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I recently received my rear bilsteins and have a silly question:

Q: the upper shock bushings look a bit different between what I received with the Bilsteins for the 99-04 cobra and what came with my motorcraft rear shocks 6 years ago.
From what I recall from bottom to top the original bushing setup looks like this: shock absorber, metal washer, bushing with the pointy end up, shock tower/car body, other bushing, metal washer, nut.

What came with the cobra bushings is as follows:shock absorber, metal washer, donut shaped bushing, shock tower/car body, donut shaped bushing, metal washer, nut.

Q: Did you guys just reuse the bushings from your old shocks or will the two rubber pieces that came with the cobra bilsteins work just fine? I haven't painted my shocks yet (because cheaty racecar) so I haven't test mounted them.

Obviously, I would use the nut that came with the bilsteins but reusing my current motorcraft rear shock bushings seems out of the question (they look beat to hell).

Online, it looks like ford will sell me these bushings for a whopping $80/ea (nearly as much as I paid for the shock absorber). A more realistic purchase would be to buy a tbird rear shock that comes with the right bushing but that still sucks as that means I would then have two extra soft shocks I'll never use: $27/ea

What my tbird came with (see bushings):


KYB Shocks & Struts Shock/Strut GR2 Twin-Tube Ford Thunderbird Cougar Rear Ea | eBay

What the cobra bilsteins came with (see black bits):
 

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I used the Bilsteins as they arrived in the picture provided and they appear to be just fine.
Great: one less item to buy.
Just to confirm though: one rubber donut goes above the hole in the chassis and one goes below, right?
-g
 

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Great: one less item to buy.
Just to confirm though: one rubber donut goes above the hole in the chassis and one goes below, right?
-g
Installs like this, with the nipple up on the lower bushing and down on the upper bushing.
 

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Discussion Starter · #128 ·
It's in mm. Buy a set of shocks and sockets and figure it out.
 

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Does any one happen to know the required socket sizes to unbolt and swap in the Billies?
21mm for the bolt at the bottom of the shock
18mm for the nut at the bottom of the shock
18mm for the nut at the top of the stock shock (at least, the last one I had installed)
17mm for the Bilstein supplied nut for the top of the bilstein shock

I agree that this is kind of a silly question: if you are missing a few #s in your wrench/socket set, just buy them as you never know when you might encounter a bolt/nut that you don't have. I quickly learned this the hard way when I first started working on my tbird with my HF socket set.
-g
 

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Yeah I don't even know the sizes of those by memory, I just look at the shock nut and guess which one from my set fits. That's the beauty of owning sets.
It really pisses off the mech e's I work with that I can look at a bolt and tell what size it is.

And put a nut on a bolt I can't see, with only my fingertips, lol.

I've done this for a bit. :)

From my incredibly poor upbringing, I can tell you that a set of feeler gauges will extend your wrench/socket/allen sets considerably, if you're creative.
 

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It looks like here at Advance Auto we can now order KYB rear shocks for the Cobra's both in heavy duty and gas adjust. $83 for the gas adjust and $53 for the heavy duty. I looked up an 03 Cobra and it brought up the Bilstiens and the KYB options. The Bilstiens were $113 a piece! What are your thoughts on the heavy duty KYB's being as stiff as the Bilstiens being that the computer brought up those options?
I did not find these rear HD KYBs at AA. Can you provide a part number?

Thanks,

Glenn
 

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Bumping up this thread. Looking to replace front and rears on an otherwise stock 97 LX, it's hitting the bumps HARD lately. Looking for a stock type ride. What are still available for these cars? Are these KYB Excel-G's any good?

Bilstein - KYB - Rancho - Monroe - KONI Shocks and Struts - Shockwarehouse.com

I don't do Monroe. I installed a set of Sensatracs on my old '95, and if you hit a dip at hwy speeds it felt like you were sailing on the high seas!

Thanks,
Al
 

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I ran KYB monotubes on my 97 and really liked them, they were stiff but I felt they wore out quickly. Somewhere ~30K -40K miles and she was nose diving in moderate braking. The car was lowered 1.5" also, that might have contributed to the premature wear. I'm running Tokico Blues on my 96 now. I'm happy with them, but would like a little stiffer ride.
 

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Thanks Scott.
Al
 

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The tokico blues on the tbird are starting to wear, and a rear one is making noise, so I'm going to be upgrading soon.

They're 8 years old this spring. :) (Spring 2010 to now)The stock ones really didn't last that long.


I haven't installed them yet, but MadMartigan made me a set of upper mounts for the race bilsteins for the front, and I'm going to put in the adjustable rear mustang konis, it they're not oos.

That should be 'Stiff as ****', I believe; the full koni setup on Lazarus is 'Stiff as Hell', this should be an 11. :)

Adjustment knobs are great.

The Front Bilsteins are the best, stiffest race or extreme performance street setup we've found so far, but require substantial additional work, and someone with a welder. :)

Please prove us wrong, lol. We'll buy it. :)
 
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Bumping up this thread. Looking to replace front and rears on an otherwise stock 97 LX, it's hitting the bumps HARD lately. Looking for a stock type ride. What are still available for these cars? Are these KYB Excel-G's any good?

Bilstein - KYB - Rancho - Monroe - KONI Shocks and Struts - Shockwarehouse.com

I don't do Monroe. I installed a set of Sensatracs on my old '95, and if you hit a dip at hwy speeds it felt like you were sailing on the high seas!

Thanks,
Al
My car had the original made in Spain heavy duty rear shocks. One had broken stuff inside and would stick and the ride was nasty and noisy. I ordered Motorcraft shocks thinking they would be heavy duty but they were the small shock with small bushings. I put them on and was surprised because they work well.
 

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The tokico blues on the tbird are starting to wear, and a rear one is making noise, so I'm going to be upgrading soon.

They're 8 years old this spring. :) (Spring 2010 to now)The stock ones really didn't last that long.
That seems kind of short. How many miles in those 8 years?

It seems you can still get the Motorcraft rears.

I wonder if supercoupeperformance will give any kind of deal on the Tokicos? I am not normally "that guy", but when he is asking 2X what they originally cost, I am! I guess he squirreled away all the last sets!

Al
 
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