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Discussion Starter #1
I'm looking for suggestions on which shocks i should run with. It's a 1965 coupe, I'll be running 480lb springs up front with 4.5 mid-eye leaf springs. I'm looking for a combo that'll drive and handle well on the street but will still be okay for an occasional run at the drags. I'd prefer not to go with the most expensive option out there but I am willing to pay for good parts. Would Bilsteins be my best option? Are Bilsteins an available option?
 

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I have read nothing but good about the Bilsteins, Shaun has a good varied selection for each use (street, race) and good pricing, plus great support:
Shock Absorbers

Shocks will add vastly to the ride and response, I have been using the KYB GR-2's which are a good shock for being <$100/4. Once I get involved in some track events I'll probably step up to the Bilsteins or Koni's if my skills require them.
Jon
 

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Since you say you "will be" running 4.5 mid-eye leafs, I would highly recommend you look at the Maier Racing leafs if you haven't your bought leaf springs yet.
Maier and Street or Track both sell the bilstein shocks (my favorite). RCD does the valving for the bilstiens (specificly for our cars) so you don't have a lot of distributors to buy from.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I haven't bought the leaf springs yet. I was wondering which brand to get, thanks for the suggestion. As for the bilsteins, should I get the street valving or the sport valving? The street valving looks like its good up to 600lb spring rate. The sport valving says its good for 500-700lb spring rate so I'm thinking that might be a bit much?
 

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I agree that Bilsteins will be your best bet. With the Bilsteins you have your choice of three different shocks (dampers) to suit your driving needs. I run Konis and am very happy with them but they need to be revavled for my applications. You can run the Bilsteins right out of the box. They are a bit pricey but...the best hurts once.
 

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I got the Grab-a-Trak 4.5 mideye leafs and they are pretty stiff.
 

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Shock Recommendations IMHO:

1) Koni- Excellent for racing applications- overpriced for street applications
2) Tokico, QA1 & Bilstein- A very good shock for street/strip applications. If you are running very stiff tires on the street (such as Bridgstone that are 100% steel belted or tires with profiles shorter than 50 series), these provide the extra give that you need for both comfort & stability
3) KYB- A very good shock for street/strip applications. If you are running a softer tires on the street (such as BFG that are a mix of steel & nylon belted or tires with profiles not shorter than 50 series), these provide the extra stiffness that you need for both comfort & stability. The GR-2’s are the equivalent to the Edelbrock IAS automatic adjusting units. Overall, stiffness between the Gas-a-just and the GR2’s are the same, the difference is the GR-2's valving which stiffens things up from a oem setting to that of the Gas-a-just units.. Best shock for the $/best price typically found at Performance Suspension Technologies (PST) and typically about 1/3 less than Bilstein.
4) Gabriel- A very nice good quality HD OEM replacement type unit.
 

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Does anyone have any experience with the QA1 adjustables? They seem like they are a nice peice.
 

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I'm a huge fan of the Edelbrocks for general performance street driving. The ride quality is really hard to top in a performance oriented shock, if that is something that matters to you.
 

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I went the KYB route with Meier rear leaf springs for years and they worked well.

About 6 months ago I replaced the with Konis.

Yeah. They are really expensive. The best normally is.

The ride is much better than with KYB Gas-A-Justs. The handling seems to be just as good.

Phil
 

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I went the KYB route with Meier rear leaf springs for years and they worked well.

About 6 months ago I replaced the with Konis.

Yeah. They are really expensive. The best normally is.

The ride is much better than with KYB Gas-A-Justs. The handling seems to be just as good.

Phil
I ran KYB Gas-A-Justs with Maier springs and had terrible wheel hop, as well as a very harsh ride. I changed to Bilsteins on their recommendation and eliminted both. The ride with Bilsteins is much nicer than the KYBs.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I think Id like to get something a step up from the kyb. the bilstein street valve shocks are less than 100 a piece, are these worth getting or should I get the sport valve bilstiens? How do the edlebrock shocks compare with the bilsteins?
 

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Again, what you buy is determined by the style of driving that you do and the way your car is set up. I know this does not answer your question but a little research into it and you will find your answer. i.e. is your car going to be just a driver?, street/strip?, open track? There are many variables with decidedly different answers. If you give us more info we can help you narrow down the search.
 

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What size tires are you running on your 66?
Yes....I know that contributes to the harsh ride. Also the fact that I have the KYB Gas Adjusts as well. I currently have 235/40/18's on the rear. But...when I first got the springs I had 225/50/16's and it was still pretty harsh. It doesnt bother me though, I'm used to it.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Again, what you buy is determined by the style of driving that you do and the way your car is set up. I know this does not answer your question but a little research into it and you will find your answer. i.e. is your car going to be just a driver?, street/strip?, open track? There are many variables with decidedly different answers. If you give us more info we can help you narrow down the search.
I'll be running with480lb springs and 4.5 mid eye leaf springs. I'll be doing mostly street driving and cruising through back roads in the mountains and canyons. I typically like good handling characteristics and enjoy pushing a car through turns and what not. Occasionally I'll take it to the drags but probably not more than 2-3x a year. Thanks for any feedback you can provide, I appreciate it. Classics are new to me. I'm more familiar with the 86-04 mustang suspensions.
 

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"I'm more familiar with the 86-04 mustang suspensions" Then you will be pleasently surprised how much better the classics handle. Since coming back to my roots, the only things I miss are 9" wheels all the way around and R&P.
 

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Discussion Starter #18 (Edited)
That's definitely good to hear! It's something I've been wondering about that for some time now. I didn't really know what I was getting myself into with these classics. I got so fed up with the California smog laws and the hassle of passing smog legitimately that I decided to move on to smog exempt platform. I bought this car as a roller 3 years back and its been a slow and intimidating but fun project getting it running; been doing a lot of mods along the way.
 

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You would be best to get the "Sport" Bilsteins. They are a bit stiffer than the "Street" version but it looks like you put handling over ride quality. The ride is really quite nice because the stiffness adds to the handling characteristics and thereby makes the drive more enjoyable. So those shocks and your spring rates will have diggin' life!
 

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This is a good thread, i swapped from gas adjusts to gr2s due to poor ride quality. I may upgrade again soon.
 
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