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Suspension Tech General discussion of suspension for the Ford Ranger.

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  #1  
Old 05-07-2005
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Cut Springs.

In a couple of weeks, I will be putting in the Upper and Lower Control arms for my truck. Since I already have the 2/3 DJM lowering kit in it, I have noticed, since I have the 4cyl., that I dont get the full 2" drop in the front (so it seems).

Now, my question is, if i cut 1 coil off of each spring, would this hurt anything? I notice alot of 4cyl. people use the belltech 3" drop coils and i figure this would be about the same. I dont want to have to do double the work, so i want to get it right the first time, but I am not 100% sure this is right.

Anyone know? Cut it or leave it?
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  #2  
Old 05-07-2005
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Do not cut the spring. Changes the rate too much and you don't get the sprint to sit in the pocket properly, which stresses it and can cause breakage. Cutting coils is considered a big no-no and those that do it are being foolish. It may never be a problem, but you'll never know until you suddenly lose control fo the vehicle during a turn.
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  #3  
Old 05-07-2005
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what ever you do do not cut your springs! the coil boots are made especially for the springs that you have in there and if you cut it it wont fit correctly and could possibly cause an accident...
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  #4  
Old 05-07-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by n3elz
Do not cut the spring. Changes the rate too much and you don't get the sprint to sit in the pocket properly, which stresses it and can cause breakage. Cutting coils is considered a big no-no and those that do it are being foolish. It may never be a problem, but you'll never know until you suddenly lose control fo the vehicle during a turn.
Have you ever cut coils before? If you havent or had no experience with it, you have no voice to speak. If you do it right you will not have a problem, with that said do not do it unless you know how to properly use a grinder and feel confident that you can do it. It is OK to cut the coils.
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  #5  
Old 05-07-2005
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Also I would never cut the spring for more than a 2inch drop maximum. More than that will be hard to get an aligment and never cut an already dropped spring, only cut stock springs.
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  #6  
Old 05-07-2005
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Yea, I was about to say you can cut your springs but only if you know what you are doing or take it to someone who does and have the exact same amount cut from both springs of course this is another one of those "dangerous mods" that may be unsafe.
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  #7  
Old 05-07-2005
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I've always heard it's better to heat the coil. That's what everyone does with their bagged S-10's around here. A few Rangers, too.
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  #8  
Old 05-07-2005
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Like N3els said cutting coils is foolish. Just spend the money and do a correct drop.

We cut the springs on my buddies S-10, wow big mistake. His ride was terrible. He later replaced them with the same drop amount drop coils. They had a much better response rate then the altered stock coils. The coils arent made to be chopped down, or altered by any means. Like others said too, the coils wont fit flush in your cups and can easily tear apart your cut sleeves. Dont be cheap and do it right.

Same thing happened when I did my hanger flip. Everyone said, 'Oh its fine go and do it I have it on my truck.' Did it, and had terrible driveline problems and an amazingly high pinion angle problem. Thats why I spent the money and got the belltech drop leafs. No reason to be cheap when they make something for it. This is my vehicle, what gets me from place to place. Might as well be safe instead of sorry.
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  #9  
Old 05-07-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 3906brad
In a couple of weeks, I will be putting in the Upper and Lower Control arms for my truck. Since I already have the 2/3 DJM lowering kit in it, I have noticed, since I have the 4cyl., that I dont get the full 2" drop in the front (so it seems).

Now, my question is, if i cut 1 coil off of each spring, would this hurt anything? I notice alot of 4cyl. people use the belltech 3" drop coils and i figure this would be about the same. I dont want to have to do double the work, so i want to get it right the first time, but I am not 100% sure this is right.

Anyone know? Cut it or leave it?
Give it awhile...it take a little bit for the springs to fully settle.
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  #10  
Old 05-07-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Funeral98
I've always heard it's better to heat the coil. That's what everyone does with their bagged S-10's around here. A few Rangers, too.
Do not heat the coill!

how do they have springs and bags?
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  #11  
Old 05-07-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Funeral98
I've always heard it's better to heat the coil. That's what everyone does with their bagged S-10's around here. A few Rangers, too.

NOOOOO, once you heat them they are trash. They will loose their stiffness, and contunie to drop. Don't cut them either. Just do it right the first time.
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  #12  
Old 05-07-2005
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Well, I have cut alot of springs for Hondas and such. I was going to measure the length of the coil up to where i was going to decide to cut and do it on both. I wasnt sure how it would effect a truck.

I probably wont cut now, too many against it. Thanks for the info. I was just wanting to make sure i got m full 4" drop in front, but if i have to settle for a 3/4, i guess its ok. Really, the whole reason I got the upper and lower control arms was because the front doesnt have very much travel with stock arms and lowered springs. I hit the bump stops alot.
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  #13  
Old 05-07-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 3906brad
Well, I have cut alot of springs for Hondas and such. I was going to measure the length of the coil up to where i was going to decide to cut and do it on both. I wasnt sure how it would effect a truck.

I probably wont cut now, too many against it. Thanks for the info. I was just wanting to make sure i got m full 4" drop in front, but if i have to settle for a 3/4, i guess its ok. Really, the whole reason I got the upper and lower control arms was because the front doesnt have very much travel with stock arms and lowered springs. I hit the bump stops alot.

Most people end up with more than a drop than they anticipated, dont worry.
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  #14  
Old 05-07-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ride n'low
Have you ever cut coils before? If you havent or had no experience with it, you have no voice to speak. If you do it right you will not have a problem, with that said do not do it unless you know how to properly use a grinder and feel confident that you can do it. It is OK to cut the coils.

actually i would give a little bit of respect to Mr. griggs.. im pretty sure he knows quite a bit more then you do about suspension
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  #15  
Old 05-07-2005
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he probably knows the most about lifted suspension on the board. and reffering to cut coils i think he is basing his opinion of common sense. however, you can't give a very valid point if you have neither done it seen the long term effects. thats why i asked him if he has done it before.
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  #16  
Old 05-07-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 92 Ranger
what ever you do do not cut your springs! the coil boots are made especially for the springs that you have in there and if you cut it it wont fit correctly and could possibly cause an accident...


i dont know what year ranger you are talking about but on the 98+ A arm suspension, yes the lower control is made to have the end of the coil sit in a "pocket" but the top of the coil just sits up in a cup, and doesnt have any pocket for the end of the coil, so cutting the coil doesnt affect it like that
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  #17  
Old 05-07-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BaggedEdge
Yea, I was about to say you can cut your springs but only if you know what you are doing or take it to someone who does and have the exact same amount cut from both springs of course this is another one of those "dangerous mods" that may be unsafe.

considering cutting coils is how minitruckin started back in the day, i dont see how its so "dangerous", its only dangerous when people start cutting and not have any idea what they are doing
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  #18  
Old 05-07-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Funeral98
I've always heard it's better to heat the coil. That's what everyone does with their bagged S-10's around here. A few Rangers, too.

heating is bad for a coil, its not recomend by anyone, and if you do that, you risk ruining the coil and a dangerous ride
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  #19  
Old 05-07-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 3906brad
Well, I have cut alot of springs for Hondas and such. I was going to measure the length of the coil up to where i was going to decide to cut and do it on both. I wasnt sure how it would effect a truck.

I probably wont cut now, too many against it. Thanks for the info. I was just wanting to make sure i got m full 4" drop in front, but if i have to settle for a 3/4, i guess its ok. Really, the whole reason I got the upper and lower control arms was because the front doesnt have very much travel with stock arms and lowered springs. I hit the bump stops alot.

if you cut your coil, start with 1/2 a coil first and then 3/4 of a coil after that, remember coils take a week or 2 to settle, so you might get more of a drop out of them...

also what engine do you have? most companies rate the drop of the coil based on a 4.0 v6 since they are heavier

also, you could replace the bumpstops with lower profile ones to allow more travel
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  #20  
Old 05-07-2005
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No, for sure I haven't done any lowering. But I don't just play an engineer on television, I AM one, and springs are funny things metallurgically.

They are suprisingly "brittle" for something so flexible. They have very sophisticated parameters which must be balanced to make them work correctly.

In addition, coil springs usually have ends that are wound to provide a flat base for weight distribution, which a cut coil won't have. This loads both the coil bucket and the spring in potentially undesirable ways and can lead to metal fatigue and failure.

Heating them destroys the tempering which binds the grains and layers in the metal in just the way that makes it a spring. Have you heard of stress relieving welded metals and all by heating? This breaks the "memory" of their old position that is sort of "stored" in their molecular structure, so that there are no static stresses which can cause the resulting weld or structure to fail. Springs have a "memory" also in their molecular and grain structure which is partially destroyed by heating. This leads less of the metal to have to take up more of the stress, leading to a softer spring. It also leads to premature fatigue and lessening of spring rate in a shorter time.

So, although the methods of cutting and heating do work to acheive the result, they have undesirable and UNSEEN side effects which can bite you later on.

I will tell you I would be less worried about it in a light *** Honda than I am in a heavy Ranger. Light unibody cars are a whole different world than a body-on-frame truck in terms of weight and stress distribution.

Anyway, that's my .02 -- make of it what you will. Everybody makes their own decision. I'm just trying to explain that many of the so-called "experts" in spring cutting and heating really don't know what they are talking about. All they know is it worked for them for what they wanted to do at the time and they really don't know what they ACTUALLY did when they performed their "surgery". No knowledge of the underlying structures or what really "makes" a spring. Otherwise, it's unlikely they would have bothered.
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  #21  
Old 05-07-2005
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[QUOTE=n3elz]No, for sure I haven't done any lowering. But I don't just play an engineer on television, I AM one, and springs are funny things metallurgically.
QUOTE]



Im no engineer but i did stay at a holiday Inn express last night


sry, had to say it


I have to agress with n3elz on this one, in my mass experience in engineering (one year of college, about 2 years ago) hes right. The springs were designed for a purpose and that use only.


however, there has been people out there that has done this with sucess, you jsut need to remember to NOT heat up the coil as much as possible, to much heat to it and you mess with the spring rate


bascially, doing something like this, is jsut like any other mod, its taking that factory vechicle (that was designed that way) and changing it. people add coil spacers, bigger coils, body lifts, suspesion lifts, leafs from other trucks, smaller coils, cut coils, replacement arms, flip kits, c-notches...

All of these mess with the orignal design and all run risks. If there was a 100 percent garentie (sp?), then they would come that way from factory...

and lets end the your wrong, no your wrong posts, you can put in your 2cents, but dont bash on other people's knowedgle. If you have an engineering background and know alittle about suspension, i would rather listen to you then someone that bagged their truck at a shop.


I myself, have thought about cutting coils, the front on my 99 is jsut alittle to high compared to the back, and getting new coils or lowering arms will jsut lower the front more then i want, so i think cutting coils are the way to go, but that doesnt mean everyone should follow me, they need to decide for themselves
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  #22  
Old 05-07-2005
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yeah, i think i was thinking more about my suspension and that kindof stuff, but i dont think that the fact that john hasnt actually done it makes much of a difference.. after reading what john has said and knowing his vass (spelling?) knowlege of our suspensions i think he would know and i would trust his word over many people who have done it!
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  #23  
Old 05-07-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gay-briel
remember coils take a week or 2 to settle, so you might get more of a drop out of them...
Coils have been in my truck now for almost 2 months. I think I have already got as much drop out of them as I can.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gay-briel
also what engine do you have? most companies rate the drop of the coil based on a 4.0 v6 since they are heavier
I have the 4cyl.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gay-briel
also, you could replace the bumpstops with lower profile ones to allow more travel
I have already replaced them with a lower profile bump stop. They still hit. Not all the time, but I can feel it when they do.


Quote:
Originally Posted by n3elz
*that huge paragraph*
That is definately something i didnt know and fortifies my decision to not cut the springs. I will live with the drop that i get out of the truck. If I would have used Control Arms in the first place, I would have been happy with the 2/3 drop.

Thanks for all the help, guys.
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  #24  
Old 05-07-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gay-briel
considering cutting coils is how minitruckin started back in the day, i dont see how its so "dangerous", its only dangerous when people start cutting and not have any idea what they are doing

I wasen't saying it was dangerous it's just that certain ppl have been running around talkin about how certain lowering processes are dangerous so I was playing that off.
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  #25  
Old 05-08-2005
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Put a 4.0SOHC and you'll get the full drop :)
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