Just installed my Bilstein 4600, tips and my Commander Leveled out? - Jeep Commander Forums: Jeep Commander Forum
Suspension / Lifts This is the place to discuss the suspension, lift systems, and other stuff underneath your Jeep Commander

 
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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 05-09-2015, 03:53 PM Thread Starter
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Just installed my Bilstein 4600, tips and my Commander Leveled out?

I just replaced all 4 shocks on my Commander yesterday, Bilstein 4600 and Moog Strut Mounts.

Perhaps the springs still have to settle in, but my Commander doesn't have the forward rake of the stock struts, the front is raised a little bit for a much more level appearance. I've only driven about 30 miles, perhaps the springs will settle into the seats and mounts, but I like it and hope the blistein 4600 have a bit higher spring perch to do this on purpose.

A couple things, keep in mind I live on the edge of the rust belt, so I did have undercarriage corrosion to deal with, as few dead in the middle of the rust belt will have worse trouble.

The lower Clevis Bolt, the one that often rusts/seizes and can't be removed.
*I soaked it in PB Blaster everyday for a week before doing the job. The nut came off easy, but the PB Blaster did NOT make inside to the collar in the bushing.
*Use a 21mm wrench to turn the bolt head. The combination of twisting and pounding the clevis bolt with a sledge was what got it out for me, just pounding it would do it, the blows of the sledge did help to break up the corrosion a bit, but the twisting with a wrench helped break the rest free.

Disconnect the sway bar end link. The way to get the strut/shock assembly out after all is disconnected is to push the upper and lower control arms apart to open enough space for it to come out. The bushings will resist you on both arms. Push up on the upper control arm with one hand and pushing down on the strut/shock will push the lower arm down to get it out. The sway bar will connect both lower control arms, so when you press down the lower control arm on one side, you actually pressdown both lower control arms linked by the sway bar. Disconnecting the sway bar end link will let the lower control arm drop down much farther to get the strut/shock out.

Rear shocks, I didn't soak those bolts in PB Blaster, like a dummy, I didn't even use some while removing the lower bolt on the Passenger side and encountered some real resistance from corrosion. I just used a bigger breaker bar and I snapped the bolt off in the welded on nut in the axle. I tried drilling it out, the but the remaining bolt was too hard. I ended up cutting the nut off the axle with an angle grinder and cutting blade, getting a new bolt and nut from the hardware store, grade 10.8.

What a different the new shocks make. The old ones had some dead bands in them, small, but the passenger side front strut/shock was near blown out, big dead band. I didn't think the ride was that bad before, I had to pay close attention to tell the bumps in the road where worse than I remembered when new. With the new Blistein's its so much smoother and controlled.


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Last edited by Mongo; 05-09-2015 at 03:59 PM.
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 05-09-2015, 09:23 PM Thread Starter
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Another 20 miles and the forward rake is coming back, but still better than before the new Strut/shocks up front.


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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 05-11-2015, 09:38 AM
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I did all four about a month ago replacing the fronts with the Monroe quick struts, and the load levelers in the rear. Huge difference. much better ride. On thing I ended up doing a week later was ordering a pair of Rustys 1/4 spacers to get rid of the front rake. The new struts brought the front end up about an inch. Adding the spacers, its just about dead level. They were $45 shipped. I was able to disconnect the swaybar links, and both ty rods to drop the strut down through the wheel well far enough to put the spacers in place and bolt back up. Im very pleased with the ride quality and appearance.


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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 05-11-2015, 09:56 AM Thread Starter
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Yea, I puzzled how new struts would raise the front? It is the spring that sets the ride height, and I reused the same spring.

Strut itself and strut mount has no effect, even a high pressure strut, you can compress yourself, and if you can compress it, that isn't enough force to raise more than a ton worth of front end.

The spring perch on the strut itself, would effect the ride height, but the Bilstein 4600 appeared to be the same distance, I did NOT measure. I would assume the Monroe, as a direct replacement would have the same distance. The Bilstein 5100 does have a higher height and you will get a raised front end using them.

I suspect the fresh rubber spring seats raise it at first until the springs settle in, wish I had bought new lower rubber seats/isolators. With a little driving, the springs settle in and the front comes down a tiny bit, with a lot of driving the seats soften up and let the spring sink in farther.


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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 05-12-2015, 06:10 AM
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The spacers will give you a 1/2 in rise... I read that the Monroes would bring up the front, and then eventually settle down to near stock. Not sure where im at now compared to what I had before the swap, but the gap at the wheel wells is very close, which is what I wanted.


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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 04-18-2016, 04:40 PM
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which MOOG part number did you use for the front strut mount. I don't see one for the Commander. Did you use the GC part #?
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