Jason Coupe DeVille Resto - New Spare Going In

I've had my worn original type spare in my 64 Coupe DeVille forever, but with the new (well unused and only 5 year old) spare from the last parts car this was a simple upgrade and a perfect example if why I got into the parts car side of things.

 

Here are a few pictures of the new spare and the original:

 

 

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Comment by Jason Edge on September 8, 2013 at 4:37pm

Just fyi..this is one reason I generally don't like to sell used coil springs unless someone is making a low rider and they clearly understand they will sit lower than new springs.   We also use them as yard art!

 

Comment by Jason Edge on September 8, 2013 at 4:33pm

Jeff,

Suspension standing height against factory specs is easy to check per instructions on page 4-15 in the 1964 Cadillac Shop manual.  For the front you measure from front rear lower control arm flange up to the center of the hole in the frame as seen in the shop manual illustration.  For my 1964 CDV the proper height would be 7 3/8" to 8 1/4".  Mine is almost exactly at 8" which is well within the correct tolerance.  I do have the HD springs which may push it up a tad.

I believe people have a tendency to have selective memory or perhaps believe what the want to be true for the past, but these cars were not low riders.  A coil spring with over a thousand pounds on it for 50 year is going to compress. Metal becomes fatigued and even thought these are stout coil springs they will compress.

Keep in mind that there were many variations on the springs depending on whether or body style and if you had regular or HD springs.  For 1964 you had 7 different springs (4 regular and 3 HD, and 5 on the rear (3 regular and 2 HD) and 2 variations of leaf springs on the commercial chassis leaf springs.  It would be hard to compare say new HD springs like I have on my 64 CDV vs tired old regular or HD springs but can make this observation.  You can take a new HD spring and sit next to a comparable regular spring, both on level ground and uncompressed, and the HD spring  will sit or so lower than the tired old regular spring but when you go to install in the car will force the car up to the proper height. When I first ordered my CDV HD springs from Kanter I thought I had royally messed up when I compared the two, but once I installed the spring I was greatly relieved.

For reference the springs are listed on page 4-32 and 4-33 in the 1964 Cadillac Shop manual.

Here are scans from that page:

 

Comment by Jeff Kinzler on September 8, 2013 at 3:28pm

OK Jason I'm back.

Your car as usual is beautiful and outstanding -especially for a car that was not found with 5k original miles.

I have an observation to make about suspension height, and the look of tires and wheels.

I was a young fellow of 10 or eleven when these cars were new, but I was paying astute attention to every new Cadillac I saw. Several neighbors had new 64's on my block. One neighbor got a gold '64 Eldorado with tan top and interior, which gave rise to my fixation on that car. 

However,  I remember that when these cars were new, they seemed to sit lower on the tires than your car and others I have seen with replacement springs. I would say about 1 to 1-1/4 inches lower.

So here's a technical question.  Being that you have so many original parts around, have you ever done a comparison of the original vs. replacement spring?  Does anyone have a specification for the original spring to compare to the new?  Has anyone found NOS springs to compare with the replacements? I would be very curious  to see why these cars look to me like they are sitting too high over the tires compared to how I remember them.

Congrats on the well deserved recognition. Keep up the good work!

Jeff Kinzler

Comment by Jason Edge on September 8, 2013 at 11:59am

Chris, the grey isn't an exact match of the original dove grey but close enough and of course hidden unless I have to pull it out and use it.  I noticed a film of dirt on the outside tread of the spare and have wiped it down and rally pops now! I just love easy win wins like this....and the cool think this tire is the exact same tire I'm running on the car so if I did have a blow out or have to replace one of my driving tires I've got the perfect replacement. While not the ground hugging performance of the radials (another topic..LOL), I've been very pleased with the B.F. Goodrich Slivertown Bias Ply.  With the 8.20 x 15 and 1" whitewall it gives the car the correct height stance and to me just looks so much better than the short fat radials...not to mention they want fit in the overhead storage . 

Now, if I ever get to my next 63/64 Caddy, it will probably will be a custom job and will trick it out with probably every modern appliance available.  While I'm gradually returning everything on my 64 CDV to stock or something original for that year (other than pertronix ignition and carb), I'll nurture my customization cravings on the next project car! LOL 

Sorry to get off on a tangent. Here's a picture of my CDV front tire and wheel cover that I think looks much, much better than those low rider radials and especially the spoke and rim tires that some run...at least for the look I'm going after with my CDV:

Comment by Russ Austin on September 8, 2013 at 11:21am

That looks good, slid into the original storage area. The radials are too fat for that.

Comment by Chris Codd on September 8, 2013 at 11:04am

Looks like a great upgrade. The rim looks excellent with the new paint. Thankfully my hubcaps cover my rusty rims, but I'll repaint them one day :D 

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