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It started out as a seemingly simple repack of a leaking Black Magic telescoping cylinder (16" collapsed 30" extended), unfortunately, there appears to be an underlying condition that caused the leak.

I removed my recently purchased 1994 Fleetwood's right rear cylinder for a rebuild. Unlike the left side cylinder, I was unable to remove the main shaft. Only way to get it out would seem to be using hydraulics... was not going to try that...

Upon closer investigation, there is some rather severe deformation to the outer cylinder case, right where it can contact the frame.





The large opening where the right cylinder passes through the frame has visible wear from the cylinder contacting the frame.



From underneath the car, there is virtually nothing ( maybe 1/4") extending downward to keep the spring in its optimal position, and from what it appeared, the cylinder from getting destroyed. The opening for the rear cylinder is approximately 3" in diameter. Perhaps the size was chosen so that the telescoping ram could be removed or installed without having to remove the hose fitting that is installed on the side of the cylinder...



The left side rear did not have any visible damage to the cylinder or coil tower on the frame. I believe the right side took more abuse from 3 wheeling....

Just to confirm, would the outer casing damage of the cylinder be enough to put this cylinder on the garage wall for decoration and not back in the car ? Other than the leak ,it seemed to work fine while operating in the driveway/garage. Once again, could not remove the main shaft, only was able to remove and repack the second stage shaft.

Even the left side rear was really difficult removing the main shaft for repacking. Had to use a rubber dead blow hammer to get it out...Pounding downward on the bottom end cap while holding the shaft...Thought it would come out like that nice Hoppos video...

I'm assuming the deformed outer portion of the right cylinder was enough to effect the sealing properties of the o-rings inside, causing leaks, and making it virtually impossible to remove by hand for a rebuild...

To prevent damage like this in the future I am considering the best repair option to use after making another purchase from Black Magic for a new cylinder. It appears that welding a cup from the bottom of the spring tower would be the best method. It does appear some kind of cup was welded from the top previously when the car had its frame wrapped.

Removing whats currently there from the top could be possible as well I suppose. This appears to be more difficult in some ways.

I would have to do some grinding underneath to prepare for welding in the new upper cup. Gas tank would be removed and all fuel lines would be secured and made safe. Would this be the best option? If so, can you recommend a upper cup for a telescoping cylinder please?

I am just getting back into lowriding after over 2 decades. I bought this car recently and had not even drove it (excluding a short test drive). I brought it into my garage for a complete shake down and inspection before hitting the streets. I do have some experience in maintaining and repairing lowriders, However, I have still much to learn. Never had to rebuild a cylinder before or deal with this particular situation.

To the subject matter experts, I would really appreciate any opinions or recommendations for the best repair to prevent damage to the rear cylinders for my already built, not by me lowrider.

Specs of the 1994 Cadillac Fleetwood that is currently hitting jack stands instead of switches:

  • Wrapped frame
  • High lock up capable lower and upper rear trailing arms (not sure of manufacture, might me custom made). Lowers have a drop to them, hits the ground when car is lowered. Uppers are adjustable.
  • Wrapped and reinforced rear end
  • Rear slip yoke
  • Powerball coil over setup with (16" collapsed 30" extended) Black Magic telescoping cylinders
  • Lower coil over deep style cups
  • No upper cups or donuts
Thank you for your time and consideration
 
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