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TR2/3/3A How long do leaf springs last?

GTP1960

Jedi Knight
Offline
After removing the rear leaf springs, shocks & linkage.
noting the deterioration of the shackled rubber bushings, buffers & silentbloc I am wondering if I should just replace the springs as well, because everything else in the rear suspension is worn out?

the springs appear fine. The old ride was rough & stiff (but what else is new).
no knocks, squeaks or tilts to speak of.

so my question is: is their a rule of thumb on when to replace the leaf springs?

thanks for reading & any advice appreciated.

GP
 

Geo Hahn

Yoda
Country flag
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I replaced mine when one broke - 53 years & about 180,000 miles. But I think the answer as to how long they last will be 'it depends'.
 

TR3driver

Great Pumpkin - R.I.P
Offline
What he said.

When TS39781LO came to me back in 1984 (so only 26 years or so old), both rear springs were discovered to be broken shortly afterwards (but not at the same time). When I was assembling TS13571L in 2008, I assembled two spring packs from the best leaves from 4 different springs. Looked fine, but one of them suffered multiple breakages a few months ago.


Also, of the pair of original springs I was given from someone else's restoration, one matched the book while the other was significantly weak.

Of course if you do replace them, the question becomes what to replace them with. I've heard many stories of springs from Moss being too stiff; and the ones I got from TRF are way, way too stiff. Testing confirmed that they have almost twice the spring rate given in the manual!


At some point, I plan to contact a local spring shop and see if they can build to the specs in the book. But for the meantime, I've assembled a pair that seem to match fairly well, and the ride is much improved. Still not like a modern car, but IMO not that harsh "lumber wagon" ride that TR3s are famous for either.
 

PatGalvin

Jedi Warrior
Offline
During my suspension resto, I took my stock springs apart, cleaned up all the leaves, greased them (red moly wheel bearing grease), and reassembled. The leaf clips broke, so I rewelded those so they would stay closed. The springs give a great ride, but the car bottoms out occasionally on dips in the road, especially with a passenger on board. I have the "heavy duty" lever shocks as rebuilt by Apple Hydraulics (stock shocks, but modified somehow).

Just a data point for others to consider.

Pat
 

CJD

Yoda
Country flag
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I keep them until they have obviously failed. "Obviously failed" for me is when a leaf breaks or the car sits crooked or on the bump stops.

Pat, I bet your car bottoms occasionally because the good grease you used is much better at lubricating the leaves as they slide on each other. They should stiffen a bit as the grease ages.
 
OP
GTP1960

GTP1960

Jedi Knight
Offline
What he said.

When TS39781LO came to me back in 1984 (so only 26 years or so old), both rear springs were discovered to be broken shortly afterwards (but not at the same time). When I was assembling TS13571L in 2008, I assembled two spring packs from the best leaves from 4 different springs. Looked fine, but one of them suffered multiple breakages a few months ago.


Also, of the pair of original springs I was given from someone else's restoration, one matched the book while the other was significantly weak.

Of course if you do replace them, the question becomes what to replace them with. I've heard many stories of springs from Moss being too stiff; and the ones I got from TRF are way, way too stiff. Testing confirmed that they have almost twice the spring rate given in the manual!





At some point, I plan to contact a local spring shop and see if they can build to the specs in the book. But for the meantime, I've assembled a pair that seem to match fairly well, and the ride is much improved. Still not like a modern car, but IMO not that harsh "lumber wagon" ride that TR3s are famous for either.



This is from the "for what it's worth dept."
I got a note from Albert Runyan at TRF, stating they had some issues with their leaf springs & are looking for a new supplier.

Also the current springs in their catalog is a "universal" spring, meaning driver side & passenger side are the same.

regarding custom made springs:
I asked for a quote from Eatons in Detroit and got this reply:
(they didn't have the template or specs for TR3)

"If you can not find them get back with me for if we had one of your old springs we may be able to make them for you.

Thank You
Mike
Phone 1-313-963-3839
Fax 1-313-963-7047
www.eatonsprings.com
mike@eatonsprings.com "

looking at some of their other prices for resto-cars, I assume the cost would be pretty high.

thanks for the insights.

I think I'll try and refurb mine and get another 20 yrs out of them ( That should be enough for me)

 

TR3driver

Great Pumpkin - R.I.P
Offline
This is from the "for what it's worth dept."
I got a note from Albert Runyan at TRF, stating they had some issues with their leaf springs & are looking for a new supplier.
When was that? I traded emails with Albert about a month ago, and he was still waiting on answers from their then-current supplier (who was apparently Heritage-approved). As I told Albert, I'm willing to be the guinea-pig if they do find a new supplier.

Also the current springs in their catalog is a "universal" spring, meaning driver side & passenger side are the same.
On top of that, they are TR4 springs. Same spring rate (according to the workshop manual), but higher ride height.

But neither of those things bother me; the left/right difference was just a spacer that I can easily add if I want. And another spacer would bring the ride height down.

looking at some of their other prices for resto-cars, I assume the cost would be pretty high.
Yeah, that's the impression I got too. But the ancestor company of the local spring shop once added some leaves to my motorhome springs for me, and the price was pretty reasonable. I'm hoping they won't be too high now.
 
Last edited:
OP
GTP1960

GTP1960

Jedi Knight
Offline
"When was that? I traded emails with Albert about a month ago, and he was still waiting on answers from their current supplier (who was apparently Heritage-approved). As I told Albert, I'm willing to be the guinea-pig if they do find a new supplier."

just today: here is his email:

" albert runyan

Guy-Thanks for the order.
I'm having some issues right now with the leaf springs. I'm checking some other sources and if all goes well, we should have some ready to ship you in a couple of weeks. Sorry for the delay.
Albert
TRF"






 
Last edited:

TR3driver

Great Pumpkin - R.I.P
Offline
Thanks, Guy. I guess he never did get a good answer from the (former) supplier. Let me know how it goes, please.
 
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