Premium Pivots = Better Handling
Last month we showed you how to lower your '73-'87 Chevy/GMC truck with new suspension products. A quality suspension is vital to a daily driver, but I quickly realized that since my '73 had a better stance and suspension parts, I needed to get it aligned so that it would steer straight and handle properly in all driving situations. The problem was that the original rubber suspension bushings were so worn out that they were no longer round. The truck couldn't be aligned properly until I replaced them, so the next place I took the Brown Bomber to was Energy Suspension's corporate headquarters located in San Clemente, California. The company's R&D facility was the perfect spot to learn the merits of Energy Suspensions' Hyper-Flex polyurethane bushing technology and get the truck on track for miles and miles of great driving experiences.
FROM THE DRIVER SEAT
With the front suspension back together and cycling smoothly on the new bushings, I drove the truck a short distance to a nearby alignment shop. The shop had no trouble getting the front suspension back to OEM specs thanks to the new suspension components from Belltech and Energy Suspension. Finally, I hit the road in the truck and the drive was impressive. For a 4,000-plus-pound pickup, it corners remarkably well, staying very flat through turns that would normally make the truck feel like it was going to tip over. The tires are also quite grippy and I'm able to take the same corners almost 20 mph faster than I used to without the tires screeching in protest. The suspension is fairly stiff, but when it's exercised over potholes, the dampers and foam rubber bumpstops do an excellent job of controlling the travel. Best of all, the new bushings do not squeak and the extra control is a welcomed addition to an improved custom truck. The next stop on the Pickup Fix-Up Tour is to Classic Industries, where we'll grab all the restoration parts for the body and interior of the Brown Bomber. We'll see you next month.
YOUR QUESTIONS ANSWERED
Time Spent Working: 4 Hours
Degree Of Difficulty: Intermediate
(only because a press and air tools are needed to get the bushings in and out)
Air impact, 1/2-inch, 9/16-inch. 3/4-inch sockets, jack and jackstands, air chisel/hammer
Energy Suspension front control arm bushings ENS-3-3161R $56.75
(price from Summitracing.com and does not include shipping and/or tax)