Noisy coil springs FJ62, 1988

Joined
Sep 27, 2017
Messages
152
Location
Aalborg, Denmark
Hey everyone. I bought my Fj62 three weeks ago, and I am not only in love with it - I also discovered the beauty of 4x4's in general. My first but definitely not the last 4x4!

I had it by a mechanic because I needed a brake adjustment, and needed new shocks. As I'm traveling through Mexico right now and don't have access to a shop I couldn't do it myself. The car has been making a weird sound which appears to be from the leaf springs, but I'm not totally sure. The noise was there before I had the new shocks installed. Whenever pressure is applied to the wheel it makes that notice, and it's bothering me a lot. Is is the leaf springs that are old and needs a replacement or what is it? I can't find anything under the front of the car that looks un-normal.

Here's a video of my LC in action with the noise.
 

Seth S

SILVER Star
Joined
Jan 4, 2011
Messages
2,807
Location
Vermont
 
As leaf springs age they like to rust just like all the other metal. When the leaves rust they no longer slide over one another smoothly when they try to flex through wheel travel. Additionaly the shackles like to get rusty and the bushings like to wear out. You could be hearing any one of these things. You might consider a suspension kit with new greasable shackles, bushings, and springs. Otherwise you could soak the spring packs in oil or spray them liberally with Kroil or WD40 or some other penetrating oil and do so every day to try and work some lubricant in there
 
Joined
Sep 27, 2017
Messages
152
Location
Aalborg, Denmark
As leaf springs age they like to rust just like all the other metal. When the leaves rust they no longer slide over one another smoothly when they try to flex through wheel travel. Additionaly the shackles like to get rusty and the bushings like to wear out. You could be hearing any one of these things. You might consider a suspension kit with new greasable shackles, bushings, and springs. Otherwise you could soak the spring packs in oil or spray them liberally with Kroil or WD40 or some other penetrating oil and do so every day to try and work some lubricant in there
Hi Seth, thanks for your reply! I'll get to work with the WD40. And it makes good sense what you're writing, because they do seem a bit rusty.
 

gregnash

Anal Retentive Analyst
SILVER Star
Joined
Nov 4, 2011
Messages
11,163
Location
Carson City, NV
 
Like Seth said, go through and check everything. Since you had a mechanic install new shocks I would go through and ensure that all the nuts/bolts are nice and snug for them. From there check all of your bushings to see that they are not destroyed and in need of replacement. Have to say that one of the best things I ever did with my suspension was upgrade the Shackles and Pins to greaseable ones. Give them a squirt of lube/grease every other oil change and keeps the suspension quiet for the most part. Ultimately, with leaf springs the "silencer pads" (think that is what they are called) that are between the leaves go bad and then the leaves begin to move slightly on torque. This causes them to click and chirp against one another. This just ends up being one of the quirks of owning these trucks.
 
Joined
Sep 27, 2017
Messages
152
Location
Aalborg, Denmark
Like Seth said, go through and check everything. Since you had a mechanic install new shocks I would go through and ensure that all the nuts/bolts are nice and snug for them. From there check all of your bushings to see that they are not destroyed and in need of replacement. Have to say that one of the best things I ever did with my suspension was upgrade the Shackles and Pins to greaseable ones. Give them a squirt of lube/grease every other oil change and keeps the suspension quiet for the most part. Ultimately, with leaf springs the "silencer pads" (think that is what they are called) that are between the leaves go bad and then the leaves begin to move slightly on torque. This causes them to click and chirp against one another. This just ends up being one of the quirks of owning these trucks.
I actually think that is exactly what has happened. The silencer pads has been worn down. I checked it out and took some pictures. It looks like the left side doesn't have any pads left at all. Even though I like fixing what I have, and it leaves more money to do other stuff, the idea of buying a new greasable set is enticing.
IMG_20170928_154449-1612x1209.jpg

IMG_20170928_152927-1612x1209.jpg


The previous owner gave me these C bolts and brackest when I bought the car. I wonder if he was thinking the same. The width of the C bolts doesn't fit the existing leaf springs.

IMG_20170928_153341-1209x1612.jpg

IMG_20170928_153053-1209x1612.jpg
 

gregnash

Anal Retentive Analyst
SILVER Star
Joined
Nov 4, 2011
Messages
11,163
Location
Carson City, NV
 
That is actually a u-bolt flip kit. @lcwizard offers them so may be one of his kits from a while back. Basically it takes the u-bolts and flips them over for when you are 4wheeling so the ends of the studs don't get caught on terrain.

Also, you springs look FLAT which also aids in the noise making, ask me how I know.. Might be worthwhile to save up for a bit and replace the suspension.
 
Joined
Sep 27, 2017
Messages
152
Location
Aalborg, Denmark
That is actually a u-bolt flip kit. @lcwizard offers them so may be one of his kits from a while back. Basically it takes the u-bolts and flips them over for when you are 4wheeling so the ends of the studs don't get caught on terrain.

Also, you springs look FLAT which also aids in the noise making, ask me how I know.. Might be worthwhile to save up for a bit and replace the suspension.
That makes good sense as the bracket has a bed for the axle.

Sounds like you have some tough taught experience in that field.
 

gregnash

Anal Retentive Analyst
SILVER Star
Joined
Nov 4, 2011
Messages
11,163
Location
Carson City, NV
 
LOL.. think we all do around here in one form or another. Mine were sagging to the point of almost sitting on the bump stops. Had this incessant click from the right front that I could never find. Only really happened on deep hits that flexed the spring and when both springs were uneven (like hitting a large speedbump or curb with that wheel first). When I updated all the springs I found that one of the longest springs (not the military wrap but the other) was busted right at the shackle/spring hanger and would CLICK back and forth across itself (the two pieces) when I hit that flex right. Found out by undoing the u-bolts and the spring shooting to the ground.
 
Joined
Sep 27, 2017
Messages
152
Location
Aalborg, Denmark
It'll be a bit hard for me to do the operation without access to a workshop, so do you have any suggestions on how to find a decent shop in Mexico? In the mainland just east of the tip of Baja.
 
Joined
Jul 5, 2016
Messages
797
Location
New Mexico
Those “u” bolts should work, if it is indeed the right kit for the 60. Mine took some persuasion to get in, but they fit just right after the correct sequence of cuss words...and “tuning”.
There should be another part to the kit that has a place to mount the shock to. The part in the above picture goes on top of the axle, and the threaded ends of the u bolt go UP through it.
If the u bolts really are to big, then you can buy just a u bolt set from @lcwizard or Manefre to use the flip kit now, or if you “rebuild” or get new front springs, or an add-a-leaf. Hope this helps.
 
Joined
Sep 27, 2017
Messages
152
Location
Aalborg, Denmark
Those “u” bolts should work, if it is indeed the right kit for the 60. Mine took some persuasion to get in, but they fit just right after the correct sequence of cuss words...and “tuning”.
There should be another part to the kit that has a place to mount the shock to. The part in the above picture goes on top of the axle, and the threaded ends of the u bolt go UP through it.
If the u bolts really are to big, then you can buy just a u bolt set from @lcwizard or Manefre to use the flip kit now, or if you “rebuild” or get new front springs, or an add-a-leaf. Hope this helps.
Thanks for your response!
The U bolts are too wide for my leafs. But if I buy a new set of leaf springs, I would assume that I could buy them in the desired width? Or does that smell like an expensive custom job?
 

Cruiserdrew

On the way there
SILVER Star
Joined
Mar 15, 2003
Messages
15,822
Location
Sacramento, CA
 
 
 
Those springs do look a bit tired, but as long as the main leaf isn't broken, they will give good service. Those are not stock springs either.

That u-bolt flip kit is a very nice kit. Don't toss that-you might want it one day.

Leaf springs do make noise. Mine pop when wet for whatever reason.

Look hard at the bushings (easily replaceable) and if you can, lube the pin to bushing interface. That should quiet it down.
 
Joined
Jul 5, 2016
Messages
797
Location
New Mexico
You should replace the u bolts when putting in new springs anyway, and wherever you source the springs from should have the ability to provide u bolts for them.
Do you have the other part to the u bolt flip kit?
Cruiserdrew is right, hang on to those parts!
The new u bolts might be a bit wider to fit the flip kit parts.
Long add a leaves aren’t too spend, and would give you an excuse to “service” all the parts!
 
Joined
Sep 27, 2017
Messages
152
Location
Aalborg, Denmark
@Cruiserdrew cool, well I'll hope the main spring will carry our weight then. That being said I'm long-distance overlanding right now, so were carrying a lot of weight which is adding a lot of extra pressure to the leaf coils. So it might give up in the middle of a shady place in Central- or Southamerica. Not sure I want to run that risc. I'll give the bushings some extra TLC.

@89BIGBLUE so do you mean I should buy new leaf springs and get new u bolts for them? I'd like to use the ones I already have. So my question is, will I be able to find leaf springs in the same width as the u bolts I have? Or will that be an expensive custom job?
Yes I have the other part of the other part is another black bracket to fit on the other side of the axle. Similar to the one on the picture. I have four of the brackets with axle beds and four u bolts.
 
Joined
Sep 27, 2017
Messages
152
Location
Aalborg, Denmark
Have you thought about installing the lift kit? What sort of tools do you have access to? It can be done on your concrete car port with some basic tools.
I have thought about it yes. The lift kit that I have, doesn't fit my leaf springs though. My C bolts are too wide. I do have access to basic tools but no power tools and only the stock lift that comes with my TLC.
 
Joined
Jul 5, 2016
Messages
797
Location
New Mexico
Here’s a link to the Manefre site for the u bolt flip kit, with fair pictures. Double check you have all the parts needed for the flip kit. Most likely those wider u bolts were made just for the flip kit.
Be advised: I think there are differences between the front and rear flip kits.

Man-A-Fre 4+Plus U-Bolt Flip Kits Land Cruiser 40 and 60 Series

I don’t know if you can get wider leaves to fit your wider u bolts. Usually u bolts are less expensive than custom springs, either to buy new, or have custom made.

If you are “in the field” right now, lube it, watch it, and let it develop; as my uncle is fond of saying! Baby them through the adventure as best you can and when you get a chance, look into upgrading the springs and hardware for the next trek!
 

gregnash

Anal Retentive Analyst
SILVER Star
Joined
Nov 4, 2011
Messages
11,163
Location
Carson City, NV
 
Sounds like you are in a situation where you are going to have to just deal with what you got for the time being. Mind you I found my broken leaf after I had been hearing that noise for YEARS (probably 3yrs) and it sounded like that when I purchased the truck so who knows how long the PO had been hearing it.

For shop recommendations I know there are a few guys that head down that way constantly, think @MANUCHAO @AdventureToolCompany are two of them. Otherwise since you are still in Baja, you may want to make a side trip up to the US and grab a good shop that is near the border, that knows OLD LAND CRUISERS to order a new suspension and do it for you. Just so you know, that will probably run you about $2k with labor if not a little more.

Other thing that you may be able to do that would be a temporary fix (what I am currently doing) is to get yourself some Add-A-Leaf (the long ones) and then take to a semi-truck spring repair shop in Mexico and have them add the extra leaf (will give you some extra weight capacity at the cost of a much stiffer ride) and have them slightly rearch the springs (basically heating them up and bending them back to the original arch parameters when new). Again this is a temporary fix and will buy you a bit of time but eventually the springs will begin to sag again.

Ultimately, you will need to upgrade the suspension sometime in the near future if you plan to continue doing your Overlanding. It is just going to be good practice and somewhat of a "set and forget" at that point.
 
Joined
Oct 22, 2003
Messages
3,946
Location
Latitude 58N or 19N
 
 
 
Yes I have the other part of the other part is another black bracket to fit on the other side of the axle. Similar to the one on the picture. I have four of the brackets with axle beds and four u bolts.
Then you have all the parts needed for replacing the stock u bolts. I don't believe it's necessary for them to be the same width as stock in order to work with your leaf springs, or replacement springs.
 
Top Bottom