A few weeks ago I read with pained memory the experiences of a few of our fellow's latter day TT rear springs removal. I had similar difficult experiences in the 2 previous TT frame restorations but had no idea this would again face me. Then I decided to provide a bare frame for our friend Ken Kopsky to use when he restores my C Cab. This is how I enjoyed a relatively easy TT rear spring removal: First I painstakingly removed the 6 cotter pins from the 2 through-the-leaf bolts and the 2 U bolts. This is so the bolt threads won't get boogered up. Then the 'oxy-acetylene wrench' on the 6 large nuts. So far, so good. After brass drift removal of both U bolts, I turned the 2 large nuts that fit on the 2 through-the-leaf bolts upside down and screwed them down so their bottom was flush with the bolts. Now the important step: spray the best PENETRATING oil you can find around the bolt and tap the bolt/nut quite a bit then spray around the bolt again and walk away until the next day. I used Maltby's penetrating oil - introduced to me by an excellent restorer on the left coast named Jeff Beaumont. The constant initial tapping on the bolts isn't meant to dislodge them; rather to open a seam around the bolts for the penetrating oil to flow downward. Forget WD-40! The next day again spray around the bolts and tap them quite a bit. Then turn the frame and rear crossmember over, get out the 18" breaker bar with appropriate socket and 'work' the bolt back and forth. Now you'll be able to make progress when you turn the frame back over and beat the nut/bolt through the 9 spring leaves. I used a scrap piece of 1/4" brass held with vice grips over the bolt/nut to avaid deforming them when whacking. After removing the 2 bolts I then removed the 2 spring clips - again with the help of heat on their nuts. Now for the most difficult part - removal of the main leaf. I pried a screwdriver between the main and second leaves and shot some penetrating oil up in there. Then methodical outward hammering on the curled 'eye' of the main leaf will eventually free it and the others quickly follow. I had 3 broken top leaves on one side and 1 shortest leaf broken on the other. Strangely, I've never seen a worn rear spring shackle bushing on a TT (steel) but these always have to be replaced on a T. . . FWIW . .
That's similar to how I got mine out. Getting the nuts off and the U-bolts off was fairly easy. The bolts through the springs were another story. I squirted plenty of Kroil on them every day for three days, applying torque with a socket, breaker bar, and five-foot handle extension. On the third day the first bolt turned a little bit. I squirted on more Kroil and turned it back the other way. I kept turning it back and forth, a little more each time, until it would turn all the way around. The more I turned it, the looser it got, until it came out easily. The same process worked on the other side. Spring removal was much the same, squirting on plenty of penetrant, hammering the main spring from the side in one direction and then the other until it started to get easier, and hammering outward on the eye until the spring finally came out. Luckily, none of the leaves were broken. This job is best done with the frame turned bottom side up.
George if you need spring leaves I have some used
Thanks John but I have quite a quantity also. See you in a couple of weeks! Find a helpmate yet? There are 2 mirror image 1/4" metal pieces riveted to the rear crossmember of the TT onto which the large bolt HEAD seats that I've considered bending to make entry of the shiny black spring stack easier. But once the crossmember and frame are shiny black PPG and the springs also; I figured they'd just slip in. Steve: Kroil is also an excellent penetrant! My main consideration was in not boogering up the bolt threads - don't think I have a die of that size. . .
When I tok mine apart a couple of years ago I found an intersting situaiton. The right side was in tact, but the top leaf (the shortest one) was broken off. It was in place, but about 2" short. It's difficult to guess how that may have happened.
The left side was even more interesting. The top leaf was missing altogether. The bolt that goes through all leaves (leafs?) passed only through the bottom leaf. All the others had slid down and were resting against the perch. I have no clue why that may have come about. Obviously, someone took it apart at some point over the past 90 years and came up short on re-assembly.
I was able to find a pair of top leafs and a missing shackle, so after clean-up they look like new.
George YES I have a T friend from Lawrenceville Ill, coming down with me, I used to swap parts with him at St. Louis swap meet. See you there.