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Cutting Coils/Springs: Do's & Dont


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I dont know if there is already a thread to this. If there is then, pls delete this. Thnks


Because of older vehicles we have there arent too many options on the suspension for stance or aero dynamic purposes, unless of course you own a 510 (hehehe). Some of us have time & knowledge how to fabricate our own suspensions but to the rest of us..... opt out to a cheaper, if not the only way to do it. By cutting or heating coil springs.


Here is what you need to know when cutting your springs or heating them up.




I will just copy & paste them in case the original link stopped working in the future.

Cutting Coil Springs


Every now and then the question comes up and customers want to know, "Can we cut coil springs to lower a vehicle?"

Our answer is, "The design of the end of the spring determines if it can be safely cut. If it has the right end, it is OK to cut it."

Coil springs have 3 basic type of ends -

  • Tangential- where the end of the coil continues to twist off into space. A spring with a tangential end would fall over if you tried to stand it on its end.

  • Square - the last coil bends back down to touch the coil below it. This style end allows the spring to stand up when placed on this end.

  • Pigtail - the last coil of the spring is the square type but has a much smaller diameter than the coils in the body of the spring.



The type of ends a coil spring has is determined by how the springs are mounted in the suspension. A coil spring can have 2 of the same ends or it can have 2 different ends.

The only Coil Spring Ends that can be safely cut are Tangential Ends.

Because Square ends and Pigtail ends are designed to make full contact with their mounting points, they would have to be re-shaped after they were cut. But in order to re-shape them the steel would have to be heated and heat is a spring's worst enemy.

So, Coil springs with Square or Pigtail ends can not be safely cut.

So how are Tangential Coil Spring Ends cut?

Using a torch is a great big No, No. Remember heat is a springs worst enemy. The reason is it only takes 400 degrees F to start annealing spring steel. Anneal means the steel begin's to soften and a soft spring can not hold up your vehicle. You, the spring owner, can not do anything to make a soft spring hard again. A heated spring is a ruined spring.

A hacksaw or cutoff wheel is the best way to cut a Coil Spring.

OK, you have Tangential End springs, a hacksaw, and are wearing safety goggles. Now how much do you want to cut off?

The first thing you need to know is that cutting a coil spring will not only lower the vehicle, but it will also stiffen the spring making the ride and handling a bit firmer. But this is a good thing because lowering a vehicle reduces the amount of suspension travel. A stiffer spring will help reduce bottoming out.

A safe place to start is by measuring how much you want to lower the vehicle. Then cut 1/2 that measurement off the length of the springs and reinstall them. Then take her for a drive, and drive it like you stole it to get the springs well worked and seated properly.

Now check your ride height. If she's still too high, repeat step 1 until you get the look you want.

Remember, you can always take more off, but you can never make them longer.

What if you have Square or Pigtail Ends?

Fear not, for chances are we have other Square or Pigtailed end springs already designed to give you the lowered ride you seek.

How far can a coil sprung vehicle be lowered?

We limit the amount of lowering to 2 Inches maximum. Why you ask? Because as a vehicle is lowered, the amount of travel left in the suspension before there is a jounce, metal to metal contact, condition is reduced also. Too much lowering can cause other parts of the vehicle to hit each other, and this would be a bad thing. So we say, and only do 2 Inches so this problem does not occur.



And a final bit of advice: Don't go perpetuating the old myth of touching a torch to them until she sinks to where you want her.

You'll end up not only with springs that are about as effective as marshmallows, they will look like these.




So, i hope this helps.

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Springs on my cressida are cut ... 1" drop from stock looks and handles loads better.


Cutting same 1" drop on my ZX plus new bushings and sway bars ... should hold out nicely until can afford coilover suspension !


Cutting springs is fine to get rid of crap factory ride height if your roads are smooth enough for lowered vehicles.

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i used to be against cutting & heating up springs. I did it when i was in high school & i regretted it. Didnt know how to do it right.

As long as you dont cut too much then it should be fine.

The original owner of my 610 cut about 3 coils on the rear & its so low that it rides like crap. Had he only cut about 1.5" then it wouldve been ok.

i just purchased me a D50 front springs to go on my rear. I will be cutting about a coil to a coil & half to that & combine it w/ a shorter shock aborber to better my suspension.

My front was also cut but not too much.

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Your best option is not to cut your springs. That is the worst option


Lets say you have a stock 710 front spring with about 100 pound spring rate. You want to lower your ride height but a firmer ride is essential not only for handling but to limit suspension travel on a lower vehicle with less road clearance. So you can go out with your wallet and buy a spring that lowers your ride and has a 50% higher spring rate for $70-$100 each?? (I have no idea what a custom spring is worth so fill in the amount) Or calculate your spring rate and find that by trimming one coil a 150 pound spring rate is achieved and the car is now lower. So what's the difference between a 150 pound per inch custom bought spring and a 150 pound per inch stock spring? It would appear to me that paying for a custom spring is the worst option.

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  • 1 month later...

i bought some old mercedes 300D front springs to use on my rear shocks. they are much firmer and ive read i need to cut 2-4 coils to achieve my ride hieght i want, the thing is I'm going to be using these on some old tokico blue shocks. whats the cons to having a stiff rear spring and a worn out shock in the rear??

will i bounce on the freeway??

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[Datzenmike] So what's the difference between a 150 pound per inch custom bought spring and a 150 pound per inch stock spring? It would appear to me that paying for a custom spring is the worst option.


Exactly what Mike said.


It is interesting to see an article like that published by a spring manufacturer saying it is ok to cut certain springs.


I have cut several sets of spring in the past. I have yet to have any of those vehicles ride worse than before. But i have never removed more than one full coil from any one spring. Mild lowering for appearance purposes.

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Your best option is not to cut your springs. That is the worst option

Really? Heat-until-droop is a better option than carefully cutting a small portion of the springs?



a firmer ride is essential not only for handling but to limit suspension travel
Agreed, but firmer springs don't limit suspension travel. They just make it less likely to bottom out.
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I would cut a spring long before i would ever install a set of split collars.


Nothing wrong with split collars. No welding needed. They, (a 2" one) have a rating of 6,000 pounds. That's 3 510s on each strut!!!! That's 12,000 pounds on the front. You can remove and use on another set of struts if you want. You can adjust the ride height without the need for threaded coil over $leeve$. Seems to me the only reason for ever using coil overs is to show everybody you could afford it.


Usually two things are desired. The car lower for aerodynamics, a lower center of gravity for handling, and sometimes just for looks. Spring cutting (if you are cautious and don't go overboard) is almost exactly the answer. The spring is shortened and the car sits lower and the spring becomes stiffer and resists bottoming out and reduces side roll for better handling. Yes, yes, if you want really stiff then an after market spring is needed for sure. Spring cutting is a fine and viable low cost option for many car owners who want a little better ride handling and looks.

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