Springs, Shocks, and Restoring New Ride

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  #1  
Old 06-08-07, 09:44 PM
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Springs, Shocks, and Restoring New Ride

Over the last 45 years I've had a lot of vehicles, some were factory new, others were not. I have replaced many sets of shocks in an attempt to regain a vehicle's earlier comfortable ride and handling. They included oem replacements, "heavy duty" shocks, "Sensamatic", and I can't remember what all. None of them improved the ride very much, if at all.

I have been told, and I tend to believe, that after about 40,000 miles, all shocks lose their ability to dampen those smaller bumps. After all, isn't about 95% of a shock piston's motion limited to a very small part of its total travel?

So here I am again, with 50,000 miles on a vehicle I bought brand new. Now some folks are telling me if I buy the same shocks AND SPRINGS the vehicle came with, and if the tires are relatively new, I should have my like-new ride characteristics back.

Any comments?? Shocks are one thing, but springs are another. Big $$$$. Just how does one gain back the original ride characteristics?

And what about replacing the steering bushings - factory original rubber? Or aftermarket poly-whatever bushings? Will this make a difference??
 
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Old 06-08-07, 10:06 PM
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while im sure most good quality shocks may improve the ride a little I dont see them having that much wear with only 50k miles and you usually dont have to ever replace the springs.
probably one of the most overlooked things that affect ride quality is tires in my opinion some brands will give you alot smoother ride than others and it would be well worth spending a little more for tires than messing with bushings, springs or shocks at 50k miles.
but to answer your question rubber bushings will give a smoother ride versus poly although they do not last as long as poly doubt that they have much wear at 50k either.
 
  #3  
Old 06-08-07, 10:21 PM
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Well I agree with your comment about tires. As a sports-touring nut, I can telly the best suspension tune-up you can give a motorcycle is a new set of decent tires.

The tires on my vehicle have about 13K on them (Bridgestone Revo II). The vehicle has been getting a little "clunky" when driving over manhole covers and such -didn't do that when it was new. Now has 50K miles on it. Shocks are not leaking, there is no sway, just somewhat clunky. Not bad, but in my experience, it will get worse.

The vehicle is a Toyota Tacoma 4WD and shocks aren't exactly cheap. But when new, it drove like a nice tight sports car. Maybe I'm just getting old and crotchety or something...
 
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