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Bilstein Shock by Arnott and Moog Ball joint repair, PICS!

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Old 06-11-13, 08:59 AM   #1
Jafch1
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Default Bilstein Shock by Arnott and Moog Ball joint repair, PICS!

Hey guys -

Take a look what came in the mail yesterday for the GX. Front and Rear shocks from Arnott Industries. These are their Bilstein replacement shocks that omit the Adaptive Variable Suspension, but still allow you to use Air bags in the rear.

With this kit you do lost the Comfort/Sport **** features. If you in anyway like me, you wont miss it one bit. Some might ask why I didn't replace the rear height control system with the coil spring conversion.

About 5 months ago I replaced both Air bags, and height control sensors in my GX with Dealer installed OEM parts. Not a cheap repair, and I wasn't going to throw it away just so quickly.

The Moog parts you see in the photo are two lower ball joints. My Front/Left one is completely broken and is running on borrowed time, therefore I plan to have both swapped out.

More to come, including shock review! Stay tuned.



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Old 06-11-13, 01:40 PM   #2
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I kept my air springs too. Just like the flexibility they offer. Definitely not a cheap repair, but seems to be the right choice for me. Like you, I never touch the ride control switch, do I won't miss it much. My Bilsteins will be here next week.
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Old 06-11-13, 04:21 PM   #3
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I would have thought the air bags worked with any shocks, adaptive suspension equipped or not. Is there something special about these shocks, or am I reading too much into what you've typed here?
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Old 06-11-13, 05:28 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IanB2 View Post
I would have thought the air bags worked with any shocks, adaptive suspension equipped or not. Is there something special about these shocks, or am I reading too much into what you've typed here?
You give up the adaptive shocks going this route, but gain better handling and keep the $800 you saved.
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Old 06-11-13, 06:03 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rj4510 View Post
You give up the adaptive shocks going this route, but gain better handling and keep the $800 you saved.
Ya I get that, and it's the route I'd go if I had to replace my OEM shocks too. I was just confused by the wording I think, it sounded like other aftermarket shocks would not be compatible with the airbags or something.
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Old 06-11-13, 07:13 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IanB2 View Post
Ya I get that, and it's the route I'd go if I had to replace my OEM shocks too. I was just confused by the wording I think, it sounded like other aftermarket shocks would not be compatible with the airbags or something.
I think the OP meant he replaced the air springs and didn't want to ditch them for the full Arnott spring conversion.
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Old 06-11-13, 09:04 PM   #7
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My apologizes if I confused anyone on the forums..

Basically the way people handle the suspension system on the GX470 is one of three ways:

A.) Spend a bunch of money on maintaining the somewhat finicky rear airbags and replace the shocks with OEM adaptive shocks. This route keeps your GX completely stock and allows the driver to control the ride by turning the Sport/Comfort **** to a liking of there choice. Downfall: OEM shocks are expensive. I work for a Lexus dealership and my cost for OEM struts all around was in the neighborhood of $1,500!

B.) To hell with the air suspension! This phrase is somewhat common on the forums. Many people prefer to not deal with the rear air bags and the headache they might bring. (Examples of this include: faulty height control sensors, leaking air bags, poped air bags, leaky air lines, and failing air compressor.)
Therefore some people prefer to just rip out the air suspension completely and convert it to coil-over spring suspension. This not only renders the Comfort/Sport **** useless but also the High Control system.
. Personally I like my air suspension. I just spent a bunch of money last year replacing all the common failures in it, and I don't see a need to rip it out.

C.) Keep the factory rear air bags and replace both front and rear shocks with aftermarket struts. We use Arnott at our work to purchase replacement air struts for our off-brand used cars. Therefore I decided to go through them and purchase both front and rear Bilstien shocks designed for the GX470. It only cost me about $820 and I got good quality brand name shocks that I have used in both my 100 series Land Cruisers without complaint.
. Downfall to this setup is that you lost the "comfort/sport" ability. If your like me that never moves it, chances are you wont lose sleep over it.

Hope this clears things up.
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Old 06-12-13, 09:38 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jafch1 View Post
My apologizes if I confused anyone on the forums..

Basically the way people handle the suspension system on the GX470 is one of three ways:

A.) Spend a bunch of money on maintaining the somewhat finicky rear airbags and replace the shocks with OEM adaptive shocks. This route keeps your GX completely stock and allows the driver to control the ride by turning the Sport/Comfort **** to a liking of there choice. Downfall: OEM shocks are expensive. I work for a Lexus dealership and my cost for OEM struts all around was in the neighborhood of $1,500!

B.) To hell with the air suspension! This phrase is somewhat common on the forums. Many people prefer to not deal with the rear air bags and the headache they might bring. (Examples of this include: faulty height control sensors, leaking air bags, poped air bags, leaky air lines, and failing air compressor.)
Therefore some people prefer to just rip out the air suspension completely and convert it to coil-over spring suspension. This not only renders the Comfort/Sport **** useless but also the High Control system.
. Personally I like my air suspension. I just spent a bunch of money last year replacing all the common failures in it, and I don't see a need to rip it out.

C.) Keep the factory rear air bags and replace both front and rear shocks with aftermarket struts. We use Arnott at our work to purchase replacement air struts for our off-brand used cars. Therefore I decided to go through them and purchase both front and rear Bilstien shocks designed for the GX470. It only cost me about $820 and I got good quality brand name shocks that I have used in both my 100 series Land Cruisers without complaint.
. Downfall to this setup is that you lost the "comfort/sport" ability. If your like me that never moves it, chances are you wont lose sleep over it.

Hope this clears things up.
Hello everyone:

Option B) Coil-over spring suspension. How is the ride compare to the OEM? More like sport or comfort?
Option C) Arnott struts. How is the ride? More like sport or comfort?

Thank you.
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Old 06-12-13, 12:51 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lac View Post
Hello everyone:

Option B) Coil-over spring suspension. How is the ride compare to the OEM? More like sport or comfort?
Option C) Arnott struts. How is the ride? More like sport or comfort?

Thank you.
Not to sound cheeky, but a spring conversion's ride depends on what spring you use, higher spring rate will be stiffer than a lower spring rate. It would be up to you what spring you use and why.

Similar answer for the shocks/struts, they will be firmer than the OEM equipment set to full comfort for sure, and I'm not sure how they would stack up to OEM set to full sport. Could be firmer yet, could be somewhere between comfort and sport settings. I'm guessing firmer than sport, based on past experience with Bilsteins.
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Old 06-13-13, 07:49 AM   #10
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Default Anxious to get our impression of change in ride quality

I have a KDSS sport equipped 2006 with 95,000 miles. I always adjust the suspension to the firmest setting and only soften the setting when I wonder if there is any difference. It always seem to soft on the lower settings whether I am on the freeway or in town and I go right back to the firmest setting.. I would actually like a little more firmer shock but I recognize there is a point that the shocks can be to harsh. If you would please pay particular attention to the ride differences and try to describe them to us, it would be most helpful. .
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Old 06-13-13, 08:10 AM   #11
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Others will likely reply, but if not, I'll have mine installed next week and will report for sure.
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Old 06-13-13, 09:04 AM   #12
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Really looking forward to reports on the Bilsteins. I have about 30k on my replacement OEM shocks (stock springs & rear bag) and I can feel them deteriorating to the point where it's starting to get frustrating again. They are also "sticking" in "sport" when I turn the switch down to a softer setting. So, kicking around options for replacement and am interested in the Bilsteins.

If they have a number stamped on the body of the shock, I'd be curious to compare them against the Bilstein HDs that are available for our T4R cousins. My bet is they are the same shock. I'd be willing to pay extra if they've actually done some revalving -- and if the revalving is an improvement...
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Old 06-14-13, 09:27 AM   #13
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Yes, please reply back with your findings. I changed my shocks/struts with Fox Coilovers up front (2.5) and Fox shocks on the back.

On the front, I kept the CO about 1" higher than stock. The ride is fairly comparable to stocks (probably in the mid setting between comfort and sport) but feels a lot smoother when driving off-road.

I'm having some ride comfort issues on the rear. I think the stock Fox rear shocks came with valving for a full load and I don't carry anyone back in the rear seat. The result is uncomfortable bouncy ride on highways. Fox offers revalving for a relatively cheap price so I'm considering that before putting the stocks back in. I would like to get a better idea how these Bilsteins feel in the back. If you could also tell us the valving they came with I'd appreciate it.
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Old 06-15-13, 10:52 PM   #14
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Alight gents -

Shocks are in, car looks and feels like new!

Questions? Ask away!
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Old 06-16-13, 04:59 AM   #15
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How would you describe the ride comfort? Is it firmer than the OEM in sport mode?
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Old 06-16-13, 04:59 AM
 
 
 
 
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