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Old 12-21-2018, 03:40 PM
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Real Name: Russell (OB #9908)
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Bluesky 07 Bluesky 07 is online now
Senior Member
Bluesky 07's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Cherokee Co., GA
Posts: 1,381
Real Name: Russell (OB #9908)
Bluesky 07 is just really nice Bluesky 07 is just really nice Bluesky 07 is just really nice Bluesky 07 is just really nice
MY GARAGE
Suspension Work

X-REAS Delete + New Suspension Install
I finally got the X-REAS swapped out and the difference in ride quality is night and day. Again, I thought it was still working as designed b/c the truck handled well and nothing was leaking, but the ride was pretty harsh. Much, much smoother now and it handles better too. Bonus: the new front springs added about 1.5" of height at the fenders and 2" at the front lower skid plate (right under the bumper) that leveled out the rake nicely even with the .25" the rear springs added.

Here's the new setup:
Bilstein 4600 shocks and front springs from a '15 Tacoma TRD Offroad ($130 from local Craigslist)
2007 FJ rear springs ($70 shipped from a FJ Cruiser forum)
Energy Suspension rear shock bushings (Model 9.8108G)



Parts are plug and play except for the rear shock bushings. Here's a thread about ways to change the bushings and my post showing how I did it.

Also needed a 22mm wrench to disconnect the X-REAS fittings at the appropriate place (not at the shock!) so that was $7 at Home Depot.

I bought new top mount nuts and lower bolts, washers, and nuts from Toyota for $42 including tax but returned it all as my original hardware all worked with the new gear.

Scrapped the old springs and shocks at a local yard and they gave me $4.20 for them. Woo!

Before


After


Happy to answer any questions, and I also put together a set of PDFs from the Factory Service Manual that provide a lot of useful info including torque specs, directions for removal of the entire system or shocks only, and so on. As with anything, this is for reference only and it's your responsibility to use whatever is helpful to you in a safe manner. Here's what is included:



Member @jcaino thoughtfully linked the files on his website so you can get them there or PM me your email address to receive a zipped folder.

Disconnecting X-REAS

I couldn't get the 22mm wrench on the fitting and turn it without bending the wheel well wall in a bit. Just tighten down a crescent wrench all the way and gently bend it toward you, then slide the wrench down a bit and do the next little section until you have enough room. About a half-inch in was enough. When you're done, just gently bend it back. I had some black spray paint handy to cover any spots where the coating got scraped.



It's slow going to disconnect the fittings b/c you can only move the wrench a fraction of a turn each time. Here's one of the rear fittings with the wheel well bent out of the way and the fitting partially loosened. The pic is a bit deceiving as it looks like way more room than it is. Bracket at left is where the rear sway bar link attaches. It has to be removed to get to the fitting.



This one's off and I'm ready to remove the shock.



The bottom spring mount is designed such that you rotate the spring until the end runs up against a stop as shown. This is the old spring before removal.



After installing the new shock and wrangling the spring for a while, success!



The front X-REAS fitting is tougher to reach and is easier to confuse with the brake lines. Be sure to follow the tube from the shock to the fitting and be sure you have the right one.



The FSM disposal instructions say to remove the banjo bolt and drain the shocks. That was only possible for the rears b/c it took 5-6 extension/compression cycles to empty them and I couldn't budge the fronts with the old spring on them. The fluid was amber and remarkably clear. It's just a trickle in this pic since I didn't have enough hands to compress the shock and take the pic.



Old rear spring vs. new-to-me 2007 FJ spring. They're sitting upside down; when installed, the rounded end is on bottom and the flattened end is on top.



On to the next project!

Last edited by Bluesky 07; 05-02-2019 at 09:34 AM.
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