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Old 07-21-2003, 10:26 AM
sbourg sbourg is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: SoCal
Posts: 1,303
About Sensatracs... my experience with an Acura Integra I used to own. The problem with the design is that they provide stiffer damping beyond a certain range of motion, i.e. the damping is position-sensitive. This as opposed to Bilsteins, which are velocity-sensitive.

The Monroes offer low resistance to motion until the piston passes the 'grooved' portion of the cylinder, at which point they become much stiffer. However, that on rebound allows the momentum to build as the vehicle is launched upward, then puts the brakes on the motion, causing a very unsettling and unsophisticated ride and squirrely handling. By contrast, velocity-sensitive shocks will immediately damp fast suspension movement, preventing the build-up of momentum in the first place. The ride is more controlled yet supple on smooth roads.

This is all aside from the quality differences of the two brands, of which just one factor is the complete lack of slop in the Bilstein valving - not the case with the Sensatracs.

'91 MB 190E 2.3
'08 RAV4 Ltd 3.5
'83 Lazy Daze m'home 5.7
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