coil spring compressor
I did a search on this subject and found a plethora of information including a thread that lead to numerous people signing up to a group buy for a special imported spring compressor that cost 700 bucks in quantity. I especially noted the many warnings about attempting to use non-Mercedes Benz intended compressors. Having a somewhat recalcitrant nature, I decided to come up with a way to compress my springs that didn't cost 700 bucks even though the suspension on my 77 300D is still working ok.
Here is what I did:
I found a piece of two and a half inch square tubing with 3/16ths wall thickness that is about 18 inches long and placed it inside the engine compartment directly over a hole leading to a coil spring. Then I attached a chain to a 10 ton pull back ram and dangled the chain and the piston of the ram all the way through the tubing to the bottom of the spring. I got the ram from Harbor Freight for about 50 bucks about a year ago. I've been trying to figure out a way to use it. Then I hammered a long half inch drive socket extension between the bottom spring coils.. through the last chain link... and out the other side. When I pumped up the ram, it compressed the spring, but not evenly. The spring kind of bulged out on one side as the chain went completely over to the edge of the spring. It worked ok but it bothered me, so I eased the tension off and dropped a couple of half inch threaded pipe couplings down inside the spring. Using one of those extendable magnets they sell at autozone, I was able to thread the socket extension through a pipe coupling, through the chain, through another pipe coupling, and then out the side. Now when I pump it up, the spring comes up evenly as the chain stays in the middle. I lifted the spring about a half an inch away from the control arm and left it there for a while.
I've done more than a few suspension rebuilds, and I've rented several different kinds of spring compressors. More than anything, I hate having my head and my hands that close to the spring as I am compressing it. I don't care what kind of compressor it is. It was nice to be standing in front of the car as I pumped this up. It was especially painless to let it down.
"Die Schadenfreude ist die reinste Freude"
Last edited by diesellieber; 09-29-2003 at 10:32 PM.