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Old 02-06-2020, 06:07 AM #1
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Anyone have recommendations on a good spring compressor for struts?

So i probably could have purchased one of these by now with all the money I've spent at the local tire store to use theirs, but can anyone recommend a good spring compressor? The two below are premium ones but I'd rather not spend quite that much, this is the design I would like to have though:

https://www.amazon.com/Branick-7600-...e%2C160&sr=1-7

https://www.amazon.com/OTC-Tools-663...omotive&sr=1-5

I also found this, a little cheaper but still a lot of money:

Manual Screw Type Floor Mounted Strut Spring Compressor

I'm just not found of the free Autozone style spring compressor, they're a pain to work with and can be dangerous...I'm ready for a decent one.
Thanks!
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Old 02-06-2020, 10:03 AM #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by theriddler View Post
So i probably could have purchased one of these by now with all the money I've spent at the local tire store to use theirs, but can anyone recommend a good spring compressor? The two below are premium ones but I'd rather not spend quite that much, this is the design I would like to have though:

Sorry! Something went wrong!

Sorry! Something went wrong!

I also found this, a little cheaper but still a lot of money:

Manual Screw Type Floor Mounted Strut Spring Compressor

I'm just not found of the free Autozone style spring compressor, they're a pain to work with and can be dangerous...I'm ready for a decent one.
Thanks!
I have been searching for a nice one for a long time as well

I want to find this style used in vid... the only ones like this are pretty spendy.

YouTube

Sir Tools ST9050 Portable Strut Master Strut Compressor SIRST9050

I have been using my harbor freight press and it works ok. please post back if you find one you like.
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Old 02-06-2020, 10:52 AM #3
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I have one like this that I bought at Princess Auto (Canadian version of Harbour Freight) about 15 years ago on sale for about $140.00 CAD. Have used it many times, you should be able to find one even cheaper in the USA

Strut Spring Compressor Hydraulic Automotive Coil

I like that the forks/claws that contact the coils have a rubberized coating on them and that they can be seperated from the tool so you can set them where you want on the strut then line it up and attach them to the tool before you start compressing....
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Old 02-06-2020, 10:53 AM #4
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I'm a cheap bstard, so I always look a the chinesium crap first...

Strut Spring Compressor & Interchangable Fork Coil Extractor for MacPherson | eBay


Single Action Strut Spring Compressor Tire Auto Body Shop Garage MacPherson Fix | eBay

New Coil Spring Compressor 3 Ton Auto Strut Hydraulic Tool | eBay


Mechanical Pneumatic Auto Strut Coil Spring Compressor 3 Ton Hydraulic Tool | eBay


I really haven't had reason to shy away from the stuff out of China, just know to do my homework first as sometimes the "cheapest" is actually the most costly, and a few dollars more at the time of purchase is the better deal overall.
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Old 02-06-2020, 01:40 PM #5
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It might not be very helpful for other cars, but I've become a fan of the no compressor method when I've needed one for my 4runner. Safer than the cheap sketchy options at autozone and much cheaper than buying one.
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Old 02-06-2020, 01:47 PM #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ser1clymb View Post
It might not be very helpful for other cars, but I've become a fan of the no compressor method when I've needed one for my 4runner. Safer than the cheap sketchy options at autozone and much cheaper than buying one.
+1 for the no compresor method
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Old 02-06-2020, 02:05 PM #7
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I've been eyeing the ones below for a couple years. Haven't pull the trigger on one yet since they wouldn't get much use. The one from Jeg's can easily be converter to to air over if you wanted.

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Old 02-06-2020, 04:21 PM #8
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Same situation looking for a good quality spring compressor & something safer than the rentals. My next set of coilovers will most likely not have a threaded shock body, like my current ones do, for easy adjustment. With the amount of times I go back & forth between lift heights on new coilovers until I find a position that works I think it would almost be worth it to buy a good compressor & much more convenient than having to take it to a shop every time.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Ser1clymb View Post
It might not be very helpful for other cars, but I've become a fan of the no compressor method when I've needed one for my 4runner. Safer than the cheap sketchy options at autozone and much cheaper than buying one.
Do you mean using a floor jack like in this video? I can see how this method can be useful for disassembling the coilover but wondering if it would work for reassembly if you wanted to raise the spring perch position?

YouTube
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Old 02-06-2020, 04:39 PM #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fourfive View Post
Same situation looking for a good quality spring compressor & something safer than the rentals. My next set of coilovers will most likely not have a threaded shock body, like my current ones do, for easy adjustment. With the amount of times I go back & forth between lift heights on new coilovers until I find a position that works I think it would almost be worth it to buy a good compressor & much more convenient than having to take it to a shop every time.




Do you mean using a floor jack like in this video? I can see how this method can be useful for disassembling the coilover but wondering if it would work for reassembly if you wanted to raise the spring perch position?

YouTube
Yes, that method. Not ideal, but I did it with a bottle jack and it worked fine. I've used it to raise and lower the spring perch. It's probably a little more time consuming having to essentially take it all apart to raise the clip, but it's quicker and cheaper than if you have to take the whole coil/shock into a shop to have them do it, or buy a spring compressor.

I probably spent over $100 taking coils back and forth to a shop to have the clips raised, and then lowered and in the end they didn't clock the springs correctly. If you do it once, taking your time, the other side will take half as long
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Old 02-06-2020, 04:47 PM #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian. View Post
I'm a cheap bstard, so I always look a the chinesium crap first...

Single Action Strut Spring Compressor Tire Auto Body Shop Garage MacPherson Fix | eBay
Harbor Freight sells the same tool, ~$50 with a coupon. Used it for a recent strut refresh.
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Old 02-06-2020, 06:04 PM #11
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This is a good subject to cover. It is super important to know that basically all tools in the lower price categories are absolutely not meant to be used on our style of springs and struts. That should become quickly obvious as soon as you start to use them, they are simply inadequate. The amount of tension needed to collapse our springs enough (even in stock form, let alone preloading onto a 5100 shock) is extremely high compared to the tools intended use.

These low budget tools are intended to be used on passenger car Macpherson strut style springs which are longer, wider, have fewer wraps, less spring rate and more room to maneuver the tool between the coils and they do make that job fairly effortless.

I have a mid tier quality spring compressor like the one I pictured below and had been mentioned in the thread earlier. It is still barely adequate for our springs, with the heads barely fitting through the provided gap, and taking some serious effort to compress the spring. Putting a stiffer coil onto a 5100 is literally at the threshold of the tool's capability.

If someone was seriously considering dropping coin on a tool that's meant to do the job quickly, safely and effectively, the OTC strut tamer extreme linked in the OP's post is the proper tool to get the job done as that was actually designed to do it. It'll take a lot of work to make it worth $800 though, so at the end of the day I still recommend finding a local shop to do that one part of the job for you. It may seem like a waste of time and money, but you really don't want to be on the business end of that spring if something goes wrong.

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Old 02-06-2020, 06:16 PM #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by theriddler View Post
So i probably could have purchased one of these by now with all the money I've spent at the local tire store to use theirs, but can anyone recommend a good spring compressor? The two below are premium ones but I'd rather not spend quite that much, this is the design I would like to have though:

Amazon.com: Branick 7600 Strut Spring Compressor: Automotive

Amazon.com: OTC Tools 6637 Strut Tamer II Extreme: Automotive

I also found this, a little cheaper but still a lot of money:

Manual Screw Type Floor Mounted Strut Spring Compressor

I'm just not found of the free Autozone style spring compressor, they're a pain to work with and can be dangerous...I'm ready for a decent one.
Thanks!


I've used the cheaper one that @Drew76 mentioned, found it on amazon for around $100-130 bucks but it the teeth bent while compressing-it was a little sketch. I now own a Branick 7600 that I found on craigslist for around the same price. It is much safer to use. I've helped others with their 4runners, Tundras and FJ's so I definitely got my moneys worth. I will say it takes up a lot of space though. I would love to find an OTC strut tamer and give it a try but the Branick is found in every shop that does struts/shocks. It's an industry standard.

Last edited by firemanj92; 02-06-2020 at 06:24 PM.
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Old 02-06-2020, 08:17 PM #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by firemanj92 View Post
I've used the cheaper one that @Drew76 mentioned, found it on amazon for around $100-130 bucks but it the teeth bent while compressing-it was a little sketch. I now own a Branick 7600 that I found on craigslist for around the same price. It is much safer to use. I've helped others with their 4runners, Tundras and FJ's so I definitely got my moneys worth. I will say it takes up a lot of space though. I would love to find an OTC strut tamer and give it a try but the Branick is found in every shop that does struts/shocks. It's an industry standard.
Really? I've used mine dozens of times on all sorts of vehicles, the only problem I had was the original long travel jack stopped working after like 10 years (new similar jack was more $ than the whole tool), I replaced it with a normal bottle jack that is from the 80's/90's and probably better quality than the new ones and some heavy wall square tubing as spacers to make up the difference in height, used it last to compress some Bilstein 6112 front coilovers no problems
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Old 02-07-2020, 03:44 AM #14
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I have the OEM brand that I got from autozone. It has a solid design.
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Old 02-07-2020, 05:32 AM #15
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Thanks for the feedback and recommendations, I'm kinda leaning toward the Jack Tech style now. Will let you all know how it works out
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