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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi I need a little advise, I bought a set of Lakewood slapper bars for my 57 Chevy which has a GM 10 Bolt axle. When I installed the bars I removed the old shock plate that bolts to the u bolts. With the new bars bolted in I only have about 5/8 of an inch for a rubber snubber between the spring and traction bar. To me that doesn't seem right. Is that my springs are to flat with very little arch? I will post some pictures later.
 

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If you decide that the lowered springs and Lakewood bars aren't a good combination, check out Caltrac bars. I have some on my '55 and I think they are probably the best money I have ever spent on any car part. New springs, shocks and Caltrac bars shaved about half a second from my quarter mile times. I'm sure Calvert Racing (they make the Caltrac bars) can answer any questions about fitting bars with lowered springs.

After installation:

http://www.trifive.com/forums/showthread.php?t=42445&highlight=caltrac+bars

Before installation, and about 10 pages of guys debating various traction bars:

http://www.trifive.com/forums/showthread.php?t=39613&highlight=caltrac+bars
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I took some pictures of the Lakewood bars i am trying to install and as you can see i have about 5/8" between the frame and the bar with no bumper installed. I called Lakewood and they suggested i install the 4 degree wedge they make to get me more clearance so i will try them when they arrive later this week.

Bumper Automotive exterior Auto part


Fish Fish
 

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The slappers can work well once you experiment with the bumper travel, tire pressure and any other preload device such as air bags. However, when we used these bars in the way past, we lengthened the bars to allow the bumper to contact the spring eye, NOT the spring leaf. That's the advantage of the Cal-Tracs and similar products. Their design lets the front half of the spring do its job, locate the banjo housing and can offer preload on the spring. The rear half of the spring provides the suspension of the car's weight.

Slappers create a sudden, violent load on the springs which over time can seriously damage them. The Lakewood slappers had added to them the U-bolt to offer a degree of preload and lessen the violence of their reaction to the springs' wrap-up.

I have Cal-Trac clones on my car and can attest to the ability of this design to work flawlessly.







paul
 

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Slappers create a sudden, violent load on the springs which over time can seriously damage them. The Lakewood slappers had added to them the U-bolt to offer a degree of preload and lessen the violence of their reaction to the springs' wrap-up.

I have Cal-Trac clones on my car and can attest to the ability of this design to work flawlessly.

paul
I couldn't agree more! Here's some pictures from the link I provided above. I bent my springs without Lakewood style slapper bars - but it's very easy to see how this can happen.

Caltrac bars push DOWN on the spring, exactly where the spring wants to bend up (and slapper bars push up). The Caltrac bars use the twisting action of the axle to push DOWN on the spring via a lever in the front spring eye.

There's a really good diagram of how Caltrac type bars work in comparison to slapper bars.

http://www.hotrodsandhemis.com/Traction.html



 

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It looks like younhave the front u-bolt cinched up to tight and it is pulling the bar too close to the spring. The front u-bolt is there to limit the downward travelnof the bars when braking. Take them off for now and let's see where the bar naturally rests.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
thehazmatguy, looking back now i should have ordered the Caltracs but as always $$$ made my decision and once again i have a problem to solve.The Caltracs were over 2x the cost.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Dragsix if i remember their wasn't much difference if i loosen them but i will try it tonight and post a new picture. The tech support at Lakewood had me get their wedge kit so i am waiting on those to arrive. More i read the more i could kick myself for not buying the Caltracs
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Rick the rear springs are on the bottom hole of the shackles that are on the car not the stock ones. Yes the front has Coil over QA1 shocks and springs. How would i know if the rear springs were lowered springs?
 

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Your car is obviously lowered at least 2", maybe 3" in the front. While it sits higher in the rear, it doesn't appear to mismatch the front much. That's why I think it's lowered.

If the u-bolt isn't sucking the spring and bar together, then it's not a problem. Most guys run that u-bolt with 1/4" to 1/2" clearance.

And yes, you may need the wedges.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Ok its 10:02 pm and i ventured out to the garage hoping it was cooler but it was still 106.5 degrees. With loosing the forward clamp i have 1 1/4 gap now. Which is better but i will have to cut the rubber snubber down a lot so that i have my 1/2 inch clearance per the instructions. My 4 degree wedge kit should be here friday so saturday i will install them and see what i have.

Auto part Automotive exterior Bumper Suspension

Text Ruler Tape measure Metal
 

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I think you have two problems going on here. If I read your previous post correctly, you have old fashioned "Cal Custom" style strap shackles or what are commonly called lift bars, looks like steel bars with various holes that are intended to lift the back of the car for a little rake. If you look at how they work, you can see that by installing the lower rear spring eye into to lowest hole on that style shackle, you have actually rotated the pinion angle upwards, and flattened out the spring in the process, which has contributed to your problem. I have run old fashioned lakewood traction bars on my 57 for nearly the 37 years I have owned my car and they work pretty well for a street car. Not perfect, but not terrible, and they are fairly inexpensive. I have no experience with the cal tracs but those that have them rave about them. However, I would be surprised to find that the fellas running the cal tracs are doing so with the type shackles you have. I would probably move your rear spring eye location higher on the lift bars, or replace the lift bars with stock spring hangers. The wedge that you are considering may give you the clearance you want, but because the spring is currently flattened out by virtue of using the lower spring eye on the lift bars, you run a higher risk of bending the leaf spring when the snubber comes into contact on an aggressive launch.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Dragsix should i be looking at new springs and stock rear shackles? I have been planning on moving the springs under the frame with a pocket kit for more tire clearance
 
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