Go Back   MustangForums.com > Ford Mustang Tech > 2005 - 2014 Mustangs > S197 Handling Section
Sign in using an external account
Register Forgot Password?
Search


S197 Handling Section For everything suspension related, inlcuding brakes, tires, and wheels.

Welcome to Mustang Forums!
Welcome to Mustang Forums.

You are currently viewing our forum as a guest, which gives you limited access to view most discussions and access our other features. By joining our community, at no cost, you will have access to post topics, communicate privately with other members (PM), respond to polls, upload content and access many other special features. Registration is free, fast and simple, so please join our community today!


Cutting Rear springs...to level the car...(not a newb at cutting) but...

Reply
 
 
 
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 11-22-2009, 09:14 PM   #1
Kona6Stang10
3rd Gear Member
 
Kona6Stang10's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Vehicle: 2010 Mustang Coupe 5sp
Location: Tennessee
Posts: 784
Question Cutting Rear springs...to level the car...(not a newb at cutting) but...

I have a question.
I had 1 coil cut out of my H&R race springs on my last mustang....it was lowered about 3 inches which is way too much for this new car...I jus want it level.....I know the options for getting the steeda rear springs BUT....I wanna know how much to cut out of the rear spring to lower the rear about 1-1.25 inches.

My last car road like a wagon but handled like a dream btw lol

D spec dampeners too!

My future setup will be
D specs
possibly some H&R sports or Eibach sportlines....


but for now I JUST WANT THE REAR LEVEL ....FOR FREE lol

SO if anyone can help I would appreciate it.

I am no newb when it comes to suspension either so I know that cutting a spring be it linear or progressive, it will slightly increase spring rate.....but we are talking about the top 1st coil area....which would be negligible as far as rate goes......so now that that is out of the way...
IS there anyone with first hand experience on how much to cut the rears to get about a 1.25 inch drop.

and while i'm at it I may as well ask about the fronts too.....1 inch for the front too.
I know for 2010 they have a progressive front spring with very wide coils so cutting the fronts will be a very precise deed.

thanks guys!
Zach~
This ad is not displayed to registered or logged-in members.
Register your free account today and become a member on Mustang Forums!
__________________

8000k HID's
Dual GT Mufflers and Custom H
GT500 Rear Lower Valence
Fog lights
Eibach Pro-Kit
18x10 Black FR500's at all four corners:
275/40/18 F & 285/40/18 R
Kona6Stang10 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-23-2009, 04:06 AM   #2
GT Bob
3rd Gear Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Vehicle: 2007 GT
Location: Pa
Posts: 763
Default

If you know about suspension, then you'll know why I say this:

"friends don't let friends cut coil springs."
__________________
"Vera" '07 GT, 3.55's, MGW Shifter, BBK Shorties, GTA's, Steeda UDP, ProFab CAI #6, Summit Racing COP's,FRPP LCA's, Edlebrock PHB,UCA and STB, Steeda PHB brace, GT500 18x9.5 285/40/18's

Hang up and Drive.
GT Bob is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-23-2009, 06:20 AM   #3
jscotty
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Vehicle: 1994 Ford Mustang GT
Location: Maryland
Posts: 27
Default

Quote:
"friends don't let friends cut coil springs."
Ditto. You would probably be better served by using spring clamps. They bolt on and the job takes less than 20 minutes to do. That way you don't completely compromise the integrity of the springs and if you get the height wrong, the clamps can be adjusted.
jscotty is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-23-2009, 08:06 AM   #4
Doogie65
4th Gear Member
 
Doogie65's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Vehicle: 07 GT Alloy vert
Location: WI
Posts: 1,896
Default

+1 on not cutting the springs.

Why not just do it right and buy some springs that drop the rear about an inch like Roush or Vogtland.
__________________
E-force 455RWHP/433RWTQ, 3.5 in. pulley, GT500 pumps, CDC vert bar & Classic Chin, Roush billet grill, GTAs, Saleen Heritage rear fascia, Steeda Billet LCAs, CHE anti-squat, MGW shifter, A47 mirrors, Aeroforce gauges, Bullitt steering wheel, Foose hood, PH DS, Bullitt suspension, Brembos


Doogie65 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-23-2009, 02:36 PM   #5
Norm Peterson
6th Gear Member
 
Norm Peterson's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Vehicle: 2008 GT Premium
Location: state of confusion
Posts: 6,953
Default

Wouldn't dropping the rear by 1" or more make the car look like it was squatting or has sagging rear springs when it was just standing still? Sorry, but I fail to see the appeal in possibly ending up with a 1950's hot-rod Mercury tail-dragger look.

Which body line are you using for reference?


Cutting springs is certainly do-able if you know what's involved (and it's not too hard to get a close estimate for how much to cut the rears if you think on it a bit). But you need to make sure that the shortened springs will stay in the spring seats and not fall out under any circumstances. A few lb/in difference in rate from one side to the other isn't particularly critical in most cases - and if you were racing at a level where it was critical I'd guess you'd have the budget to get coilovers, a spring checker, and a set of wheel scales.

I haven't looked at my rear springs since I took a few suspension linkage measurements, so I can't really tell you exactly where/how much.


Norm
__________________
'08 GT coupe, 5M, wheels, tires, pads, fluid, a few suspension mods . . . and still not lowered

'10 Legacy 2.5GT, 6M (hers) . . . '01 Maxima 20AE, 5M (spare, winter driver)

Last edited by Norm Peterson; 11-23-2009 at 02:40 PM.
Norm Peterson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-23-2009, 04:05 PM   #6
Vapour Trails
3rd Gear Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location:
Posts: 530
Default

You know a set of springs isn't really that much money, and there's no guess work involved.
__________________
2006 Mustang GT Vista Blue, Black Leather
Whipple @ 11 psi - 11.69 @ 122.6 mph Stock Longblock, Stock TR3650, Stock Clutch, 3.55s
Mostly Steeda Suspension, Tokico D-specs
Vapour Trails is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-23-2009, 04:11 PM   #7
GlassVapor
2nd Gear Member
 
GlassVapor's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Vehicle: 09 GT
Location: Northern Illinois
Posts: 303
Default

I'd be happy to sell you my stockers to practice on
GlassVapor is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-23-2009, 05:21 PM   #8
Kona6Stang10
3rd Gear Member
 
Kona6Stang10's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Vehicle: 2010 Mustang Coupe 5sp
Location: Tennessee
Posts: 784
Default

ok guys ....I know that cutting springs isn't exactly the most practiced way of lowering ....but i promise the integrity of the spring is negligibly affected when cutting 1 or less coils.

I know the springs aren't that expensive .....I just have school and food that come first lol
anyone have first hand experience with s197 cutting?

btw I have had cut coils on 3 separate setups in my last car.....soooo I know what i'm getting myself into.


and no the car would not look as if it were squating....the rear sits higher than the front
__________________

8000k HID's
Dual GT Mufflers and Custom H
GT500 Rear Lower Valence
Fog lights
Eibach Pro-Kit
18x10 Black FR500's at all four corners:
275/40/18 F & 285/40/18 R
Kona6Stang10 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-23-2009, 06:52 PM   #9
Norm Peterson
6th Gear Member
 
Norm Peterson's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Vehicle: 2008 GT Premium
Location: state of confusion
Posts: 6,953
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kona6Stang10 View Post
and no the car would not look as if it were squating....the rear sits higher than the front
I'd still like to know what body line you're referencing this to.

The other possibility is that people are unconsciously wanting to make these cars look even more like their 1960's ancestors (which are actually a bit low in the rear, particularly the coupes).


This seems to be a very common question, and I really am curious to find out exactly what is making so many people think the rear sits enough higher relative to the front to make such a big deal out of. It has to be some sort of visual reference or similar comparison.

It's my own curiosity here, nothing more. This thread just happened to be the one where I finally got around to asking questions about it.


Norm
__________________
'08 GT coupe, 5M, wheels, tires, pads, fluid, a few suspension mods . . . and still not lowered

'10 Legacy 2.5GT, 6M (hers) . . . '01 Maxima 20AE, 5M (spare, winter driver)
Norm Peterson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-23-2009, 07:25 PM   #10
Kona6Stang10
3rd Gear Member
 
Kona6Stang10's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Vehicle: 2010 Mustang Coupe 5sp
Location: Tennessee
Posts: 784
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Norm Peterson View Post
I'd still like to know what body line you're referencing this to.

The other possibility is that people are unconsciously wanting to make these cars look even more like their 1960's ancestors (which are actually a bit low in the rear, particularly the coupes).


This seems to be a very common question, and I really am curious to find out exactly what is making so many people think the rear sits enough higher relative to the front to make such a big deal out of. It has to be some sort of visual reference or similar comparison.

It's my own curiosity here, nothing more. This thread just happened to be the one where I finally got around to asking questions about it.


Norm
the main issue here is the amount of wheel gap relative to the front wheel gap.....I can fit my entire fist and one finger in the rear gap of the wheel well ....whereas in the front I can fit about 3 fingers.

It's a pet peeve of mine....if any of you have seen my last car I hate wheel gap

My last car had 1 finger gap in the rear and I couldn't even manage to squeeze my little finger into the front...
Rolled fenders of course

I'll post pics!
__________________

8000k HID's
Dual GT Mufflers and Custom H
GT500 Rear Lower Valence
Fog lights
Eibach Pro-Kit
18x10 Black FR500's at all four corners:
275/40/18 F & 285/40/18 R
Kona6Stang10 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-23-2009, 07:59 PM   #11
Norm Peterson
6th Gear Member
 
Norm Peterson's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Vehicle: 2008 GT Premium
Location: state of confusion
Posts: 6,953
Default

The it must be due to production tolerances or variations in spring free length and rate.

I just stepped outside and measured less than about 1/4" difference in the front and rear fender heights on my '08 GT, looking straight-on in side view (and the front was the larger measurement!). Front tires might stand a tiny bit taller than the rears due to them being inflated 3 or 4 psi higher, so I guess my "gaps" are pretty close to even.


Norm
__________________
'08 GT coupe, 5M, wheels, tires, pads, fluid, a few suspension mods . . . and still not lowered

'10 Legacy 2.5GT, 6M (hers) . . . '01 Maxima 20AE, 5M (spare, winter driver)
Norm Peterson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-24-2009, 10:39 AM   #12
biznazion
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location:
Posts: 11
Default

I rode around for a year on cut rear springs. I didn't like the look of the rear fender/wheel gap so I purchased a set of take-offs on ebay and removed exactly one coil from the top of the rear springs. This leveled out my car nicely but I was not happy with the "feel". It removed most of the wheel hop, but didn't feel great in the corners. After a year or so I put on steeda ultralites and d-specs front and rear, which I like much better. What I found when I swapped out all the springs was that the front of my car was lower than most to start with and the steeda springs only netted my a 1/4" drop from where I started in the front. The rear dropped about 1.25" from stock or about 1/4" more than with the cut rear springs. So it ended up "looking" just about the same, but feels much better when driving. This is probably due more to the d-specs than the steeda springs, but either way I'm happy. If I was to do it again - I'd do springs and shocks together, but if $$$ are an issue, the I'd get the springs I want and just replace the rears (provided the drop is mild) until new dampers are affordable, then swap in the front springs and dampers together. The way the front springs are clocked, you have to remove entire coils if you are cutting - so I don't recommend messing with the front springs at all.
biznazion is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-24-2009, 11:04 AM   #13
Ken04
2nd Gear Member
 
Ken04's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Vehicle: 2006 V6 pony,2005 GT
Location: Washington
Posts: 419
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kona6Stang10 View Post
the main issue here is the amount of wheel gap relative to the front wheel gap.....I can fit my entire fist and one finger in the rear gap of the wheel well ....whereas in the front I can fit about 3 fingers.

It's a pet peeve of mine....if any of you have seen my last car I hate wheel gap

My last car had 1 finger gap in the rear and I couldn't even manage to squeeze my little finger into the front...
Rolled fenders of course

I'll post pics!
the S197's do sit *** high, so cut away. Guys have been cutting springs since springs were invented, so cut yours. Geez what's the worst that could happen ? Some people are way too paranoid. Just pull them out and hack away, if you hate it you can buy stock springs for $20. I'm sure you know not to use a torch and heat the temper away, but other than that, post pictures and impressions when you're done.
__________________
hers; SMR #0951 06 V6 Pony, manual, IUP, BMR springs, adj track bar, center fog grill, louvers, GT wheels, leather int, brakes. True duals. Tri-bar grill emblem. GT500 splitter, FIA/Shelby stripes, smoked signals. FMC hood scoop.

mine; BMC #12073 black on black leather 05 GT. Manual, old school GT badge, tri bar fender emblems, Shaker 1000, Shelby FIA stripes, Steeda stingers, Pro 5.0 shifter, Stangsuspension, J&M lcas, adj uca and track bar. JLT cai and Predator tune.
Ken04 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-24-2009, 03:29 PM   #14
socalwrench
4th Gear Member
 
socalwrench's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Vehicle: 2008 Mustang V8
Location: CA
Posts: 1,291
Default

Cutting the springs is not a big deal, but there some guidelines.

1) NEVER use a torch or use any kind of heat to cut the metal- this changes the characteristics of the metal and it will eventually fail (sag or break). Use a cut-off wheel or grinder with a cutting disc, and keep it cool. If it begins to turn orange, stop and resume soon after.

2) Be sure that the spring will fit back into (or onto) the perch after it's cut. Some springs have pigtail type ends that cannot be removed.

3) Measure before cutting. This goes without saying, but I've talked to a few guys that just hack away and end up with poor results. Remember, when you are measuring a spring there's a huge difference between the installed height and the free height. As the first name implies, the installed height is with the weight of the car (per corner) that actually compresses the spring.

4) Cutting a spring will stiff it (raising the spring rate). This is because you are removing the coils which are responsible for bending. The less coils there are, the higher the rate goes. This rules applies to active coils, not the flat or end ones. You must keep this in consideration since the installed height of the spring will change- as it will not compress as much from the weight of the car (again, per corner).

5) Do your math before making the cuts. Figure out how much lower you want the car. Determine how much the spring compresses due to weight, and use that weight to determine how much your newly cut spring will compress (remember, it will be less). This can be tricky since you're going to be cutting the spring at it's free height. This is where most people make a mistake, since cutting a spring at it's free height will not be where it stays when it's installed.

Best of luck!

Two other things to note when altering springs: the spring rate increases when reducing the outer diameter, or increasing the wire diameter.
__________________
Owner/Operator: GRH Performance
socalwrench is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-24-2009, 08:06 PM   #15
jscotty
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Vehicle: 1994 Ford Mustang GT
Location: Maryland
Posts: 27
Default

Not to beat a dead horse with my suggestion but the clamps will probably help you better determine exactly where to make the cut if you clamped the springs exactly where you want the height. Then you can measure the difference.
jscotty is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-25-2009, 09:48 AM   #16
socalwrench
4th Gear Member
 
socalwrench's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Vehicle: 2008 Mustang V8
Location: CA
Posts: 1,291
Default

While clamping, or marking, the location would get you close- it still doesn't take into account that the spring will become stiffer. Therefore, it will compress less than the original, and the car will not sit at the marked location.

Anyway, I think everything has been said about cutting springs.
__________________
Owner/Operator: GRH Performance
socalwrench is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-26-2009, 08:51 AM   #17
PNYXPRESS
5th Gear Member
 
PNYXPRESS's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Vehicle: early 2000, 1991, 2008
Location: Clermont, FL
Posts: 2,582
Default

I cut my springs in the new edge with no problem, just used a cutoff wheel and took my time to make sure everything was measured correctly. But what I did was bought a complete set of take off first, that way if I did mess something up I wasnt without the veh until I could get new springs.
__________________

1991 2.3L I4
1996 3.8L V6
2000 3.8L V6
2008 4.6L V8
PNYXPRESS is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-27-2009, 07:48 AM   #18
Norm Peterson
6th Gear Member
 
Norm Peterson's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Vehicle: 2008 GT Premium
Location: state of confusion
Posts: 6,953
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ken04 View Post
Guys have been cutting springs since springs were invented, so cut yours. Geez what's the worst that could happen ? Some people are way too paranoid. Just pull them out and hack away,
Not paranoid, just careful with a great deal of respect for the rest of what goes into making a good spring. Some of it is from an engineering point of view and some is from direct experience.

(1) You cut too short and a spring falls out on your test drive (you do take careful test drives after performing chassis mods ???)

(2) The end configuration after cutting does not fit the vehicle's spring seats. Think pigtail-end springs and springs that need to be cut in specific increments (like in full coils). Ride height more than likely still won't be 'right', corner weights will be off, the spring's axis will try to bow out of straight because the cut end doesn't want to sit flat any more (this increases the likelihood that it might pop out).

(3) You cut or otherwise hot-work the spring using poor technique, add even more carbon to the steel composition, and it fractures. If you'd ever had to drive a car knowing that it had a broken spring and the situations that could easily cause the pieces to fall off the car . . . never mind the details regarding how I might know this.


You asked . . .


Norm
__________________
'08 GT coupe, 5M, wheels, tires, pads, fluid, a few suspension mods . . . and still not lowered

'10 Legacy 2.5GT, 6M (hers) . . . '01 Maxima 20AE, 5M (spare, winter driver)

Last edited by Norm Peterson; 11-27-2009 at 07:50 AM.
Norm Peterson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-28-2009, 10:42 AM   #19
Rubrignitz
5th Gear Member
 
Rubrignitz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Vehicle: 2007 Mustang GT Coupe
Location: TX
Posts: 4,897
Default

I just purchased a set of Steeda ultralite springs from Sam to use while I figure out how to get my Steeda comp springs front ride height level with the rear. As it sits now, the front is 1/2'' higher than the rear! Not sure if it's my combination of mods but it seems even more offset now with the X5 balljoints and new control arms.

I was seriously considering lopping off ~1/4 of a coil on the steeda comp fronts which should be just enough to level the ride height. Being a tangential-end spring it wouldn't be difficult to do.

I love the springs but hate the higher front end. I've just lived with it since the springs are so nice but have finally decided to either swap springs or fix the steeda comps. If I like the ultralites I'll keep them, if not I'll be trimming these comps...
__________________
2007 Alloy GT Coupe - MGW shifter/C&L Racer CAI/JBA LT headers/SLP Powerflo/Steeda HD motor mounts/Coast 17# driveshaft/Richmond 3.89s/Steeda Ultralite 18x9.5/275 40 Nitto NT05/Autometer DPSS Lvl 2 shiftlight, gauges. Steeda Sport Springs/FRPP STB/GT500 front CAs with X5 balljoints/Steeda bumpsteer kit/Steeda Watts Link/Koni Sports/Steeda HD strut plates/BMR relocation brackets/Hotchkis swaybars/Steeda CA bushing kit/Steeda rear coilover adjusters.
Rubrignitz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-21-2012, 05:29 PM   #20
Barrybobvt
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Vehicle: 2005 Ford Mustang
Location: VT
Posts: 3
Default How to Measure Where to Cut?

I wanted to revive this thread because I am going to cut my springs on my 2005 convertible to lower the rear by 1". Folks who have done this say to remove one full coil.

Two questions:

1) Exactly how do I measure one full coil? Just cut the underneath where the end is?

2) How do I make sure the newly cut end sits right, and not at an angle? Some have suggested turning the spring upside down because this put the newly cut end in a more stable position.

Thanks,

BL
Barrybobvt is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-21-2012, 05:29 PM
MustangForums
Ford Mustang




Paid Advertisement

 
 
 
Reply

Tags
2008, body, car, coil, cut, cutting, fox, hr, lower, mustang, race, rear, sport, springs, steeda

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

Forum Jump

Advertising

Featured Sponsors
Vendor Directory
New Sponsors
All times are GMT -5. The time now is 01:42 AM.

© Internet Brands, Inc.


This forum is owned and operated by Internet Brands, Inc., a Delaware corporation. It is not authorized or endorsed by the Ford Motor Company and is not affiliated with the Ford Motor Company or its related companies in any way. Ford® is a registered trademark of the Ford Motor Company
Emails Backup