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-   -   My '78 is getting a set of #7100 Bilsteins (https://forums.ihpartsamerica.com/showthread.php?t=10120)

Patrick Morris 06-25-2013 05:37 AM

My '78 is getting a set of #7100 Bilsteins
1 Attachment(s)
I started this post up in the iho product questions sub-forum, but I'll continue it here.

Just working on the front shocks so far. I have a set of the 10"-travel non-res 7100s. I only have about 3" of lift up front, so 5" of play up and down is probably more than I need but I'd rather have extra than have not enough, which is how it was with my 6.3" ranchos. At everyone's suggestion I went with the 255/70 valving. We'll see how I like that.

What I've done so far is cut off the front upper shock mounts and prepped a couple of the aftermarket shock towers to be graphed on. I cut the towers down to 9" high since that's all I need for fitment. The pic below shows where I am right now. The towers are not yet attached, as I'm still working out exactly how to do that and have them properly stand off the frame rail.

I'll post my progress in this forum, in case it interests anyone. What can be learned here I guess, is how the IHPA towers can be modified to work on a sprung-under Scout II that has only moderate lift, like mine.

As an aside, my buddy just installed a set of the 2.0 fox emulsion shocks all around on his Scout II, which has an old set of rancho spring that are 20+ years old. The improvement over his old rancho 9000 shocks is amazing. I didn't think it'd be possible to improve the bump-handling and general road manners on a leaf-sprung Scout with just a change in shocks, but the improvement his huge. Speed bumps used to be a jarring experience at any speed and sent any loose gear airborne. Now, hitting those bumps at 20-30 mph and the the Scout just does a little thump-thump. I was very impressed while riding in it.

Anywho... Since the 7100s are of a somewhat similar design and application to the fox 2.0s, I will be very happy if my Scout's handling comes out similarly better.


chico 06-26-2013 11:42 AM

Re: My '78 is getting a set of #7100 Bilsteins
Keep us posted im interested.

Patrick Morris 06-29-2013 02:20 PM

Re: My '78 is getting a set of #7100 Bilsteins
4 Attachment(s)
Hi. I got a little further along with the project this weekend. Both the right and left shock towers are tacked in place. For now I just have those borrowed blstn 5125s mounted. They will work until I have everything finished. Then I'll mount my nice new 7100s.

I'm going to hold off on doing the complete welds until I can take my Scout out to a place in the local hills and get the suspension all crossed up, and then make sure there is no unwanted contact. I don't think there will be any issues, based on how everything looks straight and the shocks clear the tower shrouds by a decent margin. But I just want to be sure. I May not be able to do this check for some days though.

edit: I drove around with these old 5125s yesterday. I should really just put on my 7100s since the damping in the 5125s is all wrong anyway. As I said they are borrowed, and the application is actually an f350 set up for dual shocks (according to the pn). Their damping is only 170/60, way too soft for a Scout in my opinion. My 7100s are 255/70 since that's what everyone says I need.

Patrick Morris 07-05-2013 10:14 AM

Re: My '78 is getting a set of #7100 Bilsteins
2 Attachment(s)
Update: I have the front towers welded in now and ready for a little paint. While the towers were still just tacked into place I did a fit check on a rutted trail nearby, getting everything crossed up pretty good, just to make sure there were no clearance issues.

I have to say, the ride is really nice with the bilsteins. They are a big improvement over the r9000s. The Scout's front end seems to handle better and the suspension is now allowed to work in soaking up bumps.

So far this is only half of an improvement though. I need to bite the bullet and order a set of 8" 7100 shocks for the rear end. For example, just for fun I drove over a 6" curb at about 6-8 miles an hour. When the front tires hit, I didn't so much as feel the curb as hear it. But when the rear tires hit, boing, the whole back end jumped up in the air and and launched my loose cargo airborne momentarily.



Patrick Morris 07-06-2013 08:42 AM

Re: My '78 is getting a set of #7100 Bilsteins
2 Attachment(s)
All painted now. Here are some in-situ pics of the 7100s.

I'll need to wait at least four weeks for my rear 7100s from the time I order them, since the 7100s are made to order at Bilstein.

I'll update this thread when I get them in.



chico 07-11-2013 06:17 AM

Re: My '78 is getting a set of #7100 Bilsteins
Looks good man! Roughly how much do those 7100s cost?

Patrick Morris 07-14-2013 09:44 AM

Re: My '78 is getting a set of #7100 Bilsteins
3 Attachment(s)
I feel a little weird talking about pricing on this forum, but since Jeff and co don't sell these particular shocks anyway I guess it would be okay to mention that I got them from aj-usa for about $138 each, after tax, with free delivery.

I ordered the rears, which will just be the 8" versions, last Monday. So I should have them around the first week of August.

Below are pics of my Scout getting the suspension crossed up in a big rut so that I could check the clearances on the tacked-on front towers and also to measure the travel on the rears when full stuffed. Pulled the ranchos off the truck to do this. Turned out to be unnecessary since the rear doesn't actually change much, at least where the shocks are concerned. So the 8"-travel 7100s will be fine back there using the existing shock mounts.

Btw, that's a buddy of mine in the pic; he was spotting for me. He's the guy who just put the fox 2.0 emulsion shocks on his '72 Scout with very favorable results.

I can definitely recommend the fox shocks. They are a few dollars more but work extremely well and are usually much faster to obtain. Like the 7100s, they are easily revalvable if you want to change damping. Both types of shocks perform about the same, from what I can tell so far.



chico 07-17-2013 06:00 AM

Re: My '78 is getting a set of #7100 Bilsteins
Thats good to know. Looks good man! So far looks like everything has bee worth it so far.

Patrick Morris 07-17-2013 08:03 PM

Re: My '78 is getting a set of #7100 Bilsteins
Thank you. Just wish I'd done it years ago... Like the cut-n-turn, the mastercraft seating, wide-ratio t19, etc and so on. This truck has been evolving over many years. By the time I'm 85 it will be just awesome.

And as it turned out, my rear 7100s came in yesterday, three weeks ahead of schedule. I'll put them on this weekend, if I have time, and take some pics.

Fwiw, the valving I used is Bilstein's 255/70, which is what Bilstein recommends (for both front and rear) and what IHPA sells for their 5100 series shocks. I think it will work fine. I won't know for sure until I take it out to the desert next fall and have the truck loaded with the usual extras.

I think if you're on a tighter budget you would be happy with 5100s. From what I read there is no difference in how they work, internally. Might be the same piston and valve arrangement. Main diff is that they have heim joints instead of rubber bushings. So their reaction is more.... Precise?

And the fox shocks my friend is running have what fox calls "50/70" valving. Fox measures the damping very differently than Bilstein. Those numbers mean 50% compression, 70% rebound. The percentage I guess refers to max possible damping for the piston in those directions. Or something like that. But whatever it means, it seems to work pretty well also. You want noticeably firmer rebound than compression. Not all shocks work that way, but they should.

We'll see how it all works once my rear shocks are on.

Btw, I'll also be redoing my bump-stops, which I might have mentioned above. I bought some Energy Suspension 2.5" 'racing' stops for the front and I will be figuring a way to drop those an inch or so. The rear end will get something similar since they definitely rub at full stuff, yet the axle never seems to come near the whimpy factory rubber stops. It needs taller stops mounted a little rearward of where they are now.


chico 07-19-2013 05:56 AM

Re: My '78 is getting a set of #7100 Bilsteins
So in the rear end you dont need to fab up new mounts? You are reusing the old ones? With the same travel and all? Im gonna order mine next week. Im pretty handy in the fab department but im just livin through you till I get mine. Haha also did you flush mount the front towers to the frame or did you pull them away a little? I noticed you welded the plates on the side of the after market towers. Im excited to find out the road manners and how it changes.

chico 07-19-2013 05:58 AM

Re: My '78 is getting a set of #7100 Bilsteins
Oops nevermind on the length change question. I over looked that. Lol

chico 07-19-2013 03:12 PM

Re: My '78 is getting a set of #7100 Bilsteins
Also do you have part numbers for both shocks? And is the 255/70 standard for this series shock or did you request it that way?

Patrick Morris 07-19-2013 07:28 PM

Re: My '78 is getting a set of #7100 Bilsteins

Originally Posted by chico (Post 70075)
also do you have part numbers for both shocks? And is the 255/70 standard for this series shock or did you request it that way?

They'll fit my rear set-up... Without new mods. But I do have non-stock spring plates that are high-clearance on the shock mounts. They are a little higher than the stock position by about an inch and a half.

The pn of the rear shocks is ak7108s04. I think the front ones are ak7110s04. The 08 and 10 are indications the lengths. And the 04 is the damping, just Bilstein's code # for 255/70.

There is no "standard" valving for them---you will always need to specify the damping. These 7100s are made to order (unless they happen to have a set made up already), but the 255/70 is a pretty common valving. It's what they recommend for vehicles in a Scout's weight class, at one shock per corner. And as I said, it's what I think Jeff typically uses. But check the store for accurate info on that.

As to your other question about the front mounts, yes, I tilted them out a little---that's why the gussets you see in the pics. Otherwise I was afraid the shocks wouldn't clear. And they wouldn't have. The frame has a weird indentation right there on both sides, you May have noticed. Mounting them "flush" would have actually tilted them in a little.

How I positioned the towers correctly was by using a handy tool my buddy (in the pic above) made. It's kind of a dummy shock that you can set the length with a set screw. I used it to position the towers at the correct height---about 21", mid-length of the shock---and then tilted out the towers slightly before tacking them into place. Worked great. I'll try to post a pic of it this weekend.

It will be interesting to see how these all work together. My buddy is already thinking he wants to try upping his rear rebound slightly, to 80%. One really cool thing about fox is they'll do one free damping change for you on these shocks. And... Fox offroad is right here in san diego, so he can just drive them over.

Actually, Bilstein is here in sd too. But they charge a lot of money for a redamp. So I'll need to buy a nitrogen bottle if I want to redo mine :smilewinkgrin: and by a new set of shim packs (~$15 I think).

Patrick Morris 07-21-2013 08:13 AM

Re: My '78 is getting a set of #7100 Bilsteins
2 Attachment(s)
Okay.... My rear bilsteins are in. Not to exiting to look at I guess. You might be able to see the big rubber o-rings they put on the shaft. It shows the extent of compression after I'd hit a few speed bumps at various speeds up to about 20-25 mph.

Btw, the spring plates are from Scout madness. And I modified them a little.

These shocks are definitely more compliant than the ranchos and let the springs work better. Can't say yet if they're better, the same, or not quite as good as fox though.

Eventually I'll want to re-do the fronts' lower mounts to move them outboard a little, by about an inch on either side. Mostly it's just for looks to make them a little more straight up and down rather than tucked in. Personal preference.



chico 07-23-2013 11:38 AM

Re: My '78 is getting a set of #7100 Bilsteins
Looks good man! I ordered mine today. 1 day turn around, that aint bad. Just need the towers and see how my rear plates work.

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