I intend to replace the suspension on my Prado in the very near future. I'm tossing up a couple of options - one is Ridepro all round and the other is Bilstein shocks and Lovell springs (which many people seem to think is the best Prado set-up). I'd love to get the bilstein/lovells combo but to fit in my budget I would have to do the installation myself. Hopefully I will have access to a suspension installers workshop or at the least a mechanics workshop and the help of my mechanic neighbour.
I know there are some tricks to DIY Prado suspension - one is having spring compressors to do the front springs/struts but the one that worries me more is getting the rear LH shock out and in. Has anyone done this themselves and can offer any tips and advice on doing the job safely and easily?
Get a ring spanner with a deep off set like Sidchrome. Spanners like Kinchrome don't have the right off set to get down onto the nut. You'll need long nimble fingers and a lot patience.
Contrary to popular myth you can't get to them from inside the car under the rear seats. Seems Toyota saw this as a problem so they fitted a rubber grommet so you can access the shock top nut in the 120 series.
Once you get the spanner on turn the shock casing and it should undo, it is better with two people. One holds the spanner the other turn the shock.
I would also suggest you try and get access to a lift hoist and don't try it at home in tha garage as it will all end in tears due to the funny angles you need to get into to get the spanner up there.
I ended up having to step in and help the fitter at TJM Burleigh. The shock casing had broken off at the top (useless Toyota product) so he couldn't undo using the method described. Ended up with a set of multi grips tensioned right up and secured to the centre piston rod. Thats after he'd had to peel the casing away using pneumatic hacksaw.
If I hadn't stepped in I would have been latre for the Xmas party! I got a discount as well.....
Just upgraded my suspension on my 90 series and thought this may help others doing the job. Just fitted bilstien shocks with king springs.
Don't know why darren down in vic charges for putting more circlip
grooves in the shocks as they now come direct from factory with 5 grooves and I was told they used to come with 3 previously. May be he doesn't know the code or is just ripping people off, I'll let you decide that.
I got mine from micheal at NS4WD in sydney for $1100 shocks and springs.
Having put them in myself with some help from my mechanic I can tell you the backs are a terd , the left rear is the biggest mother of them all. You can,t even see the top shock to navigate the lock nut on. You must use the force luke! It would help if you had a spastic friend to get in around the corners as you must bend & twist your arms in all directions. I do believe the car Slads is talking about is a 120 series and access can be gained from inside.
The fronts are dead easy no problems there .
My only other complaint is I specificly asked for 50 mm lift and have only got 30mm ,Don't know if KING SPRINGS have changed their specs recently but they now only supply 30mm max lift so i am now searching for a true 50mm lift,
Hope this may help others in the future
Have already spoken with my supplier and are sorting something out,
doesn't change the fact that the king springs only give you 30mm.
I don't have a problem with Darren charging what he does, I am just
saying there are other ways . thought this web sight was to tell others of their experiences and to maybe aviod some pitfalls
I meant the same, No offence meant by it (tongue in cheek ) :wink:
From what you said, you ordered a 50mm lift and they obv went *Oh well Kings max is 30 mm that'll do* and supplied them, One would think they would contact you first. (May be wrong in my scenario)
Reason most have been recommending Darren at ATS is easy to figure.
I havent seen a complaint about him yet!
Even the small simple stuff.
And I know I have wasted at least 45 minutes of his time for a measly 200 buck sale on some Grande limiting cables for the rear swingarms!
Actually the springs were ordered using the same part Number as he has always used ,King springs have changed the specs and not changed
the product code. I inquired direct with KS obout the specs on 2 occasions to confirm this and was told they made 30mm lift and the next time they said they made 50mm lift , both times i was given the same product code. So they don't even know what they make themselfs.
I am happy to say I have been given a set of Lovells and iam riding high
I've just had fitted a bilstien suspension kit from Qaudrant suspension's in berwick on my 2001 TD gxl, ive got an arb winch bar, 9000 pd warn and dual batteries on the front. I forgot to measure the clearance before i dropped it off but have measured it now and i have 750mm front and 780 rear i asked them for a 2 inch lift. I am just wodering how much i got in the end?.