Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 08-20-2004, 09:22 AM   #1
Rivet Master
Cracker's Avatar
Currently Looking...
Pittsfield , Maine
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 1,097
Bilstein Shocks

I would appreciate comments from forum members about their experience with Bilstein shocks - with emphasis on whether or not they noted a real improvement in ride comfort after installation. I'm not questioning Bilstein's quality - simply wondering whether switching from relatively new OEM shocks (---less than 20,000 miles) to Bilsteins makes sense - especially with a vehicle similar to mine.


2003 GMC 3500 D/A, CC, LB, 4x4 and 2000 Airstream Excella 30. WBCCI 7074
Cracker is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-20-2004, 09:43 AM   #2
Rivet Master
Airstream Dealer
Inland RV Center, In's Avatar
Corona , California
Join Date: Feb 2002
Posts: 16,501
Images: 1
I don't believe the Bilsteins will fit.

Secondly, your trailer requires horizontal shocks.


Inland RV Center, In is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-20-2004, 09:45 AM   #3
1 Rivet Member
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 6
My experience was with a Ford Ranger 2 wd pkup. I choose them for
a long life as i do not like to replace parts any more than need to. Paying
good money is no problem as long as the product does what it is expected and advertised. The ride was very rough when the truck was empty. I was disapointed in that. Control was much improved, which i loved. If more weight was carried i'm sure the ride would be different and my comments would be different. I can't address as how long they will last as the truck was totaled 4 months later. The dream was to get about 90,000 to 100,000 miles out of 'em. Which i hear is no problem.
sorlows is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-20-2004, 09:53 AM   #4
Rivet Master
59toaster's Avatar
1959 22' Caravanner
Atlanta , Georgia
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 2,197
Images: 22
Love them on my tow rig. Retrofitted them to replace the factory (1988 LOL) shocks. BIG improvement but still rides like a truck because it's a truck LOL. 3/4 ton burb start riding nice once you get 5 people and lugage in it.
1959 22' Caravanner
1988 R20 454 Suburban.
Atlanta, GA
59toaster is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-20-2004, 09:55 AM   #5
Rivet Master
Join Date: Dec 2002
Posts: 1,310
Images: 4
Cracker, I assume we are talking about the truck. I changed my truck's OEM shocks to Bilsteins at 100k miles. Before changing them I did the normal shock absorber check by bouncing one side up and down and seeing how many oscillations it took to stop. It took about three, whereas I would hope for just one. I changed to Bilsteins, different! On the other hand, I changed to gas shocks after 100k on my Land Rover Discovery, and the improvement was phenomenal. Far less body roll on curves, in particular. I'm glad I changed mine, as 100k should wear out any shock. I would stick with the OEMs unless or until you detect more roll and pitch than when the truck was new. Nick.
Nick Crowhurst, Excella 25 1988, Dodge Ram 2500 Cummins Diesel. England in summer, USA in winter.
"The price of freedom is eternal maintenance."
nickcrowhurst is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-21-2004, 05:35 PM   #6
Rivet Master
Cracker's Avatar
Currently Looking...
Pittsfield , Maine
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 1,097

I was definitely referring to the tow vehicle. Your kind of response is what I was looking for. The one thing that I don't believe new shocks, a change in the suspension, or any other modifications can overcome is the additional weight of the dually axle and a second set of tires and rims --- but that's why I put the question out! It takes a certain resistance to support any given load in a static position. That said, does it really matter whether or not that resistance is provided by springs, air bags, torsion bars, or some other device? The one thing I've noticed about my truck, when loaded, is that the piggyback set of springs have just begun to bear against their chassis contact points. This means that the upward resistance will increase suddenly following recovery from, or exposure to, dynamic loads - rather than "progressively." I've often wondered if the simple removal of the piggyback springs might offer the single greatest improvement for a loaded condition? I know there's such a thing as "spring rate." Maybe we can stir up some expert input.

2003 GMC 3500 D/A, CC, LB, 4x4 and 2000 Airstream Excella 30. WBCCI 7074
Cracker is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-21-2004, 08:28 PM   #7
Rivet Master
Bob Thompson's Avatar
Corpus Christi , Texas
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 936
Images: 67
For most of the day to day driving and towing, you're not likely to notice a difference between Bilsteins and any other good shock absorber. But then thats not the point. Bilsteins come into their own when conditions get rough and abrupt, like rough bumps where asphalt meets concrete bridge aprons, or like cordoroy gravel roads, or like rough concrete expansion joints. If your vehichle gets squirrelly in those conditions, the Bilsteins help maintain control better than most. IF you're towing in those conditions, you slow way down because even though the TV can take it, the trailer is not near so tough.

Bob Thompson is offline   Reply With Quote

Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Bilstein shocks ebay evan Airstream Motorhome Forums 32 05-11-2010 05:57 PM
X-Ref on shocks? RonJudi Mechanics Corner - Engines, Transmission & More... 4 03-18-2004 07:02 AM
ProComp Explorer Shocks BobbyW Shocks 0 09-25-2002 08:16 PM
Hello from new Forumee - and a question about front shocks on my 1989 345LE williamhenshall Mechanics Corner - Engines, Transmission & More... 12 04-14-2002 10:13 AM

Virginia Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

Our Communities

Our communities encompass many different hobbies and interests, but each one is built on friendly, intelligent membership.

» More about our Communities

Automotive Communities

Our Automotive communities encompass many different makes and models. From U.S. domestics to European Saloons.

» More about our Automotive Communities

Marine Communities

Our Marine websites focus on Cruising and Sailing Vessels, including forums and the largest cruising Wiki project on the web today.

» More about our Marine Communities

Copyright 2002-2015 Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 01:34 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2016, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.

Airstream is a registered trademark of Airstream Inc. All rights reserved. Airstream trademark used under license to Social Knowledge LLC.