Yep, I had a fun time of it last night, sticking the axles onto the chassis.
For the benifit of those who haven't done the job before, its worth mentioning the easiest order of events. The proccedings are more or less the same for the front and back axle.
1) Fit the spring shackle plate to the chassis (I did this when the chassis was still on its back after all the welding). Do not tighten fully.
2) Roll the axle under the chassis.
3) Drop the chassis until the main rails are resting on the axle.
4) Fit the rear eye of the springs into the shackle plates.
5) Fit the front eye of the springs into the chassis mounting
6) Jack or crane the chassis up until the axle is just off the floor, and sat on the springs.
7) Manhandle the axle until it is sat on the mounting pegs. If it doesn't want to drop down, use a ratchet strap to pull the springs together, or a hi-lift jack to push them apart. If its really close, just sit the axle on-top, and smack the spring with a lump hammer in the right direction, and everything will probably drop into place. (It did for me last night). If you get a really stubbon one that won't fit, check that the peg on the spring isn't too big for the hole in the axle - this is a known fault with some pattern springs.
8) Fit the U bolts and bottom plate, and tighten fully. (Incidentally, it is bad practice to re-use old U bolts, as they are meant to stretch slightly as you tighten them - not that we haven't all done it mind you).
9) Lower the chassis until its sat on its wheels, then fully tighten all the springs shackle bolts.
I did the rear axle in about an hour, and the front in about an hour and a half, all working solo... how's that for a speed rebuild.
Todays big project is to try and get the engine and box in. I'm off shortly into Stockport, for a set of engine mounts, a clutch pressure plate, and a few other little bits and peices. I've got to sort out which gearbox I'm useing first however, which may be a fun game in its own right - wish me luck...
As I type
10 years ago