top cup is angle cut on the top and that both cups are not in the same position causing the bags to have different angles, but without pics thats my best guess.
     
  24. Century
    Joined: May 28, 2009
    Posts: 177

    Century
    Member

    The top cups are cut straight.
     
  25. elanore56
    Joined: Sep 12, 2006
    Posts: 169

    elanore56
    Member

    mines all stock, but rebuilt. five year now being bagged and all good.:D
     
  26. elanore56
    Joined: Sep 12, 2006
    Posts: 169

    elanore56
    Member

    mines all stock, but rebuilt. five years now being bagged and all good.:D
     
  27. Century
    Joined: May 28, 2009
    Posts: 177

    Century
    Member

    So I finally figured out my problem. I had the same upper and lower mounts on each side of the car but the bags inflated completely differently. I decided to remove all the bags and compare. Two of them had a sticker reading '090512366' and the other two read '090512557'. Basically the 366 bag that was on the drivers side ballooned a hell of a lot more than the 557 bag that was on the passenger. I switched the drivers side bag with the 557 from the back and all is good now. In retrospect I probably should have tested the other 366 bag but I was fed up at this point.

    There you have it... I don't know what the difference is, maybe just different production dates?

    I'm currently finishing up the front shock mounts and once I order some slow-downs for all the lines and a water trap, I should be done.

    Question: should I get truck/van shocks in the rear since my ride height is around 25psi? The current shocks are probably blown, it's very very bouncy. What about the front?

    [​IMG]
     
  28. StanDaManTX
    Joined: Feb 27, 2009
    Posts: 597

    StanDaManTX
    Member
    from The South

    looks great.

    measure the distance of your shock mounts aired out, and fully inflated. Then go to the monroe website and find a shock that will work. They list "ALL" of the specs of all on their shocks.
     
  29. 58 Delpala
    Joined: Sep 25, 2009
    Posts: 334

    58 Delpala
    Member
    from NC

    I suggest once you can afford it go out and buy some Slam Bags. None of those worries with them.
     
  30. BuickBorracho
    Joined: Jan 30, 2008
    Posts: 430

    BuickBorracho
    Member

    Looks great man. Congrats! What kind of hubcaps are those?
     
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