Shock Absorber Mount Repair Information

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Question from Jay:

I have traced a "clunk" on our '62 to the left-front shock absorber lower mount. The nut is tight on the bolt, but there is a LOT of free play between the shock and the lower mount. Now I haven't had the opportunity to remove the right front shock for comparison, but is appears that the left front lower shock mount is missing a bushing.   If my guess be right, is this bushing a hard part to come by?


From Dick:

Not sure which bushing you are referring to, but there should be two rubber donuts at each end of each shock absorber, assuming they are the axial rod mounting type. There is a dished washer to cradle the donuts, and sometimes a sleeve of metal to slid along the threaded mounting rod also, where it passes through the mounting point. If the nuts are tight and the shock is loose, one or more of these parts is missing. There should be lock nuts in addition to each fastener nut, also. If these are missing, the nuts will unscrew themselves and you'll have a clunk in your clunker. In any case, the donuts and washers are very standard items, and come new with new shocks.

From PEN:

The front lower shock absorber bushings for a '62 are supposed to come pre-installed in the new shock absorbers. The uppers may have to be reused, unless you can mix or match them to other uppers that are available and on the books. Be prepared to replace the bolts that go through the front lower bushings as they may be worn.

Follow-up from Jay:

I had the front shock off the car last night. The lower bushing is there. The hard-rubber doughnut insulator between the bushing and the shock mount apparently disintegrated and disappeared. As more of the insulator material fell away, the "clink" was getting worse until the entire insulator was gone.

This will all be solved with the installation of the new shock. The lower mounting bolts are not worn enough to need replacing.

The real challenge is filing the lower bushing on the new shocks (1.5") down to what fits into the lower mount on the control arm (1.25"). This was mentioned by Chris Hawkins and I started doing this by hand using a machine file and soon wished I had a grinding wheel. I'm taking the shocks to someone with the right tools to make short work of this. I should be riding on four new shock come midnight tonight. (installing the rears was a cake-walk)

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