Suspension Build

 

**MAIN PANTERA PAGE**

 

***Click on photo for larger image***

 

Ride Tech
Shockwave #21150801 
14.5" ride height
11.56 - 16.66" range
Comes with 1/2 or 5/8 inserts

I will not be using the stock A-Arms, but I went ahead and threw them on to see how they fit; and they fit well.

Steel box bolted to frame, additional metal welded in between lower suspension mounts. Tubes welded in frame. Pump Electric
 

 

 

 

BUMP STEER is induced in a Pantera due to the steering rack. Some people shift the location to move the effect minimizing the bump in compression, but it doesn't actually change the bump steer.

The distance between the tie rod ball joints; where they pivot is about 3" too far. On the power steering rack I chose, it the pivot point is 6" shorter then the Pantera rack so it needed to be extended. 

The rack is extended. The threaded shaft will allow me to change the distance once installed and actually find the proper location. 

 

 

 

This jig was used to determine suspension dimensions. The tubes were bolted in each pivot point. The frame was welded to each tube. The frame removed from the car then the points could be measured. The power steering rack 6" shorter at tie rod pivot then Pantera rack.

Pantera rack a little too long anyway.

End cut off. The end was originally press fit. A small hole still exist in area cut off. Who said there are no tractor parts in the Pantera?
Just need the threaded section of the pin. Threaded section cut to fit in hole.
Welding is hard on a ball joint. I used an MGB rod end. The entire ball joint can be dismantled so the components are not damaged in welding. Ball joint is adjustable. Set up is a little too long to start with but this will allow me to make some measurements, make some changes and go a little at a time till I hit the right spot.
The Pantera tie rod pivot point is about 28.25" apart. This is the source of the bump steer problem. Some calculations in a suspension program show it needs to be about 27". 

Don't quote me on that. My data has changed since I have been fine tuning it. I will zero in on the numbers when I get the a-arms built.

Data

 

Power steering pump comes with bracket which just won't work. It is designed to clamp on rubber isolation mounts. One of my most valuable tools is my Harbor Freight $17 angle grinder (orange, not blue) with cheap Harbor freight cut off wheels.

 While cutting with a PLASMA would be easy, you can hold a far tighter tolerance with the angle grinder and cut off wheel. Holding a line within 1/32" is no problem. 

Face mask is a must. There is not only a lot of material coming off the wheel but the wheels do shred occasionally. Face and eye protection is an absolute must.
Cheap HF cut off wheels shed faster then better quality cut off wheels I have bought elsewhere; but they cut better/faster. 

Especially the way they shed, safety protection is an absolute must. First, my dad cannot hear because he has never used hearing protection. Christmas is always plagued by a TV volume so loud no one can talk. 

Breathing protection is a must as well. These wheels fill the air with a fiber dust; one can only imagine the long term health impacts. Weather you are using a plasma or a grinder, use breathing protection! 
While many of my photos show the grinder without a guard; I don't condone it. I will also say not everyone has the right frame of mind to use a grinder safely.

It is one of the most dangerous tools in your arsenal if not the most dangerous.....

Make no assumptions!

But it is also one of the most powerful!!!!

 

ALWAYS cut with the grinder driving away from you as posted above.  Never let a grinder slow down significantly; you are asking it to bite and launch. There is never a good outcome to this.
Take every grinder project slowly and with reverence. Always consider how you are holding it, where you are in reference to the grinder and what could go wrong and how it could go wrong. If the grinder launches out of your hand, let it. Walk away and unplug it.  Grinder sparks are 100 times worse then welding sparks. Run a grinder at night one time and see how far grinder sparks fly. I keep all flammables in an isolated room away form my construction area.
Bolts sit in rubber mounts; mount will clamp together. Precision cutting with a grinder makes welding a breeze!
Nuts MIG welded to bolt box in the front. MIG welding preferred on Nuts; heat saturation is significantly less then when TIG welded and distorts threads less.

Non the less, run a tap through threads when done.

Bolts as spacers to align bolt plates for welding.
Assembled. Pump mounted with fill in front trunk.