Strutmasters Suspension Kits

Derphound01

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Vehicle Details
Chameleon 1995 Thunderbird LX 4.6
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I'm piecing together the parts for my suspension rebuild and came across these for the Mk.VIII.

Two questions. First, will these work on a Thunderbird? And if so, what are the thoughts on stock height versus the 1" drop?


 
At the very least the front coilovers will bolt right in. The rear shocks mount differently at the top on the FN10 but the rear springs I think also are a direct swap. The LCAs and body mount on the FN10 don't have a spring perch but on an MN12 that's not a concern.
 
As Brandon was saying, everything will bolt up. The rear shocks in this kit use a small bracket with 2 studs that you would just disregard, along with the spring 'cups' for the rear springs.

As far as this being a desirable swap versus whatever other options are on the table now, I can't make any comment.
 
As far as this being a desirable swap versus whatever other options are on the table now, I can't make any comment.
That was going to be my third question. Obviously the options for new shocks/coils are limited, but has anyone here used these on a Lincoln and had good results?
 
They were on my 96 Mark when I bought it. It was far from a race setup, but for DD'ing they were fine.
 
Was yours the standard height or the 1" drop?

I don't plan on making mine a race car, I just want it to be a comfortable but responsive touring coupe. Or at least that's the hope. :ROFLMAO:
 
I have 1" drop vogtlands and they're definitely a good middle ground between stock ride height and the lower 1.5-2" lowering spring options in terms of everyday drivability(eg not bottoming out). As far as handling it doesn't make much difference with such a modest drop on a chassis with an already low center of gravity, real handling performance, as well as ride quality is determined by the spring rate
 
If you want a daily, DONT go with the bilstein setup (Cobra rear shocks, DIY Mitsu 300GT inserts). IMO, its WAAY too rough for the street
 
The mustang Koni rear shocks are adjustable; They are not too stiff, if adjusted properly. Just don't use the sport springs; the stock v8 springs "GG" are softer than the JJ sport springs. The initial jounce is set by the springs as much as the damping. (Jounce is the compression, rebound is the extension part)
 
If you want a daily, DONT go with the bilstein setup (Cobra rear shocks, DIY Mitsu 300GT inserts). IMO, its WAAY too rough for the street
I'll add to this by saying that I have OG MN12 Bilsteins with +15% compression/+25% rebound custom valving on the front with 1.25" Eibachs and drove the car daily until 2011. It is drastically different than stock. I happen to like it because it got rid of the floaty suspension feeling that I didn't like about these cars. However, I will also mention that I mostly drive on good roads.
 
The mustang Koni rear shocks are adjustable; They are not too stiff, if adjusted properly. Just don't use the sport springs; the stock v8 springs "GG" are softer than the JJ sport springs. The initial jounce is set by the springs as much as the damping. (Jounce is the compression, rebound is the extension part)
I think mine has the 33FF combo. No clue what that means as far as rates or ride goes.

I'll add to this by saying that I have OG MN12 Bilsteins with +15% compression/+25% rebound custom valving on the front with 1.25" Eibachs and drove the car daily until 2011. It is drastically different than stock. I happen to like it because it got rid of the floaty suspension feeling that I didn't like about these cars. However, I will also mention that I mostly drive on good roads.
I like how that sounds. Not sure if I want to go with custom valving, but that sounds like a good setup. Our roads are blegh here though.
 
The custom valving was a recommendation to pair with lowering springs. The Bilstein shocks that were available for the MN12 would be equivalent to the Bilstein B6 today which is designed for stock height springs.

I wasn't paying particularly close attention to the Bilstein 3000GT cartridge mod that gained a lot of attention here a few years ago, but it looks like the Bilstein B6 for the 3000GT can still be found and modded if you're serious about having a good quality shock for the front. The other options are not very appealing.
 
There's a listing of the spring rates that was posted by Duffy floyd on sccoa, with all the spring rates:
The Thunderbird spring rates are listed by year and application
below.



Year

3.8L

3.8L SC

V8

1989

Front: 223-282 lb./in.

Rear: 361-501 lb./in.

Front: 349-403 lb./in.

Rear: 509-637 lb./in.

N/A

1990

Front: 223-282 lb./in.

Rear: 361-501 lb./in.

Front: 349-403 lb./in.

Rear: 509-637 lb./in.

N/A

1991

Front: 223-282 lb./in.

Rear: 361-501 lb./in.

Front: 349-403 lb./in.

Rear: 509-637 lb./in.

Front: 270-330 lb./in.

Rear: 361-501 lb./in.

1992

Front: 223-282 lb./in.

Rear: 361-501 lb./in.

Front: 349-403 lb./in.

Rear: 509-637 lb./in.

Front: 270-330 lb./in.

Rear: 361-501 lb./in.

1993

Front: 223-282 lb./in.

Rear: 361-501 lb./in.

Front: 349-403 lb./in.

Rear: 509-637 lb./in.

Front: 270-330 lb./in.

Rear: 361-501 lb./in.

1994

Front: 223-282 lb./in.

Rear: 361-501 lb./in.

Front: 349-403 lb./in.

Rear: 509-637 lb./in.

Front: 270-330 lb./in.

Rear: 361-501 lb./in.

1995

Front: 223-282 lb./in.

Rear: 361-501 lb./in.

Front: 349-403 lb./in.

Rear: 509-637 lb./in.

Front: 270-330 lb./in.

Rear: 361-501 lb./in.

1996

Front: 223-282 lb./in.

Rear: 361-501 lb./in.

N/A

Front: 270-330 lb./in.

Rear: 361-501 lb./in.

1997

Front: 223-282 lb./in.

Rear: 361-501 lb./in.

N/A

Front: 270-330 lb./in.

Rear: 361-501 lb./in.

LX Sport Option:

Front: 349-403 lb./in.

Rear: 509-637 lb./in.

Definitions:

Progressive Springs
: Also know as rising-rate springs or variable springs are like two springs in one. The first small amount of suspension travel gets the softer rate, which helps filter out potholes, bumps, expansion joints, and ruff road surfaces. After the first inch of compression the spring rate switches to the higher, stiffer rate.

Linear Springs: A linear-rate spring is designed with an amount of resistance in its first inch of compression that doubles with the next inch of suspension compression, triples with the next inch, and so on.

Free length: Free length is the height of the spring uncompressed.

Front and rear stock anti-sway bar information is available. Click
Here

Eibach



Eibach-ProKit springs are of the progressive design and offer chrome silicon heat treated steel that is powder coated for a lifetime of protection. Eibach offers two versions of their ProKit for the 89-97 Thunderbird.

One is designed for the v6 3.8L normally aspirated (part#3522.140) and is designed to lower the car 1.25" with a front spring rate of 286-411 lbs per inch and a rear spring rate of 514-714 lbs per inch. The free length of the springs are 16.375" for the front and 11.625" for the rear.

The other ProKit is designed for the v8 & Super Coupe (part#3524.140) and is designed to lower the car 1.50" with a front spring rate of 286-411 lbs per inch and a rear spring rate of 514-714 lbs per inch. The free length of the springs are 16.125" for the front and 11.4375" for the rear.

Eibach makes their springs in the USA and the average discounted price for the springs are around $225.00 - $250.00 and come with a lifetime warranty against defects in workmanship and materials.


Eibach Springs
17817 Gillette Ave.
Irvine, CA 92714
Tel: (714) 752-6700
fax: (714) 752-6788

Lift Kits, Lowering Springs, Race Springs, Shocks & Sway Bars

H&R


hr-gif.40580



H&R springs are of the progressive design and are made from Bekaert wire from Belgium. The Bekaert wire is used exclusively because in durability testing, the Bekaert wire alloy has a much longer service life than any other wire tested. These materials ensure a defect-free function over the entire service life. H&R offers two versions of their Sport Springs for the 89-97 Thunderbird. One is designed for the V6 3.8L normally aspirated (part#51623) and is designed to lower the car 1.60" in front and 1.40" in the rear with a front spring rate of 310-385 lbs per inch and a rear spring rate of 540-610 lbs per inch. The free length information was not available.

The other Sport Spring is designed for the V8 & Super Coupe (part#51624) and is designed to lower the car 1.50" in front and 1.40" in the rear with a front spring rate of 310-385 lbs per inch and a rear spring rate of 540-610 lbs per inch. The free length of the springs are 16.25" for the front and 12.00" for the rear.

H&R makes their springs in Germany and the average discounted price for the springs are around $225.00 - $250.00 and come with a lifetime warranty against defects in workmanship and materials.



H&R Special Springs, LP

3815 Bakerview
Spur #7
Bellingham, WA 98226
Tel. 888-827-8881
(360) 738-8881
fax: (360)738-8889

Tokico


tokico-gif.40581



Tokico-Sport Lowering Springs are of the linear design and offer cold wound steel that is powder coated for a lifetime of protection. Tokico offers one kit for the 89-97 Thunderbird and it is designed to lower the car 1.25". The front spring rate is 326 lbs per inch and the rear spring rate is 577 lbs per inch with a free length of
15.70" in front and 11.07" in the rear.

Tokico makes their springs in the USA and the average discounted price for the springs are around $225.00 - $250.00 and come with a lifetime warranty against defects in workmanship and materials.



Tokico
1330 Storm Parkway
Torrance, CA 90501

Tel. (310) 534-4934

Suspension Techniques


suspension-jpg.40582



Suspension Techniques-Sport Sport Suspension springs are of the linear design and offer cold wound steel that is powder coated for a lifetime of protection. Suspension Techniques offers one kit for the 89-97 Thunderbird and it is designed to lower the car 1.50". The front spring rate is 432 lbs per inch and the rear spring rate is 631 lbs per inch with a free length of 14.33 in front and 10.89" in the rear.

Suspension Techniques makes their springs in the USA and the average discounted price for the springs are around $220.00 - $250.00 and come with a lifetime warranty to the original purchaser of the product that it will be free of manufacturing defects so long as such purchaser owns the vehicle on which such products were originally installed. The warranty is transferable by the original purchaser for a warranty period of five years from the original purchase date.



Suspension Techniques, Inc.

(A Belltech Company)
2822 East California Avenue
Fresno, California 93721

Phone: (800) 595-7016
California and outside US: (209) 266-9173

Fax: (209) 266-4348

http://www.belltechcorp.com

Jamex


jamex-gif.40583



Jamex-Sport Springs are of the progressive design and offer chrome-silicon heat treated steel that is powder coated for a lifetime of protection.
Jamex offers one kit for the 89-97 Thunderbird and it is designed to lower the car 1.50" - 2.00".
The spring rate is listed as 15% stiffer than the OE V8 sport springs with a free length of 17.00" in front and 11.50" in the rear. Jamex makes their springs in the USA and the average discounted price for the springs are around $125.00 and come with a lifetime warranty against defects in workmanship and materials.



Jamex
4975 C Energy Way
Reno, Nevada 89502

Tel. (702)857-4888
Fax (702) 857-1635

http://www.jamex.com

Vogtland

45009



As of 2021 Vogtland is the last aftermarket manufacturer making lowering springs for the Thunderbird.
Vogtland makes progressive rate spring in two sizes for the MN12 that are available in either a 1" drop or 1.6" drop. They have a gorgeous violet color like no other spring color on the market.

Vogtland North America is well know for it's involvement in NASCAR suspension technology. The quality of these springs are unmatched and highly superior to other springs available. The price tag for a set of MN12 springs is approx. $260.

The springs need to be broken in for a short period of time before they will settle exactly right. They should be set after about a week on the car.


www.vogtland.com

VOGTLAND Autosport


www.vogtland.com
www.vogtland.com

1" Vogtland: 315-412 front/530-650 rear

1.6" Vogtland: 365-400 front/600-713 rear

This came up when I was deciding on what springs to put on Lazarus. I went with the sport springs; the gg springs are softer, and ff are even softer. If it's not obvious, the 33gg are the ratings for front and rear, With the fronts heavier to take up for the engine.
 
Please find a shop with a wall mounted shock tool, to put the springs on. the "strut spring compressor kit from Advanced is not good enough.
Putting a set of sport springs on the konis with the set I bought was the most dangerous thing I've ever done, and I spent part of my youth base jumping. lol. The tools are hardened steel, and the bolts bent like a banana, when I got them assembled. I've since found a shop with the right tools. You've got over a ton of force on the tools by the time you get them compressed enough to get the nut on the top.
 
I just put the front springs on using the cars weight and a floor jack
 
I actually have a wall-mounted strut compressor bolted into a block wall. Acquired it from a shop that closed down. :ROFLMAO:
 
The shop I found has a foot-operated one, bolted to a steel beam. The skinny guy started to take mine apart, and almost launched himself. :) Luckily, the owner stopped him and grabbed one of the heavies, lol. I thought for a minute I was going to see a show, lol.
At one point, I had sport springs on Gabriel shocks, and they weren't too bad, but they only lasted about three years. The fronts now hold my koni inserts, lol. The strutmasters have softer than stock spring rates, and will only last a few years. Monroe shocks also had a limited lifetime, but I drive hard.
 
I just put the front springs on using the cars weight and a floor jack
A heavy friend to sit on the shock tower helps get the sport springs to go back together. That last little bit didn't want to expose enough threads to engage the nut. This is a safe way to do it; with the weight on the front end, it's not going anywhere.
I pulled the jesus nut off a car in the jy, so I could get the washer off the top; I didn't notice that someone had taken the lca, lol. The spindle flew about 50 feet, after bouncing off the ground. :) I was sitting on the engine at the time it departed.
 

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