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IconicXLTsport

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I couldn’t stand how badly the truck handled with the stock shocks anymore so I gave up on waiting for Bilstein to release the fronts for the 2021s and ordered the rear shocks for my truck. I did not want a lift or level. I want a stock height truck that just rides and handles better.

I was worried the rear would be too firm and the front would still be bouncing around everywhere and the truck would still handle poorly. However, I was pleasantly surprised.

I have installed Bilsteins on several vehicles so I know they may still break in up to ~300 miles but the ride and handling improvement from the first day was much better than the stock shocks, and much better than I imagined.

On the stock shocks, it feels like the rear is just completely uncontrolled at times and each end of the truck was doing something different. With the bilsteins, the rear is actually well controlled and this allows the stock front shocks to actually work at controlling the front. The ride is still just as soft as the stock shocks but when hitting larger bumps or potholes, the bilsteins actually control the rear axle.

Side to side motions like pulling into the driveway or a low spot in a gravel parking lot used to cause the entire truck to rock side to side uncontrollably. Now, even with just the rear shocks, the truck will roll up into the driveway without drama.

I still want the fronts cause the truck still floats and bounces more than I want in the front but if you are thinking about just doing rears or you’re like me and are Waiting on Bilstein to produce the fronts, it’s 100% worth just getting the rears on the truck ASAP, wish I had done it sooner.

installation: 15mm bolt and 18mm nut at each end of shock. I left the truck on the ground to install at normal ride height. I put the top bolt in first to hang the shock and then either use a Jack to lift the rear (by the hitch or frame) or it is possible to compress the shock a couple inches by pushing up on the shock body. In either case, put the truck back to normal height before tightening either mounting bolt. Torque spec I found online was 66 ft lbs. Removal of stock shocks and install of new shocks took less than 1 hr but I was trying to get done quickly and I have done this job on other vehicles.
CDF05805-52F2-4E7B-B28F-B8BF8110E1D5.jpeg

 
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Kodiak

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Thanks for posting this. I will probably do this too. This will be one of the first things I do. I am not looking for a "stiff" ride I just want a little better control than OEM may offer. I do not have the truck yet but from hearing from everyone it sounds like OEM is less than ideal.

I also love what I see from vids of the Helwig rear anti sway bar. Though this is not a cheap date.

Good luck with truck and come back and add to this thread if you have any other comments to make about the ride.
 
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IconicXLTsport

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I considered the rear sway bar but due to its cost and how much better the bilsteins control the truck, I think I’m gonna stick with the shocks. I suggest doing the shocks cause they are much cheaper and then Revisit the sway bar after you’ve put some miles on the new shocks.

The ride is definitely not stiff. Hitting small bumps feels just like stock. Large bumps are better than stock because the bilsteins stop the axle from bouncing. The bilsteins still allow movement of the axle so it doesn’t feel stiff. They act like a shock should.

The absolute worst part of the stock shocks is their rebound damping. When the springs compress because of a dip in the road, the stock shocks seemingly do nothing to damp out the extension of the shock/spring. The bilsteins actually correct this to keep the truck from bouncing around but the damping is not so aggressive that it feels stiff and they actually do allow slightly more rebound motion than i would like but this allows the shocks to feel nice and soft.

feel free to ask any questions you have about the ride quality.
 
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Kodiak

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I considered the rear sway bar but due to its cost and how much better the bilsteins control the truck, I think I’m gonna stick with the shocks. I suggest doing the shocks cause they are much cheaper and then Revisit the sway bar after you’ve put some miles on the new shocks.
This is exactly what I will do. Give the Bilsteins (I have them in my 2009 Tacoma) some time before I look into the Helwig. Currently I will not be doing any towing but I may in the future and then that might give me another reason to spring the $$ for the Helwig.
 
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IconicXLTsport

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I am in the process of moving to an area with many more hills and winding roads. I am going to revisit the helwig after I get all 4 shocks on the truck and see how the truck handles. I’ll likely only go with the softer setting on the bar, if it is even necessary, to not change the roll stiffness too much on the truck. Super stiff rear bar with no load in the bed is a recipe for sliding off the road in the hilly/twisty areas I’m moving to. I do not currently tow or haul heavy enough or often enough for it to be a deciding factor on the sway bar.
 
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thebigdu

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Thanks for posting about this. I've been curious about changing just the rears on my truck without any other lift/level/suspension mods, but I have the max tow suspension, and I don't think it's as floaty as the normal suspension has been described. My complaint is the back-and-forth body roll after making a slow speed turn at an intersection. Did you have this with your truck before the Bilsteins?
 

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Great write up, thanks. I’ve been considering these for the last week or two. Was this the Part Number? BSN-33-253183
Trying to figure out what the difference is between these two…

48D5E4CF-7EEC-4E00-AC3B-1926C386C275.png
 
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IconicXLTsport

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Mine were 33-253213 for CCSB 2.7EB 2wd

I went to Bilstein USA website and put in the info for my truck to find the part number bilstein lists for my truck. then I made sure it was the same part on the website I was buying from.
 

SportySpace

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Trying to figure out what the difference is between these two…
I'm trying to figure out the same thing.

1654279459419.png


This is a screen shot from TDOT Performance website, a reputable aftermarket parts supplier up here in Canada. Looks like 33-253213 is for 2WD trucks & 33-253183 is for 4WD models.
 
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Tobstertx3

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Mine were 33-253213 for CCSB 2.7EB 2wd

I went to Bilstein USA website and put in the info for my truck to find the part number bilstein lists for my truck. then I made sure it was the same part on the website I was buying from.
Thanks!! Summit Racing sent this also..

“bsn-33-253213 should be for 2WD application as long as your vehicle doesn't have Continuously Controlled Damping
 


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IconicXLTsport

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Thanks for posting about this. I've been curious about changing just the rears on my truck without any other lift/level/suspension mods, but I have the max tow suspension, and I don't think it's as floaty as the normal suspension has been described. My complaint is the back-and-forth body roll after making a slow speed turn at an intersection. Did you have this with your truck before the Bilsteins?
yes I did have that issue before the bilsteins. Turning at low speeds like in parking lots or turning into a driveway, specially if there was a curb, would cause the truck to rock side to side. That is almost completely gone now with just the rear shocks. i imagine once I have all 4 shocks, that motion will be eliminated
 

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I just checked the blistein web site, and it appears fronts are now available
 
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IconicXLTsport

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The fronts are available for the 4x4 trucks but apparently not for my 2wd truck.

another update, it seems after a few miles the rears have softened just a smidge. Just taken the edge off the small quick bumps. Honestly would be happier if they were a bit stiffer over the large undulations but everything is well controlled and comfortable
 
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hotrodmex

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it seems after a few miles the rears have softened just a smidge. Just taken the edge off the small quick bumps.
Monotube dampers will have a lot of seal stiction until the seals on the internal floating piston (this is the divider between the damper oil and the high pressure nitrogen gas chamber) breaks in and lubricates. As this happens, the damper gains small bump compliance, as the "preload" from the seal stiction is reduced.
 

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I'm trying to figure out how to remove the roll oversteer.

We have a (65mph) Tollway here that has a couple of sweeping curves and I have to brace my left knee against the door trim and be VERY alert that some numpty isn't changing lanes without warning as my truck is very sensitive to steering input at speed. It lurches from understeer to massive oversteer with any change of steering angle.....

I love the ability to soak up bumps but it really could do with some roll attention without stiffening the ride...

I'm looking for a real suspension solution.....

 

 
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