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Thread: kishy's 1985 Country Squire

  1. #481
    The Brown Blob 87gtVIC's Avatar
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    Well....one is on the way for my Vic.
    ~David~

    My 1987 Crown Victoria Coupe: The Brown Blob
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  2. #482
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    Last night I swapped the passenger front spring for one of my ex-91 factory front springs. The springs look to be the same diameter, same number of coils, and same free height. Left and right sides are sitting the same, and I am now completely confident that the spring is properly seated in its pocket. I really don't know what the deal is with it. Maybe the extra weight of a wagon behind the rear axle has a natural leverage effect and they just want to go high in the front?

    I'll probably cut a coil on each side. Speedway springs (I have a set) ride like garbage. I want this to be a squishy couch and stock spring rate, just with less spring, is probably the best way to do that.

    Separating the upper balljoints is so much less dramatic with the 92+ stuff. No ruined boots.

    83 GM 2dr | 84 TC POTM 1/2017 & 4/2019 | 85 CS | 85 Ranger | 91 GM POTM 12/2017 | Junkyards

  3. #483
    Member BigMerc96's Avatar
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    Let us know how the spring cutting goes. My '98 sits entirely too high, it has 100% stock springs up front with stock air ride in the back, yet it seems to sit higher than every other '98-'02 GMQ. I don't know if its because its an HPP and the springs are firmer and therefore haven't sagged while every other '98-'02 has, or what its deal is. When I got it, it had that "bodies in the trunk" look, I thought maybe the RAS was tired, but inspection showed the air springs look perfect (impressive for 21 years old) and the height sensor had never been touched best as I could tell. I ended up adjusting it to its full maximum height setting and that made it at least level front to rear but its now just too tall overall. I need to deal with the original ball joints soon, so the thought of cutting a bit off the front springs while I have it apart has been on my mind. Beauty of having RAS is that I can adjust the rear ride height in about 5 minutes by loosening a single bolt and moving the sensor, and it will always be at that height no matter what.
    -Steve

    2006 Audi A6 S-Line FWD ~132k miles, stock.
    1998 Mercury Grand Marquis LS HPP ~102k miles, slowly acquiring modifications.
    1997 Lincoln Town Car Cartier ~145k miles, Ported Plenum, Gutted Airbox, Mechanical Fan Delete, Contour E-fan Retrofit, Dual exhaust, Cats ran away, KYB Gas-A-Justs, P71 front sway bar, air ride reinstalled, Blinker Mod, Projector headlight retrofit, Caddy 4-note horn retrofit, Wood rim steering wheel, rustbelt diet plan..
    1996 Mercury Grand Marquis GS 117,485mi. R.I.P. 7/14/12

  4. #484
    all the CFI are belong to me
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    Well, cutting the springs definitely achieved what I was going for. It now sits much more similar to my 91, maybe a bit lower. I removed one complete coil and that was probably a slight bit too much, but the car now rides quite a bit nicer and is raked in the correct direction rather than the hideous one. Side note: whoever decided it looked cool to make pickups be lower in the back should really re-evaluate their life choices.

    This was also the perfect amount of spring removal to make reassembly not require a spring compressor, or other methodologies...just put it in by hand.

    Death of the Aquavision:



    Spring fun:











    Compare vs:



    (no hood, however, the hood did not push the front down any more once installed)


    Also, the AMP light keeps coming on. Sometimes right away, sometimes after a period of driving. Charging voltage is healthy at 13.7-14.5 (keeping in mind the Ford manual says the regulator holds it at 14), lights do not pulse/flicker, radio and chime have no interference noise coming through. Swapped the regulator and found no change. Very odd.


    83 GM 2dr | 84 TC POTM 1/2017 & 4/2019 | 85 CS | 85 Ranger | 91 GM POTM 12/2017 | Junkyards

  5. #485
    Road Warrior Kodachrome Wolf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigMerc96 View Post
    My '98 sits entirely too high, it has 100% stock springs up front with stock air ride in the back, yet it seems to sit higher than every other '98-'02 GMQ. I don't know if its because its an HPP and the springs are firmer and therefore haven't sagged while every other '98-'02 has, or what its deal is...
    Welcome to the party. My '97 is similar where any other Aero I've seen is usually an inch or three lower than my car. I've only ever swapped out my rear springs for stock replacements because mine did start sagging back there, but the nose never has.


    @Kishy: The ride height looks good. Your rake is similar to my wagon with the cargo coils in the rear, though I think you're a bit lower in the nose. Doesn't look bad though, and is a considerable improvement over the monster truck lift those old springs were giving you. Hopefully those springs were added sometime later and that car didn't leave the factory riding around stupidly high like that when new.

    Regarding the AMP light: Possibly a intermittent connection issue between the regulator and the cluster, or is even charging steady with the light on? Never played around with a vehicle equipped with an external regulator, but having looked at wiring diagrams I've noted the similarities to internally regulated Ford setups.

    My Cars:
    -1987 Grand Marquis Colony Park LS (325K Miles) - April 2017 POTM Winner
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  6. #486
    I'm an air-conditioned gypsy gadget73's Avatar
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    honestly to me it looks low in the back

    86 Lincoln Town Car (Galactica).
    5.0 HO, CompCams XE258,Scorpion 1.72 roller rockers, 3.55 K code rear, tow package, BHPerformance ported E7 heads, Tmoss Explorer intake, 65mm throttle body, Hedman 1 5/8" headers, 2.5" dual exhaust, ASP underdrive pulley

    91 Lincoln Mark VII LSC SE, triple black (Timewarp) - poly front bushings, KYB struts and shocks, Holley SystemMax1 lower intake, SilverFox AOD valve body,

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    Quote Originally Posted by phayzer5 View Post
    I drive a Lincoln. I can't be bothered to shift like the peasants and rabble rousers

  7. #487
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    Really surprised how much that one coil affected the height. Was not expecting that at all.

    See, to me, the rear looks perfect, the front was too high, and the front is now too low. Not bothering to look up what's correct here, really doesn't matter that much in the end. I don't like that I've lost crashworthiness (bumper underride now that the front is lower) but it was not just a cosmetic issue. The front upper bump stops were completely destroyed by the control arms smushing them into the frame, just sitting at normal ride height. This is seemingly an issue that was introduced by the 92-94 arms. There was virtually no suspension extension available for going over bumps...plenty of compression if you hit the bump real hard, but no room to extend further. Now that I've given it oodles of travel it rides very smooth.

    I had played around with the positioning of the stock camber/caster adjustments to see if that would fix it, and it did not. Pushing them out to maximum positive camber corrected it the most it was able to, and even then, there was still nowhere for the arm go to go let the suspension come down any more. And of course positive camber is goofy. It will "look" even lower once it gets aligned, which should be interesting.

    The alternator is charging even when the light is on.

    83 GM 2dr | 84 TC POTM 1/2017 & 4/2019 | 85 CS | 85 Ranger | 91 GM POTM 12/2017 | Junkyards

  8. #488
    I'm an air-conditioned gypsy gadget73's Avatar
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    unplug the regulator and see if the light is still on. if it is, you've got a short somewhere in that circuit. I think that bulb is also supposed to be bypassed by a resistor. If thats open you might be getting enough draw to light the thing. Is it full bright or partial? I'd expect not quite full if its the resistor.

    86 Lincoln Town Car (Galactica).
    5.0 HO, CompCams XE258,Scorpion 1.72 roller rockers, 3.55 K code rear, tow package, BHPerformance ported E7 heads, Tmoss Explorer intake, 65mm throttle body, Hedman 1 5/8" headers, 2.5" dual exhaust, ASP underdrive pulley

    91 Lincoln Mark VII LSC SE, triple black (Timewarp) - poly front bushings, KYB struts and shocks, Holley SystemMax1 lower intake, SilverFox AOD valve body,

    1984 Lincoln Continental TurboDiesel - rolls coal

    Quote Originally Posted by phayzer5 View Post
    I drive a Lincoln. I can't be bothered to shift like the peasants and rabble rousers

  9. #489
    I post a lot... mitymerc's Avatar
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    I don'don't recall which car it was but if the light is missing the alternative won't excite.

    '10 Escape LTD. V6 AWD, K&N, Bullitt wheels.

    87 Ford LTD Crown Victoria Country Squire Station Wagon. 4.10's, Repacked Trac Loc, Boxed LCA's, Explorer Intake, 65mm T-body, 'Stang Cam, 'Stang Air tube, K&N, GT-40X Heads, 1" Spacer, 1 5/8 BBK's, 2.5" Pypes X-pipe w/high flow cats, Single Chamber Thunderbolts, B&M 'vertor, Po-lice Swaybars.

    '91 Mercury Grand Marquis Colony Park Station Wagon. K-Code, 4.10's, Repacked Trac Loc, MK VII LSC Engine, 'Stang Upper Intake, 'Stang Air Tube, K&N, 65 mm T-Body, 'Stang Headers, 'Stang Cat Pipe,'Stang Torque Convertor, 2 Chamber Thunderbolts.

  10. #490
    Member BigMerc96's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mitymerc View Post
    I don't recall which car it was but if the light is missing the alternator won't excite.
    Common arrangement. The light is on the ignition switched power circuit for the regulator. With the key on, 12v passes thru the bulb in the cluster and powers part of the regulator, when the alternator starts charging it sends voltage back across that same wire, now the bulb has 12v on both sides of it and it therefore no longer lights. The light should be on any time the cluster has power and the alternator's output is lower than the battery's voltage such as with the key on and engine off. Most clusters (but not all, especially older ones) have a resistor in them along with the bulb so that the circuit remains complete and alternator should still charge if the bulb is burned out/missing.
    -Steve

    2006 Audi A6 S-Line FWD ~132k miles, stock.
    1998 Mercury Grand Marquis LS HPP ~102k miles, slowly acquiring modifications.
    1997 Lincoln Town Car Cartier ~145k miles, Ported Plenum, Gutted Airbox, Mechanical Fan Delete, Contour E-fan Retrofit, Dual exhaust, Cats ran away, KYB Gas-A-Justs, P71 front sway bar, air ride reinstalled, Blinker Mod, Projector headlight retrofit, Caddy 4-note horn retrofit, Wood rim steering wheel, rustbelt diet plan..
    1996 Mercury Grand Marquis GS 117,485mi. R.I.P. 7/14/12

  11. #491
    I post a lot... mitymerc's Avatar
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    I had the cluster out & had to drive it... oops!

    '10 Escape LTD. V6 AWD, K&N, Bullitt wheels.

    87 Ford LTD Crown Victoria Country Squire Station Wagon. 4.10's, Repacked Trac Loc, Boxed LCA's, Explorer Intake, 65mm T-body, 'Stang Cam, 'Stang Air tube, K&N, GT-40X Heads, 1" Spacer, 1 5/8 BBK's, 2.5" Pypes X-pipe w/high flow cats, Single Chamber Thunderbolts, B&M 'vertor, Po-lice Swaybars.

    '91 Mercury Grand Marquis Colony Park Station Wagon. K-Code, 4.10's, Repacked Trac Loc, MK VII LSC Engine, 'Stang Upper Intake, 'Stang Air Tube, K&N, 65 mm T-Body, 'Stang Headers, 'Stang Cat Pipe,'Stang Torque Convertor, 2 Chamber Thunderbolts.

  12. #492
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    I'm leaning towards a short, but it's weird. Shut the car off, start it again, the light sometimes reverses whatever its previous status was. No real consistency.

    It is at full brightness when it is on. It has been seen flashing (I say that to differentiate it from flickering - on/off, at random, but at either 0 or 100% brightness, nothing in between).

    Drove it to Detroit yesterday, junkyarded with a friend in it. Car did well. The extreme toe-in became very apparent while driving it at higher speeds so I toed it out a bit and that helped a great deal. It will get aligned soon, I just have to decide if I'm happy with the springs first. The ride is right, but I'm thinking of maybe trying half a coil off my old 91 springs and seeing how it sits on those. Once it's aligned, there is no more spring swapping. Spring height changes alignment.

    On the bright side, of course, this confirms that anyone who wants the height of the Speedway springs, but wants to preserve ride quality and not spend any money, can just cut a coil...I need to find someone to offload those Speedway springs to. I will never install them in another vehicle. I don't hate myself enough to do that again.



    Another benefit to how it is now: I don't have to unseize the headlight adjusters. The sky-high headlights are now at the right height.

    83 GM 2dr | 84 TC POTM 1/2017 & 4/2019 | 85 CS | 85 Ranger | 91 GM POTM 12/2017 | Junkyards

  13. #493
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    Okay, so the rake is much more apparent in that picture than the above ones.

    Are you shooting for factory ride height or raked stance? I'm only asking since if you dropped the rear, that wouldn't look too bad for leveling, otherwise it looks like the nose needs to come up ~1-2" to get it leveled up there.

    Otherwise, throw some meaty tires back there and make it look like it means business.

    My Cars:
    -1987 Grand Marquis Colony Park LS (325K Miles) - April 2017 POTM Winner
    -1989 Sable LS Wagon (88,710 Miles) - Sold
    -1997 Grand Marquis LS (210K Miles) - The Daily Workhorse & March 2015 + January 2019 POTM Winner

  14. #494
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kodachrome Wolf View Post
    Okay, so the rake is much more apparent in that picture than the above ones.

    Are you shooting for factory ride height or raked stance? I'm only asking since if you dropped the rear, that wouldn't look too bad for leveling, otherwise it looks like the nose needs to come up ~1-2" to get it leveled up there.

    Otherwise, throw some meaty tires back there and make it look like it means business.
    So...I don't know what I'm aiming for.

    Refer to this:



    Observe the height of the brightwork along the rocker panel, relative to the turbine centre caps, then compare this same reference point on the wagon. Useless trivia, those are in fact the same turbines that just went on the wagon, but with the Ford caps.

    The springs that were in that car at the time that photo was taken, were later removed.

    I then put those springs into this wagon and it did not change the height, it was still as pictured with the crazy high front end, and destroying the upper bump stops.

    Then I cut one coil each from the springs that came in the wagon, and we got where I am now.

    I cannot account for any reason why this car should be so seemingly light up front. No AC and no smog pump, but the weight of those items just isn't enough to do it. Plus the 91 has an aluminum hood and the wagon has a steel one. The wagon just does not want to settle on stock height springs, it wants to stay stupid tall. Until I cut a coil, of course

    That's why I'm thinking maybe cut half a coil off the old 91 springs, and maybe that'll get me about right. I do not want to bring the rear of the wagon down and I do not want it fully level. Very mild rake is probably a reasonable goal.

    83 GM 2dr | 84 TC POTM 1/2017 & 4/2019 | 85 CS | 85 Ranger | 91 GM POTM 12/2017 | Junkyards

  15. #495
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    Back in the early 90's I had a straight 6, 4spd '81 Capri. I wanted it to handle like my Stang so I put 5.0 swaybars on it, then decided to put 5.0 Convertible springs on it. It sat way too high. Rule of thumb @ that time was cutting 1 coil would lower a 5 oh car 1". My thought process was that a 6 must be lighter, I'll remove 1.5 coils. So I spent quality time with my wife and a hack saw, several packs of blades and a front springs in a 5 gal bucket. It sat so low in the front that the K member was about an inch and a half off the ground. Turns out weight of the 3.3 L is similar to that of the 5.0. Needless to say, I acquired another set and only took off 1 coil LOL.
    Last edited by mitymerc; 08-11-2019 at 08:52 PM. Reason: Speeling

    '10 Escape LTD. V6 AWD, K&N, Bullitt wheels.

    87 Ford LTD Crown Victoria Country Squire Station Wagon. 4.10's, Repacked Trac Loc, Boxed LCA's, Explorer Intake, 65mm T-body, 'Stang Cam, 'Stang Air tube, K&N, GT-40X Heads, 1" Spacer, 1 5/8 BBK's, 2.5" Pypes X-pipe w/high flow cats, Single Chamber Thunderbolts, B&M 'vertor, Po-lice Swaybars.

    '91 Mercury Grand Marquis Colony Park Station Wagon. K-Code, 4.10's, Repacked Trac Loc, MK VII LSC Engine, 'Stang Upper Intake, 'Stang Air Tube, K&N, 65 mm T-Body, 'Stang Headers, 'Stang Cat Pipe,'Stang Torque Convertor, 2 Chamber Thunderbolts.

  16. #496
    GMN Regular DerekTheGreat's Avatar
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    You came to Detroit and didn't pay me? Pssh.

    Looks better than it did, ride height wise. I too, hate the lower rear truck thing look. I've heard that is called the Nashville squat or something. Looks stupid to me, always has. There is nothing more hoopty than a higher front than rear.
    1985 LTD Crown Victoria - SOLD
    1988 Town Car Signature - Current Party Barge

  17. #497
    I'm an air-conditioned gypsy gadget73's Avatar
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    the ride height mesurements are in the factory manual somewhere towards the back. I forget the measurement point, possibly off the bottom of the bumper bracket, but that will tell you if Ford thinks its too low or not. The front does look low, but I'm not entirely sure I think the back end looks high enough either.

    ass dragging is dumb unless the thing is loaded. That was a thing in the 50s before the ass end had to be pointed way up like in the 70s. I like level or slightly tail-up.

    86 Lincoln Town Car (Galactica).
    5.0 HO, CompCams XE258,Scorpion 1.72 roller rockers, 3.55 K code rear, tow package, BHPerformance ported E7 heads, Tmoss Explorer intake, 65mm throttle body, Hedman 1 5/8" headers, 2.5" dual exhaust, ASP underdrive pulley

    91 Lincoln Mark VII LSC SE, triple black (Timewarp) - poly front bushings, KYB struts and shocks, Holley SystemMax1 lower intake, SilverFox AOD valve body,

    1984 Lincoln Continental TurboDiesel - rolls coal

    Quote Originally Posted by phayzer5 View Post
    I drive a Lincoln. I can't be bothered to shift like the peasants and rabble rousers

  18. #498
    I post a lot... mitymerc's Avatar
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    Still here...

    '10 Escape LTD. V6 AWD, K&N, Bullitt wheels.

    87 Ford LTD Crown Victoria Country Squire Station Wagon. 4.10's, Repacked Trac Loc, Boxed LCA's, Explorer Intake, 65mm T-body, 'Stang Cam, 'Stang Air tube, K&N, GT-40X Heads, 1" Spacer, 1 5/8 BBK's, 2.5" Pypes X-pipe w/high flow cats, Single Chamber Thunderbolts, B&M 'vertor, Po-lice Swaybars.

    '91 Mercury Grand Marquis Colony Park Station Wagon. K-Code, 4.10's, Repacked Trac Loc, MK VII LSC Engine, 'Stang Upper Intake, 'Stang Air Tube, K&N, 65 mm T-Body, 'Stang Headers, 'Stang Cat Pipe,'Stang Torque Convertor, 2 Chamber Thunderbolts.

  19. #499
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    Quote Originally Posted by kishy View Post
    I have also wondered if it might be an extremely early St Thomas car, being built in Feb 85. Maybe something along the lines of a "production prototype" demonstrating STAP performance to Ford execs...is that too far fetched?

    If anyone happens to know what the first VIN issued at STAP was, that would be super handy. I bet Marti's data could provide that, but since everything needs a VIN to be checked against, I'm not sure they can look at it backwards like that.
    Ford started building Panthers at St. Thomas in October 1983. There was a little over a year and a half of production overlap between there and St. Louis. (If you're curious, my car was built in January '85 at St. Thomas.)
    1985 LTD Crown Victoria
    1977 Oldsmobile Cutlass Supreme
    1992 F-150 XLT 4x4, 351W

    Past: 1995 Crown Victoria Police Interceptor

  20. #500
    all the CFI are belong to me
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stocker View Post
    Ford started building Panthers at St. Thomas in October 1983. There was a little over a year and a half of production overlap between there and St. Louis. (If you're curious, my car was built in January '85 at St. Thomas.)
    This goes contrary to all information I've seen to this point, which is that model year 85 were the first cars built in St. Thomas, and that model year 85 is the only year where cars were built in both plants in parallel, and not for the entire model year.

    Not saying you're wrong, because I dunno, but I haven't seen that anywhere before.

    83 GM 2dr | 84 TC POTM 1/2017 & 4/2019 | 85 CS | 85 Ranger | 91 GM POTM 12/2017 | Junkyards

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