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1965 2door HT Helena, GA 31037
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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
OK, here I am once again. I got out my nice package of shock tower bolts and slid them into the slots so I could see how well they worked and found they do not work at all. The shanks are way to long and the tower will not even come close to sitting down flush to the top of the skirt where the slots are located because the shank holds it off.

I did a search back to 2006 and only found that some are using regular 5/16" bolts with ground down heads along with a ground down open-ended wrench to hold the bolt in place while installing them. Not sure if they meant there was access from underneath or from the top but that did not sound like an easy process.

I also found a thread where one guy said he ground a slot into the top of the original bolts so he could insert a screw driver to hold the bolt while he was tightening the nut.

I hate to keep bothering all of you but you are my knowledge books. So, what did you guys do?
 

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Tower bolts

Go to yer hardware store and get 3/4" carriage bolts and call it good. One of the aftermarket people wanted 21.00 shipped with no nuts or anything. A whole 2.00 bucks worth of bolts. good luck... T.
 

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1965 2door HT Helena, GA 31037
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Discussion Starter #3
I already had some small carriage bolts but their shanks were to large also. I've also considered drilling the tower holes out so the shanks will go up into the tower and then putting a washer on top of the hole to allow the nut to pull the shank up higher. Makes me wander what the heck was GM thinking when they built this setup.
 

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1969 Nova . . 2dr . . Chino Valley,Az USA
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I can Help out ----------------------


go BUY a 3rd Gen.


may-be 'highlight the area you are talking about --- the left-hand bolt
.... "shank or square shoulder area" .

Is the right side bolt - original - ?

................. jim
 

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I just had the fun of removing my shock towers. I had to use a sawsall to cut off 6 of 8 bolts cause they were rusted and just spun in the slot. The original one you have pictured has a square shank about the same height as the thickness of the skirt sheet metal. The fit is so loose in the slot that the bolts spin easily. I think I will just use carriage bolts and washers like someone else suggested.
 

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65 Super Sport
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OK, here I am once again. I got out my nice package of shock tower bolts and slid them into the slots so I could see how well they worked and found they do not work at all. The shanks are way to long and the tower will not even come close to sitting down flush to the top of the skirt where the slots are located because the shank holds it off.

I did a search back to 2006 and only found that some are using regular 5/16" bolts with ground down heads along with a ground down open-ended wrench to hold the bolt in place while installing them. Not sure if they meant there was access from underneath or from the top but that did not sound like an easy process.

I also found a thread where one guy said he ground a slot into the top of the original bolts so he could insert a screw driver to hold the bolt while he was tightening the nut.

I hate to keep bothering all of you but you are my knowledge books. So, what did you guys do?
Addendum to my prior post:
I compared the old bolts I removed to the new bolts I used, they are identical to your photo and they are longer as you stated. I didn't notice that.
After looking at the old bolts I see what you are saying.
 

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1965 2door HT Helena, GA 31037
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Discussion Starter #12 (Edited)
I’m going to try and explain what I did the best way I can. First reference the previous photos of the spring tower bolts, both new and originals. As you see the original bolt has a very short shank on it while the repop bolt has a tall shank. In order to make the repop bolts work the shank has to be ground down or compensated for. I chose both.

I had bought a Dremel diamond grinding kit from ebay which contains a lot of shafts which are tipped with diamond chips. These work very well at grinding mild steel. What I did was used one that is the same 1/8” diameter all the way down the shaft to where the diamond chips are located. I ground the tops of the bolt shanks down about 1/8” thus making the shanks on the repops shorter. See the first photo. I know I took a finished photo of the results but somehow it got deleted from my photo file. That seems to be happening more and more to me lately.

Moving on…. I decided that I wanted to install a washer on each bolt in order to make more contact area between the bolt head, material along the skirt slot, washer and the shock tower. I ground down the washers so they wouldn’t stick out from under the shock tower and for a more pleasing appearance. See the second photo. I then painted each washer before installing them. I measured the stack before I installed the painted shock tower and then removed it to observe that the shank did not come all the way up to the underside of the shock tower holes thus assuring that when I tightened the nuts it would be a solid and tight stack. I know this sounds like a lot of trouble but when I installed the towers, I didn’t want to have to ever take them back off.

So, lets move on to what I found out about my Nova. Looking at the ’65 Assembly Manual, on page 29 (Spring & Shock Absorber) note 9 reads: 3790339- Tower Asm - Must be installed with manufacturers identification outboard. Well, my Nova shock towers were not installed that way. See photo 3. This is a photo of my car back in 2007 and as you can see the towers were mounted with the short sides inboard and now for something confusing. One of my towers had a manufacturer mark on the short side and the other tower has a mark on the long side. So much for what the manual says. I put a small piece of post-it over the marks so you can see what I am talking about. See photo 4.

The other photos also show a difference in the distance between the holes. One side had the distance center to center being 2 5/8” and the other side being 2 3/4”. When I did a trial fit of the towers, I found they would only go on one way and that was with the short sides inboard. This was because there was a difference on each side in the length between those holes. See the other photos. They would only go back on with the short side inboard but one manufacturing mark is inboard and one was outboard due to the manufacturing differences of the towers.

So, to finish. I installed my shocks to the bottom spring absorbers, installed the towers and all is well now. The shocks stand straight up inside the springs and the towers are mounted solid to the tops of each skirt. I have to believe that since my car cowl tag shows it being built (07E), the last week of July 1965, it had some slight design changes and left-over parts installed. Who knows what they do on an assembly line when the production of a car is winding down?
 

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getting the shock tower bolts off

I have good luck with driving a big flat bladed screw driver under the bolt.It keeps it from spinning some what. Also a little heat on the nut will help.You only have to get 3 off,as you can hit the tower from the back side and it will slide out when you are down to one to loosen.:yes:
 

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1965 2door HT Helena, GA 31037
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Discussion Starter #14
The old screw driver trick is what I used to get mine off but it still wasn't easy. What I did was cut some grooves long ways along the end with a Dremel cut off wheel on an old big screwdriver. That way when I drove the screwdriver under the head it cut grooves as it went. Heat, penetrating oil and some choice words did the trick but never want to do that again. Oh, and I put just a little anti-cease on the threads when I installed my new bolts. I forgot to mention that in my last post.
 
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