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Old 06-01-2014, 06:21 AM   #31
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Default Re: Best Shocks! Please help.

The Konis helped, but it was still pretty bad. I have a lot of weight up high. The swaybar made more of a difference than the konis. This on a 2500 with one, heavier swaybar.
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Old 03-20-2019, 05:13 PM   #32
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Default Re: Best Shocks! Please help.

Hi there, I did a youtube video of my replacement of the front shocks with bilstein b4s. I am looking into what to use for the rear. Right now Im thinking the b6s becasue the price diff is approx 20 compared to the b4s. Additionally, there are some offers online for 25 for both right and left rear shocks which are claimed to be OE specs, but I am dubious of if it is even worth the savings.
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Old 03-21-2019, 05:27 AM   #33
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Default Re: Best Shocks! Please help.

Except this is the T1N forum, not the NCV3....
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Old 04-02-2019, 02:04 AM   #34
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Default Re: Best Shocks! Please help.

Originally Posted by Coast2Coast View Post
Do you sacrifice MPG with 60 on the rear, I'd like to try 70 or 75. When I pull into a parking lot at 5mph it rocks the whole van and feels like a roller coaster ride
This is our fourth van. We had an Econoline 250, an Express 2500, a Transit Connect and a Transit 2500. We mostly hauled 3D printers, which aren't particularly heavy, but towed some very large boat trailers at times. We used Michelin LTX for the most part.

Unloaded with 60 psi rear the ride was brutal. We eventually dropped them down to 40psi front and 45-50 rear and the ride was greatly improved, mpg stayed the same, and the tires lasted many 10's of thousands of miles. Seemed to be a bit better in snow as well. Load Range D and E tires are quite stiff so you really couldn't tell from looking at them.

The Transit was annoying because the TPMS required at least 60psi even when unloaded. It went with the company I sold, so I never figured out a way to circumvent it.
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Old 11-22-2019, 10:32 PM   #35
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Default Re: Best Shocks! Please help.

I had a similar thread going, so I am repeating today's post on that thread here in case anyone is interested:
That thread is here: https://sprinter-source.com/forum/sh...ht=brutal+ride


I returned from my trip Seattle-Phoenix, and return.

The ride down at 50psi was brutal on California 99 due to poorly maintained roads with lots of pavement breaks, and lips. The trip back I lowered TP to 40 and that helped a tiny bit, and I took I-5 hoping it would be better. It was (a few years ago it was awful).

I did 2 things upon my return: I ordered new front struts (Bilsteins) and new tires all around. My vehicle "only" had 61,000mi on it at this point and my original Michelin LTX still had 1/2 tread left but has age checking in the sidewalls, and felt I was perhaps on borrowed time with them. They would easily have gone over 100k miles, but better safe than sorry.

I considered Konis, but at $200 ea, I hesitated. The Bilsteins were $101 ea. I've had bad experiences with KYB being really HARD so I didn't consider the, Other no-name struts at various sources at UNDER $90 a pair were tempting, but since I was trying to improve the ride, I didn't want THAT big of an experiment.

I yesterday installed the struts (much easier than I imagined, with each side taking only 30 minutes once the wheels were off), and today installed the new tires (I'd removed them, painted the wheels, and had the tires mounted and balanced) and drove the vehicle about 20 mi and thought I'd share my impressions.

First, the old Sachs shocks. As I said, they had 61,000mi on generally super smooth Interstates in the country, some local driving in WA State, and a couple of trips up I-5 over the past 5 years. The take-offs felt FINE. Still pressurized, and uniform action on compression and rebound. They "felt" like new shocks and thought I'd probably wasted my money on the new struts-they felt THAT good. Not a spot of rust on them, or a sign of oil on the top seal. Frankly I could wipe them with a damp sponge and sell them as new (the Sachs labels look like the decals were just applied, even).

The Bilsteins felt almost the same-maybe 10% stiffer at most, but good compression and rebound. But being brand new, slightly stiffer damping is to be expected I suppose.

That said, I have over an hour's driving on the new combination and the results were marked. The ride is SO much better, with no shark "crack" when transiting road irregularities, and in fact no suspension noises at all (the back wheels "thump" a bit on man-hole cover depressions, but the wheels are so far back I never was bothered by the back end anyway.

From the day I bought the vehicle new, transiting irregularities diagonally even at VERY slow speed (so the left wheels go over a bump, or speed bump, before the right ones, or vise-versa,, the occupants were thrown violently back and forth, with an unwary passenger or two hitting the side window with their heads pretty hard) . One had the feeling of being at the top of a flag pole in an earthquake (or on the flying bridge of a 30ft cabin cruiser in 3ft waves). Very (VERY) uncomfortable at best even when it was expected!

With the Bilstens, almost NONE of that. On my brief drive, I transited parking lot transitions at an angle and unconsciously braced as I have for 15 years of use in the van, but there was almost NO such tossing back and forth! And this is with the original back shocks.

Overall, I LOVE the van, perhaps for the FIRST time since buying it (though I always appreciated it's utility).

The tires. MAYBE they made all the difference? I had the new tires aired to 47psi (vs 40psi for the Michelin LTX Load E 10 ply rating), and the new tires are also Load E 10 ply, so other than more tread (full vs 1/2) I wouldn't expect THAT much improvement from the tires alone, especially since I was carrying 20% MORE inflation in the new ones for the trial.

The tires I bought were a gamble. Bought them on Amazon. Westlake SL-309, 225-75/16 same as OEM. They had really outstanding reviews by about 40 buyers so I took a chance. Amazon wanted $228 ea. for new Michelins vs. $78 ea for the Westlakes, and while I am sure the Westlakes won't last 100,000+ miles like the Michelins, I frankly don't put on the miles fast enough to USE the rummer before it goes bad.

A set of 4 Westlake tires cost $400 with mounting, balancing, and tax vs
A set of Michelin tires cost $1100 with mounting, balancing, and tax.

The Westlake tires ride and handle fine. Part of the "ride" is shocks, so I can't comment, but the handling is indistinguishable from the Michelins.

Only time will tell on the tires, I guess, though.


Last edited by bobinyelm; 11-22-2019 at 10:37 PM.
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Old 11-22-2019, 10:56 PM   #36
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Default Re: Best Shocks! Please help.

Anyone use the air-ride suspension on the rear of their T1N instead of the stock or Sumo stops? It seems to help on the heavy RV T1N but you must find the sweet spot for PSI.
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