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I am looking to get new Shocks and Struts for my Bird. I have 97k + on the originals and would like to know if anyone has some suggestions. I know the T-Bird has a rough ride but would like to settle it down abit.

Also, is this something I can do myself or do I need to take it in to a shop?

Thanks for the help in advance....
 

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kfentress said:
I am looking to get new Shocks and Struts for my Bird. I have 97k + on the originals and would like to know if anyone has some suggestions. I know the T-Bird has a rough ride but would like to settle it down abit.

Also, is this something I can do myself or do I need to take it in to a shop?

Thanks for the help in advance....
For starters you will a REALLY hard time finding struts for your car. You can't do the front unless you have a wall mounted spring compressor. backs are EZ.
 

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Noob question, is it the front that has the struts, or is it the back? I'm guessing the front?
 

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Actually, the T-Bird doesn't use struts - it's a coil-over-shock assembly.

I doubt there are springs that give a softer ride than stock - usually they're either stiffer or for lowering. New shocks could definitely improve the ride, though as mentioned, the fronts are a pain to change because of the fact the coil springs are mounted on them.
 

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I was thinking about getting the 'sport' springs/shocks, since they're pretty cheap.
 

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I think sports have the same shocks as lx's. You can use any SC springs too.
 

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Sport Shocks Not The Same as LX

I have a 1997 T-Bird with the sports susupension package. It does not have the same shocks as an LX.

About a year ago, I had a set of Tokico blues put on the front. The car still bounced too much when hitting road dips at highway speeds - like 70 mph and up. I thought the springs were bad so I had a new set of sports suspension springs put on the front. It didn't make any difference.

Yesterday I had the Tokicos taken off and new set of Ford sports suspension shocks put on the front. I can now zoom up and down I-95 without looking like the car has bungee cords for front end suspension.

Fact is, Tokico, KYB, Monroe, and other aftermarket shock companies do not make a replacement shock for the sports suspension package. Tokico offered to exchange the "bouncy" shocks for super coupe shocks. I was told that if I set the shocks on firm, that would solve the bounce problem. But the original Ford sports suspension shocks - the right ones for the car - are a lot less expensive then the Tokico super coupe shocks.

Eddie
 

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Re: Sport Shocks Not The Same as LX

Eddie said:
I have a 1997 T-Bird with the sports susupension package. It does not have the same shocks as an LX.

About a year ago, I had a set of Tokico blues put on the front. The car still bounced too much when hitting road dips at highway speeds - like 70 mph and up. I thought the springs were bad so I had a new set of sports suspension springs put on the front. It didn't make any difference.

Yesterday I had the Tokicos taken off and new set of Ford sports suspension shocks put on the front. I can now zoom up and down I-95 without looking like the car has bungee cords for front end suspension.

Fact is, Tokico, KYB, Monroe, and other aftermarket shock companies do not make a replacement shock for the sports suspension package. Tokico offered to exchange the "bouncy" shocks for super coupe shocks. I was told that if I set the shocks on firm, that would solve the bounce problem. But the original Ford sports suspension shocks - the right ones for the car - are a lot less expensive then the Tokico super coupe shocks.

Eddie
The Sports Suspension on the 97's is adjustable?
 

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Re: Re: Sport Shocks Not The Same as LX

WaLieN said:


The Sports Suspension on the 97's is adjustable?
NO. It's good he didn't get the SC shocks, or he'd be stuck in Soft mode.
 

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Front Shocks / Coil Overs

The rule of thumb is to take your front shock / spring assemblies to a shop with a wall mounted spring compressor.
However, it is also something you can do yourself.
If you use a jack below the lower mounting bolt, and unbolt the three top mounting bolts to the body, as well as the bolt in the very middle of the shock; you can lower the jack and decompress the spring to remove it from the shock.
Be sure to note alignment points between the spring and the shock when you are re-installing the bolt using the reverse procedure.
 

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HELP ME PLEASE!

i have all the bolts undone and the spring is compressed and i still cant remove the strut. its about 98 outside with a ton of humidity so maybe im missing something here. thanks for any help!
Dave
 

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is it possible for those of us not equiped with sports suspension to upgrade to the shocks without any hassle
? (since they seem to be superior to most aftermarket shocks for our cars, at least in the performance realm)
 

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Changing to Sports Suspension

I don't see why it would be a problem to change an LX suspension to the '96 or '97 sports suspension. The Ford sports suspension shocks are considerably less expensive than Tokicos. (Got mine at Five Star)

Check out the sports suspension spring ratings at www.mn12performance.com/mn12-techinfo/psring/springs.htm

The '96 - '97 sports suspension springs are the same rating as the '89 - '95 Super Coup. I suspect the sports suspension shocks are the same as the SC shocks set on firm - but the sports suspension shocks don't have the electronic adjustment. (less to go wrong?).

Eddie
1997 T-Bird
Sports Suspension
1st generation Jerry chip
Competition Limited harness 80/100 bulbs
Addco 1.25" rear bar
Kenwood head, Phoenix Gold amp, Boston Acoustic speakers, 10 CD Kenwood changer, etc.
 

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Re: HELP ME PLEASE!

dyrtybyrd281 said:
i have all the bolts undone and the spring is compressed and i still cant remove the strut. its about 98 outside with a ton of humidity so maybe im missing something here. thanks for any help!
Dave
There are only 4 bolts holding the front struts in, the one bolt on bottom, and three nuts on top. If you take those all off and you have your front end up in the air the strut will come out easily, you just might have to pry it off of the mounting point on the bottom, it usually wants to stick, so use something for leverage, or a mallet.
If you're trying to pull the spring out of the strut, do like I mentioned previously, use a jack below the lower mounting bolt, to compress the spring, and unbolt the middle bolt on the strut. Then when you release the jack it should release the tension on the spring so you can remove it.
 

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RatBastard said:
is it possible for those of us not equiped with sports suspension to upgrade to the shocks without any hassle
? (since they seem to be superior to most aftermarket shocks for our cars, at least in the performance realm)
direct swap. just make sure you get a spring with an equal or greater spring rate as the sport springs, or you will wear them out quick.
 
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