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  #1  
Old 10-26-2001, 10:06 AM
Robert Boyer
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Bilsteins: comforts on front; HD's on rear

Query:

On my 420 SEL (W126), I recently installed Bilstein comforts on front, and Bilstein HD's on rear.

Do you think that this is an error? That it could upset handling and/or ride, to mix? Would the car be better balanced by having all comforts or all HD's?

Thanks.
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  #2  
Old 10-26-2001, 10:26 AM
Michael's Avatar
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I don't think that they are too different, but if it were me I'd match all four as the manufacturer intended.

How does it ride & handle?
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  #3  
Old 10-26-2001, 11:03 AM
Robert Boyer
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Bilsteins

Thanks, Michael.

To answer your question, I think the handling is off. That is, I think that the stiffer rear creates a little more sway in front. Additionally, I think that the stiffer rear slightly changes the weight distribution of the car, so that a bit more weight is on the front, making it ride a bit lower - compressing the springs a bit more than it should and fomenting a touch of toe-out.

Further, I'm wondering if when you put in HD's, you need a stiffer spring to go with it. That is, in the rear, where I have th HD's, I have stock springs. The harder and stiffer rebound of the HD's might be a bit much.

What do you think?
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  #4  
Old 10-26-2001, 11:30 AM
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I recently installed HDs at all 4 corners on my 300D-I like the performance of the new struts, but given the original way-too-soft springs on this car I'm inclined to install Sportline springs.

Shocks alone will not affect the weight distribution, BTW, just it's perception. And a shock in a non-load-leveling suspension (like yours) does not im pact ride height.

Lastly, with the stiffer rear suspension, your front by comparison will seem a bit less controlled.

If you really dislike the rear suspension characteristics, perhaps you can install Comforts back there? The rears are the cheaper shock, and this is the most economical way to address your issues.

Good luck!
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  #5  
Old 10-26-2001, 11:33 AM
Robert Boyer
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Bilsteins

Michael:

What do you think would be better?

HD's on the front to match the rears, or put comforts on the rears to match the fronts?

I suppose that I want to avoid the rear wallowing too much.
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  #6  
Old 10-26-2001, 12:10 PM
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I had to make a similar decision. I had to replace my back shocks on my 190e and thought about HD's but decided on the regular ones just to keep everything the same. I was also wondering if the HD's would be too stiff. Anybody put 4 HD's on a 190e? How are they?
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  #7  
Old 10-26-2001, 01:57 PM
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Robert,

Given that you want to minimize wallow (which is EXACTLY why I changed the struts/shocks on my 300D), go with HDs up front. Maybe once the front matches the rear, the rear won't seem so harsh.
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1995 E500 street car
1986 Porsche 944 Turbo S track car
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  #8  
Old 10-26-2001, 04:04 PM
jfujimoto
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Jim,

Yeah...I've got the 4 HD's on my '85 190E. They're a tad stiffer than the stock/comfort shocks. On the highway at high speed they keep good contact with the road whenever there are dips or bumps. I've got such a HUGE gap between the fender and tire that it looks like a 4X4. Now I've gotta cut the springs or get a new set of lowering springs. Actually, I'm gonna wait until I get a new set of rims. Thinking back, I wish I had bought sport shocks instead.

Jeff
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  #9  
Old 10-26-2001, 08:59 PM
Clauser1
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What about sports shocks on stock
springs? Possible?
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