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Old 10-27-2009, 03:53 PM   #1
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Best shocks for a 3rd gen.?

Does the quality of shocks vary that much from, say, a $16 pair of Gabriels to a $50 pair of Gabriels or some other brand? The reason I'm asking is I need new shocks in the rear bad, and I called autozone and they have the lifetime Gabriel shocks for $16 and $22, but I want to make an informed decision.

Are the $16/22 shocks any good or would you guys recommend another brand from possibly another vendor?

I'm looking for shocks where I can actually feel a difference, as opposed to the $16 shocks, where I cannot. they just feel "normal."
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Old 10-27-2009, 03:59 PM   #2
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Re: Best shocks for a 3rd gen.?

I use Gabriel High Jackers. You feel a lot of difference in them. Depending what you want? These ones i am talking about are air adjustable. Ask for them for some premiums if you want stiffer ride. I know they make heavy duty ones. thats the ones you want. If you want a stiffer ride? for hieght go for the gabriel high jackers.
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Old 10-27-2009, 05:52 PM   #3
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Re: Best shocks for a 3rd gen.?

I personally wouldn't reccommend any of those brands. I would at least get KYBs if you aren't looking to build a handling car. The shocks are that cheap for a reason.
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Old 10-27-2009, 05:57 PM   #4
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Re: Best shocks for a 3rd gen.?

Quote:
Originally Posted by robersml View Post
The reason I'm asking is I need new shocks in the rear bad....
If you need shocks, you probably need struts as well.

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Old 10-27-2009, 06:18 PM   #5
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Re: Best shocks for a 3rd gen.?

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I use Gabriel High Jackers. You feel a lot of difference in them. Depending what you want? These ones i am talking about are air adjustable. Ask for them for some premiums if you want stiffer ride. I know they make heavy duty ones. thats the ones you want. If you want a stiffer ride? for hieght go for the gabriel high jackers.
the only and absolutely ONLY purpose or function shocks have is to dampen spring jounce and rebound. it just SLOWS the up and down motion of the COIL SPRINGS. you cannot change ride height with shocks. nor make it "stiffer", you need stiffer springs for a stiffer ride, unless your talking about a slowed reaction as bieng "stiff" then yeah that will work. socks dont support any type of wieght of the vehicle.
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Old 10-27-2009, 06:31 PM   #6
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Re: Best shocks for a 3rd gen.?

Had KYB's on my 88 and my brothers 92 has them currently, they are awesome shocks for the price. I have Bilstiens on my 4th gen, my sisters 88 GTA has them also, absolutely love them. They are pricy though.
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Old 10-27-2009, 08:09 PM   #7
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Re: Best shocks for a 3rd gen.?

got a set forsale. they are gabriels worked great pulled them off and put on drag shocks because i am going a different direction with the car. struts are new shocks are about 2000 miles old. sell them for half of what they are new which is 75 bucks
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Old 10-28-2009, 11:28 AM   #8
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Re: Best shocks for a 3rd gen.?

You'll be hard pressed to get good shocks for $50. In order of importance of suspension components that will make the biggest difference in performance, quality shocks and struts fall only behind good tires. That is of course assuming the rest of the suspension is not worn out.
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Old 10-28-2009, 11:42 AM   #9
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Re: Best shocks for a 3rd gen.?

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Originally Posted by cIaRmOaCrZo View Post
the only and absolutely ONLY purpose or function shocks have is to dampen spring jounce and rebound. it just SLOWS the up and down motion of the COIL SPRINGS. you cannot change ride height with shocks. nor make it "stiffer", you need stiffer springs for a stiffer ride, unless your talking about a slowed reaction as bieng "stiff" then yeah that will work. socks dont support any type of wieght of the vehicle.
You ONLY have this half right (smiles).

Alot of people do not know that the main function of shock dampering is to control the chassis weight. It is the same function as the spring do- control the chassis weight. As a byproduct, the shocks control the bump damper and recoil. Too mucch compression valving combined with spring rate will cause unsettling of the chassis when you hit a bump. Too much rebound and the tire will not make it back down to the pavement fast following a bbump and will skip loosing traction momentarily. rebound is really mainly used to keep the chassis (or body weight) from rolling forward, aft, or laterally without being too stiff to lift the wheels the weight is transfering off of.

Cheap shocks generally have low rebound rates, or they have high rebound rates but poor quality valving that has no mans land slop in between the up stroke and the down stroke cycles. A 1/16" slop here can result to sometimes inches of undampered body movement based on mounting angles. Good shocks and tires are where you spend most of your money- other than needed maintinace parts lkike bad balljoints, worn bushings etc.

Last edited by Vetruck; 10-28-2009 at 11:48 AM.
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Old 10-28-2009, 12:52 PM   #10
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Re: Best shocks for a 3rd gen.?

http://www.autozone.com/autozone/cat...L+HIGH+JACKERS

These are 65 dollars. I wouldn't say they were cheap. But they are a good brand I use gabriel's all the time. I never had any problems with them. Kyb yes are a good brand. Just saying. If you haven't used them don't knock them for what they are.
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Old 10-28-2009, 12:55 PM   #11
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Re: Best shocks for a 3rd gen.?

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the only and absolutely ONLY purpose or function shocks have is to dampen spring jounce and rebound. it just SLOWS the up and down motion of the COIL SPRINGS. you cannot change ride height with shocks. nor make it "stiffer", you need stiffer springs for a stiffer ride, unless your talking about a slowed reaction as bieng "stiff" then yeah that will work. socks dont support any type of wieght of the vehicle.
Check the link. you don't need to get stiffer springs. and yes you can change the height of your ride w/o getting springs.
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Old 10-28-2009, 07:57 PM   #12
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Re: Best shocks for a 3rd gen.?

Okay, now on to the next question,

I changed the shocks on my 88 RS and I had to go inside and get behind the seat to mount the top of the shock. I now have an 84-Z. Are they changed the same way?
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Old 10-28-2009, 08:03 PM   #13
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Re: Best shocks for a 3rd gen.?

never done it on the both of em. but i dont see why not. thats a feature of this generation camaro i beleive never changed. its all the same body style, drive line, and what not.
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Old 10-28-2009, 08:32 PM   #14
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Re: Best shocks for a 3rd gen.?

Quote:
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I changed the shocks on my 88 RS and I had to go inside and get behind the seat to mount the top of the shock. I now have an 84-Z. Are they changed the same way?
Yes.

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Old 10-28-2009, 08:56 PM   #15
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Re: Best shocks for a 3rd gen.?

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Originally Posted by cIaRmOaCrZo View Post
the only and absolutely ONLY purpose or function shocks have is to dampen spring jounce and rebound. it just SLOWS the up and down motion of the COIL SPRINGS. you cannot change ride height with shocks. nor make it "stiffer", you need stiffer springs for a stiffer ride, unless your talking about a slowed reaction as bieng "stiff" then yeah that will work. socks dont support any type of wieght of the vehicle.
I don't think anyone expects socks to help a cars suspension; I've worn sports socks, casual socks, even wool and my ride never changed.
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Old 10-28-2009, 09:00 PM   #16
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Re: Best shocks for a 3rd gen.?

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I don't think anyone expects socks to help a cars suspension; I've worn sports socks, casual socks, even wool and my ride never changed.
exaclty, but if you read the quote i originally posted to, then you would know why i had to explaine that!
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Old 10-28-2009, 09:01 PM   #17
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Re: Best shocks for a 3rd gen.?

and haha. SOCKS dont do anything at all for your car
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Old 10-28-2009, 10:34 PM   #18
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Re: Best shocks for a 3rd gen.?

with him i have driven mine with no socks at all and didnt change the ride.
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Old 10-28-2009, 11:14 PM   #19
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Re: Best shocks for a 3rd gen.?

I have tokicos on my car, love emm... decent price too!! 10x's better then any gabriel or monroe shock\strut...
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Old 10-29-2009, 08:23 AM   #20
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Re: Best shocks for a 3rd gen.?

Quote:
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I don't think anyone expects socks to help a cars suspension; I've worn sports socks, casual socks, even wool and my ride never changed.
HAHAHAHAHAHAHA
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Old 10-29-2009, 08:56 AM   #21
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Re: Best shocks for a 3rd gen.?

Quote:
Originally Posted by berlin305 View Post
http://www.autozone.com/autozone/cat...L+HIGH+JACKERS

These are 65 dollars. I wouldn't say they were cheap. But they are a good brand I use gabriel's all the time. I never had any problems with them. Kyb yes are a good brand. Just saying. If you haven't used them don't knock them for what they are.
Yes, they are. I've had the Monroe Sen-a-Tracs (comparable in price and quality to the Gabriels), and compared to an actual set of sport shocks (KONI, Bilsteins, Tokico, even KYBs), they're crap. I'd say they're passable for a DD car with very little heavy aggressive driving. Not saying they won't be better than the blown stock, but it's like always eating rump roast and never had filet mignon- you don't know what you're missing til you try it.

Last edited by 91_5.7_TPI; 10-29-2009 at 09:00 AM.
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Old 10-29-2009, 01:26 PM   #22
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Re: Best shocks for a 3rd gen.?

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Yes, they are. I've had the Monroe Sen-a-Tracs (comparable in price and quality to the Gabriels), and compared to an actual set of sport shocks (KONI, Bilsteins, Tokico, even KYBs), they're crap. I'd say they're passable for a DD car with very little heavy aggressive driving. Not saying they won't be better than the blown stock, but it's like always eating rump roast and never had filet mignon- you don't know what you're missing til you try it.
What if you don't plan to REALLY go racing. Sports like koni, KYB, ect.. will really make a difference?

It's time for me to get new shocks and struts, so that's what I'm asking. I'd love to get a nice, Smoooth ride
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Old 10-29-2009, 01:34 PM   #23
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Re: Best shocks for a 3rd gen.?

Even in street driving, the differences will be obvious. The upper level brands will not only last longer, they'll give you a better handling car. The ride of the car will suffer some, though. You just need to decide on the balance of comfort and performance you want. I would think that a KYB would a good shock for someone who just plans to drive the car with a little fun here and there and doesn't plan to take it too far. If you plan to lower it, you'll need at least something like the nice KYBs (I can't recall how they do with lowering springs, so you'll want to look into that) as the cheapo stuff dies pretty fast if you lower the car (speaking from personal experience).
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Old 10-30-2009, 07:53 AM   #24
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Re: Best shocks for a 3rd gen.?

I was looking at shocks to jack my rear end up a couple inches. I need some air adjustable shocks.743019 do these shocks actually increase ride height or just stiffness? does anyone know how they ride?
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Old 10-31-2009, 09:19 AM   #25
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Re: Best shocks for a 3rd gen.?

http://autofabcart.net/82-2003fbodyr...onversion.aspx

I found this rear coil over kit for our cars....has anyone used anything similar to this? if so, do you think it will give me the 2 inches im looking for?
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Old 11-02-2009, 08:18 PM   #26
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Re: Best shocks for a 3rd gen.?

I know it's kind of an odd comparison, and maybe not spot on, but it will give you an idea...

Mine has KYB shocks on the back, and Monroe Sensa-Trac Struts on the front. There is a huge difference between responsiveness of the front and rear, very much in favor of the KYBs. I'll be pulling the Monroes and replacing them with KYBs next spring when I do my C4 brake swap, even though they've only got 10,000 miles on them. Good Shocks, good swaybars, good tires, that's where you make the difference. From there, wonder bar and panhard bar are the next biggest step up. Just my $.02 though.

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Old 11-03-2009, 10:36 AM   #27
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Re: Best shocks for a 3rd gen.?

Okay, I just got a quote of $167 to install KYB GR2 shocks, any suggestions on whether or not these are good shocks?

Then I got a quote of $232 for the KYB gas adjustable shocks. Same question above, any suggestions on whether or not these are good shocks?

I'm not racing. Won't be for a long time. This car is just for around town and occasional highway driving.
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Old 11-03-2009, 11:17 AM   #28
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Re: Best shocks for a 3rd gen.?

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Okay, I just got a quote of $167 to install KYB GR2 shocks, any suggestions on whether or not these are good shocks?

Then I got a quote of $232 for the KYB gas adjustable shocks. Same question above, any suggestions on whether or not these are good shocks?

I'm not racing. Won't be for a long time. This car is just for around town and occasional highway driving.
i read a lot of threads on shocks, and took their suggestions, just like presented here, and bought kyb's off rockauto, they have a 5% off coupon thread on 3rd gen here too.
i have too much stuff to do, and not installed yet, but advice steered me against the monroe's that i was going to get cheaper.
btw, i'm looking for a smooth controlled ride for a daily driver type vehicle. ws6 suspension which is firm already. i can't disagree that more expensive shocks would be better for a more aggressive application. i followed the advice presented here to arrive at my decsion if that helps u in yours.

Last edited by turbosbox; 11-03-2009 at 11:18 AM. Reason: KYB GR2's more specifically
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