Just change it all at once? I have a problem.

Discussion in 'Mazdaspeed 3 Suspension & Brakes' started by DubC, Mar 5, 2021.

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  1. DubC

    DubC Gold Member

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    So since the car sits all winter I try to do any upgrades during that time. I decided this season (though it's almost time to bust the damn thing out) to do a little suspension upgrade. Of course 'a little' never really means a little, does it?

    So I bought some Swift springs that are sitting in the garage. I also popped on a White Line RSB (thanks to some good deets given). That is en route. I'm not sure I need/should replace any other components (like the end links...I've hard no clunking yet...I don't think) yet.

    I have been scouring this site for information on shocks/struts that I could use on my car. It's more a DD than anything, though it's not driven daily. I guess it's clearer to say that I'm not planning on tracking the car in any capacity. I've also read/seen that if you're going to change the springs, then may as well change the struts (if desired) since it's such a pain in the ass.

    So in perusing the threads on this forum it's clear that most folks, if they want to upgrade, are likely doing some tracking or at least thinking they might. I know that you get what you pay for, but I'm not going to splurge on coilovers. I'm also not entirely interested in figuring exact compression/rebound rates, etc. So I think just straight strut/shock replacements are for me.

    So for the average MS3 owner that isn't going to track, are the Koni Yellows going to be good enough? I've also been Bilsteins mentioned (perhaps yellow on the front, Bils in the back?). Even the newest threads on this topics are a few years old. I doubt tech has changed that much but what the hell do I know? Anyways, any input is appreciated.
     
  2. gotovato

    gotovato Silver Member

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    Rear endlinks you can change if you want but they don’t NEED to be changed. Take a look at how rusty yours may be and determine if you’d rather have a spare set of endlinks ready to go for when one of yours snaps while trying to remove it. if yours are in good shape then you’re fine. It’s a dead easy part to change later on.

    As for struts and springs. You have your swift lowering springs. A popular option that I think just about everyone agrees on would be the Bilstein b8’s. That combo should given you the equivalent performance to an entry level coilover setup and will actually outperform most of the elcheapo coilovers out there. It’ll ride plenty good enough for a modified car(perfectly nice on the street) while actually acting as an upgrade not just a lowering mod.

    they are not the cheapest btw.

    As for koni, they ain’t bad either but I don’t believe they receive the same love the Bilsteins do for this platform. I have no personal experience with koni’s so someone else will have to chime in there.
     
    gotovato, via an iPhone, Mar 5, 2021
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  3. DubC

    DubC Gold Member

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    Thanks again! I thought I saw a combo mentioned of Konis in front and bilsteins in rear. But I’ll look at both. Also saw that CS sells an adjustable set. Funny as their reviews are either 5 stars or 1 star. Peeps either loved them or despised them. They are cheaper ($495 I think) and I don’t know anyone who has them. Will wait to see if anyone has thoughts on those as well. Though CS customer service has not been a strong suit that I’ve experienced, in case they are junk.


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    DubC, via a mobile device, Mar 5, 2021
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  4. DubC

    DubC Gold Member

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    hmmm well damn. anyone have any experience with the Bilstein B14 PSS Coilover Kit? Looks like it is height adjustable (says depends on application so maybe it is for our car?). Pricewise it's about the same as the struts/shocks and swift combined.
     
  5. gotovato

    gotovato Silver Member

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    Fantastic kit. Will allow for ride height change(no lowboi stancy stuff though, they do not go crazy low). I was going to suggest b14’s but you mentioned you didn’t want coilovers lol. But if you’re going to do coilovers, those are the ones.
     
    gotovato, via an iPhone, Mar 7, 2021
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  6. DubC

    DubC Gold Member

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    Thanks! I turned cheek to coil overs as I thought they would all be $2k. That’s obviously wrong. And being able to determine and choose ride height seems like a real bonus.

    Okay so I’m sorta double dipping in two threads. Not on purpose but found another old thread where I think you suggested ST X coil over kit.

    Sooooo....bilstein b14 (b16 seems too race mode) or ST X? Hell even saw a kit by ISC that could be a winner and is comparable in price.

    Also curious if I’ll have to roll my rear fenders with a lowering kit. I assume yes but figured I’d ask anyways.


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    DubC, via a mobile device, Mar 7, 2021
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  7. gotovato

    gotovato Silver Member

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    I wouldn’t compare ISC to Bilstein or KW(ST).
    The st coils use KW dampers so they are high quality. They are soft though. I liked my ST’s and they took me pretty far but I needed more. Thus the b16’s.

    It really is a toss up though. You can go either way and not make a bad decision. I’d honestly say go with whatever the better deal is. I’m kinda bias towards Bilsteins though. The b16’s really are fantastic.
    Also I suggest you check out rock auto under “suspension kits” for our cars. RockAuto’s Bilstein pricing is insane.
     
    gotovato, via an iPhone, Mar 7, 2021
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  8. DubC

    DubC Gold Member

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    wow good suggestion. forgot all about rock auto. i see they have the b14's for ~$925. that's around a $100 cheaper than most sites. i see the the ST X kit at $879 on tirerack. damnit! since so few MS owners have or post reviews/vids about these two setups, i've been a lot from focus owners. they have the same dillema in regards to B14 vs Swift/B8 lol.

    thanks again. oh yeah..shit. did you roll that rear finder though? depends on your tire size i guess.
     
  9. Awafrican

    Awafrican Moderator Gold Member

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    Don't forget your rock auto discount code for 5% off 163840229135603679 exp 28 Mar 21
     
    Awafrican, via a mobile device, Mar 7, 2021
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  10. DubC

    DubC Gold Member

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    feel like i'm just peppering peeps with questions here. trying to determine if i'll need any adjustable camber plates/arms or toe arms with the B14s. I'm reading as many forums as i can and i see some say 'yeah you might' and others say 'eh, probably not'. WTF. i'm pretty sure they don't come with adjustable plates in the front or arms in the rear. i know an alignment will be needed but i'd hate to wait to get the shop before they tell me they can't adjust anything as needed.

    anyone have thoughts here?
     
  11. DubC

    DubC Gold Member

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    finally did my own research! according to Bilstein, i shouldn't need any other adjustment parts. might buy new strut top plates just so i don't have to disassemble my stock ones and dick with that. aside from that, per them, i should be good. yeah buddy.
     
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  12. gotovato

    gotovato Silver Member

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    for what youre doing you dont need anything additional. no camber plates or camber arms. none of that. Grab a pair of OEM strut mounts with bearings and good to go. Anything additional would be to dial in your alignment more accurately, unbelievably useful for tracking...not quite as important for daily life
     
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  13. DubC

    DubC Gold Member

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  14. gotovato

    gotovato Silver Member

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    I believe the OEM strut mount comes with the bearing but I’m not 100%. Best bet, call a dealer tomorrow with that part number and ask. They’ll tell you no problem
     
    gotovato, via an iPhone, Mar 8, 2021
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  15. DubC

    DubC Gold Member

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    called em. they don't come together. annoying though as edge calls that last link a bearing, whereas tasca calls it a spring insulator. then there's also a bumper under that. that 'spring insulator' almost looks like a bushing of sorts, which is not the same as a bearing. jeez. i'll just have to take the SOB off and look at it and go from there. tasca has a really nice schematic but the terms don't line up.

    https://www.tascaparts.com/v-2012-m...4-gas/front-suspension--suspension-components
     
  16. gotovato

    gotovato Silver Member

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    I think you just need the mount and the bearing. Those two pieces and you’re good to go. I’m on corksport camber plates so it’s a little different for me.
     
    gotovato, via an iPhone, Mar 8, 2021
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  17. SharksInSpace

    SharksInSpace Planets and shit. Silver Member

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    B14s are legit for DD use. I had the Swift/B8 combo on my juan and liked it plenty at the time; then I bought my pu that came w H&R coilovers and they were a bit smoother, then those died and I went B14 and they're the best yet in terms of ride quality and performance feel. Also really easy to set up since they're only height adjustable.

    While you're in there, it's definitely worth doing the top mounts on the front so you know everything is new and fresh. The rears are quick and easy enough to access if they go bad later, but the fronts suck to get back into so you might as well do them while you've got everything out and taken apart. I used Moog pieces when I swapped mine and they're so far so good after a year, part no K160228 is the full mount plus bearing assembly.

    I would also recommend having new end links on hand, all around, bc you may well end up having to cut the existing ones off if you live somewhere with any amount of road salt.
     
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  18. DubC

    DubC Gold Member

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    I have seen MOOG mentioned in a number of threads. can't tell what kind of quality they offer. i hate to use price as the almighty measurement, but most aftermarket parts for our car seem to be more expensive (some way more) than the OEM replacement (talking Tasca prices, not the 400% dealer markup). however MOOG is not that way. the strut tower combo is ~$20 cheaper per side and the end links are few bucks cheaper than OEM. if that's the deal then fine...i just don't know much about that company. i did read on an amazon review that moog endlinks are a bitch to install so that's a thing.
     
  19. SharksInSpace

    SharksInSpace Planets and shit. Silver Member

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    Front Moog end links are fine to install but the rears are a massive PITA and should be avoided.
     
  20. DubC

    DubC Gold Member

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    I'm scared! lol. prolly just buy OEM for peace of mind and hope they aren't shit.
     
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