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I just successfully swapped in a 5.3ls into my 72 nova and it is off the lift and running! Now it's time to address the suspension. As discussed in my previous post RE: suspension questions, my 72 nova had a 396 bbc sitting on the original 6cyl springs/shocks. Once she stood on the ground (with the 5.3) the front springs compressed within about 3/4" from the rubber stopper thing at the bottom of the lower control arm or fram or wherever that this is mounted (yeah I'm a noob). The front suspension is all stock but was "rebuilt" with new bushings (poly), ball joints, etc.

What I did notice though is that there is a nasty negative camber angle on the front tires (it was like this with the bbc I just wasn't educated enough at the time to know it was a problem). If I was tech savy I'd upload a picture, but suffice it to say you can see with your naked eye how negative it is.

QUESTIONS:
Is this negative camber caused by the worn out springs/shocks? If so, presumably once I install new springs/shocks it should be able to be adjusted to the proper camber angle? If this isn't the springs/shocks what could it be? :turn:

Thanks in advance to all who reply:yes:
 

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Discussion Starter #2
Also, the tires that were on the front before the swap were changed because they were worn down completely on the inner most part of the front tires. Why did this wear occur, camber and toe angle? Do I need a camber kit? Any help is greatly appreciated? :yes:
 

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Cave, you can typically remove the neg camber by removing some shims on the upper control arms, (one front and one back at a time). This moves the upper ball joint outward. This will also reduce caster which is not necessarily a good thing.
If you get to 0 shims and you still have negative camber you will need to look into new parts
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Cave, you can typically remove the neg camber by removing some shims on the upper control arms, (one front and one back at a time). This moves the upper ball joint outward. This will also reduce caster which is not necessarily a good thing.
If you get to 0 shims and you still have negative camber you will need to look into new parts
Thanks Alf (Gordon Shumway?)! Have the seriously sagging springs caused the negative camber, or contributed materially to it? Will I have less camber to correct if put in stock springs? I originally wanted to lower the car, but the oil pan on the ls is so low to the ground, at least for now, it's going to have to stay at stock height.
 

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Too much Neg. Camber

I just successfully swapped in a 5.3ls into my 72 nova and it is off the lift and running! Now it's time to address the suspension. As discussed in my previous post RE: suspension questions, my 72 nova had a 396 bbc sitting on the original 6cyl springs/shocks. Once she stood on the ground (with the 5.3) the front springs compressed within about 3/4" from the rubber stopper thing at the bottom of the lower control arm or fram or wherever that this is mounted (yeah I'm a noob). The front suspension is all stock but was "rebuilt" with new bushings (poly), ball joints, etc.

What I did notice though is that there is a nasty negative camber angle on the front tires (it was like this with the bbc I just wasn't educated enough at the time to know it was a problem). If I was tech savy I'd upload a picture, but suffice it to say you can see with your naked eye how negative it is.

QUESTIONS:
Is this negative camber caused by the worn out springs/shocks? If so, presumably once I install new springs/shocks it should be able to be adjusted to the proper camber angle? If this isn't the springs/shocks what could it be? :turn:

Thanks in advance to all who reply:yes:

I would suggest putting heavier springs in simply to prevent bottoming out the rubber snubber & helping ride height. That said,raising the front with springs will give you more negative camber. Wearing the front tires on the inside is typically too much negative camber. Replace the springs & remove shims as stated earlier evenly.
The best thing to do is have a shop do the alignment & talk to the guy doing the job & tell him your concerns. I always would wrather speak with the customer than the service advisor when i did this for a living.
My 73 nova is out of spec. currently on Caster & the only way for me to get enough is new tubular control arms. It drives nicely & doesn't pull either way so i don't care.
One last thing--the more you lower the front without lowering the rear---the more caster goes negative. Hope this helps.
 

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I had similar issue, car sat way to low with 6 cylinder springs.

I did a bunch of research that may help you.
Start at post # 86.

https://www.stevesnovasite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=634449&page=6

I agree with others: get the right springs in and then see about your camber/ alignment.

I opted to go tubular as my control arm bushing holes were bad, once I got the correct springs in my alignment was spot on.
I may have another set of v-8 springs Ill check, if I do and you want them just pay the ride Ill ship em to ya.
 
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