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TR4/4A TR4 Rear Leaf - Do I need distance piece?


Freshman Member
Morning everyone. Continue to rely heavily on this community for my TR4 build...thanks!! Really close to getting it into "roller stage". I am sort of stuck on how to address the gap that exists between my new leafs and axle. I ordered the early TR4 springs from Moss (Moss Part 851-195 / 208636) thinking they would allow me to mount the axle footing pads directly to the top of the springs. The pictures in the parts catalogs and some of the pics in the TR manual lead me to believe that mounting them net tight the the top of the springs is how the "early" type springs worked. My guess was that the "later" type springs were deeper dish and required the distance piece (per moss part number 851-210 which calls out the need for the distance piece). I attached 2 pictures. I have about 1.5 inch gap to span between the top of spring and axle pad. Seems like the leaf would have to be completely flat across for spring and axle to attach directly to each other. Makes me wonder if I got early and late style spring mixed up, and the later style is flatter than the earlier? (or possibility exists that the pictures are an optical illusion and the spring I have is the flattest it is going to get, and there was never any application that had the axle mounting directly to the top of the spring) I found this thread, seems like the the distance piece in this picture is what I need, can anyone confirm? https://www.britishcarforum.com/bcf...ight-on-non-IRS-TR&highlight=rear+leaf+spring. Thanks in advance, Chandler


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Great Pumpkin - R.I.P
What is your commission number? The high arch springs and big spacer were a production change at CT23382; the mounting points on the frame moved at the same time.

From what I have heard, it is very common for new "early" springs to have too much arch to them. When I bought some recently from TRF, Albert Runyon told me that there was only one supplier in England that they trusted to make them right, and that supplier has quit supplying the springs. Fortunately, the springs they eventually got from another supplier appear to be OK, at least as far as free arch goes. (But I haven't tried to install them yet.)

Looking at your photos, it appears to me that you have an early frame, and early springs with a bit too much arch to them. I don't think installing the later spacers is going to be the way to go, but I could be wrong. Try laying a straight edge across the tops of the spring eyes, and measuring down to the axle mounting surface. That distance should be about 4" (with no load on the spring).
If it is closer to 8", then the later spacer will work; but I think you are going to find something around 4.5" or 5", in which case you need to either return the springs or find both a thinner spacer and a longer shock link.

Note that Moss is located in CA, which has an implied consumer warranty. If the goods they have sold you are unfit for their stated purpose, they have to replace them or refund your money, regardless of whatever they tell you about your having tried to install them.


Freshman Member
Thanks Randall. Good notes. I measured and mine are 4" of arch. I think you are right....thinner spacer and longer shock link is the ticket. Nice thing about the basic leaf set up is I can fab up some custom spacers to get the height right. A quick search on the web also shows a bunch of inexpensive leaf spring lowering blocks out there in different height that could also work. Thanks again! Chandler


Country flag
Actually, if the components are correct, I don't think you should worry about a thinner spacer or extra shock link - try positioning the differential in place, and if you have some larger clamps, you can compress the leaf spring to get it close enough to get the u-bolts connected. I suspect you have enough room potentially, I had the same issue on my TR3 and it came together fine.


Great Pumpkin - R.I.P
I agree. I had to put the weight of the assembled car on the springs to compress them enough to get the U-bolts started, and then still used the U-bolts to pull them up the rest of the way.


Senior Member
I have an early TR4 and had my sagging springs repaired by a blacksmith. This included replacing a leaf and retempering the springs. The result was a TR4 that sits too high because the curve in the springs is too big. I have removed and reinstalled those springs so many times that I could do it with both arms cut off. Aside from getting new springs the only way I can fix the problem is to put in a spacer that will lower the ride height. The longer distance requires longer u bolts. If your springs have too much set (curve) then the result will be a TR4 that looks like its jacked up. As I said before you can add a lowering block. I use a jack under the springs to raise the springs then get the U bolts nuts going a few threads and then its fairly easy.
The fact that you measurement was 4" probably means that you will be fine. I must measure mine one day
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