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Bilstein HD Upgrade

 
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marsdawg



Joined: 15 Jan 2017
Posts: 11
Location: Knoxville, TN

PostPosted: Sun Jan 15, 2017 5:33 pm    Post subject: Bilstein HD Upgrade Reply with quote

First timer here and trying to familiarize myself with using the forum. I have been watching this site for a couple of years and commend all for sharing with each other. Just replaced shocks and struts on my '07 SE 4x4 with no problems. While the rear appears to have remained the same height, the front is noticeably taller and the front wheel camber appears to be out (wheels leaning out at the top). Will the front settle over time and should I have an alignment done for peace of mind. It drives and handles beautifully. Any other recommendations?
Thanks again for this informative site.
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2007 SE 4x4 4.0 - 2" lift, Bilstein 5100 front/ 4600 HD rear with medium duty springs, Rear adjustable Upper Control Arm bushings, Firestone Coil-Rite air springs, Michelin LTX/AT2 P265/70/R16, American Outlaw Buckshot wheels, Aftermarket radiator, Timing chain and tensioner replacement.

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smj999smj
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Joined: 22 Jan 2012
Posts: 4691
Location: Prospect, VA

PostPosted: Sun Jan 15, 2017 6:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Did you just replace the front strut, or the strut assembly (as in "quick-strut")? I've heard some people say that the Monroe Quick-struts caused the front height to be a little higher than before. I would give it a week to settle in and then have it aligned.
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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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marsdawg



Joined: 15 Jan 2017
Posts: 11
Location: Knoxville, TN

PostPosted: Mon Jan 16, 2017 6:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I re-used the stock strut springs with the new struts. I think I will take your advice and give a week. Most intel indicates it should settle and then I will do the alignment as suggested.
Thanks for the reply.
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2007 SE 4x4 4.0 - 2" lift, Bilstein 5100 front/ 4600 HD rear with medium duty springs, Rear adjustable Upper Control Arm bushings, Firestone Coil-Rite air springs, Michelin LTX/AT2 P265/70/R16, American Outlaw Buckshot wheels, Aftermarket radiator, Timing chain and tensioner replacement.

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marsdawg



Joined: 15 Jan 2017
Posts: 11
Location: Knoxville, TN

PostPosted: Wed Jan 18, 2017 9:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

After talking with 4x4Parts and comparing my reinstall configuration with other photos I discovered that the coil spring seats can be (and were) installed upside down resulting in an approximate 2" lift. Seems strange that the seat accommodates the spring in both orientations. I am taking it back to the shop this evening for correction. Will have the alignment done this weekend to check out the specs. I am curious as I have 140k miles on my Pathy and have never had it aligned. I religiously have the tires rotated and balanced at Discount Tire every 5k and they have always worn evenly. I currently have 50k (predominately highway) on these Michelins and they have yet to show any appreciative wear. The guys at the shop can't believe it. Maybe shouldn't have messed with a good thing but the old shocks/struts were toast. I don't remember it riding this good when it was new. I just hope it stays aligned like it has in the past.
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2007 SE 4x4 4.0 - 2" lift, Bilstein 5100 front/ 4600 HD rear with medium duty springs, Rear adjustable Upper Control Arm bushings, Firestone Coil-Rite air springs, Michelin LTX/AT2 P265/70/R16, American Outlaw Buckshot wheels, Aftermarket radiator, Timing chain and tensioner replacement.

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marsdawg



Joined: 15 Jan 2017
Posts: 11
Location: Knoxville, TN

PostPosted: Wed Sep 27, 2017 11:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wanted to give an update on my progress. After having been told by my local dealership that the alignment was "close enough", I washed my hands and took my Pathy to a highly reputable Off Road shop for some real advice. Jason and the guys at Rocky Top Customz in Knoxville, TN admitted that they don't see many Pathy's but were more than excited to help me with my issues. I was having some noise coming from the front end and they diagnosed that as worn out bushings. They also recommended to replace the Bilstein HD 4600 shocks with the 5100 adjustables as the 4600s were not accommodating to the 2" lift. During front end disassembly and installation of the bushings that were observed to be worn, they discovered additional ones that appeared on the surface to be fine. Since it was apart I gave them the go on replacing all the bushings. What a difference. The stance, ride, and handling of my Pathy is incredible. They showed me the bushings that they replaced and they were definitely way past needing to be changed. The rear is a continuing story. Even though everything looks and performs better than new I was told that they couldn't get the rear camber in spec. We agreed on installing a set of camber adjustment bolts but even that didn't get it. I remembered seeing a post on rear alignment issues where someone had found some adjustable rear upper control arm bushings. The guys at Rocky Top admitted they had never heard of them so asked if they could do a little research. They called me back and recommended the bushings from Super Pro suspension products. Being $40 cheaper than the ones from 4x4 Parts and being higher recommended we have ordered the bushings and am waiting for delivery/installation. At this point, including shocks, my suspension upgrade/repair project has cost me @ $1700 and that's including labor. Probably would have been a little cheaper if I had gone to Jay and crew in the first place for the whole install but we live and learn. I will let you now how the bushings work but they are confident that will solve the alignment problems. I have read where other folks that don't do their own wrenching have recommended finding a good Off Road shop in lieu of the dealership or chain stores and I can't agree more. Even though I am not doing a 20k off road build the guys at Rocky Top treated me as though I were. Their knowledge of 4x4s is unequalled by the guys who say "It's good enough!" I encourage anyone trying to solve the problems associated with installing a lift on these Pathys, to not try and skimp on money and just go have it done right by someone who knows what they are doing. Keep up the posts.
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2007 SE 4x4 4.0 - 2" lift, Bilstein 5100 front/ 4600 HD rear with medium duty springs, Rear adjustable Upper Control Arm bushings, Firestone Coil-Rite air springs, Michelin LTX/AT2 P265/70/R16, American Outlaw Buckshot wheels, Aftermarket radiator, Timing chain and tensioner replacement.

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smj999smj
Moderator


Joined: 22 Jan 2012
Posts: 4691
Location: Prospect, VA

PostPosted: Wed Sep 27, 2017 1:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You should have paid only half of the bill that the dealership gave you. Then, when they wanted to rest, you could have said, "Well, that's close enough!"
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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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marsdawg



Joined: 15 Jan 2017
Posts: 11
Location: Knoxville, TN

PostPosted: Wed Dec 06, 2017 3:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Got the adjustable rear Upper Control Arm bushings installed and everything aligned great. Rides like a 4x4 should and I like knowing that the alignment is spot on. Thanks Rocky Top. Anyone going with a 2" or > lift on their Pathy should consider these as a prevention for the rear alignment issues that seem to be immanent.
_________________
2007 SE 4x4 4.0 - 2" lift, Bilstein 5100 front/ 4600 HD rear with medium duty springs, Rear adjustable Upper Control Arm bushings, Firestone Coil-Rite air springs, Michelin LTX/AT2 P265/70/R16, American Outlaw Buckshot wheels, Aftermarket radiator, Timing chain and tensioner replacement.

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GK1707



Joined: 11 Dec 2011
Posts: 17
Location: NY

PostPosted: Sat Jun 16, 2018 2:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Anyone got any tips on replacing the rear shocks? Looks like I'll need to replace mine soon and those top bolts look like a pain to reach.

No way an impact is gonna fit in there. How'd you guys get to that top bolt to get enough torque on it, breaker bar?

Mine are pretty rusted also, might have to cut them but not sure if I can fit a grinder wheel in that small space to cut those bolts off.
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smj999smj
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Joined: 22 Jan 2012
Posts: 4691
Location: Prospect, VA

PostPosted: Sat Jun 16, 2018 8:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I use a big breaker bar...sometimes with an even bigger pipe over the breaker bar! They are a bit of a pain as far as rear shocks go.
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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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