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Discussion Starter #1
So when I got the 98 Mark VIII, the original owner had replaced the front air bags with aftermarket Westar parts - I do not know how old they are, but they started leaking down a few months ago. I just installed a new Arnott compressor and would rather not kill it by running it all the time to pump up the front suspension every morning. Furthermore I am fairly certain the front shocks are rattling over bumps (they sound like bad sway bar links) since I've addressed about every other front-end component I can think of aside from those and the noise persists.

Sadly the only new front air springs available on the market now are the same crappy (but not inexpensive!) Westar bags, or even cheaper no-brand parts. The OEM parts appear to have long since been discontinued and are obsolete.

Fortunately someone in Nevada listed OEM takeoffs on eBay last week for a reasonably appropriate price, and I managed to get the pair that look, well, brand new. I'm wondering if anyone has thought of spraying/rubbing a conditioner on the rubber air bags to help prevent them from drying and cracking as they continue to age whenever the tires get rotated (5000 miles/3 months in my case). Something like this: Amazon.com: Tire Dressing, Tire Protectant, No Tire Shine, No Dirt Attracting Residue, Natural Satin/Matte Finish, Aircraft Grade Rubber Tire Care Conditioner, Better Than Automotive Products, 32oz: Automotive

Given the inexpensive and minimal investment of time to do something like that, I'm seriously considering it. Thoughts? No, I'm not interested in a coil spring conversion (yet). :D
 

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One question I have with this product is if this product dries out rubber similarly to how Armor-All does. Or will it actually hydrate / rejuvenate rubber it's applied to.

Another question I have, is where in Nevada the airbags came from? From the deserts of southern Nevada (think the greater Las Vegas area) or further up north where the climate is more temperate. If from the desert areas of southern Nevada, then the rubber may have had been dried out at an accelerated rate, unless properly stored. But that doesn't seem to be the case with yours?
 

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All the rubber rejuvenating products I've seen an used over the years were not good for the rubber in the long term.

I worked on typewriters, and we used platen cleaner products which increased the grippability of the rubber, but led to its demise in short order, so we could sell a new part.

Same thing in the vcr industry, with the rubber rollers there.

Everyone should know by now what Armor all does, lol.

I didn't chime in because I don't have any good news.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Well, this is on hold for now. I got the air bags in and they are indeed very nice, but the shocks are totally shot!

The guy who got them is from just outside Reno. He's looking to see if he can get me a different set, otherwise he said he'll refund me and let me do what I want with them.

For the time being I have the old one on the left side and one of these on the right - both the old ones I have for the right with good shocks are all leaky. I can't win, lol.
 

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Call me naive, but the shocks themselves are not replaceable?
No. On the MarkVIII, the air spring and the shock are one assembly, and there is no way to take them apart. Unfortunately all the aftermarket air shocks have terrible shocks, so factory ones or a coil spring conversion are the only good options.
 

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After I clean up rubber and plastic parts I put 303 aerospace protectant on them and did exactly that to the air bags on my 03 marauder. Guy on YouTube used it on tires and belts even. I use it when detailing an engine bay. Does an amazing job
 
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