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Old 07-08-2010, 10:38 PM   #1
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Wanted: Source of leaf springs or spring work


A while back I asked about finding me a pair of 24" wheels for the front of Millicent, to improve ground clearance. But since then I have taken a better look underneath. Holy #$%^&*! The front springs are sagging rather badly. They have almost a W shape, as opposed to an arch shape. Only around 2" clearance to the frame. So I priced new springs at a Sacramento truck suspension shop. $900. Each. Plus $600 for installation (of them both, thankfully.) $2400? Ain't gonna happen.

The shop suggested that the old springs might be reused after some serious smithing. But it would still be very expensive, by my standard.

I might be able to do the R-n-R myself. I also have a local truck mechanic who works reasonably. The worst part seems to be the springs themselves.

The springs measure 26" x 26" x 3".

Suggestions?
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Old 07-09-2010, 12:04 AM   #2
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Re: Wanted: Source of leaf springs or spring work

Oh boy! For the price of the springs you could buy another bus, swap them, then sell the the donor.

Seems like the price of a bus is just a down payment.
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Old 07-09-2010, 12:09 AM   #3
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Re: Wanted: Source of leaf springs or spring work

There was a shop in Oakland called Mor-drop that would drop axles for hot rods and straighten and re-arch springs. I know a couple years ago he was looking to sell the business and retire, but it might be worth investigating

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Old 07-09-2010, 12:40 AM   #4
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Re: Wanted: Source of leaf springs or spring work

Husky Spring out of Minnesota...they ship to every continent but one (take a guess which one that is!). These guys know their stuff. I don't know what you're going to be looking at price-wise as $900 might just be the going rate, but on the other end of this number will be John or Mike, both of whom know their stuff. Tell them Andrew told you to call.

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Old 07-09-2010, 07:25 AM   #5
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Re: Wanted: Source of leaf springs or spring work

North Side Auto Spring in Evansville, Indiana is my place, even from down in Houston. The best prices on springs, alignment, and any other suspension issues you may be having. I've known them for decades. They are next door to the trucking company I used to work for.
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Old 07-09-2010, 09:08 AM   #6
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Re: Wanted: Source of leaf springs or spring work


Great! Keep'em coming! I figure there has to be somebody out there with Chinese springs, or re-arched springs, or something for a couple hundred.

Ah... Mor-Drop.... An iconic business of my youth. I visited there in 1971, just as a kind'a pilgrimage. The man patiently explained to me what they could and could not do to various early Ford axles, and how they did it. The shop is just barely visible off the freeway. Nice nostalgia trip this morning!
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Old 07-09-2010, 09:11 AM   #7
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Re: Wanted: Source of leaf springs or spring work

That gives me the heebies if you used to work for Walts lol. Elliot if you want to give Northside a call and if I can do anything for ya in the evansville area let me know
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Old 07-09-2010, 10:34 AM   #8
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Re: Wanted: Source of leaf springs or spring work


I'm finding a variety of used springs in the online inventory of Acme Truck Wreckers in Stockton, Ca, for decent prices, but nothing that immediately appears to fits Millicent. (If I had a Freightliner FL70, I'd be hip-deep in springs!)

I've just been underneath again, and found the part number on the springs: 1446970. It is stamped on the side of one of the clamps that hold the leaves neatly bundled. There are nine leaves, plus what appears to be a little spacer pad the thickness of a leaf.

All this said, I am not in any great hurry -- primarily because I have no money to buy springs for. But this will need to be tended to eventually, so I figure I'll start looking and learning.
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Old 07-09-2010, 12:03 PM   #9
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Re: Wanted: Source of leaf springs or spring work


And I am indeed learning -- and this might be a good tip for many occations:

Part numbers. They are magical.

I telephoned the same shop that quoted me $900 each, and they were able to cross reference my part number to a comparable spring for $336 each. I'm guessing that's a Chinese clone. It's not that I exactly celebrate the end of the "American Century", or want anyone here at home to lose their job, but I'd have to drive around with blocks of wood between the axle and the frame before I could pay $1800 for a pair of springs.

Now I'm looking to beat the $336. Probably can if I order them thru my old employer, or a friendly local shop.

But other info still welcome!
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Old 07-09-2010, 01:58 PM   #10
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Re: Wanted: Source of leaf springs or spring work

Quote:
Originally Posted by letz4wheel
That gives me the heebies if you used to work for Walts lol. Elliot if you want to give Northside a call and if I can do anything for ya in the evansville area let me know
How do you know this?!?!? I hear a skeleton rattling around in a closet in the back somewhere...... Did you work for them too?
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Old 07-09-2010, 02:22 PM   #11
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Re: Wanted: Source of leaf springs or spring work

WILL A PAIR OF 93 BB TC2000 WORK ???? IF SO OUR FIRE DEPT,FLIP ONE OVER TO WORK ON TO GET PEOPLE OUT OFF IF ONE FLIP OVER,,THE SPRING ARE STILL THERE,BUT I THINK THE SHIPPING WILL KILL YOU,FROM GA 30540, MIGHT GET THE PAIR $500.00 OR LESS


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Old 07-09-2010, 02:50 PM   #12
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Re: Wanted: Source of leaf springs or spring work


Keith, we would have to find out if they are the same springs. Different year, for one thing. Then there is the fact that a TC2000 can also be a rear-engine unit. So we would have to investigate.

Worst, those springs are probably just as worn as mine! So wouldn't likely do much good.

But keep those ideas coming!
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Old 07-09-2010, 05:28 PM   #13
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Re: Wanted: Source of leaf springs or spring work

You could put air bags between the springs and chassis and have a hybrid spring/air ride suspension...
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Old 07-09-2010, 05:32 PM   #14
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Re: Wanted: Source of leaf springs or spring work


That's actually no joke -- I would love to do that! But I'm worried that the main leaf will break, and then I would go nowhere -- except maybe in the ditch.

Add-on air ride kits do exist for motor homes and such. But rather expensive.

One thing at the time. I probably ought to start saving towards those $336 springs as a matter of safety.
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Old 07-09-2010, 08:18 PM   #15
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Re: Wanted: Source of leaf springs or spring work

I'm surprised Acme can't help you. They've got tons of parts. Did you call them or just look at their website?
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Old 07-09-2010, 09:36 PM   #16
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Re: Wanted: Source of leaf springs or spring work


I only looked at their web site. They have a lot of springs listed individually, by the truck they came off. But perhaps I ought to telephone them, or even stop by. Their used springs seemed to average $125. That is more "my price range".

By the way, the "generic" part number for this spring (at Dentoni's) is 14-120. Provided the second guy had it right.
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Old 07-15-2010, 06:06 PM   #17
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Re: Wanted: Source of leaf springs or spring work

I suggest a big-truck salvage yard...you need to get the Hollander interchange number. Then again...hit one with a tape measure & your front GAWR...long as they're the right size & weight rating, who cares what they're out of?!
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Old 07-15-2010, 07:45 PM   #18
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Re: Wanted: Source of leaf springs or spring work

Naess,i check with the bus company about your bus and they said from1990- 1992 bluebird use frightliner springs on all there bus so they saided too check the dis between the eyes and the wt of the front axle and go from there..on my 94 its springs are made by alaco spring co.

if you have a light axle ,,i go with the heavy axle spring,still well fit..


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