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Shock Tower Repairs ...........Page #1

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Metal fatigue is very prominent in the shock tower area of the '67-'70 models, particularly those with power steering. This inherited flaw is caused by the tremendous force imposed by the ram cylinder pushing against the tie rod. The amount of pressure is transferred to the spindles whenever the steering wheel is turned. Caster angles cause the wheel to pivot on the spindle in an arc pattern, which pushes on the upper control arm. When the vehicle is stationary, brakes applied, the force and flexing is greatly multiplied. Severe braking, or a brake that "locks up" jolt the shock tower area with every instance.With the engine's torque or broken motor mount insulators, plus the weight of the entire car on worn control arms or other suspension / steering components it becomes apparent that cracking and separation will eventually occur.

Because the light weight shock tower area is a sandwich of three layers of steel inadequately spot welded together, it becomes the weak link. Once the spot welds become separated, the shock tower area is doomed to collapse!

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Brace the control arm with a large socket or other spacer against the frame rail to approximate ride height. Jack up front of car. Always be safety conscious use jackstands under frame rail or lower body cutouts. Remove shock absorber. Install coil spring compressor ( the internal type). Tighten the spring compressor just enough to ensure safety while a hammer is used to strike squarely against the machined area of the spindle, just below the ball joint in order to separate.

For more detailed info on upper A arm removal, refer to the Disk Brake Conversion article in the ''How to Section''.

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Tighten spring compressor until the brace tool can be removed. Remove the two nuts that hold the upper arm shaft to the structure, and remove upper ''A'' as an assembly.

I've modified tools and even designed a system to repair damages (if not too severe), to pull back and weld broken shock towers.


Tower Repair Page 2