Weak shocks

Stuntmanmike77

Well-Known Member
Hey everyone. I recently bought a bunch of suspension parts for my 03 tb including rear shocks. I went to put them in and noticed upon removal of the the old rusty ones realized they were still good! The old ones were much harder to compress by hand than the new ones and they still extended smoothly and faster than the new ones so, I left the old ones in until I can figure out why these new shocks are so flimsy feeling. I bought kyb excel g for the rear. Should I just put them in or look into something else? The old ones still seem to be working but quickly being taken over by rust.
 

Chickenhawk

Well-Known Member
The KYB Excel G shock is a twin-tube design. It is designed to replace the standard twin-tube rear shocks and duplicate the factory ride. Quite frankly, it is just a cheap replacement for the wimpy standard shocks. It is not an "upgrade" shock.

On the other hand, your "rusty" existing shocks were probably the upgraded factory shocks or were replaced previously with upgraded aftermarket shocks. They are a gas-charged shock, and this is why they appear stiffer to compress. There is always a certain preload tension in them (unless they are really worn out or leaking.)

Just because the outside of the tube is rusty, it doesn't mean they are bad. A hand compression test is not really a good way to test them either, because the gas charge will be stiffer, even if worn out. A bounce test is the second best way. (The best way is to drive behind your truck on a bouncy road and you will instantly see if you need new shocks.)

My opinion? If you want a cushy factory ride, put on the new shocks. If you think the ride is a tiny bit stiff, put on the new shocks. If it feels like your rear shocks are a bit harsher than they used to be, put on the new shocks. BUT if you want a good ride, with excellent control and like your ride stiffer than a cushy factory floaty-ride, get better aftermarket shocks. (Most of us in this forum fall into the latter category.)

If you have less than 50,000 miles on the old shocks, then the old ones are probably better than those KYB shocks. (Don't worry about rust.) If you have more than 50,000 and you liked the ride you are getting now, get the Bilstein HD shocks in the rear. You will be pleased.
 

Mike534x

Well-Known Member
I ran the Excel G on my Ext TB when I still had it. Ride wise, it's a little bit stiffer then the stock ones. It wasn't as floaty but still soft. I'm running the KYB Gas-a-Just shocks right now in the rear, I wanna say they're the middle ground of the stock shocks and the Bilstein HDs. The ride isn't super floaty, but isn't too stiff but is still able to handle bumps while keeping itself composed.
 
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Stuntmanmike77

Well-Known Member
So, mono tube over twin tube shocks? Bilsteins I would love to have but, a little rich for my taste considering I need to do the front struts too. Any other suggestions?
 

Chickenhawk

Well-Known Member
Monroe Reflex is similar, but the price for the Reflex and the Bilstein HD is about the same anyway. Check out Shock Warehouse. I had both and prefer the Bilsteins.

The fronts and the rears do not need to match. I use Monroe on the front and Bilstein on the rear. I am very sensitive and particular about handling, and I like to keep my rear stiffer than the front to help reduce understeer. That is why I have the Bilstein HDs on the rear, plus a stiffer aftermarket sway bar. I like balanced and neutral handling in a vehicle.
 

Mike534x

Well-Known Member
I'm running Monroe Reflex's on my Avalanche, they aren't bad but I would prefer if they were a bit stiffer. I was going to go with the Bilstein HD's, but went with Monroe's when RockAuto had a sale on Monroe shocks. I think after the rebate kicked in, I only ended up paying the cost for 3 of the shocks and the 4th was "free". On the Envoy I'm running Monroe OESpectrums in the front, due to them being a lot stiffer then the Excel-G and of course the Gas-a-Just in the rear. I'm pretty happy with the combo, and the replacement of the sway bar bushings helped tremendously with the handling front + rear.
 

vipergg

Well-Known Member
I'm running Monroe Reflex's on my Avalanche, they aren't bad but I would prefer if they were a bit stiffer. I was going to go with the Bilstein HD's, but went with Monroe's when RockAuto had a sale on Monroe shocks. I think after the rebate kicked in, I only ended up paying the cost for 3 of the shocks and the 4th was "free". On the Envoy I'm running Monroe OESpectrums in the front, due to them being a lot stiffer then the Excel-G and of course the Gas-a-Just in the rear. I'm pretty happy with the combo, and the replacement of the sway bar bushings helped tremendously with the handling front + rear.
I am running OESpectrums on mine all the way around and they have about 40000 on them now and they still ride nice . If you think you will ever replace them they are warranted for life even against standard wear out . Been pretty happy with them . Just did swaybar links on mine and that made a big difference in the steering , didnt realize they were bad .
 

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