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Can Newer Style Rear Damper Links be Installed on a 1950 Tourer?

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dschwartz1957 David Schwartz
Framingham, MA, USA   USA
1950 Morris Minor "Moyshe"
1968 Morris Mini Traveller "The Tardis"
2000 Mazda MX-5
The rubber in the ball ends of the rear damper links on my 1950 Tourer has mostly deteriorated. From photos on the various parts sites I knew there was a slight bend at the circular end (chassis end) of the replacement part (SUS702). After inquiring about part compatibility with early Minors, I ordered a new set from ESM. The new parts arrived yesterday and the dimensions are quite different from the originals.
  • Replacement part is 16mm (0.64inches) longer than the original.
  • Replacement part comes with bushes installed. The inside diameter of bushes is 10.5mm. Original is 13mm. The replacement bush does NOT fit over the un-threaded section of the mounting bolt at chassis end of the link.
  • The circular end width is about 2mm narrower than the original, so the spacing from the inside edge of the chassis mounting bolt is slightly different. The bend in the link forces the ball end away from the rear springs, so this may be OK.
  • Circular end Inside diameter: new part is 20.1mm, original is 21.8
  • Circular end Outside diameter: new part is 28mm, original is 29.1
  • Circular end Width: new part is 17.7mm, original is 19.4
  • The installed rubber bushes don't have the large rim that covers the edges of the circle on both sides. In hindsight, I should have ordered the original style bushes (SUS703).
Below are links to the replacement parts.

Rear Shock Absorber/Damper Link Unit (To Chassis) SUS702
Rubber Bush-Link To Chassis (2 Required Per Side) SUS703

Attached are several photos showing the differences.

  1. Should I be concerned about the 0.64" difference in length?
  2. Has anyone else used the current replacement damper links on early Minors? Is so, have you made any modifications?
  3. My old (worn) original bushes fit in the new links (with help from a rubber mallet). They should fit over the mounting bolt even though the inside diameter dropped to 12.7mm. Assuming the modern bushes SUS703 have a larger inside diameter, these may solve the fit problem. Should I go with this alternative?

Thanks again,

David Schwartz



Edited 4 time(s). Last edit at 2017-10-11 07:44 PM by dschwartz1957.

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emjay Jim English
Marietta, PA, USA   USA
The Morris axle is much heavier than the later Austin axle so the shock has more work to do. The longer link will shift the working range of the shock. That may cause a problem if the shock hits it's internal limit but the axle still wants to move. Is the taper on the bolt compatible with your shock? If so you could cut and weld the old bushing eye onto you new link to replicate the original link. If you cut far enough away from the shock end, the rubber won't be affected by the welding heat.

dschwartz1957 David Schwartz
Framingham, MA, USA   USA
1950 Morris Minor "Moyshe"
1968 Morris Mini Traveller "The Tardis"
2000 Mazda MX-5
I measured the new and old tapers with a digital caliper and they appear to be identical. At least within the margin of error, dirt and rust smiling smiley
Cutting down the new link and welding on the old bushing eye occurred to me. Though there will still be a slight angle near the eye end.

Didn't BMC install upgraded rear dampers on later Minors? This is interesting if the later Austin rear axles are lighter than the early Morris axles. I assumed the road springs do most of the work since the rear dampers are so small.

In reply to # 26541 by emjay The Morris axle is much heavier than the later Austin axle so the shock has more work to do. The longer link will shift the working range of the shock. That may cause a problem if the shock hits it's internal limit but the axle still wants to move. Is the taper on the bolt compatible with your shock? If so you could cut and weld the old bushing eye onto you new link to replicate the original link. If you cut far enough away from the shock end, the rubber won't be affected by the welding heat.

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0123 Mike D
Biddulp, Staffs, UK   GBR
Shorten and straighten the link.

Fit polybushes.

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