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  #1 (permalink)  
Old 12-31-2000, 08:14 AM
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Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: Avondale, Pa
Cobra Make, Engine: Contemporary, Shelby Alum 427, Dove heads
Posts: 55
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Bill, I have an older Contemporary cobra with the watts linkage. I installed the watts linkage with the Contemporary supplied templates which I still have. I have had trouble with the shoulder bolts breaking and the linkage falling into the half shaft U-joint and locking up the rear. I have installed springs to the linkage that will pull it up in the future but I have broken the bolts twice on each side. I have installed the linkage at the default template length (9 9/16) but this greatly limits the rear tire travel. If I lenghten the arms to their limit I can get more travel but still the Watts binding limits the travel. I believe that this Watts binding is causing the shoulder bolt to snap. I have also noticed that the bolt snaps at the threads and not at the shoulder and looks like it has been over torqued and not sheared. I think that the watts binding is actually trying to tighten the bolt as the suspension tries to travel up (Drivers side).I have laid the Watts geometry out in autocad and with 2 inches of lower control arm travel the pivot points are not in allignment. Do you or anyone know of a fix for this? I have checked the site and have not seen any other references to this problem. Could it be me?
Thanks
Ed White

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  #2 (permalink)  
Old 07-01-2002, 10:07 AM
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Join Date: Aug 1999
Location: Newtonville, NY, USA,
Posts: 78
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Default Watts linkage!

Ed, this problem can be attributed to 2 possible problems. The 1st of which is the improper location of Watts Chassis mount brackets. I have a gig that can locate these for you. It may entail the removal and rewelding of the brackets that you have mounted. The 2nd possiblity is the improper adjustment of the actual linkage arms themselves. The object in adjusting the linkage arms is to have both very near equal length. Start at about 9 1/2" c to c of heim for both the front an the rear. When you install both of these linkage arms make sure all the coil overs are removed and you have your ride height gauge installed. Refer to your Contempoary manual on how to fabricate a ride height gauge. Once the ride height gauge is in place and you have adjusted / installed the 2 equal length linkage arms; remove the ride height gauge and check for free movement of travel in the up and down plane. You should not have any binding at the bellcrank what so ever. If you do see binding you will need to reinstall your ride height gauge and re-adjust your linkage arms. NOTE: The top arm of the bellcrank when adjusted properly will be angled forward at about 15 to 20 degrees.

If you have followed all of the above steps and are still breaking these shoulder bolts you may want to ugrade to our Billet Aluminum Watts link hub carriers which have a beefier pivot bracket!

Bill Connelly
Upstate Super Replicars, Inc.
www.daytona-coupe.com
427cobra@compuserve.com
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