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front struts

 
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nismopath



Joined: 24 May 2016
Posts: 78

PostPosted: Fri Feb 09, 2018 2:41 pm    Post subject: front struts Reply with quote

Can i buy just the strut itself or do i have to buy the entire coilover piece as one ? I found struts online for just the strut part without the coil, but i had always thought it was a one piece option.

*edit* I am not looking for a lift, just standard height.
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BullDozer



Joined: 17 Jan 2016
Posts: 53
Location: Detroit, Michigan

PostPosted: Fri Feb 09, 2018 6:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, they are two separate pieces. The strut contains two pieces: a shock and the spring. They come together, referred to a quick strut to make it easier to change them as one unit. You have to compress the spring to remove it from one strut to another.

Most likely your coil springs need to be replaced anyway, so I would recommend changing them both and getting a quick strut. Keep in mind it is more labor intensive to change just the new strut and take the coil springs off the old strut.


Don’t forget to get alignment.
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2006 SE 4.0 4x4
Rancho quick strut front
Armada rear springs, Rancho rear shocks
265/75 R16 Cooper AT3
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smj999smj
Moderator


Joined: 22 Jan 2012
Posts: 4506
Location: Prospect, VA

PostPosted: Sat Feb 10, 2018 5:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Either/or...it's your option. As mentioned, the real issue is if you want to get involved with compressing the coil spring or not. Unless you have the SE-OR model, the factory strut is essentially a KYB G2/Excel. KYB released their "Strut-plus," a complete strut assembly with a limited lifetime warranty about a year ago and would be the way I'd choose. Their regular strut (no coil spring/mount assembly) also has a limited lifetime warranty.
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2006 Pathfinder LE VQ40DE AWD, Nitto Dura Grappler P265/65R17, aftermarket radiator, Airlift 1000's, Bilstein HD rear shocks
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nismopath



Joined: 24 May 2016
Posts: 78

PostPosted: Sat Feb 10, 2018 7:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

OK that's good to hear, I did a quick search and all I got was the complete coil and spring together. I just looked again on RockAuto and did find other options, thanks i thought i was missing something.

I don't want to deal with compressing the springs and so id like the option that involves not to. But I have about 140k miles so i am in a toss up of whether i need coils or not ? I don't see any sagging, but if im doing shocks it makes me think i should and get a little better handling. Is that a wrong assumption or not ?

Also I can get new Bilstein 4600 front struts for $100 or KYB or Monroe coil/strut combo for $150, is it going to do anything for me to get the combo or just keep to the original springs? By the time i pay someone to install the front its about the same amount of money too! But when i was on RockAuto it has said that the Bilstein is a better front strut than the Monroe or KYB quick-struts.. so i don't want to sacrifice quality. Is Bilstein actually any better of a front strut or is that just marketing? I need something good to match up with Bilstein HDs for the rear.

Ps- do I have to compress the front coil if i am just swapping out the front strut ?
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smj999smj
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Joined: 22 Jan 2012
Posts: 4506
Location: Prospect, VA

PostPosted: Sat Feb 10, 2018 9:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If you are only replacing the strut, itself, as opposed to a complete strut assembly, then you have to compress the springs in order to swap over the spring and strut mount onto the new strut. You need to have the right tools and know what you are doing because there will be a lot of pressure on the spring and if it lets go, it can cause serious injury or damage. If you do replace just the strut, use the original hardware (washers, etc.) as the ones supplied with aftermarket kits (even the KYB) are usually incorrect.
I can't tell you if the Bilsteins are any better of a front strut than the KYBs as I haven't used them personally, only the Bilsteins for the rear shocks. Bilstein makes quality struts and shocks, but the factory front suspension is actually pretty good on the whole; it's the rear suspension...namely the rear coil springs...that can use improving (stock Moog replacement springs or installing Airlift 1000 air bags are often used).
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2006 Pathfinder LE VQ40DE AWD, Nitto Dura Grappler P265/65R17, aftermarket radiator, Airlift 1000's, Bilstein HD rear shocks
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nismopath



Joined: 24 May 2016
Posts: 78

PostPosted: Mon Feb 12, 2018 6:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well that makes this a little tougher decision. I was hoping i could just buy the strut and replace it myself and get out the cheapest route but no matter what I am going to have to pay someone to install this anyway.. so based on RockAuto current prices, i have three options:

1. Bilstein front struts $80 each side and use current coil
2. Bilstein front strut and new MOOG coil $80/each side + $50 for pair of coils
3. KYB Strut-Plus $112 (this will have new strut and new spring)


I don't know if the coil needs to be replaced, but that's my point to this, since i have to pay for the install should i just go ahead and get new coils and go with either option 2 or 3 because its only $50-$60 more total ?

Or say what the heck and get bilstein 5100s for $100/each and use the existing springs and get a little lift out of it! ? I am already doing Bilstein HDs on the rear so add a $70 spacer lift and call it a day !?
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DanJetta



Joined: 03 Oct 2012
Posts: 471

PostPosted: Mon Feb 12, 2018 2:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Couple of things I can add:

1. I'd go for the KYB or factory strut up front. The Bilsteins have a slower expansion/recovery rate that gives the front an odd dynamic. Makes it feel a bit like a dump truck. I've been through a few sets and the factory strut, hands down, feels the best up front. Very solid and stable. The first time I removed them (around 100K miles) they were actually in decent shape still.

I know a lot of people say the Bilsteins help in the rear but I didn't notice a big difference. I think it's more that the rear struts wear out faster and a pair of new struts (any brand) are an improvement. The airbags make the most noticeable difference on my truck.

2. If you want to save money, replacing the front struts isn't as terrible as it sounds. Getting the assembly out is a breeze. Then you compress the spring with a spring compressor and take it apart. The hardest part is getting the top nut off without spinning the shaft (huh huh, I said 'shaft'). If you don't have a spring compressor, put the front of your truck on jack stands and take the strut assemblies with the new strut to a tire shop and have them swap it out for you. I had a local shop disassemble mine for $50 total.

Unless your springs are cracked, you want a lift, or you want the convenience of a preassembled unit, there's no reason to spend the money to replace the springs. They should easily last the lifetime of your truck.
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