Shocks and Springs, is there a consensus? - Mercedes-Benz Forum
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post #1 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-21-2018, 07:17 AM Thread Starter
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Shocks and Springs, is there a consensus?

I have been bringing back to life a 1983 380SL for the last 2 years. I have sorted out most of the big items, now I am focusing in on some of the annoying things I have noticed.
The front sits up a bit taller than the rear. When placing the car in gear and accelerating the rear sits down even more. I have not driven another SL, so I am not sure if the ride is appropriate, but it does not seem to be as refined as I would expect from Mercedes. I am assuming that the old springs need replacing, maybe the shocks too.

I have been casually reading through old threads on the subject, but I have not been able to determine if there is actually a group consensus on some ideal shock/spring setups for the R107.

I don't need to be overly aggressive, but I would like a nice smooth ride with and to eliminate the rear squatting. Any recommendations?
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post #2 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-21-2018, 07:39 AM
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Originally Posted by ehawk01 View Post
I have been bringing back to life a 1983 380SL for the last 2 years. I have sorted out most of the big items, now I am focusing in on some of the annoying things I have noticed.
The front sits up a bit taller than the rear. When placing the car in gear and accelerating the rear sits down even more. I have not driven another SL, so I am not sure if the ride is appropriate, but it does not seem to be as refined as I would expect from Mercedes. I am assuming that the old springs need replacing, maybe the shocks too.

I have been casually reading through old threads on the subject, but I have not been able to determine if there is actually a group consensus on some ideal shock/spring setups for the R107.

I don't need to be overly aggressive, but I would like a nice smooth ride with and to eliminate the rear squatting. Any recommendations?
Bilistein Comforts rear
Bilistein Heavy Duty front

The nose of the 107 will always rise on acceleration. They did that when they were new.

Might check your spring rubber spacers. They are available in different heights. The number of dots identified the height of the spacer. The one shown is from a 560SL with 4 dots.
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post #3 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-21-2018, 08:54 AM
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post #4 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-21-2018, 10:06 AM
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post #5 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-21-2018, 10:24 AM
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I reduced the amount of rear end squat by lowering the front end 2 inches.

I did this by shortening the front springs.
And I have HD Bilstiens.

I get the weight transfer to the rear applies more traction to the road....but I did not like the look nor the squat.
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post #6 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-22-2018, 09:52 AM
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It seems that most forum members prefer Bilsteins, however although I have read all the various recent threads on shocks, nobody has come up with a reason as to why. Both Monroe and KYB offer shocks that they recommend for 107's and KYB actually seems to claim OEM equivalency, so other than the fact that Bilsteins seem to offer the harshest ride, I'm in a bit of a fog as to which way to go. Currently Monkeywrench has KYB's on sale and I'm tempted, but would welcome advice on the subject. Driving all of 1,500-2,000 miles per summer does not exactly demand ultra high performance and the current shocks, while a touch weaker than perfect, are adequate in most ways.
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post #7 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-22-2018, 10:37 AM Thread Starter
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Bilistein Comforts rear
Bilistein Heavy Duty front

The nose of the 107 will always rise on acceleration. They did that when they were new.

Might check your spring rubber spacers. They are available in different heights. The number of dots identified the height of the spacer. The one shown is from a 560SL with 4 dots.
Should the spacers be replaced during this process?
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post #8 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-22-2018, 10:45 AM Thread Starter
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It seems that most forum members prefer Bilsteins, however although I have read all the various recent threads on shocks, nobody has come up with a reason as to why. Both Monroe and KYB offer shocks that they recommend for 107's and KYB actually seems to claim OEM equivalency, so other than the fact that Bilsteins seem to offer the harshest ride, I'm in a bit of a fog as to which way to go. Currently Monkeywrench has KYB's on sale and I'm tempted, but would welcome advice on the subject. Driving all of 1,500-2,000 miles per summer does not exactly demand ultra high performance and the current shocks, while a touch weaker than perfect, are adequate in most ways.
I am probably going to put less than 3000 miles on the car each year also. I am curious to know if anyone has strayed from Bilsteins and if they worked out OK or not.
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post #9 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-22-2018, 12:33 PM
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Buying shock absorbers is one of those purchases that can get confusing. I wanted to limit the unknowns and based my decision on the reputation of Bilstein and the feedback from members on this forum. I also like a little bit of a firmer ride so I chose HD’s for the rear shocks.
I believe @PanzerPuff has KYB’s
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Last edited by RLT61; 05-22-2018 at 01:44 PM.
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post #10 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-22-2018, 03:16 PM Thread Starter
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Do the springs also need replacing when the shocks are replaced?
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