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1989 190e 2.6
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Discussion Starter #1
Running into some issues with my suspension setup and looking for any advice or experience. Bought a set of H&R springs for my 2.6, ordered from Germany and verified multiple times they were correct for the 6cyl. Once installed my mechanic advised getting new stocks, he and other recommended Bilstein B8s are they're supposed to work specifically for lowering springs and my old driver side strut was shot.

Installed the B8s and found the ride very stiff, apparently the car is sitting on the stock bumpstocks. I tried trimming 3/4in from the bump stop and got more travel but I'm still slamming into them even on moderate bumps. Through my research the H&Rs are quick soft (doesn't matter to me) and apparently they're stock sized. My thinking is that the spring is just not enough for the B8s, however I'm being told using OEM sized struts is not advised with lowering springs and not really sure where to go next. Anyone with any experience?
 

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W201 Moderator
89 190E2.6- 5-speed Manual, 95 E320 Sportsline-sold, 2001 E320 4matic Wagon-sold
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I have a combo of Benz Sportline springs and Billstein B8-HD. That combination seems to work.
My Sportline springs are cut about half and inch worth and could use another half inch by using a thinner pad as well.

But others have your combo, so with some tinkering, I'm sure they have made it work. Yours does not seem extremely lowered so I'm surprised you have issues (mine sits a bit higher than yours)
 

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1999 E320, 2003 E320 Wagon, 2005 C230K SS, 2010 Accord LX w Eibach & Koni FSD's
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Don't know about W201, I have/had three vehicles with Eibach Pro springs and Bilstein B6s and B8s without any issues.

Can you cut the bump stops any more? Maybe go with thicker spring pads................but that would defeat the purpose of the H&R :(
 

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1989 190e 2.6
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Discussion Starter #4
I feel a tad stupid, need to confirm this but I think it might actually just be the tire hitting the fender. I spaced my fenders the other day and couldn't get them to rub however that was before I put on the B8s. Maybe it changed things just enough that I'm getting a slight rub again.
 

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1999 E320, 2003 E320 Wagon, 2005 C230K SS, 2010 Accord LX w Eibach & Koni FSD's
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Shocks don't change the ride height. Could be springs are starting to settle in. Do you actually see rub marks?

How long are your bump stops now?
 

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1989 190e 2.6
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Discussion Starter #6
I know thats a common thing, but I am 100% certain going from blown KYBs to new B8s raised the car partially.

Should have 70-75mm left of the bump stop.
 

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I know that's a common thing, but I am 100% certain going from blown KYBs to new B8s raised the car partially.

Should have 70-75mm left of the bump stop.
If the shock raised the vehicle, then that would be a good thing if you have a clearance problem. I personally haven't seen that happened with the five cars I lowered.

70-75mm is almost 3 inches. Depending how your shock covers are mounted, I would shorten them as much as possible if you're bottoming out on the shocks.

Do you see rub marks from the tire on the fender?
 

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1989 190e 2.6
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Discussion Starter #8
If the shock raised the vehicle, then that would be a good thing if you have a clearance problem. I personally haven't seen that happened with the five cars I lowered.

70-75mm is almost 3 inches. Depending how your shock covers are mounted, I would shorten them as much as possible if you're bottoming out on the shocks.

Do you see rub marks from the tire on the fender?
If I have the time tonight I'm going to try some peanut butter on the strut and wheel well. Its hard to say if the rubber on the fender is from now or before I spaced them out, it was rubbing really bad last week.
 

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What size tires, rims (width & et) and spacers are you running?
 

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89 190E 2.6 x2
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Definitely check to see if your tires are rubbing. The most common rub point is where the front bumper meets the fender. I put some blue painters tape there and then check for rubbing.
As a reference point I'm running Koni sports, Sportline bumpstops w/ Brabus W124 springs (1 coil removed, made by H&R) 205/50/16 tires. Additionally my front fenders and bumper are spaced out at the rubbing point. Had this setup for 6 yrs now w/ no rubbing.
Previously I ran Bilstein B6 w/ the same combo and no issues either.
 

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1989 190e 2.6
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Discussion Starter #11
205/50/16 on Evo 1 wheels, 16x8 +34. I spaced the fenders using sway bar bushings like the DIY. Seems to have worked previously.

I'll try the blue painters tape trick on the fender.
 

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Discussion Starter #12 (Edited)
Yeah its the wheels, just very weird that they weren't scraping before but now they are. By installing the B8s with lower travel could that have changed the suspension geometry enough to cause it to rub now?

I had a blown strut on my driver side, that would cause additional camber there. Once I fit the B8...less camber, less clearance.
 

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B8 has a smaller body than B6 so that the lowered car will still have suspension travel. A shock replacement won't affect geometry unless the mounting tabs are located differently.
 

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Yeah its the wheels, just very weird that they weren't scraping before but now they are. By installing the B8s with lower travel could that have changed the suspension geometry enough to cause it to rub now?

I had a blown strut on my driver side, that would cause additional camber there. Once I fit the B8...less camber, less clearance.
Shocks will not affect the ride height or camber/suspension geometry significantly if any. B8 shocks are about 1 inch shorter and are meant to be used with shorter springs. The travel range has been moved to a more optimal stroke relative to the shock to compensate for the shorter spring.

Most likely as I mentioned before, your coil springs are settling in. This will affect camber! Contrary to what some people say.......it will continually getting lower (at a slower rate) for the life of the springs.

Shocks bolts should be tighten with weigh on suspension.
 

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1989 190e 2.6
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Discussion Starter #15
I can guarantee you last Saturday the car was lower and didn't rub. Put on the B8s and it raised it and it now it rubs. I know I've heard time and time again that struts don't affect ride height, but I swear with 100% certainly they either changed the camber enough to make it look higher or raised the car a tad.

Going to do an alignment in the AM and roll the fenders and see where I'm at.
 

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W201 Moderator
89 190E2.6- 5-speed Manual, 95 E320 Sportsline-sold, 2001 E320 4matic Wagon-sold
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Struts do change the ride height. Not by much though. Because they are gas pressured they apply an upward force. So if they are blown they will sit a little lower.
But I suspect the difference is 1/4 inch or so, not more.

However you are saying the rubbing started after you mounted new B8 struts. Mine went the opposite way. After I replaced my blown original struts with B8's the very little rubbing I had stopped.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Struts do change the ride height. Not by much though. Because they are gas pressured they apply an upward force. So if they are blown they will sit a little lower.
But I suspect the difference is 1/4 inch or so, not more.

However you are saying the rubbing started after you mounted new B8 struts. Mine went the opposite way. After I replaced my blown original struts with B8's the very little rubbing I had stopped.
Yeah strangest thing. For drainage my apartment complex has some crazy angles to the parking lot and after just the springs were changed and I spaced out the fenders I couldn't get the thing to rub. Now every time I leave it rubs. The only thing that makes sense is the increase in ride height (agreed at about 1/4") and new struts gave me more positive camber than I had on the blown struts.
 
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