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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My Mk4 R32 has H&R 20mm lowering springs and standard shocks fitted. The springs are only a year old but the shocks are now 86K old and one of the front ones is knackered.

Question is, do I get replacement OEM shocks to replace the front pair (cheaper option) or do I buy a new set of after market shocks and replace the lot?

If the latter, which shocks would be best to go with H&R 20mm lowering springs?
 

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Also interested in what people have to say on this as I am in the exact same boat, although not on the top of my list for jobs on the car but it is on there! I was also wondering whether to go for coilovers when I do it.
 

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Ive got exactly the same springs but i bought the bilstein B8 dampers and replaced the lot. The handling is definantly better over standard. I just didnt want to loose ride comfort going down the coilover route. plus i live in the country and use it daily and slamming my car would make it un usable with all those pot holes.
 

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Ive got exactly the same springs but i bought the bilstein B8 dampers and replaced the lot. The handling is definantly better over standard. I just didnt want to loose ride comfort going down the coilover route. plus i live in the country and use it daily and slamming my car would make it un usable with all those pot holes.
I live in Devon some understand where your coming from! I think I would stick to the springs, quite happy with the ride height as it is on them anyway. I looked at the Bilsteins aswell. Do they lower the car any more?
 

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I live in Devon some understand where your coming from! I think I would stick to the springs, quite happy with the ride height as it is on them anyway. I looked at the Bilsteins aswell. Do they lower the car any more?
I put both the springs and shocks on at the same time so at first it looked the same height, but now they have settled i would say its only gone down 15-20 mm over standard which is what it said on the said on the awesome gti website. Im happy with it i do like the look of it low but i also like to drive my car!! I think the B8 dampers are advertised as shortened shocks to match lowering springs.

I live in somerset and can imagine the roads are pretty similar.
 
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
What price do the B8s come in at?

I was looking at Koni FSDs as well.

Again same bought, the 20mm drop the H&R springs give is perfect for me. Already have scrape marks on my sump :S
 

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So the B8s haven't worsened the ride quality? I think I read somewhere the standard dampers are half way between a B4 and B6, but the higher the number, the stiffer they tend to be.

Standard dampers are £250 each now, so definitely not a cheap option.

Yohan, is your knackered damper visibly leaking or knocking or something? I find it quite tricky diagnosing duff dampers in such stiff setups, unless there's obvious leaks or that side of the car very noticeably behaves erratically.
 

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So the B8s haven't worsened the ride quality? I think I read somewhere the standard dampers are half way between a B4 and B6, but the higher the number, the stiffer they tend to be.

Standard dampers are £250 each now, so definitely not a cheap option.

Yohan, is your knackered damper visibly leaking or knocking or something? I find it quite tricky diagnosing duff dampers in such stiff setups, unless there's obvious leaks or that side of the car very noticeably behaves erratically.
Not noticeably worse, my dad couldn't really tell the difference in ride quality either though when cornering it just feels like the wheels have better contact with the road. If you hit a pot hole it does feel harder like the shock goes through the car but then compared to coilovers of a similar price its loads better for ride quality. Also that bouncing up and down you get when traveling along a motorway has gone though im guessing this might be down to the progressive spring.

And OEM is ridiculously expensive considering the aftermarket options.
 

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Thanks for that. I'm amazed the ride quality hasn't suffered too much, despite using firmer dampers and springs! I hear the same thing for the B14 coilovers but I'm not going down that road again. As soon as those strut body threads corrode up, that's it!

I normally stick with OEM parts but there's no reason to use them (at that price) as the dampers and springs are aftermarket anyway!
 

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Thanks for that. I'm amazed the ride quality hasn't suffered too much, despite using firmer dampers and springs! I hear the same thing for the B14 coilovers but I'm not going down that road again. As soon as those strut body threads corrode up, that's it!

I normally stick with OEM parts but there's no reason to use them (at that price) as the dampers and springs are aftermarket anyway!
Yea ive heard the same for the B14. Bilstein are a good make. I also liked the fact that the the original shocks were bilstein and the springs were H&R so i havent strayed to far away from keeping it original.
 

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What I like about Bilstein is their damper consistency. Whether it's 30 degrees outside, or 1 degree, the damping always feels the same. They have very hard high speed bump, but they're consistently hard!

On previous VWs I've had KW V3s, H&R coilovers, Gaz coilovers, H&R + Koni sports etc and I was forever having to tweak the rebound to make them feel consistent from one day to the next.

The OEM stuff, weirdly, appears to be made to a worse standard than aftermarket. The springs corrode badly and can snap at the back and the dampers have a cheap looking hammerite finish and they corrode up quite nicely too!
 
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·

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I know it's fooked because it squelches like hell going over bump and it knocks when going over bumps at speed. I'd be surprised if there is anything left inside it tbh.

I asked DPM Performance and this was the reply: -

"Personally I'd go for the Bilstein B8 dampers which are very well matched to the H&R springs and one of if not the best dampers on the market - http://www.dpmperfor...0199-p-624.html"
Is the noise a bit like a metal-on-metal knock through the floor? I have that on the nearside. I did the top mounts at the weekend and it's started making that noise ever since.

Hmmmm, could be time to upgrade to B8s! Are they too short for standard springs?
 

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Koni FSD is supposed to be best of both worlds, but I don't remember anyone writing a decent review on them.
 

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I have b8's and H&R's I'd say the ride is as hard as it is with standard shocks and H&R's which is what I had before.. I'm running poly bushes also which makes it even harder. But the payoff is well worth when you take it for a proper blast, it just feels confident and sure footed and you feel connected to the car if that makes sence
 

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How much play should the standard dampers have in them? My nearside one has a little lateral movement in the damper rod if I put it in a vice and rock it back and forth, but otherwise isn't leaking or making a squelch noise. I do get a knock through the chassis if I hit a bump on right hand turns, but left handers are quiet. I'm wondering if that small amount of movement I could feel translates into much bigger movement with the car's weight and cornering loads on it?
 

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How much play should the standard dampers have in them? My nearside one has a little lateral movement in the damper rod if I put it in a vice and rock it back and forth, but otherwise isn't leaking or making a squelch noise. I do get a knock through the chassis if I hit a bump on right hand turns, but left handers are quiet. I'm wondering if that small amount of movement I could feel translates into much bigger movement with the car's weight and cornering loads on it?
Well I have something that sounds simular to you. I had a bad knock/clunk when driving slowly and turning (such as a turn in the road) so I had my top mounts and bearings replaced along with new H&R springs due to a snapped rear spring and I was there when my partners brother did the work at his Audi garage he worked at the time. He showed me both up and down movement and side to side, the side to side was a track rod end which we replaced but the up and down is still there. It is the left side and I can feel its not quite right on bumps and cornering and do get a slight clunk still and I can feel the play in the steering. When he left the up and down movement he said although it feel very small at the wheel it would feel a lot worse when driving.
 
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