203 spring retensioning
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  1. #1
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    Default 203 spring retensioning

    Does anyone know where I can get my 203 front cross spring retensioned in NSW?
    Hendersons in Melbourne was where I used to go in the 70's with my 403.
    I could do a big yellow pages search but why bother if someone knows the right place.
    Thanks in advance.

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    1000+ Posts jo proffi's Avatar
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    I dont know if it is the 'right place' but in sydney, Kmac mess around with curly bits of wire and ovens and do custom work.


    Jo

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    I think there are less proper spring works than before - by a long shot! Brown's aren't too bad - but not close, being in Victoria.

    Better Springs in St Mary's might be OK; they're still (AFAIK) guided by the same hands.

    Closer again (although not cheaper) would be Houston's mob (VMG) in Central Mangrove; they probably do theirs in-house.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by luthier View Post
    Does anyone know where I can get my 203 front cross spring retensioned in NSW?
    Hendersons in Melbourne was where I used to go in the 70's with my 403.
    I could do a big yellow pages search but why bother if someone knows the right place.
    Thanks in advance.
    Unless the ends are actually turning up don't bother, I've found the cars are much better to drive when the springs are lower.
    Graham

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    Default Hmmm!

    Quote Originally Posted by luthier View Post
    Does anyone know where I can get my 203 front cross spring retensioned in NSW?
    Hendersons in Melbourne was where I used to go in the 70's with my 403.
    I could do a big yellow pages search but why bother if someone knows the right place.
    Thanks in advance.
    This probably sounds like sacrilige but in our impoverished youth we used to get the 'best' leaves from several front springs and make up something that gave a decent ride height.
    Technically wrong I'm sure but it worked and was free.

    Cheers
    John

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    Quote Originally Posted by bahay View Post
    This probably sounds like sacrilige but in our impoverished youth we used to get the 'best' leaves from several front springs and make up something that gave a decent ride height.
    Technically wrong I'm sure but it worked and was free.

    Cheers
    John
    And would work heaps better than having the spring too high.
    Graham

  7. #7
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    If you do have it hot re-tensioned make sure you have new eye bushes or get them to save the old ones first. They are getting hard to find.

  8. #8
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    Well this is all sounding a bit depressing. Firstly I reckon it needs redoing because there's barely an inch from the bumper stops and I can feel it bottoming out. This does not in any way constitute better handling. In fact it makes me feel slightly nervous about cornering at anything more than extremely careful. Not a good way to drive from my perspective. My 403 always handled heaps better after a spring job.
    So I rang Better Springs but their leaf spring maker has retired and they don't do it now.
    I have a couple more to check out.
    As far as the eye bushes, I wasn't aware that they could be removed without destroying them and in any case I would like to be able to put new ones in when they need it in normal usage. Graham Wallis? were you tracking some for me?
    So until these are found the spring stays put.
    Vintage Motor Garage sounds interesting but I'm scared to call them as they seem likely to be very expensive for the retensioning if they can do it anyway.
    Perhaps there may be eye bushes from some other car that would work and perhaps they might know so I'll gather the courage tomorrow and have a word.

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    Keep an eye on the international ebay listings, for the 403 as well. There are lots of 403's in South America and I'll bet the eye bushes are available there. I'll tell you if I see any around.

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    Quote Originally Posted by luthier View Post
    Well this is all sounding a bit depressing. Firstly I reckon it needs redoing because there's barely an inch from the bumper stops and I can feel it bottoming out. This does not in any way constitute better handling. In fact it makes me feel slightly nervous about cornering at anything more than extremely careful. Not a good way to drive from my perspective. My 403 always handled heaps better after a spring job.
    So I rang Better Springs but their leaf spring maker has retired and they don't do it now.
    I have a couple more to check out.
    As far as the eye bushes, I wasn't aware that they could be removed without destroying them and in any case I would like to be able to put new ones in when they need it in normal usage. Graham Wallis? were you tracking some for me?
    So until these are found the spring stays put.
    Vintage Motor Garage sounds interesting but I'm scared to call them as they seem likely to be very expensive for the retensioning if they can do it anyway.
    Perhaps there may be eye bushes from some other car that would work and perhaps they might know so I'll gather the courage tomorrow and have a word.
    I mentioned that some were available, might be thrown out now as no one confirmed that they wanted them.
    I've got enough so didn't buy these ones. I did ring the guy back about an engine I was to pick up but no reply so don't know what is happening at present.
    An inch sounds OK, maybe the shockers are faulty, broken or out of oil.
    You shouldn't feel it bottoming out in any situation.
    Jack the car up on the end of the spring, pull the wheel off then take out the top kingpin bolt. You can then move the shocker arm up and down and see what is happening with it.
    Graham

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    Quote Originally Posted by Russell Hall View Post
    Keep an eye on the international ebay listings, for the 403 as well. There are lots of 403's in South America and I'll bet the eye bushes are available there. I'll tell you if I see any around.
    I haven't seen any listed which is strange as a lot of other stuff is being remade.
    A bigger problem is that you cant get diff seals anymore and of course engine bearings haven't been made for many years.
    Also water pumps are NLA I've just about exhausted my supply of good used pumps and kits.

    Graham

  12. #12
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    Default bushes

    The spring eye bushes were still available at Blackwoods as they are used in agricultural machinery
    sold by length, so any bought would have to have the outer metal skin trimmed.

    You could ask Goodwins at Cessnock if they know of a recommended spring retensioner and bushes

    I had some Landbrusier springs reset by an old smithy in Orbost 25 years ago and they are still high!!

    Regardless I would go by Grahams advice on resetting 203 springs

    Your 203 did not appear too low last seen . IMHO more importantly inspect carefully that the leaves
    have not worn into the leaves below them much, if they have, thru lack of lubrication and too many million ks, I would look for another spring

    Cheers

  13. #13
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    A recent listing for con rod bearings was 203/early Skoda. Don't know if the seller had it right. We need a Spanish speaker to hunt down an Argentinian parts supplier.

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