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Eric's 1960 T-Bird

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  • Going from 5/16" to 3/16" tubing is a really drastic reduction, especially in flow. Why not try 1/4" tubing?
    Harbor Freight sells Brake Line Pliers for about ten bucks that will bend a very tight bend in 1/4" or 3/16" tubing.
    My latest project:
    CLICK HERE to see my custom hydraulic roller 390 FE build.

    "We've got to pause and ask ourselves: How much clean air do we need?"
    --Lee Iacocca

    From: Royal Oak, Michigan

    Comment


    • Hi Eric, those pliers that Dave was talking about are brilliant, they will even work with annealed 3/16" stainless steel if you later make your own brake lines. They will do 1/4" copper easy too. You may even be able to do the 5/16" but be careful as the larger the tube, the easier it kinks.

      Make sure you do a test piece before you make the real tubes so that you can check for any burrs or deep scratches on the tube, as those types of nicks, scratches and burrs are bad news for tubing. If that is the case you may need to blend the part on the jaws of the pliers that caused the marks.
      Just my experience with those pliers. Good luck!
      Randall

      Comment


      • I am using a similar plier, as well as a bunch of others. But most are made for 3/16 and 1/4 tubing. Not much tools on the place for 5/16. Maybe I should go for 1/4" but will the system works the same with a smaller ID tube?

        Comment


        • I am still thinking about how to bend this 5/16 tube...

          I did not get input about my other 2 questions :

          1. I noticed that the antiroll bar mounts on the wheels are leaning forward, like 30. Rubbers are crushed on the lower arm. Tried to shoot a picture but did not wanted to pull a wheel.
          Is that normal or do I have the wrong bar. I can't install it more to the rear as it's touching the frame.

          2. Also I still have doubts about the rear springs pads. I tightened to manual's specs and I feel it's too much. How do you tighten them to make sure they are tight enough and not too much?​

          Comment


          • I managed to make my own tool to bend this short radius and line is now installed.Tube on pictures is the old one for testing.
            IMG_20221029_105312_068.jpg IMG_20221029_105247_701.jpg
            IMG_20221029_153526_035.jpg
            I managed to shoot a picture of this leaned forward anti roll bar mount. What do you think?
            IMG_20221029_154543_544.jpg

            Comment


            • Toolmaking and fabrication is essential when restoring classics.

              I would turn a 1-1/4" (or so) piece of mild steel to form a 5/16" groove (like a spool), make a thin cut right down the center of the groove to make two halves, lay both halves flat and cut it in quarters, then weld one 'pair of quarters' to handles much like the Brake Pliers you already have from Harbor Freight. That way, you can put the flat part of your new pliers up against your flare nut and bend your 90-degree elbow.

              If you're skilled at using an angle grinder with a drill motor you can accomplish the same result. Welding is a key ingredient in this tool. I would weld a 1/2" rod to set in the drill's chuck for the piece to be ground,. A drill press would work even better. Be careful and go slow. For the 'pliers' part, you can sacrifice a pair of harbor freight brake pliers and weld your new 5/16" jaws to it for under ten bucks.

              Your bender's diameter, using the bolt and washers, prohibits you from bending close enough to the flare nut. - Dave
              My latest project:
              CLICK HERE to see my custom hydraulic roller 390 FE build.

              "We've got to pause and ask ourselves: How much clean air do we need?"
              --Lee Iacocca

              From: Royal Oak, Michigan

              Comment


              • Thank you for the tips Dave.
                I tried the first option using my lathe but I am lacking skills and tooling so I gave up and ended up with this set up. Well it worked but I will try to keep in mind the other solutions for next time.

                What do you think of the anti roll bar mount leaning forward and crushing the rubber??

                Comment


                • I wouldn't worry about 'crushing' the rubber because that's what rubber is supposed to do. CUTTING the rubber is quite another story.

                  Your lower control arm is designed to be adjusted fore/aft and that is why the rubber is there. If it's on an angle or straight up, makes no difference in the function of your anti-sway bar.

                  Just so you know, we usually assemble the lower arm with it shoved all the way back to the No. 2 crossmember, then add shims to the front (#1 crossmember). All measurement references on your car are done with respect to the No. 2 crossmember (which is the same that your engine rests on).

                  Could it be that your lower control arm was shimmed in the rear side? This IS possible if the body was bent in a collision. - Dave
                  Last edited by simplyconnected; November 18, 2022, 06:54 AM.
                  My latest project:
                  CLICK HERE to see my custom hydraulic roller 390 FE build.

                  "We've got to pause and ask ourselves: How much clean air do we need?"
                  --Lee Iacocca

                  From: Royal Oak, Michigan

                  Comment


                  • As I look at the end of the upgraded sway bar I wonder if it matches the profile of the original. Do you still have the original to compare?

                    Comment


                    • Carl
                      I got the car with this bar so I don't have any original to compare.

                      Dave
                      I understand that the rubber can be crushed but here it is crushed completely on one side and I think it may be destroyed rapidly.

                      When I re-installed the lower arms I asked a lot of questions and I am pretty sure the shims were on the right (as correct) side as, back then, I was quite on top of those questions. I had much trouble with the lower arm bushings being wrong and I had to get them replaced. With the first set of bushings, I had no room for shims so made me wonder and ask questions and this led to a new set of bushings.

                      Comment


                      • Eric, do you also have rubber 'bushings' on the bottom of your lower control arm? Four in total? If so, I would run with the way it is.
                        My latest project:
                        CLICK HERE to see my custom hydraulic roller 390 FE build.

                        "We've got to pause and ask ourselves: How much clean air do we need?"
                        --Lee Iacocca

                        From: Royal Oak, Michigan

                        Comment


                        • Yes the parts are complete.
                          I noticed the LH bracket is bent. I may remove it, make it straight and adjust the bar as it seems to be not centered left to right in the car.

                          IMG_20221121_161809_152.jpg IMG_20221121_161938_791.jpg

                          Comment


                          • Your bushing mounting bracket looks like a 'custom' set-up to accommodate the heavier bar. Could this be the problem with the proper alignment with the ends of the bar and the control arm?

                            Comment


                            • Karl
                              I don't think the mounts are the "problem" as in any case, the bar is too short. It's all the way back against the frame and it seems there is about 1 inch missing in length to allow the links to be straight.
                              Mounts can be any shape, there is no other way to install this bar.

                              Comment


                              • Here is the original mount with the original bracket
                                eric.jpg

                                Comment

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