Toyota Nation Forum banner

1 - 11 of 11 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
25 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
What are the best shocks/struts available for our trucks?

I've looked around here and there, but don't know if I've covered all the options.

I'm looking for the best shocks that will provide comfort over bumps, soft but supportive suspension. I have oem height, and won't be lifting it.

I'd love to get some Fox shocks, but afaik they are not available for my truck (1987 pickup 4wd manual).

I know Rancho and Bilstein are options.
 

·
Moderator
Various Toyotas
Joined
·
4,228 Posts
I don't have the 4x4, just the RWD on my '87 pickup. I put some KYB shocks on last year. The KYBs seem fine. Got all four for less than $101 delivered from Rock Auto.


I think my front springs and rear leaf springs are worn out, though. Haven't bothered with it, since I only drive this truck about 2K miles per year.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
50 Posts
I currently have had “KYB Gas-a-just” shocks on my 1980 2wd for about 2 months now. They do the job well, but do seem kind of stiff. Although, they absorb bumps in the road quickly and settle the truck almost immediately.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
25 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
Just ordered a set of Bilstein hd 4600 series shocks. They seem to be most highly recommended when I search the Internet forums. We'll see how they are.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
64 Posts
On my 86 2WD Extra cab SR-5 I currently have Gabriel Guardians with 70K on them. They are OEM ride smooth. Handling is good but not spirited. They are now worn out.

Had Gabriel Ultras and they handle much better but the light weight rear end just pounded even over roadway expansion joints. Made my eyes blur and kidneys bounce. Took those off for the step down Guardians.

Just ordered OEM ride KYB GR-3 / Excel-G from Rock Auto for $119 set of 4. Had KYB Gas-a-Adjust on a previous car and they were stiff, so didn't want them on my truck.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
25 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
On my 86 2WD Extra cab SR-5 I currently have Gabriel Guardians with 70K on them. They are OEM ride smooth. Handling is good but not spirited. They are now worn out.

Had Gabriel Ultras and they handle much better but the light weight rear end just pounded even over roadway expansion joints. Made my eyes blur and kidneys bounce. Took those off for the step down Guardians.

Just ordered OEM ride KYB GR-3 / Excel-G from Rock Auto for $119 set of 4. Had KYB Gas-a-Adjust on a previous car and they were stiff, so didn't want them on my truck.
Cool, thanks for the feedback. It's surprising to me that there aren't more options for soft shocks. I wish Fox made them for oem height for our truck.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
64 Posts
Gabriel, KYB, Sachs, Monroe are what Rock Auto offers in OEM ride.

I found Gabriel to be stiffer than Monroe. I had Monroe-Matics (Parts Geek) before and they rode fine. Just wanted to try KYB this time.

I have a 2WD truck RockAuto and Parts Geeks has about a half dozen brand to choose from. The tail end is so light that performance shock ride like a rock. On the front end performance shocks are OK due to the added weight. I'm not into mixing shocks, so I stick with OEM ride shocks.

The 2WD X-cab rides and handles like a small car. I will see how the KYB's ride, Hopefully. not harsh.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
64 Posts
Just installed the KYB Excel-G front and back. In the 33 years of driving, they are the best shocks so far. Much better than Gabriel Guardians. They handle like the stiffer Ultras, but ride as smooth as OEM new. Small bumps are soaked up with no floating feeling an large ones are just a thump. Not a pound that would rattled my tailgate hangers. Highly recommend the KYBs for everyday driving.

Tips:
1).The front shock uses a 4 washer set-up as the bushings are flat on top on both sides. They have a special washer that sit in the frame mount hole. I'd put a flat washer under the top nut as the threads on the shaft will bottom out and need the washers to back space the nut for more tightening.
2). The rear shocks don't have an inner steel sleeve on either end but fit perfect. Called KYB and they said it doesn't need one. Bushings seem stiffer than on the Guardian's. which also didn't have a steel sleeve.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
87 Posts
Kybs are good for daily driving. Yellow bilsteins are a small step up for occasional offroad driving.
Ive had both of these wear out on me eventually.
Im doing a suspension rebuild on my 1980 and its getting 5100 bilsteins.
Buy shocks with a good warranty if youre gonna pound on them because they will all go out eventually.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
64 Posts
Just installed KYB Excel-G on a 86 2WD. Rides smooth like OEM with no float but takes corner much better. Had Gabriel Guardians that floated a bit. Tried the Gabriel Ultras, but way too stiff in the rear and literally made my eyes blurry. They also hit hard even on pavement expansion joints. KYB Gas Adjust are stiffer than the Excel-G. For daily driving the KYB Excel-G are the best shocks I've had on that truck in 33 years as a daily driver. Better than OEM but rides a smooth. A set from Rockauto cost ~$120
 
1 - 11 of 11 Posts
Top