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Discussion Starter #1
Unhappy with the traditional Koni adjustables installed a couple of years ago on my 65FB. I am to the point where I believe they may be overrated.

I have an aggressive driving style with multiple weekly city/highway driving and also the occassional open track event.

I will truly appreciate any feedback on recommendations on proven alternatives to Koni?

Thank you.
 

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Unfortunately, I've never been able to find a direct comparison on shocks in vintage Mustangs. All we have is anecdotal evidence. I've read several times how people have put on Konis, and say they were an upgrade, but I've never heard anyone say they went from Konis to anything else and saw an inprovement.

Too bad MM wouldn't do a double blind performance shock comparison, or a double blind comparison on anything for that matter.

John
 

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I have the Edelbrock IAS shocks and really like them. I have had Gabrial Striders (too soft) and KYB's (too stiff and slow to react). I think the Edelbrock's work great on the street, they are very firm until you encounter a change in the pavement surface, then the valving allows the shock to let the spring react.

I'm curious to hear more about the Bilstein's that Maier Racing is selling. They are taking an off the shelf Bilstein and modifying it to fit an early model.
- http://www.maierracing.com/ - go to Catalog, Early Model, Suspension, Shocks

EDIT: What spring rate are you running up front?
What rear leafs do you have?

Tim
 

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In my experience Konis have proven to be the best shock for an OEM-style suspension, but don't expect them to make a vintage Mustang handle like a modern sportscar...shocks don't perform miracles.

I doubt the problem lies in your shock choice, as I doubt you'll discover any improvement by simply swapping your Konis for another make, unless of course your Konis aren't adjusted properly relative to your other suspension components.

Can you be more specific on what you're unhappy with (body roll, bumpsteer, ride quality, etc)? If it's handling in general, you should first look into adjusting your Konis. If this doesn't do the trick, look to your other suspension components. If you want the ultimate suspension setup and have a bunch of money to burn, give Griggs a call.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I am runnig a GW stage 3 kit. I am uncertain of the front spring rate, as I know the current kit they offer has been modifed a little since I purchased 3 years ago. For ex. they no longer supply Cure ride shocks in the rear, instead now QA-1 adjustables. It's possible they switched the front spring that's in the kit.

I am seeing from all of your comments that my Koni's may not be THE problem I am unhappy with. I will first try turning up their damping rate a little, and then maybe experiment with a stiffer spring.

What front suspension setup are all of you running with your Koni's?
 

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I replaced the KYB Gas a just shocks with Konis and I am more than pleased with the change. I am running the G/West 520# springs in the front and 138# leafs in the rear. The shocks on my car were re-valved and adjusted on a shock dyno to match the springs I used. I even have a printed graph that shows the initial and current response to the changes. Thanks to KiwiGT for having this done for me, my shocks were sent to New Zealand for this process and returned to me after the work was complete. I'm sure someone here in the states offers this service, while I can't provide a before and after comparison of the Koni's, I can say they do not exhibit any objectionable ride characteristics. The handling of the car is much more controlled than before, rough pavement doesn't result in a white knuckle grip of the steering wheel.
 

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Well, my car isn't done yet, so I can't comment on any adjustments I made to the Konis considering I'm not yet to that point. My setup is fairly common and similar to other setups I've come across, with the exception of the rear override bars and custom through-floor subframe connectors. Regardless, here's what I have in my '65 GT350 clone...

Front: Konis, 1" swaybar, 620lb springs, boxed upper and lower control arms with 1.75" UCA drop and negative-wedge kit, roller perches, Baer bumpsteer kit, Street or Track adjustable strut rods

Rear: Konis, 4.5 leafs, GW Del-a-lum bushing shackles, Cobra Auto override traction bars (spring bars with 900lb springs)

Chassis: Fully welded custom through-floor subframe connectors, Shelby R-model 4-pt rollbar, export brace, Monte Carlo bar, Cobra Auto Trans-Am front crossmember

I think you're headed in the right direction by first trying to work with what you already have. It would be a shame to spend more money on a change that may actually have an adverse affect on your car's handling.
 

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mariofenu said:
I am runnig a GW stage 3 kit. I am uncertain of the front spring rate, as I know the current kit they offer has been modifed a little since I purchased 3 years ago. For ex. they no longer supply Cure ride shocks in the rear, instead now QA-1 adjustables. It's possible they switched the front spring that's in the kit.

I am seeing from all of your comments that my Koni's may not be THE problem I am unhappy with. I will first try turning up their damping rate a little, and then maybe experiment with a stiffer spring.

What front suspension setup are all of you running with your Koni's?
The front springs on your stage 3 are 540#/in.
They are an off the shelf Moog that actually
fit another year Mustang. This would be their
S-23 spring and this is what you have unless
you have something unusual, like a big block,
351W with iron heads or use the car only for
the track.
The swap to QA-1 in the rear was made purely
for volume and ease of obtaining parts- the
Cure Ride shocks are still manufactured but
are a PITA to get.

You never did say exactly what you are unhappy
with in terms of the front Konis.....

I've got the second car they put together back
in 1986- 1966 GT, Koni double adjustable front,
Cure Ride rear, full Stage III Global West plus
some stuff they don't sell. I've retired it as
far as open track is concerned but with only
240 rear wheel horsepower, it would usually be
the 3rd or 4th quickest and I drove it to and
from the track.
I'm happy to help you if you elaborate on your situation.....

ex-Global West GM
1991-1994
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thanks 1owner.

I boast about the rest of the GW kit. It's pretty awesome stuff.

Here's exactly what I am unhappy about. With the shocks turned about 1/2 way, I feel like I am driving a cadillac (soft and squishy)at 80-90 mph over undulations, or on highspeed bends. I just expected it to be stiffer.

What do you think of what I described?
 

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i have total control products coil over conversion with 450 lb springs on front power rack and subframe with xframe assembly. I am running maier racing 200 lb race springs with koni shocks on the rear.
i found the the konis choppy at pretty much any setting. the guy at maier racing recomended the bilsteins and I have them now (should have listend to him the first time).. they are taught but not overly stiff either.
 

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No problem. It's my pleasure.
What you're describing should NOT be happening.
1/2 way out should ride more like a REO truck
with solid rubber tires than a Cadillac!
I don't know Koni's current warranty behavior,
but the special D's have a "lifetime" policy.
(these days who knows what hoops you have to
jump through, that's why I hesitate to say "yeah
they'll handle it")
I have a special toll-free customer service number
in my rolodex. I can call them for you-
My opinion is that there's got to be an issue
with your front shocks.
Your gonna get some lift with the front of a
Mustang at those speeds but it shouldn't be
accompanied by bobbing with carefree abandon,
that's for sure. (I've got my GT set up about
1/2" lower at static..... a ride height that
is at the absolute lower limit for use with
the GW arms)
With your shocks, worst case is I'll have to
call when I get back, but I'm packing right
now for SEMA in Las Vegas- they're in booth
#22487, about 50 yds away from my company's
booth. Lemme see what they say.

How old or how many miles on your shocks?
 

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I had a set of Monroe Matic Plus's on my 69 and really liked them. Not sure if you can even get those anymore, but I need shocks in the next few months, so, guess I will have to pick from above.
 

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#20630 is our booth. It'll be me and another
manager named Jim..... I'm the good looking
one though :p
I WILL NOT be there Friday, just Tuesday-Thursday.
 

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I've got the Bilsteins and the racing springs from Maier racing. I'm very happy with the ride, a bit stiff, stiffer then the suspension in my 996 Carrera, but real racey....wouldn't have it any other way!
 

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mariofenu-

I just got done talking with Koni on your issue.
They'd like you to proceed by adjusting your
front shocks to be a bit more stiff and see
if that has the required effect. If not you
can take advantage of the lifetime warranty-
assuming you are the original purchaser. (and
hopefully you have your receipt)
If you send them back for rebuilding under
warranty, tell them in a note that even when
adjusted to better than half-way, they're still
not stiff enough for you. Perhaps they will
revalve to suit your requirements?
That's how you should proceed and was straight
from the horses' mouth, so to speak......
 

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1 Owner said:
I just got done talking with Koni on your issue.
They'd like you to proceed by adjusting your
front shocks to be a bit more stiff and see
if that has the required effect. If not you
can take advantage of the lifetime warranty-
assuming you are the original purchaser. (and
hopefully you have your receipt)
If you send them back for rebuilding under
warranty, tell them in a note that even when
adjusted to better than half-way, they're still
not stiff enough for you. Perhaps they will
revalve to suit your requirements?
I would second that. I have generic "620" springs and Konis all around. I started fronts with rebound on 3rd position and then loosened it to 2nd softest. On track, I haven't noticed anything but on roads, I think I should get back to 3rd position. When doing 60mph+ on twisty undulating roads, the front sort of wallovs a bit too much. Added insult is of course bump steer problem when suspension goes up and down.
 
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