April 2015 – Body Cart Mounting
The body cart arrived from Summit Racing the day after I ordered it, and that was the free shipping option. In fact, it was sitting in my driveway when I woke up. Because I’ve accumulated a bunch of half-used cans of spray paint, I didn’t feel it necessary to pay for a body cart that was already painted– the bare metal one was good enough for me. After it arrived, I sprayed it with some flashy red Rust-Oleum, waited overnight for it to cure a bit, and put the thing together. Not that it’s a complicated setup, but I appreciated the fact that the instructions were written in English and that it’s a quality “Made in U.S.A.” product (although the wheels are from overseas).
Mounting the Disgustang to the body cart involves leaving the adjustment nuts loose on the front upright supports as well as where the front section connects to the longitudinal support bar (the bar that connects the front section to the back). Since I’d spent so much time on assembling the rear and front suspension components, I opted to poop the front and rear suspensions as complete assemblies rather than disassembling the entire setup. The rear suspension is easy– just remove the shocks and then undo the front and rear leaf spring-to-body connections while supporting the rear end on the floor jack– I even left the wheels on so I could roll the thing around. The front suspension presented a few more challenges because I’d already installed most of the steering linkage, I had to remove the coil springs, and then had to disconnect the upper and lower control arms and drop the linkage as an assembly without slamming the brake rotors on the pavement. It was a late night, but it all worked out.
With the car still in the air sitting on jack stands, the challenge then became attaching the body to the cart. At the rear, the body cart attaches to the front leaf spring connection point; I used to original leaf spring bolts and nuts, which I’d thoughtfully saved. At the front, the cart attaches where the lower control arms would normally go. But it’s not as simple as it sounds. With the car on jack stands, you can’t just slide the cart underneath and attach it. Instead, I had to separate the front and rear portions and creatively slide the back in, then slide the front in and simultaneously connect the two halves in the middle. With the nuts loose on the front, I centered the posts as best I could and then tightened them down. After that, it just became a matter of lowering the car down onto the body cart.
What a difference! I can now slide the car from side-to-side as well as backwards and forwards. Again, I wish I’d done this sooner, it would’ve saved a lot of time. Next time I won’t wait so long. The only issue I’ve encountered is that because all four wheels are free spinning, reversing direction can sometimes result in the car trying to move diagonally as the wheels turn around. As it comes out of the box, moving the car is probably best accomplished with an assistant or done in an area where you aren’t likely to hit something if things go sideways. If I were to keep it and use it again in the future, I’d seriously consider drilling a hole so I can lock the front wheels in the straight ahead position and steer with the rear set (or vice-versa).