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Old 08-09-2016, 09:39 AM   #1
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What should I change first to improve the ride?

The ride in my car seems very harsh, I have to slow way down to go over speed humps without grinding the front and find myself avoiding any little bumps or holes in the road because when I hit them I feel (and hear) everything. I'm wondering what I should aim to replace first to improve the situation?

It's a 97 base, 105k, 17" wheels, owned for 2 years, very little previous service history. Road driving only, no track, and not lowered. I put in 2 new rear control arms about a year ago, to fix the well know loud banging over bumps issue. Everything else as far as I know is original and coming up to 20 years old now! I'd love to do a full refresh of all the suspension parts, but funds don't really stretch that far right now...

So it's a toss up between new shocks and various/all metal & rubber suspension bits. The shocks don't seem to be leaking visibly and rebound ok when rocked, but I can't help feeling like they've got no travel left in them over bumps. The arms are obviously on their way out too, bit of squeaking all around when rocked and the rear control's had already given up, but would changing the rest of these parts improve the ride much over new shocks?

I know this is kind of guesswork without sitting in it, but any suggestions appreciated as to what I should check or try first.


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Old 08-09-2016, 10:36 AM   #2
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At 105k, shocks/struts. Front and Rear Track Arms.
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Old 08-09-2016, 03:21 PM   #3
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Tire air pressure should be checked and then I would replace the struts.
1966 912, 1976 911
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Old 08-09-2016, 03:26 PM   #4
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Before condemning the shocks I bet the foam rubber bump stops (Porsche calls them auxillary springs) have probably crumbled and fallen off the car. Without them in place the shocks can bottom out hard maybe explaining the crashing noises you are experiencing the bump stops are only a few dollars each but unfortunately its almost as difficult to change them as it is to change the shock itself.
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Old 08-09-2016, 03:34 PM   #5
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In the same subject, where is the best price in terms of price and quality for struts and how much do the go for?
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Old 08-09-2016, 04:29 PM   #6
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I'm still running the factory hardware on my '03 S with 67k, but I suspect the time is coming sooner than later. I second the bump-stops, they were an issue in my car until replaced.

One of my options is Koni's FSD setup. Reviews are very good, they seem to have wider capabilities than the factory setup regarding the outer limits of comfort and performance and dare I say they're inexpensive.

The next step in price is likely the ROW (Rest of World (what all Non USA Boxsters got from the factory)) M030. I gather it's harder to find these days and if you do you can add almost $1k to the cost of the Konis.

My final choice would be the Bilstein pss9 coil overs. Thems real money, but the most flexible in their setup capabilities. Hard to say if they can be setup soft enough for some tastes.

Something else to consider is the cost of installation. I've been told the rears in the 986 are no fun to replace, so maybe get some quotes to budget in. When I get mine done, I may also invest in corner balancing. Just a suggestion.

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