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Technical Lowering 54' Belair

Discussion in 'Traditional Hot Rods' started by Amber Rossow, Apr 15, 2019.

  1. Amber Rossow
    Joined: Apr 15, 2019
    Posts: 15

    Amber Rossow

    Hey everyone I'm new here and can't seem to find the correct information I'm looking for after reading tons of threads. So with that being said can you guys help with my new Chevy? This is my first Chevy as I am a Ford person, so I really dont know where to go to get a lowering kit (besides Jamco) and I've read bad reviews about them. My car is completely original and unmolested and I'd like to lower it without needing to fabricate anything, I'm just looking for everything to be bolt on. I want to get it as low as possible but mind you we are the "Pothole" state (Michigan) so I'm concerned about my driveshaft getting shoved through the trans. as well as steering issues. Please help, it's much appreciated!
    Thanks, Amber
     
  2. wvenfield
    Joined: Nov 23, 2006
    Posts: 4,645

    wvenfield
    Member

    You aren't going to be able to go "as low as possible" because of the torque tube. Quick and easy. Replace the front springs and put blocks in the back. I'm sure someone can come up with replacement springs before long.
     
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  3. Amber Rossow
    Joined: Apr 15, 2019
    Posts: 15

    Amber Rossow

    Ok thank you. Do you know of anyone besides Jamco that has a similar kit? Jamco does carry the front coils, and the rear blocks but I've heard bad stuff about them not sending all of the parts and horrible customer service. I found another place on Ebay (Performance parts online) but read really bad reviews for them as well.
     
  4. quick85
    Joined: Feb 23, 2014
    Posts: 1,276

    quick85
    Member

    Live near a large city, or suburb of? A spring shop can wind up a pair of coils for you
    while probably giving you the info on what would be best for you. Ask about the rears
    while you're at it. Too many people hit the internet without considering what's
    available locally.
     
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  5. wvenfield
    Joined: Nov 23, 2006
    Posts: 4,645

    wvenfield
    Member

    Sorry, no idea. I'd just get a set of blocks and find a set of springs that would work at the local parts store. For some reason I seem to recall people using Caprice springs but my memory isn't so good.
     
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  6. Amber Rossow
    Joined: Apr 15, 2019
    Posts: 15

    Amber Rossow

    Theres a local guy but I'm looking at about $2k for 2 inches and a few months to make them in Michigan we only get about 3 months of summer if were lucky.
     
  7. Amber Rossow
    Joined: Apr 15, 2019
    Posts: 15

    Amber Rossow

    I'll have to look into the caprice springs thanks for that info, I'll do some more homework on them.
     
  8. Bert Kollar
    Joined: Jan 10, 2007
    Posts: 881

    Bert Kollar
    Member

    Eaton Springs
     
    Amber Rossow likes this.
  9. As for lowering how much do you want to go?

    I live it Upstate New York so crazy lowering on my 53 Chev. was not a wise move.
    I changed to 14" late 50's early 60's wheels.

    Also are you going to hot rod it?
    The stock transmission will not hold up.
    My 261 Chev. 6 showed me that.
    Three transmissions in one summer.
    I went late 50's Corvette three speed and 57 and up rear.
    [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]

    Once it is lowered look into a set of the following
    53-62 Corvettes have the same front end as 49-54 Chevrolet cars.
    56-62 Corvettes use a shim between the frame and cross member to add caster.
    Any Corvette specialist should have them.
    [​IMG]
     
  10. VANDENPLAS
    Joined: Dec 14, 2009
    Posts: 1,541

    VANDENPLAS
    Member

    The blocks for the rear are narrower then anything you will find local and the venturing pin is off set forward.

    I got a set made for my 50.
    Anything lower then 3” and I have heard any more then that and the diff will drain into the trans

    You can lower the spring pockets on the lower control arms as they are bolted
    2 coils can be cut
    There is/was a company that would drop your factory uprights ( cut and weld)
    I went to two fab shops I deal with and while both said they could do it. Would not as it’s a steering part and they did not want the possible liability. If you check locally your results may vary.
     
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  11. Amber Rossow
    Joined: Apr 15, 2019
    Posts: 15

    Amber Rossow

    I was hoping I could get 3" out of it without any fabrication...as for the trans mines an automatic, the car is completely stock/original. I would like to keep it that way as far as the rest of the car goes, just wanted it with a nice drop, maybe do a few cosmetic things, pinstripe, maybe window tint, I like my original hub caps too, the car has some decent patina on it so just plan on clearing it. Going for an original lowered look, I want to drive the car as much as possible, I have other other hotrod and goes fast cars, this one I want to be a nice cruiser. Why did your stock trans not hold up? What trans did you have originally?
     
  12. Amber Rossow
    Joined: Apr 15, 2019
    Posts: 15

    Amber Rossow

    Thank you, great info! I didnt want to go any lower than 3 because I figured I would run into to alot of issues, I was hoping to just purchase new springs in case I want to go back to original I'll have everything still.
     
  13. For lowering springs use Moog 8542 springs for a pinto or mustang II. They work perfect and cost about 60 bucks a pair. I cut a half a coil off and replaced all the bump stops. It rides great and sits just great compared to stock. You will have to replace the shocks with shorter ones as the stock ones are too long and will bottom out. Cant remember the monroe number I used but they weren't bad price wise. Just use blocks in the rear. On my 51 I used the moog 8542 springs and 1.5 inch block on a chassis engineering rear spring kit.
    20180608_154649_008.jpg Screenshot_20190415-130722_Photos.jpg
     
  14. i work at national chevy, we have lowering blocks for the rear, $89+ shipping . You can cut a coil off the each front coil but, after 60 years, im sure the coils will need to be replaced anyway
     
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  15. Amber Rossow
    Joined: Apr 15, 2019
    Posts: 15

    Amber Rossow

    Thank you! Your car looks great by the way! I will definitely look into those springs!
     
    Nailhead Jason likes this.
  16. They have been in there for almost 3 years now and settled very little, rides smooth as glass down the freeway. Best drop for the buck and the ride is great!
     
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  17. Amber Rossow
    Joined: Apr 15, 2019
    Posts: 15

    Amber Rossow

    I dont want to cut the old springs in case I dont like how it rides, I also want to keep the value of the car. Do you have a website or catalog I could look at? 20190406_191441.jpg 20190406_191441.jpg
     
  18. Amber Rossow
    Joined: Apr 15, 2019
    Posts: 15

    Amber Rossow

    20190415_095453.jpg

    This is the car now, yes the back quarter was unfortunately spray painted by my father in law but I can still get the paint off. This is how she sits now
     
  19. Amber Rossow
    Joined: Apr 15, 2019
    Posts: 15

    Amber Rossow

    That's what I'm going for, a nice solid drop, but also want it to ride nice too, I want to be able to drive the car with no worries
     
    Nailhead Jason likes this.
  20. cederholm
    Joined: May 6, 2006
    Posts: 1,494

    cederholm
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    I dropped mine with new springs and blocks from Jamco - no problems.

    IMG_9972.JPG
     
  21. Amber Rossow
    Joined: Apr 15, 2019
    Posts: 15

    Amber Rossow

    Is yours 3"? Also did you buy the deluxe kit with rear leaf's or just the blocks?
     
  22. cederholm
    Joined: May 6, 2006
    Posts: 1,494

    cederholm
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    yes, 3" but blocks in the back.

    Note, I bought them years ago. No idea how Jamco is now.
     
  23. Amber Rossow
    Joined: Apr 15, 2019
    Posts: 15

    Amber Rossow

    Ok thanks, I was reading some threads on here but they were from like 2012 so I was hoping by now they would be better. I think I'll probably just end up going with the same setup. How does it ride and steer?
     
  24. cederholm
    Joined: May 6, 2006
    Posts: 1,494

    cederholm
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Better then my model A! :D

    I think it steers the same and maybe a little harder in the rear. But that could be in my head. ...and these are on the rough streets on NYC.

    ~ Carl
     
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  25. Amber Rossow
    Joined: Apr 15, 2019
    Posts: 15

    Amber Rossow

    Lol well that's good! I was wondering about the ride after going 3". The streets here in MI are really rough too. Thanks for your help!
     
    cederholm likes this.
  26. This blow-up was leaving a cruise hard and missing a shift with the stock three speed. After that, I babied the transmission went I shifted. If I didn't get it all the way in 2nd gear it would break the cluster gear.

    It was a running driving car when I bought it with the 261 truck in it with single carb and exhaust. Stock it was a 216.
    I had it fix (with the help of my dad.) a lot in including a bad engine rebuild.

    I rebuilt it with a vintage Edelbrock 2x1 intake and Fetons

    [​IMG][​IMG]

    The dash, oil filter, and overflow can on my 1953 Chevrolet by Don Rooney
    [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
    Please forgive the dirty engine bay I drive it everywhere!

     
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2019
  27. Amber Rossow
    Joined: Apr 15, 2019
    Posts: 15

    Amber Rossow

    Dang that sucks! Luckily mines a 2 speed powerglide! I like your stripes though and that's what I'll be doing, driving it everywhere!
     
  28. Amber Rossow likes this.
  29. Memphis T.
    Joined: Feb 16, 2015
    Posts: 21

    Memphis T.

    Fatman Fabrications uprights and steering arms workout great on my 54. A little more pricey than the other options mentioned. Drops the front about 2 1/2”. 3” blocks in rear work fine.


    Sent from my iPhone using H.A.M.B.
     
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  30. Amber Rossow
    Joined: Apr 15, 2019
    Posts: 15

    Amber Rossow

     

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