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  #1  
Old 12-31-2002, 01:15 PM
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Location: Chatham, NJ
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Koni or Bilstein or others - Reasonably confused

I recently purchased a '89 300CE. The previous owner had H&R
springs installed but did not find the time to install a brand new
set of Koni shocks (so he says at least). So the Konis are now in my garage waiting to be either traded or installed...

Surfing the various older posts, I wonder if I should accept the previous owners choice or switch to Bilstein?

I realize that there have been plent discussions on this subject
but would appreciate to hear back from the forum to make a
final decision.

BTW, should I entrust any mechanic to install these specialty shocks or go the an MB expert?

Thanks,
Stefan
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  #2  
Old 12-31-2002, 03:18 PM
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Konis are great shocks, as are the Bilsteins and if you already have them you might as well go with those. The question I would have is whether the Konis are OEM style, sport, or the adjustable ones. If they are the OEM replacements, you may want to consider going to a sport shock since the H&R lowering springs won't provide as much travel for the shock and it is going to wear them out faster than a sport shock.

As for installation, Mercedes shocks are pretty straightforward to install, especially since they are separate from the springs and the install points are readily accessible. from the engine bay/well and the trunk. I would suggest that you check the front strut towers for rubber cracks and probably replace them anyway given the age of the car.
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  #3  
Old 12-31-2002, 03:50 PM
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MIT

They are adjustable. Thanks for pointing out that the front strut towers should be checked for rubber cracks. Maybe I just replace them like you suggested.

You think it is still a job for the local mechanic or time to consult
the expert? Unfortunately, this job exceeds my skills...
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  #4  
Old 12-31-2002, 07:44 PM
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Koni's are awesome shocks and the best part is they are adjustable. I used to have a set on my 190E and it made the car handle like it was on rails in the hardest setting. I think the medium or softer setting would be similar to what you would find from a set of Bilstein Sport shocks.

Don't forget that the Koni Adjustables cost twice as much as the Bilsteins which is the biggest reason why they aren't as popular.

Make sure the Koni's have the rubber boots on them, if not removed them from your old shocks and use them. I believe mine didn't come with any and I had to do this. This was 10 years ago so I'm not positive on this.

Good Luck
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  #5  
Old 01-01-2003, 02:52 PM
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I would be inclined to believe that any decently experienced mechanic (ASE certified?) would be able to handle MB shock replacement. If you have the proper jack and sockets (1/2 drive with extensions) and the time, it could be a DIY. There are several sites that go thru the steps with photos.

http://www.scotty-c.com/

For the 190, but the procedure is the same.

On the Koni adjustables, I believe you have to remove the shock or strut to adjust the height, so try your best to get it right the first time. Good luck!
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  #6  
Old 01-01-2003, 03:02 PM
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MTI is partially right about the shock settings.

On the front struts the adjustment is right on top where the shock towers are. I'm sure you have the white plastic adjustment tool which you'll need.

The rear is a bit tougher. As MTI stated I believe the adjustment is not easily accessible unless the car is on a lift. You'll have to make adjustments whenever your car is in the shop.

Unfortunately if I remember correctly the shocks have a break in period and they say not to use the hardest setting initially. Again it's been a while so you should definitely thoroughly read the manual to make sure.
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  #7  
Old 01-13-2003, 04:56 PM
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Thought I let you know that I had the Koni's installed.
Wow, now this baby is rocking...

Thanks again for all your input - I am off now to have
some fun - glued to the road!

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  #8  
Old 01-13-2003, 05:40 PM
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Placo1

Would you mind digging out the part number of your adjustable Konis, if its not too much trouble? I'd like to get a set for my fronts and would like to shop around using the correct number.

Also, are they red or orange? I'm getting conflicting stories from a few other folks who have installed them...not that the color matters at all to me. Thanx much.
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  #9  
Old 01-13-2003, 05:47 PM
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Hi Jim,

I wish I could help you with the part numbers. I used to have these shocks on my 190E which I sadly had to get rid of several years ago. You might be able to get the part numbers for the 500E off of TireRack, I think they sell them.

Regarding the color I'm 100% sure mine were orange. They stood out like a soar thumb before I lowered the car. Good luck with your search. BTW are you looking to stiffen up your ride? If so why not try the AMG Shocks, although I'm not sure if they are still available.
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  #10  
Old 01-13-2003, 06:44 PM
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Made in Germany-

Chatam NJ ... I know that area and those roads. Great driving areas.

Haasman
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  #11  
Old 01-14-2003, 09:22 AM
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Thanx Afshin...I thought you had the Konis on your 500E.

I already have new H&Rs springs waiting to go on the car also. My front stock shocks are done and figured I'd freshen up everything this winter with new stuff.

I got a price from the 'Rack' but didn't want to ask for the part number...that,to me, is sorta cheesy to call one vendor for a part number only to go somewhere else to buy it...although I may have to do that. I want to be sure I get the right shocks , and obviuosly, I don't want to find out I got the wrong ones once I take the fronts off and all; its happened to me before.

Orange it is then...cool. I have the yellow adjustables on my Scirocco and have been very pleased with their performance over the years.
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2001 Audi allroad
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  #12  
Old 01-14-2003, 10:32 AM
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Jim,

I hope you find the part numbers, I wonder if maybe Koni lists them on their website. I'll check that out later today. I loved the Koni's on the 190, they made that car corner, brake and accelerate like a race car. I did manage to blow one of the front struts out but Koni warrantied them so no big deal.

So you're putting H&R's all the way around the car huh, that will really flatten out the cornering of the car. I'm curious, are you making any changes to the rear hydraulic system or are you leaving that alone? What size wheels do you have?
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  #13  
Old 01-14-2003, 10:59 AM
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No changes to rear SLS with the H&Rs...that's why I chose them. I like the SLS.

No biggy on the Koni numbers ...I'll trust Luke at the 'Rack' to send the right ones...I'm not going to shop around anymore just to save maybe $10-15 on a shock.

I have the 17x8.25" polished EvoIIs on the car. The cars has 135K on it and I want to freshen up the tired suspension...as you know, the car is a porker and at 11 years old...its time for new stuff. I've heard all good things from this combo and can't wait to get it done and back on the road...once the snow is gone.
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1992 500E
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2003 Audi RS6
2001 Audi allroad
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  #14  
Old 01-14-2003, 01:30 PM
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I'll take a look at my paperwork later tonight and post the
details. The Koni's I installed are red (adjustable). Left the
softest setting (per factory recommendation) to start off
with.

Depending if the potholes in NJ are getting fixed in Spring
or not, I may tweak them a little tighther.
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  #15  
Old 01-14-2003, 09:50 PM
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Jim,

Can not find the part number on any of my documents.

Suppose you'll have to trust the guys at the 'Rack' to
ship you the right stuff.
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