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I have a non-TRD, would it be worth upgrading the shocks?

Discussion in '2nd Gen. Tacomas (2005-2015)' started by PA452, Jan 4, 2011.

  1. Jan 4, 2011 at 4:00 PM
    #1
    PA452

    PA452 [OP] Well-Known Member

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    I don't really do any offroading. I have a standard SR5 with pretty much everything stock. I'm out of warranty at about 57K miles, so TSBs are out. The ride quality on the road is pretty bad, and seems like it's gotten worse. I'm just wondering if it would be worthwhile to upgrade the shocks. I figure there are a good many Bilstein 5100s for sale out there from those who bought TRDs and upgraded to different suspensions. I don't want to shell out much money for this, but I figure that could be an option. I just don't know if they would really make much of a difference?

    ETA: I'm strongly considering going with the 5100s now I think.

    I'm not interested in lifting the truck any, I just want a smoother and more controlled ride. Would 5100s alone help me with that?
     
  2. Jan 4, 2011 at 4:07 PM
    #2
    jjw1

    jjw1 Well-Known Member

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    I say upgrade. I'm goin from the SR5 shocks to Bilstein 5100's all around with OME 885 Coils with the Top Plate Spacers and the Wheelers/Icon Leaf Pack in back
     
  3. Jan 4, 2011 at 4:15 PM
    #3
    jjw1

    jjw1 Well-Known Member

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    Thats what I am doin. Leaving the Billies at 0 and then puttin the OME 885s with the top plate spacers on top
     
  4. Jan 4, 2011 at 4:19 PM
    #4
    brians05taco

    brians05taco Well-Known Member

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    lifted, bedcover,BHLM, grill, etc...
    i upgraded to stock bilsteins and alot better ride, and with the miles u have its prob time to change shocks
     
  5. Jan 4, 2011 at 4:19 PM
    #5
    PA452

    PA452 [OP] Well-Known Member

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    How much of a difference do you guys think that will make compared to my original setup?
     
  6. Jan 4, 2011 at 4:43 PM
    #6
    DrRabbitFurHead

    DrRabbitFurHead Yeah, there's a TSB for that!

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    Salem, VA
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    X-treme Off Road Edition (4x4)
    Icon Extended Travel Coil Overs, Fox Rear Resi 8-Way Adjustable Shocks, Light Racing UCA's, OME Rear Leafs, M/T Classic Locks 17x9, Nitto T/G (285/70/R17), 5mm Billet Aluminum Spacers, Demello Sliders, All Pro Front Plate Bumper & IFS Skid Plate, PIAA 510's, Doug Thorley Long Tube Headers, O2 sims, Rear Timbren's & U-Bolt Flip Kit , 3* Rear Axel Shims, Extended Rear Brake Lines, 48" Hi-Lift with a ton of accessories, Wet Okoles, TRD bed mat, Borla Air Filter, Garmin Nuvi 765T, Viper 5901 remote start, 50% tint.
    I had the TRD O/R shocks and leaf springs and upgraded my front and rear shocks and rear leaf springs to aftermarket items. It's a completely different ride! The new front suspension is DRASTICALLY better and the rear leafs allow me to haul and tow considerably better than the OEM set up. I don't regret spending the $ one bit.
     
  7. Jan 4, 2011 at 6:35 PM
    #7
    Pugga

    Pugga Pasti-Dip Free 1983 - 2015... It was a good run

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    I'd say its worth it. I've got an SR5 and they replaced my stock shocks front and back when they did the suspension TSB with factory bilsteins. It made a really big difference in ride quality. I'd look into stiffening up the rear leafs also if you've got one of the factory soft leaf packs. I'm still running the stock coils up front with no complaints also. Once my shocks wear out I plan to go to 5100's all around, they seem to have great reviews even from people who leave them set at 0 up front on stock suspension.
     
  8. Jan 5, 2011 at 6:51 AM
    #8
    Lurkin

    Lurkin Well-Known Member

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    Depends on what you're looking for. You say that the ride quality is "pretty bad", but don't define what that means. If you liked the ride from the SR5 shocks originally then you are probably wanting a softer ride. If that's the case then the TRD shocks or the 5100s may not be good for you as these will firm up the ride. Might want to consider some stock upgrades (used SR5s...), or just a cheaper aftermarket shock.

    If you want a firmer ride and a bit more control, then the TRDs or the 5100s are good choices. Next step up cost wise is to upgrade the springs, but you said you didn't want to spend too much.
     
  9. Jan 5, 2011 at 6:57 AM
    #9
    05Moose

    05Moose Middle-Aged Member

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    '05 4x4 DC LB SR5 (LSD & Tow Pkg), Timbrens, AAL, 5100s (.85), Owned: 12/3/04 Mods: Fog, Map/Dome Light, Illuminated 4wd Switch, Washable Cabin Air Filter
    I replaced my SR5 shocks with the 5100's last year. I had 88K miles on the original SR5 shocks and the ride was horrible...too much bouncing on the highway over the bumps. I also added an AAL in the back since I wasn't aware of the TSB until after I was out of warranty. I'd say the ride is smoother now. If you hit a bump, it should smooth it out not make you feel it multiple times.
     
  10. Jan 5, 2011 at 7:01 AM
    #10
    TACOMA TRD

    TACOMA TRD Well-Known Member

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    Look in here, I forever see the factory bilstiens for sale. Most are pretty cheap too.
     
  11. Jan 5, 2011 at 7:05 AM
    #11
    JEA86

    JEA86 Well-Known Member

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    i bought a set of TRD offroad shock and Coil set and i like it pretty good. Was it truely a step above OEM eh i couldnt tell much of a difference honestly
     
  12. Jan 5, 2011 at 7:07 AM
    #12
    hardtaco

    hardtaco Well-Known Member

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    My non TRD has Billstein shocks on it. Do the SR5's come from the factory with these?
     
  13. Jan 5, 2011 at 9:01 AM
    #13
    pudge151

    pudge151 Well-Known Member

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    ill sell you my stock TRD Sport Bilstein rear shocks, they only have a few thousand miles on them
     
  14. Jan 5, 2011 at 9:27 AM
    #14
    A7XTaco

    A7XTaco Member

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    You don't want to know...
    I just put Bilstein TRD Off Road shocks all the way around my prerunner a few weeks ago. By far the best mod I have done.

    I couldn't stand the way the tuck handled with the stock shocks. It was pretty to look at, but would drive me crazy behind the wheel.

    Now, I love it! Absolutely no way to compare the improvement it made in the ride and handling of the truck.

    Be aware though, it will make the ride rougher. If you want smoother with the same performance, get 5100s.

    I bought the TRD shock here on TW for $150 with 4,000 street miles on them.
    With air tools, I had them installed in a couple hours.

    EDIT: Oh yeah, it also gave me about an inch lift all the way around too.
     
  15. Jan 5, 2011 at 9:31 AM
    #15
    05Moose

    05Moose Middle-Aged Member

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    No. But if a non-TRD has the rear leaf spring TSB done, then in addition to the new leaf pack they also replace all 4 shocks with the TRD shocks.
     
  16. Jan 5, 2011 at 9:58 AM
    #16
    grivera

    grivera Well-Known Member

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    Rear Suspension TSB, Bilstein 5100 on all 4 corners-fronts set at 1.75". BFG A/T's @ 265/75/16; Access LE Roll-up cover; Iron Cross Tube SS Steps; Fumoto valve; WeatherTech Liners; AFE Pro-Dry; front side windows tinted 20%; TW Decal!
    Did you also change the springs? Short of adjustables like 5100's, there is no way you'll get a 1" lift from just new shocks. The shocks purpose is to dampen the springs and prevent the vehicle from bouncing.
     
  17. Jan 5, 2011 at 11:31 AM
    #17
    A7XTaco

    A7XTaco Member

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    Nope, original springs. I think the old shock (100,000 miles) were just that worn.

    It was very obvious because I did the drivers side of the truck first. When I stepped back and looked at the truck, it had a pretty good lean to the passenger side until I changed the passenger side and it leveled back out.


    The truck looks taller, and the ball the I have hanging for backing into my garage that cleared my toolbox for 6 months, now hits it.

    True it may not be an entire inch, but its close, especially in the rear.
     
  18. Jan 5, 2011 at 2:13 PM
    #18
    PA452

    PA452 [OP] Well-Known Member

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    Alright, so it sounds like it's worth it. And yes, I want a smoother ride, not firmer necessarily. My truck tends to bounce on the very rough pavement, and in general handling is beyond terrible in my opinion. Honestly I never thought the truck handled all that great, even when new, but it's 10x worse now. Seems like it's gotten really bad just in the past 10K miles or so. In general my steering feels like crap too. I get a lot of bump steer from little imperfections in the road, and I'm hoping some suspension upgrades might help with that a bit too.

    I have to ask now though, I thought the Bilstein 5100s were the shocks installed from the factory on the TRD models. Are they different? If I'm looking to make the ride smoother with no weight in the back, what should I be looking at?
     
  19. Jan 5, 2011 at 3:03 PM
    #19
    A7XTaco

    A7XTaco Member

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    Just to clarify, with the TRD Off Road shocks on a prerunner, its firmer ride. Yes you feel every crack in the road, but you lose that sloppy feeling in the steering and truck as a whole you probably have now.
    I haven't been able to bottom out these shocks yet. I even hit a pretty good little hill at about 40 going across a pasture the other day, almost caught air, and still didn't bottom them out. I do have the 4cyl, so there is little less weight in the front though.

    Also, if you feel the highway speed handling sucks, it fixes that too. If there was even the slightest breeze, I would be all over the road. Now, flags can be standing out, and I don't even know there is wind.

    Off/on ramps that I wouldn't take much over 50, I can now take at 60-63 with almost no body roll. I feel the tire sidewalls giving now, not the suspension.

    Its like a sports car ride in a truck, but when needed, like off road or big dips, they give like they should.

    No the Bilsteins on TRDs are made specifically for toyota.

    I think 5100s are supposed to be a little softer in the very short travel, like you don't feel that little pebble on the road, but still gives you the heavy duty shock absorption off road.

    Another thing, if I was making a hard stop on a rough surface, I could trip the famous tacoma antilock brakes every time. I haven't been able to trip it since. Its almost like the tires are glued to the pavement.

    I seriously used to compare the handling to my 84 f150, now its more like a bmw... well I wouldn't go that far, but you get the idea.

    Oh, and the truck doesn't try to rip the steering wheel out of my hand anymore with things like crack in the road... that's a big plus.
     
  20. Jan 5, 2011 at 3:31 PM
    #20
    hardtaco

    hardtaco Well-Known Member

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    So, if my 08 SR5 non-TRD PreRunner has Billsteins all the way around, it has had the rear leaf spring TSB done most likely?
     
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