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Old 10-20-2018, 12:18 PM   #1
Gunfighter97
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Default Selection of Shocks/Unf@cking PO Bodge Jobs

So first of all, I have a 1965 1100 4x4 with unknown springs and newer 1200 axles(ra16 and fa25). Basically in removing my front axle to undo the centillionth PO screw up Ive found, I found four or so more. The one Im curious about here, is prospecting a new set of shocks in front, and since the backs are missing all together, the back as well. Basically I pulled the wheels off the front, put stands under the frame and lowered the axle for removal. In doing so I found the front shocks are roughly an inch short. My dad is a BMW guru and loves Billsteins, I've heard alot of good stuff about them as well, so I'm leaning in that direcrion.
My question for the forum is more broad, hopefully It can be a general guide for future reference with regards to scouts or pick-alls.
For sake of theory, I have a vehicle with no shocks, how do I go about measuring for the right size? Secondly How do I go about looking at valve rates? Thirdly, what difference does the fluid in the shock make?(ie. Nitrogen vs oil) Thanks.
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Coming to you from behind enemy lines, in an unmarked barn, somewhere in The Communist West
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1965 IH D11004x4 "Sherman"
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1973 Fiat 850 Spider "il Cannoli"
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Old 10-30-2018, 08:56 PM   #2
Ron Anderson
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Default Re: Selection of Shocks/Unf@cking PO Bodge Jobs

Good question. Kind of wish someone had an answer. I have used a high lift jack, no shocks on, to force full articulation. Then just measure. Limiting straps and bump stops can be used to keep from going to far one way or the other. No clue on the valving, better seats and strap yourself in . Some shocks can be adjusted, but I would think a lot depends on the springs and weight of the vehicle. I think the Bilsteins are a decent shock, even though I blew one. High speed on washboard roads. They sent me a new one.
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Old 10-31-2018, 08:38 AM   #3
Gunfighter97
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Default Re: Selection of Shocks/Unf@cking PO Bodge Jobs

Yea I know weight/spring rates are important. This thing doesnt have a ton of room for upward travel however the axle hanging from the springs with no shocks traveled probably a good 8-10 inches down when I lowered the jack with no wheels on. I got a parts manual to look at different spring groups for it. Originally it had HD fronts and standard rears. Now it looks to have standard fronts and HD rear helpers, but IDK what the rear main springs are. Shock setups are original, atleast how they mount. Honestly I thought a question like this would've summoned a CPT guru but oh well. My front springs, for a variety of stupid reasons, are pretty well shot. Dont know if theres a way to have them rebuilt or stretched out to get a bit more life out of em.
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Coming to you from behind enemy lines, in an unmarked barn, somewhere in The Communist West
(currently planning my escape)

1965 IH D11004x4 "Sherman"
1946 Dodge Job Rated half ton "Rusty"
1973 Fiat 850 Spider "il Cannoli"
Half of a dead 1958 Apache "Mad Dura-Max(to be)"

VOTE!VOTE!VOTE!VOTE!VOTE!VOTE!VOTE!
"SHHHHH! Be wary, wary quiet! Im hunting turkeys"
Happy Thanksgiving!
RIP belts everywhere

Last edited by Gunfighter97; 10-31-2018 at 08:43 AM..
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Old 10-31-2018, 11:28 AM   #4
Robert Kenney
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Default Re: Selection of Shocks/Unf@cking PO Bodge Jobs

It's normal for the shock to be the limiting factor in axle drop on OEM setups. Other considerations come into play like drive line and brake line limits.
If you need more shock travel that you can fit in the installed length I would consider making room by moving a mount to accept a longer shock.
As for what shock to use as a replacement, I will be measuring my compressed and drop pin to pin distances and buy a shock to fit with a similar application.
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Old 10-31-2018, 11:39 AM   #5
Gunfighter97
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Default Re: Selection of Shocks/Unf@cking PO Bodge Jobs

Ok, I had to lift on the axle to unbolt the shocks, then the axle dropped about an inch farther. But I guess, from what you're saying its supposed to be that way? My rear shocks are missing because they werent long enough and when my shop put it on the lift the struts snapped off the top of the shock. So maybe they were just WAY too short? I already measured more or less like you said, so would I look for shocks based on GVW?
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Coming to you from behind enemy lines, in an unmarked barn, somewhere in The Communist West
(currently planning my escape)

1965 IH D11004x4 "Sherman"
1946 Dodge Job Rated half ton "Rusty"
1973 Fiat 850 Spider "il Cannoli"
Half of a dead 1958 Apache "Mad Dura-Max(to be)"

VOTE!VOTE!VOTE!VOTE!VOTE!VOTE!VOTE!
"SHHHHH! Be wary, wary quiet! Im hunting turkeys"
Happy Thanksgiving!
RIP belts everywhere
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Old 10-31-2018, 01:22 PM   #6
Ron Anderson
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Default Re: Selection of Shocks/Unf@cking PO Bodge Jobs

I broke a leaf in the rear pack on my 77 SS back over 20 years ago. Took them to a spring shop in Stockton Ca. with an OEM replacement leaf from a used pack. They hot re-arched them so both packs were the same. Not a huge amount of lift but they have held up. So I would say, yes it can be done and since they don't exactly sell a "kit" for your application, it might be worth it. The hard part might be finding a good spring shop. They are probably more rare than radiator shops that can actually rod or re-core old radiators.
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Old 10-31-2018, 01:25 PM   #7
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Default Re: Selection of Shocks/Unf@cking PO Bodge Jobs

If you do take your springs to a real spring shop, weigh your corners first. They will be able to tell you your spring rate is, modify it if necessary and probably recommend a shock with the correct valving.
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Old 10-31-2018, 01:58 PM   #8
Gunfighter97
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Default Re: Selection of Shocks/Unf@cking PO Bodge Jobs

Rearching. I thought I had heard that before in regards to springs but wasnt sure... We gunsmiths have a "attitude adjustment" for some types of worn out springs, usually magazine springs: stretching them out to get a little more life out of em before they get thrown in the wire hanger scrap bin. Funny enough I bought this thing in Stockton from a peculiar gent with an arse load of 50s shaguars and a rare 1940 dodge 1ton step side. I'll look around for a spring shop. Maybe my local garage can ship em out somewhere for a free quote like they did my driveline. Well this is now fixed, see pic. Unfortunately I've noticed all 4 of my front bed mounts are broken while I was under here. Following came can o' worms syndrome and I found all my cab mounts are equally garbage. Uhhhg. I jumped up and down on the rear bumper then on the front. The rear is alot springier than the front but then again the front has shocks so IDK.
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Coming to you from behind enemy lines, in an unmarked barn, somewhere in The Communist West
(currently planning my escape)

1965 IH D11004x4 "Sherman"
1946 Dodge Job Rated half ton "Rusty"
1973 Fiat 850 Spider "il Cannoli"
Half of a dead 1958 Apache "Mad Dura-Max(to be)"

VOTE!VOTE!VOTE!VOTE!VOTE!VOTE!VOTE!
"SHHHHH! Be wary, wary quiet! Im hunting turkeys"
Happy Thanksgiving!
RIP belts everywhere
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