Skip to main content
Topic: Old School Shocks... (Read 422 times) previous topic - next topic

Old School Shocks...

MK1's stripped of it's suspension and in no particular order have been tidying up different things.

You could tell immediately that all the dampers had, had it and needed replaced.

Unlike the MK2, the MK1's front shocks are a two piece affair, which was news to me until I looked into getting replacements.

Bilstein make the replacement inserts (which I've gone for, and refurbishing the tubes) or can supply the whole assembly. It's not clear if these assemblies are now a one piece construction (like the MK2's) or they've stayed with the original two piece arrangement.

Likely just an old school way of doing things, probably cheaper too and maybe easier changing out the insert than the whole thing / resetting geometry?

Don't know either, but perhaps the insert is semi-universal and saves on costs, Bilsteins are considerably cheaper if buying the insert as opposed to the whole thing.

Something else I didn't realise was the retaining tube the new damper slides into has to be filled with an exact amount of oil, the cap creates a seal against leaking. It's quite a snug fit and I don't see the oil playing any part in the damping, possible more of a lubrication / preservation thing. Mine certainly came out very easily because of the original oil.

Always a good day for me when you learn something you didn't know before!

Re: Old School Shocks...

Reply #1
Interesting arrangement, never come across strut inserts before.
The oil I would have thought is the damping fluid, like the shocks on a mountain bike. Was there an upgrade option?  Something like a sealed gas damped insert?

Re: Old School Shocks...

Reply #2
just to show how old I am mark 1 ford cortina's had separate inserts.

Re: Old School Shocks...

Reply #3
One of my dampers was a later replacement (no way of knowing when) and the other was very likely the VW original, both well passed their best and the piston on each barely came back up when pushed down by hand.

Not sure how you'd tell now because of that, plus any markings are hard to read, but it's always possible the VW one was from a time when it was just oil filled as opposed to being oil / gas on mainstream cars as it is now.

The Bilsteins are oil / gas, just had a Google and the pre-built version that incorporates the separate tube of mine may well be an one piece construction, the shaped metal threaded cap is replaced by a black plastic one. Same thing's on the MK2's replacements, it's just a push on protective cover and not integral.

The quantity of oil to go in the tube is barely an egg cup full, the space between damper and tube is minimal, just enough for it to spread thinly around.