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Frame/Suspension/Brake... Talk & Q&A All things... Frame/Suspension/Brake

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  #1  
Old 06-29-2017, 08:21 PM
Odies dad Odies dad is offline
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Default Bending steering arms

I need to bend the steering arms on my project to keep the tie rod from hitting the hair pins.
I need to bend them up about an inch on each side.
I would like to do this right the first time, so if someone can walk me through this process, I would appreciate it.
Stock 40 ford spindles with attached steering arms
4" dropped I beam axle.
Speedway bat wings and hairpins with rod ends.
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Old 06-29-2017, 09:57 PM
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Skip Skip is offline
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Seems to me that bending the arms would change the geometry of the steering, which is not likely a good idea.

Pictures of the issue would help. Hopefully, someone more experienced than I will have a better idea.
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Old 06-29-2017, 10:37 PM
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Dr Crankenstein Dr Crankenstein is offline
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I've never done this, but it's a common modification with little effect on geometry. Heat evenly to cherry red and bend... orange or yellow is too hot... let it cool naturally, no quenching or shop air... have the finished piece magnafluxed for cracks.

That's all I know about forming (or reforming) forged steel. Hopefully somebody else will chime in here...

bobw? BED? Torchie? zz?

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Old 06-30-2017, 01:05 AM
dutch dutch is offline
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Not sure why orange would be too hot..? I would think you`ve got better chance of a part with no cracks when you bend a bit hotter.
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Old 06-30-2017, 09:13 AM
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I've done this a few times with no problems.
When you bend it, make sure you go straight up or down or it will change the akerman a little.
A line from the center of the king pin through the eye of the steering arm to the pinion of the rear end is what you're looking for.
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Old 06-30-2017, 01:54 PM
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Torchie Torchie is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Old Iron View Post
I've done this a few times with no problems.
When you bend it, make sure you go straight up or down or it will change the akerman a little.
A line from the center of the king pin through the eye of the steering arm to the pinion of the rear end is what you're looking for.
OI has it right. The big thing is to keep it lined up.
When I have done this I usually get it hot enough to the point where it will bend with a bit of force. So as I am heating it I am apply force and when it starts to bend I take the heat off.
As Dr Crankenstien says, I would call the color cherry. I guess. Then I just let them cool back down naturally.
I never had them Magnafluxed after. Maybe I have just been lucky. Or maybe I was just stupider then than now. But as always. Safety first.
Torchie

Last edited by Torchie; 06-30-2017 at 02:09 PM.
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  #7  
Old 06-30-2017, 09:41 PM
TIMOTHALE TIMOTHALE is offline
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Default Iron workers spike.

A long tapered punch or iron workers spike thru the taper hole to keep it allgned so you don't put in a twist.
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  #8  
Old 07-03-2017, 02:02 PM
Odies dad Odies dad is offline
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I am starting to lean towards the notion of swapping the rod ends for heim joints. I think that they will clear.
Speedway has a 11/16 hiem with a 5/8" hole for this situation.
I am not comfortable with the heating and bending stuff. I have no way to magnaflux them when I am done.
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  #9  
Old 07-03-2017, 04:31 PM
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The guys have pretty much covered it, bending the arms is no big deal, done it lots of times with no failures. Don't use heim joints - they're OK for race cars but not for street use - noisy and not geasable.
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Old 07-03-2017, 07:35 PM
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I agree with zz, real tie-rod ends are superior to heim joints for street abuse. (Here, a heim joint won't pass a simple safety inspection, period.)


Don't be afraid to heat and bend... if they crack, they're flawed or damaged already.

A good alternative to magnafluxing (for the home builder) is DPI or Dye Penetrant Inspection. Any decent welding supply should have this stuff on the shelf in aerosol cans.

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