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  1. #1

    Question High Front Stance

    The front of my 83 Spirit sits too high. Its a 4.2 DL. Were there different
    OEM springs for each of the various engine used in these chassis?
    Has anyone lowered their front by cutting the springs? How badly does it affect the camber? A drop of 1.5" would be nice.

  2. #2


    This tech tip was written by Tony Zamisch of California Classic AMC regarding front coil springs and lowering a front end.

    Front coil springs

    There is only one way to correctly lower the front end of your AMC car.
    First things first. NEVER lower the front end of a car by cutting the coil springs, or heating them up to collapse them. These methods are proven DANGER! Have you ever noticed that both ends of AMC front coil springs are FLAT wound? There is a good reason for this. It keeps the spring located correctly in the spring seat or trunnion cup depending in the year of the car. Cutting the coil removes the flat wound bottom and cocks the spring seat sideways producing undue stress on upper control arm bushings, the spring seat bushings, and ball joints. Sooner or later, the coil will also shift position and even pop out on a good bump. The load rating of the spring will also change if cut or heated. It is best to determine the ride height of the original spring by measuring the coil from top to bottom. Do one side at a time. To get a fairly accurate measurement, put a floor jack under the lower control arm and raise the car just enough to get the wheel off the ground. Remove the wheel and get the measurement. Doesn't have to be exact, but the closer, the better. Contact any good suspension shop and bring the old coils with you. They will measure the diameter of the spring "Wire". This, combined with your ride height measurement will tell them how to make your NEW coil springs. You tell them how much less ride height you want, let's say 2", and presto! You've got a new set of coils made to handle your front end weight of your car AND you have the two inch drop you wanted. Cost is usually between $150 and $200 for the new set of coils, and well worth it. Save up the money and do it right.

    Better to be safe than sorry.

    Also, whenever you lower the front end, you lose suspension travel. Having a spring made that has a "Wire" that is a few thousands bigger, will help to keep the front end from bottoming out on the lower control arms. The use of a quality shock absorber, like KYB, doesn't hurt either. And ALWAYS have your front end re-aligned whenever you change the coils. As far as the tool necessary to remove 70/up coil springs safely, I use a Coil spring compressor from "Mac" tools, Part # CC520. It compresses the spring from the inside! You have to remove the shock tower and shock absorber, and the tool is lowered in thru the top, hooks on the bottom of the coil and has a "Fork" that slips thru the coil on the outside. It has a long threaded stud that you turn from the top and compresses the spring. Super tool! Super easy, quick and safe to use.

    I have a ton of experience with AMC front coil springs from all my years of racing the Silver State Challenge, and this knowledge has really helped me on my "street" cars.

    Tony Zamisch
    California Classic AMC


  3. #3

    Default springs

    I have an 83 SX/4...Does anyone know what part number etc would it be to replace the factory springs.

    Also what I have to order for a 2 inch lift(longer) for one of my other SX/4's. Replacing the factory spec ones to finish the front lift. The back has custom lift leaf springs. But the previous owner just put some sort of clamp looking spacers...Looks dangerous to me.

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