When you're driving around a 4,000-pound classic Chevy, you want to be able to steer the car where you want, and stop when you want. While the '55 front suspension was revolutionary when it debuted, 53 years later the drum brakes and heavy stamped steel control arms are showing their limitations and disadvantages. today's aftermarket is a bountiful feast of suspension and brake upgrades for the venerable tri- Five design, and the levels of stopping and handling power a '55-57 owner has to choose from are spectacular. For this story, we'll be installing a middle-of-the-road kit from Mcgaughy's Suspension Parts on our '55 hardtop.
Our McGaughy's kit included everything for the front suspension, from tubular control arms to new spindles and disc brakes. The only things you'll need to reuse from the original suspension are the A-arm cross-shafts. If your shafts have seen better days, or you just feel like installing new ones, you can purchase new shafts from Classic Chevy International (www.classicchevy.com). McGaughy's also has upgraded steering components, and we'll cover the install of those in a later story where we refurbish the steering system of our '55.
So, follow along in the pictures, and see how easy it is to give your antiquated suspension new life in a weekend.