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Newly installed Koni's dun today!!!

This is a discussion on Newly installed Koni's dun today!!! within the Suspension and Handling forums, part of the General Help category; I just finished putting in my Koni 4/4's. I got kind of a late start as I was helping my ...

  1. #1
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    1998 Trans Am WS6

    Newly installed Koni's dun today!!!

    I just finished putting in my Koni 4/4's. I got kind of a late start as I was helping my friend at the salvage yard this morning. It payed off in dividends tho as he helped me out all day. At one point, we had four of us total playing around.

    Nonetheless, I got them in and i must say it was a PITA. 12 year old shocks do not want to come out as they fought for their life to make mine hell.

    My friend brought an Impactor and it made things so much easier!!! THIS IS A MUST IMO for this project. If u don't have one, good time to buy new tools!

    The infamous corroded nut at the top of the front shocks was the biggest issue. PB Blast penetrant be damned, it wasn't coming off. Cutting wheel was a must if only to just cut off the top threads as they are corroded so bad as to allow the nut to back off. Another tip I can pass along is that we stabbed the plastic dust cover at the top of the old strut with a screwdriver (while in a vise) and opened it up a bit between the spring. This effectively exposed the shaft that the nut attaches to and allowed us hold it with vise grips from there and work on the nut without anything else being in way.

    And the top rubber boot was seized to the second front shock we worked on even after that nut was removed. More penetrant. The boot comes off finally after much massaging in the vise. Unfortunately, the metal sleeve bushing came out of the center of the rubber boot as it was seized to the shaft. More penetrant, two vise grips and more massaging, it finally came off.

    So I kept stock springs as I saved the spring money so I can get a dyno tune. Haven't tuned it since purchasing the car and wasn't too concerned as I was fine with ride height. Well, now I let the car down off jack stands and the front seems noticeably high to me.
    Will it settle with a little time or do I need to play on it more?
    Also, I made no adjustments to the Koni's as I just put them in. Does anyone know how the come to you outta the box or it this something I have to just keep playin with as I drive. It seems like that's a PITA too bc of the way the fronts are adjusted (with wheels off?).

    Either way, I'm worn out and planning to play with it more tomorrow. She needs a good waxin too I think.

  2. #2
    Member c5z28's Avatar
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    Only way it would look off is if you didn't sit the spring right in between the shock and the rubber isolator. Or may just need time to sit.
    FYI I put some marine grease on top of the nut and the area surrounding it on my new shocks to prevent that rust crap from the first time around.

  3. #3
    Likes twisty roads bene's Avatar
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    LOL, if you bought it brand new, and didn't do anything to them before installing them in the car, I can pretty much guarantee that you are in the high perch setting.

    Front Koni shocks have this ring and indentions (perch) where the rings can be adjusted to for the height. They're are 3/4" apart hence you'll get 3/4" lowered stance when you do the lower perch.

  4. #4
    Life In The Fast Lane..!! redracer1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bene View Post
    LOL, if you bought it brand new, and didn't do anything to them before installing them in the car, I can pretty much guarantee that you are in the high perch setting.

    Front Koni shocks have this ring and indentions (perch) where the rings can be adjusted to for the height. They're are 3/4" apart hence you'll get 3/4" lowered stance when you do the lower perch.
    +1
    Is it sitting higher or just back to stock height?

    Were you expecting it to sit lower without lowering springs?

    If so with stock springs
    as stated above you would need to mount the stock springs on the lower perch of the Koni's. If ever in the future you do purchase lowering springs raise perch back up.

  5. #5
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    No, I wasn't expecting lower, but wasn't expecting higher either. I didn't realize the perch was adjustable. How do lower the perch then?

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    Firebird Encyclopedia 9T8W66's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by weberje View Post
    No, I wasn't expecting lower, but wasn't expecting higher either. I didn't realize the perch was adjustable. How do lower the perch then?
    Theres a C clip under the Perch.
    And the car should settle slightly as it's driven the first couple days. If it doesn't it's possible the swaybar is preloaded as the endlinks need to be tightened under load.

    Also the shocks come in the box set at full soft, my advice is to firm them up about 3 sweeps from there then adjust accordingly to your preference. And the rears set at full soft.
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    Life In The Fast Lane..!! redracer1's Avatar
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    The perch is that plate that holds the spring.
    Under it is a C-clip in a small indented spot on the shock.
    You'll need to remove the spring and under the perch is a c-clip. You will need to remove it and install it on the lower indented spot.

    Check out post #5 pic you can slightly see the lower perch c-clip point.
    Koni Lower perch location?

    I wish I had better news but yes ya gotta take it back apart.

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    Lets clarify, If you want stock height with the stock springs then you need the perch on the upper position (the way they come in the box) if you want a 3/4" drop (to go along with the rear hose mod) then you use the lower perch position.
    If it sits higher then stock out of the box you may have done somethng wrong in the install. But you need to roll the car or drive it to settle the suspension after dropping it off the jack.
    Last edited by 9T8W66; 02-21-2010 at 07:34 AM.

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    A little off topic here, my appologies to the OP, but from what I'm reading it seems you can lower the car about 3/4 of an inch in the front by using the lower perch....can you do the same in the back? or is there no lower perch setting on the rear shocks?
    If anyone has done this, how did the car react with the stock springs still in there, I'm curious as this is a smaller amount of lowering than can be achieved with most aftermarket springs...and in my application a little lower (but not much) is all I can go.

  10. #10
    Likes twisty roads bene's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Intrepidman View Post
    A little off topic here, my appologies to the OP, but from what I'm reading it seems you can lower the car about 3/4 of an inch in the front by using the lower perch....can you do the same in the back? or is there no lower perch setting on the rear shocks?
    If anyone has done this, how did the car react with the stock springs still in there, I'm curious as this is a smaller amount of lowering than can be achieved with most aftermarket springs...and in my application a little lower (but not much) is all I can go.
    You can do the hose mod at the rear... What's a hose mod?

    Well, it's a process of taking out the stock rubber isolators that sit on top of your stock springs and replacing them w/ fuel/vacuum line hose via inserting them to your stock springs. It'll give you 3/4" lowered stance at the back since the stock rubber isolators are like 3/4"-1" thick. Pretty simple mod.

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    I have heard of that....and although I can't find it to make a link (at least not in a hurry) I do remember reading a post about the negative side of removing that rear rubber isolator. I don't remember it being anything drastic, but I do remember there were some posters who were against the idea.
    (I'll post the link if/when I find it)

  12. #12
    Likes twisty roads bene's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Intrepidman View Post
    I have heard of that....and although I can't find it to make a link (at least not in a hurry) I do remember reading a post about the negative side of removing that rear rubber isolator. I don't remember it being anything drastic, but I do remember there were some posters who were against the idea.
    (I'll post the link if/when I find it)
    There isn't a negative side at all. I've done it w/ my stock springs and did it again on my DMS springs.

  13. #13
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    Okay all. Here's the update: I brought my buddy back over, we knocked it out in record time (much easier without all the corrosion problems slowing u down) and set them to the lower perch. Been driving around all day and I have fallen in love with my car all over again. It's like a brand new car (or better!) I must say i don't miss swerving and wincing at bumps anymore and it handles like a dream. The rear looks higher than the front slightly, but I like it that way. I don't care for the soggy bottom look where the car looks like it's squattin to poop. Thumbs up, prolly my best mod to date.
    Another note on the fronts to anyone doin this- make sure when u reassemble the new shocks and tighten the nut down on top that you make sure your 'adjustment window' (where you insert the allen wrench) is facing outboard so you can access it on the car. First time I had them on there I had them spun around and wouldn't be able to access. Learning curve... Thanks for the help all!

  14. #14
    Life In The Fast Lane..!! redracer1's Avatar
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    Glad things worked out, you could always do the hose mod on the rear later.

    Enjoy..!!

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    The easiest way to get a rusted top nut off is to drive an impact socket on it and then snap the nut off with a prybar.

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    Just curious so the 4/4 are the single adjustables? what are the double adjustables called?

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    Life In The Fast Lane..!! redracer1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 5abivt View Post
    Just curious so the 4/4 are the single adjustables? what are the double adjustables called?
    Koni SA = single adjust

    Koni DA = double adjust

    Koni 4/4 and 4/3 are both SA's. The 4/4 have smaller incrimental adjustments and are on car adjustable.

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    3's refer to 3rd gen rear monotubes. The 4the gen rear is a twin tube.

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    So how do I know if Im buying 4/3 or 4/4s ? Or from what I am guessing 4/4 is the 4th gen koni and 4/3 is the SA 3rd gen Koni? If so why does everyone even mention 3 or 4/4 ? this is a 4th gen forum its confusing !!

  20. #20
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    The 4/3 rear rear shocks have to be removed to adjust. 4/4's are adjustable on the car as it sits. They come with a dial handle that you put on the top of the shock (in the hatch behind the back seat) and simply turn to firm or soften. I love it! Best mod ever.

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