Vanagon – new rear spring perches

The van has been off the road last two months. Had to do some transmission leak sealing ( selector shaft seal) , clutch repair, and engine cooling line and exhaust work. Maybe I’ll post something on that business later. But while I was doing all that I noticed that my right rear spring perch was separating from trailing arm and the bump stop was also breaking off.

So I decided to make new ones. The steel part is water jet cut 1/8” mild steel, the bump stop was turned down 2” mystery steel ( I didn’t have any pipe or tube to suit. I did bore out the solid a bit though). Bump stop welded to plate on back side, recessed 1/6” in the hole for fusion weld ( no added filler). Yeah, I was a bit hot on the weld. I promise to try better next time.

The larger holes in the plate are for plug welds to trailing arm , if I choose to do that. The smaller holes are to be, or maybe not, tapped for M6 screws ( right thru trailing arm to). The screws to hold down the plastic part. I’m not sure if that really needed though.

Plastic part made from un virgin polyethylene left over from another job. This recycled poly machines poorly. Fuzzy cuts even with sharp cutters.

Made a recess for the spring pigtail. That seemed to work out ok ( 1/8” ball nosed endmill , scallop tool path).

Van is back on the road now so I’ll get the bad spring perch replaced and decide at the time if I’ll replace the other side too. Pics show old spare spring in test fit.

Here’s a pic of a model of the pad. I changed it slightly, slightly larger spring groove and led it further around

  1. #1 by edbee on August 9, 2021 - 2:12 pm

    Cool! Nice work! Now I know where to go for custom machining!
    You wouldn’t happen to have a 10mm hand reamer would you? The speedo shaft from the syncro is tight in the aluminum housing that goes in the side of the front diff.

    • #2 by albell on August 9, 2021 - 2:22 pm

      Hi Ed,

      I don’t have that size hand reamer at home, I’ll check what we have a work. Will be machine reamer but that don’t matter.

      The Speedo insert measures up as 10mm? Any burrs on bore? Any chance you measured the bore accurately ? ( not being a dick with last question, just wondering if you have tools for good measurement)



      • #3 by edbee on August 10, 2021 - 1:08 pm

        Thanks Ab,

        I was in a rush getting ready for a trip and didn’t measure anything yet. The speedo shaft from the westy was so tight in the aluminum housing that it caused the new bronze gear I had installed a couple of years ago ( to spin on the steel shaft (the loctite/press fit holding gear to shaft let go) so I pulled the shaft and aluminum housing from the DOKA (project in waiting) and both shafts spin easily in the aluminum housing from the DOKA and both shafts stick in one end of the aluminum housing from the westy so seems like that one end of the westy aluminum housing is the culprit. I do have tools to measure small bores so I can/will check things out in more detail soon.

        Good news is the westy speedo and odometer worked perfectly for the recent trip of just under 2000 km (with the shaft and housing from the DOKA front diff temporarily installed).

      • #4 by albell on August 10, 2021 - 7:09 pm

        Pmail me Ed and we can talk


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: