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Discussion Starter #1
Really leaning towards getting Bilteins for the front and rear of our X to improve the ride. How much would be a normal fee to have these installed?

Thanks!
 

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most shops charge 50-60 an hour (around here anyways...but i've seen as high as 80 an hour).....i would think 200-300 would sound right, but each shop is a little different, depends if they go by the book or charge you straight up
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Local place quoted $25/shock...but they're damn cheap compared to most and do excellent work. Even if it's a little more, that's not bad.
 

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DBAX said:
do it yourself?
Doing my own stereo installs, tuning, modding, etc. is enough to keep me busy and fulfilling my DIY wants and needs. I'm not looking to mod the suspension anymore than these shocks, and have no desire to do it again in the future.
 

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chadillac3 said:
Local place quoted $25/shock...but they're damn cheap compared to most and do excellent work. Even if it's a little more, that's not bad.
If they're reputable, that's a very fair price. Go for it!

For the DIY guys, that may sound like a lot to spend for a relatively easy job, but I know where chadillac3 is coming from. Baby, job...Not everyone can be a wrencher.
 

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S_e_X-Terra said:
Do the rear ones yourself! It will take you all of ten minutes. Then have a shop do the fronts... It will save you time and money!
That's a compelling point and an important distinction. I tend to lump all four shocks together when I consider whether to do the job myself or not.
 

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usmc xterra said:
Normal is free! All you need is a proper wrench and some PB blaster.
Never pay for this job! MC
MC, I respect your wrenching skills and the way you make it easy for people to follow your lead. But you have to understand that for some of us, wrenching time is difficult to find, and that in some cases, the money spent is worth less than the time saved. My girlfriend tolerates, and sometimes very much enjoys the wheeling, but if I head out to the garage without her on a Sunday to work on my truck, well... Her dad barely knew the kids because he was always working on his tractors, trucks, etc.

I've been inspired by thenewx.org to pick up a wrench a number of times already. but I must confess that right now finding time to buy tools, clear space, learn not to be an idiot--that time is difficult to find.

Not to say that I don't or won't DIY. but it's a trade-off. It's not a sin to pay for an easy job, at least IMO.
 

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lostboy said:
anyone have a how too for those of us who are less inclined?
Hot to,
Buy new shocks of proper fit,
look at the holes, you will be undoing the bolts in those holes under your X.
Go un do them, use a solvent, right size wrenches,
Pull shock out.
Install new shock and tighten to spec as directions say.
(Most time you just get the rubber to squeeze out to edge of washer that meets up to rubber bushing.)
On a newer vehicle this is a snap.
Once installed cover threads with a silicone so next time it is just as easy.

The rear is a shoe in DIY the front is better left to a pro because the spring is involved. Anyone who always works on cars can do the front provided they have the compressor to do their particular job. Or, you can remove and take to a shop that does it and they will, BUT it's just as easy and sometimes better to get a new spring on the shock and install the works. It will work better and last longer. They do sell em that way.

And D rap you are right, the blame I get in PM's for missing a step, not mentioning a wrench size, omitting a specific location for a squirt of PB blaster, part numbers, wire sizes, colors, location of materials, prices, availability in foreign countries, use of air tools, wood blocks, pry bars, paint, rust preventative, lube, and common sense and many more things that are my fault is endless.

The thanks I get can be counted on fingers and toes.

Thus, you notice I slow way way down on my how to's and post right? I kinda thought by mistake for sure that people inclined to come here were the DIY type looking for info, not total novices looking for lesson. My mistake, and I pay for it.

MC


MC
 

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usmc xterra said:
And D rap you are right, the blame I get in PM's for missing a step, not mentioning a wrench size, omitting a specific location for a squirt of PB blaster, part numbers, wire sizes, colors, location of materials, prices, availability in foreign countries, use of air tools, wood blocks, pry bars, paint, rust preventative, lube, and common sense and many more things that are my fault is endless.

The thanks I get can be counted on fingers and toes.

Thus, you notice I slow way way down on my how to's and post right? I kinda thought by mistake for sure that people inclined to come here were the DIY type looking for info, not total novices looking for lesson. My mistake, and I pay for it. MC
C'mon, MC, I didn't mean to imply anything like that. I've probably spent enough time reading your how-tos to install 10 sets of shocks. And I sure didn't mean to fault you at all. Just pointing out that we're not all seasoned DIY guys, and that breaking into the game takes some time and getting past some jitters. Please keep 'em coming! How do novices become wrenchers if not under the influence of someone encouraging and knowledgable?
 

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All to save money. I tell my kids, all the money in the world won't buy you a plumber when the phone is out on a Sunday. But, if you know how to unclog the toilet, you won't be in deep schit. So learn to unclog the toilet, then you can use it sooner and have more cash in your wallet for fun and toys.

So, once my AC compressor clutch went out on my Caddy the day we were going to leave on vacation, There was none to be had anywhere, none, Best any dealer for 200 miles could do was in a week maybe. But Autozone had a Compressor, (With clutch) in 4 hours we left on vacation with a fully charged AC. They got the point.

(And we did entertain the thought of transferring the clutch, but it was a slightly different design on new compressor.)

MC
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I think we all just look at the potential solutions differently. :)

My solution to the AC issue would have been to rent a car for the trip.
 

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d-rap said:
usmc xterra said:
Normal is free! All you need is a proper wrench and some PB blaster.
Never pay for this job! MC
MC, I respect your wrenching skills and the way you make it easy for people to follow your lead. But you have to understand that for some of us, wrenching time is difficult to find, and that in some cases, the money spent is worth less than the time saved. My girlfriend tolerates, and sometimes very much enjoys the wheeling, but if I head out to the garage without her on a Sunday to work on my truck, well... Her dad barely knew the kids because he was always working on his tractors, trucks, etc.

I've been inspired by thenewx.org to pick up a wrench a number of times already. but I must confess that right now finding time to buy tools, clear space, learn not to be an idiot--that time is difficult to find.

Not to say that I don't or won't DIY. but it's a trade-off. It's not a sin to pay for an easy job, at least IMO.
Problem is, if you wheel, things will break. If you have to pay someone every time something breaks, you either have to be VERY wealthy or your wheeling days will be short lived.

I have been working on cars since before I could drive. I have have two years of formal auto mechanics training and my last car (Dodge Intrepid) I never even changed the oil in it myself. It wasn't worth my time or effort. But with the X and Jeep, I would be so broke right now that I wouldn't be able to wheel because I couldn't afford the gas or lunch out on the trail, if I had to pay people to fix / mod the vehicles.
 

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You might also want to weigh in the warranty with the type of work. Installing shocks, bumper, AALs, etc, sure I will do with friends. But say the SAS, even if I had the time and knowledge to do it, it is such a HUGE project (and also has never been done before) that forking out the dough knowing that the shop will fix the problems that arise down the road is well worth the money IMO.
 

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Oh, hell, unless you are a fully built fab shop, I would never attempt a non kit SAS on a brand new vehicle.

Maybe if it was a $3K beater I would take a hack at it, but the chance that you will render your $25K vehicle useless is too great.

Hell, Pony, I thought you were nuts for letting the pros do it. Obviously, they knew what they were doing, but as soon as you start cutting them IFS brackets off, there isn't much turning back. :)
 

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Muzikman said:
Problem is, if you wheel, things will break. If you have to pay someone every time something breaks, you either have to be VERY wealthy or your wheeling days will be short lived.
I've been completely convinced that this is true over the last year of wheeling my X and now buying an old Jeep. Even since I wrote the words Muzikman quoted, I've moved far in the direction of doing my own work. I'm buying tools, my buddy and I already did some bang-up body work on his X, I'm re-doing the Jeep suspension myself, and we're putting shocks on my buddy's X. Anything I do to the ZJ, I'm doing. I want to be ready for problems on the trail, and I'm getting killed paying unnecesary labor. And I'm already having a blast turning a wrench. Not to mention, what shop is going to be as careful and as meticulous with my vehicles as I will be?

Thanks to this site and guys like MC, Muzikman S_E_X-terra and many others for the encouragement.
 
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