Controlled technique to drop the cradle a lot

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Made me a cradle lowering kit.

I cut up a 1 meter length of 14mmx2.0 allthread from McMaster into 4 lengths of 10" each. I used an old Workmate to hold the rods and a battery powered saw. I ground the ends real nice. I chose the lowest strength steel because these are only used as a temporary tool.I I sourced the nuts and washers locally to save overall cost.
Took under an hour.

I plan to use these to lower the cradle enough to get the front diff insert bolts installed. Another benefit is that the cradle will raise with each bolt hole lined up when replacing the blue bolts.

20220609_094632.jpg


20220606_110438.jpg

 
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Here are some notes and pics from this process.

The long threaded rods worked out very well. I was never concerned about losing alignment of the 4 subframe holes, or about the risk of losing control no matter how much I wanted to lower the subframe. Nothing ever hung up, even with the alignment sleeves left in.

If you do this technique, I suggest adding another nut and large/thick washer above the 2 jamb nuts. This will allow the actual drop height to be adjusted and set to any specific elevation.

We did this on a drive-on lift. It had a movable cross tray that we positioned under the rear axle. We had 2 bladder jacks and used them to jack at the rear and position jack stands in order to remove the rear wheels.

20220610_141531.jpg


Then we used one of the bladder jacks to lower or raise the diff. We used some lumber under the bladder jack to get extra height.

20220610_144228.jpg


This photo shows the gap above the subframe, and all the extra height available (behind the blue sway bar).

20220610_153858.jpg



We ran into some challenges, and the project took a long time. For one, the exhaust prevented lowering the subframe sufficiently to get the front left diff insert installed. So we removed the exhaust, propping up the mufflers so as not to have to disconnect the active valves.

20220610_144202.jpg


Next the shocks prevented lowering even further, so we unbolted them at the top mounts. We had to unbolt some brackets for the brake lines so as not to strain them. We also pulled out a clip securing a harness above the subframe so as not to strain that.

There were some other Catch-22 situations, but I won't detail those. Fortunately there were no errors or symptoms on the drive home.
 
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TeeLew

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We ran into some challenges, and the project took a long time. For one, the exhaust prevented lowering the subframe sufficiently to get the front left diff insert installed. So we removed the exhaust, propping up the mufflers so as not to have to disconnect the active valves.
It's one connector per side. Go ahead and disconnect and get stuff like that out of your way. It only takes a bump, your propped up mufflers fall and it breaks the connector. This means you get to buy the jumper harness from the car harness to the muffler.
 

 
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