Automotive door sealing technology has improved dramatically from the early days when rain water came in from all angles. By 1969 GM changed the outer seal strip that wipes the glass clear on those damp mornings to do a good job of keeping water out of the door. In turn it kept water off of the door internals and off the backside of the fiber door panels. By 1984 the door outside seal strip was an integral part of door glass sealing. The downside was they were the most exposed seal strips to date subjecting them to the effects of UV deterioration much quicker than previous year Corvettes. You can help keep them around longer with an application of rubber protectant to replace the rubber solvent compounds removed after each wash job. Products like Adams V.R.T. Vinyl Rubber and Tire Dressing from Corvette Central P/N 106824 will keep your outside seal strips looking good for many years. This dressing brings back that new look without that greasy oily slick look, you can also touch it without fear of it coming off on your hands or clothes.
The Other Way Of Stopping Wilwood C1 Front Disc Brakes
By Jay Heath
Wilwood front disc brakes help turn our fishtailing ’58 into a decelerating dynamo
As recent auction results make clear, ’53-’62 Corvettes continue to rank among the most desirable U.S.-built vehicles in the collector-car marketplace. Credit the car’s historical significance and timeless good looks, traits blissfully undiminished by the inexorable forward marches of time and automotive technology.
1997-2013 Rear Anti-roll / Sway Bar Link Replacement
By Chris Petris
When we had a chance to look under the first C5 in 1997 it was hard to believe a performance vehicle would have a plastic anti-roll (sway bar) link. To make things difficult lock nuts were used to hold the links stud into the control arms. That meant when someone removed the end link chances are they would rip the joints seal because they did not hold onto the stud during removal. The original plastic sway bar end links flexed under hard cornering making the anti-roll bar less beneficial. Of course a hard driving Corvette owner might break one or more on a track day. By 2002 GM finally dropped the plastic pieces replacing them with an aluminum anti-roll bar end link. One of the few things that did occur positive is the same end link is used from 1997-2013 so you can easily find and replace the weak original 1997-2001 links. If someone was not being careful and tore the end link seal during suspension service you may need to replace one or more on your 2002-2013 Corvette.
Corvette Central has the anti-roll bar end link you need in stock form or heavy-duty performance Heim joint style end links. The installation is simple and does not require much time or many tools to complete. We often replace the end links when replacing shocks making a simple job even easier. The most important thing to remember when replacing the end links; the wheels should be hanging free on the front or rear. If one wheel is hanging free and the other wheel is loaded the end link will also be loaded making it difficult to remove and possibly dangerous. This is not something you can do by jacking up one side of the Corvette at a time; it must be done with the front or rear jacked up. The following photos will show you how it’s done.
An 18mm wrench is used to turn the nut while a T40 Torx bit holds the stud. Of course you can spin the stud on the old pieces for removal.
1997-2013 Shock Absorber Replacement
By Chris Petris
Shock absorbers are considered a consumable product with a limited lifespan here’s why…
The C5 Corvette shock absorbers and C6 Corvette shock absorbers are both Mono-tube design. Mono-tube shock absorbers construction begins with a single cylinder (tube) filled with hydraulic fluid. Another piston is used to separate the gas charge from the oil charge. Together the hydraulic oil and high pressure gas with proper valving dampen suspension oscillations. The rod that protrudes out of the cylinder is connected to a piston with seals to keep fluid in check. Another seal is used at the end of the cylinder where the connecting rod comes out to keep the fluid and gasses in while trying to keep debris out. One of the major benefits of mono-tube shocks is the pressurized gas is separated from the oil via a piston. The constant gas pressure on the hydraulic oil minimizes aeration of the hydraulic oil preventing foaming. Foam affects shock absorber performance because it can be compressed while fluid cannot, in turn; the shock reacts quicker with predictability. Overall suspension performance is enhanced with quicker reaction times with the tire on the pavement as much as possible.
Now we delve into the controversial subject of when shock absorbers should be replaced.
The shock absorber piston seal wears from rapid movement depending on how rough the road surfaces you traverse. Also dependent on the environment the shocks rod end seal wears from grit, dust or just plain dirt that coats the shocks rod surface. A light film of oil is present on the exterior of the shock absorbers exposed connecting rod attracting debris which is unavoidable. You can expect to see evidence of slight seepage on the shock absorbers cylinders exterior over a long period of time. It appears as a stain not wet to the touch, if there is a film of oil present on the exterior of the shock absorber, emanating from the rod end seal area, the shock absorber should be replaced. (more…)