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Discussion Starter #1
A few of things...

- How easy is it to install some $200 lowering springs (about 3cm lower) on a 97 lantra sedan for 2 people who have a lot of time but haven't done it before, and what tools would be NEEDED?

- Is it bad to use different springs on the stock struts? Can it cause excess wear/damage?

- Has anyone done this or similar, how did it turn out, and what springs did you use and where did you get them?
 

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You will need,

Jack, Jackstands.
Spring compressor.
Socket Wrench.
Braker Bar.
17 mm socket
14 mm socket
12 mm socket
12 mm wrench.
Vice grips.
Pliers.

The 17 will remove you wheels and the lower bolts on your struts, and the top nut on the strut.
The 14 will remove the anit-roll bar and the brake lines and the nuts for the top of the front strut.
The 12 is for the bolts holding for top of the rear struts.

First, after taking off the wheels, loosen the retaining nuts on the top of the struts.
FRONT: There are three 14mm nuts holding on the strut in the top, as well as a 14 (or 12, not sure) holding on the brake lines to the strut. After that, loosen the four 17mm bolts (2 each side) on the strut on the bottom. Then, slide the strut down and out of the car.
BACK: There are three 12mm nuts holding the strut on the back. These are located under the rear cover in front of the speakers. You may have to pull the backseat forward to get access tot he bolts. These are tricky, and are located in a tight spot. After that, four (2 on each side) 17mm bolts holding the strut to the rear supension. Also remove the anti-roll bar with the 14mm socket. The nut might just spin the bolt, use the vice grips to hold the bolt and then loosen the nut. To remove the brake line, pull the metal tab out with the pliers, a flat head screw driver might be used as well. Now they're out!

To remove the spring, tighten both sides of the spring compressor to the spring, the run the center bolt down untill teh srping compresses. Then remove the 17mm nut on the top of teh strut under the dust cap. Make sure to grab the spacer! Then pull the strut apart. You lowering springs might be small enough to not use the spring compressor to put them back in.

Then, repeat everything backwards to put them back in. The rear struts are difficult, owing to the small space.

New struts would be a very good idea, but are not needed. A KYB GR-2 would be a very nice strut to get.

Thats about it i think, click the link in my sig, and you can see what one looks like with coils! (mind you, its gotten lower since the pics.)

GOOD LUCK!!! ;)
 

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Discussion Starter #3
thanks for the info!

the only reason i was considering this is because it should only cost me around $200, so Im not looking at buying new struts. Its definitely OK for the struts just to put new springs on????

And those photos in ur sig - how low is that? it looks like 2 inches or so?

And I thought u only needed a spring compressor if u wanted to get the stock springs back on at a later date?
 

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You need the compressor to put them back in too.

Thats about a 3 inch drop in the front, and 2.5 in the back. I have no fenderwells, and i still rub:dead: but thats ok. I have 195 tires btw, so they are not little.

Your struts should hold up to a 2 inch drop, but look for KYB's for the future. My factory ones lasted less than one hour!!!:lol: Most lowering springs drop you 1.3-1.7. So your good.

Me thinks that write up was good... if i only had pics, this would be a sticky. but! pwease anyways?! :lol:
 

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Discussion Starter #5
what do u mean ur factory ones only lasted an hour?? :dead: i dont wanna do this if its gonna kill my struts!!

im looking at a 30mm drop, just over an inch.
 

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Well, they were made in 1997, and they lasted this long, and i dropped them waaaaaay down. The backs maxed out, and so did the fronts on bumps. And they blew oil everywhere. This is cause I am stupid, and thus, wanted my car stupid low. Making it stupid cool. Sorta got the effect in the front. IT SHOULD NOT HAPPEN TO YOUR CAR. I really lowered it. Your struts are fine, but a better ride will come with a set of KYB's or whatever, and they are roughly $255 for all four. But, you dont *need* them.

You'll be fine, and it will look b!tch!n.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I dont have a spring compressor... my mate reckons we dont need one :paranoid:

If i go ahead and do it without a spring compressor is it gonna be suicide?

[Edited by figs on Oct 25, 2005 4:23 PM]
 

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Any autozones near by?
They rent tools, the policy is, you buy the tool outright, use it, and when you return it, you get all your money back.

Now, you can do without, just that when the spring explosively uncompresses, it takes off your hand thats on the socket wrench. So, with two guys you can do it. Just need a third one to drive to the hospital, and finish the car.;):
 

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uh huh, sure, well, you can do that then. I wouldnt, and for that matter, i dont think you can loosen the nut at the end if it isnt compressed.

and i forgot one thing, the strut might spin when you try and tighten the top nut under the dust cover, using vice grips, hold the shaft from spinning, PUT THEM AT THE TOP OF THE SHAFT, NOT AT THE BACE!!! you can wreck the seal if the shaft gets stratched when the srpings compress.

The spring compressor is like, 15- so bucks, and you jsut return it, im serious, you really should get it. Just my .02c.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Thanks a million man... think ill get the compressor. Any last minute words for two bumbling idiots before we take the plunge?
 

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Possibly, id say at least check it. You should be ok without, my drop cause so much caber that i was over 2 degrees out of factory specs, but it just made the tires grip better. Tracks funny sometimes...

You should be fine, but you should get it checked, some palces do it for free or cheap.
 

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Um. My two cents:
It took me about 5-ish hours to first time replace all four of my struts with coilovers. You prolly won't take as long. You'll definately need a big breaker bar though. Do yourself a favour, and go to a do it yourself carwash and blast all the dirt and crud out of the wheelwells first. A torque wrench is also probably a good idea to have on hand.

When you take off the rear struts, make sure you have the sway bar all the way detached before you take the struts off, and reattach on both sides after you're all the way done. I tried to do one strut at a time, and that...didn't work. :embarrassed:

And good choice to get spring compressors; those springs are kinda...big. Saw a picture where the bolt came off and things went 'sproing' all over a garage. At high speed. x.x
 

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Sorry I missed this.
I've got a writeup of the spring/strut install on my 97 Elantra Wagon:

http://amcforum.net/amconline/elantra/suspension/

I dont have a spring compressor... my mate reckons we dont need one

If i go ahead and do it without a spring compressor is it gonna be suicide?
Yes - you definately need one.
I don't know any safe way to get the assembly apart without one.
On the INSTALL, I was able to compress the lowered rear springs by "hand" (me and a buddy), but I had to use the compressor to install the fronts.

is the car gonna need a wheel alignment after all this?
You should definately get an alignment after changing your suspension. That said, I didn't do it yet. I'm waiting to buy new tires before I get it aligned and my car pulls harder to one side than it did before the install.



[Edited by jav360 on Nov 1, 2005 5:48 AM]

[Edited by jav360 on Nov 1, 2005 5:48 AM]
 

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Originally posted by CROOOL_LANTRA
[body]
Originally posted by wilburisthecoolest
[body]
^^^ 45 mins. All alone.


But thats the last time, the first... hahhahaha... lets not talk about that shall we?
[/body]

Dam your quick!
[/body]
experience is the key.
 
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