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Old 11-02-2010
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Shock upgrade??

Ive been looking for awhile on how to get some extra travel out of my stock 2000 4x4, and I found the Dixon Bros. shock upgrade 1998-2009 Ford Ranger 4wd Performance Shock Upgrade - Long Travel Suspensions - Dixon Bros Racing or people have been telling me about the Camburg 2.0 shock upgrade. Anybody ever run these ?

I was seriously thinking about those DBR shocks (given their shop is a 2 miles from my house. https://www.ranger-forums.com/forum2...lies/shrug.gif) , would they make a noticeable difference on the dunes and as my DD ?
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Old 11-02-2010
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The Camburg 2.0 upgrade is for 2WD with a 5.5 kit.

Camburg makes (or used to make) a 98+ 4x4 Upgrade Kit but it has never been catalogued on their site. It consists of Bilstein 7100s, custom lower mounts and limit straps

The DBR 4x4 Shock Upgrade is a concept similar to the Camburg upgrade and consists of a quality set of reservoir shocks and custom mounts. DBR also makes an excellent 4x4 long travel kit but it is serious money.

The factory 98+ Ranger 4x4 suspension travel is limited by upper A-arm clearance and the max factory CV joint angle. You can only gain about 1/4" over stock before the outer CV's bind while turning at full travel.

Either the DBR or Camburg 4x4 shock upgrades should significantly improve ride quality and suspension control within the limits of the stock suspension travel (about 7").
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Old 11-02-2010
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Hmmm, Not really worth the money I guess. Figure a good set of bilsteins HD or OEM FOX shocks could help with the ride quality , and a torsion twist for some more clearance should be able to hold me over until I get enough money for the DBR LT kit.?
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Old 11-03-2010
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Bilstein HDs were the factory shocks on the FX4 Level II's and are readily available as a bolt-in replacement for 98+ 4x4 Rangers. These are quite good and dead easy to install - a great choice for a Ford OE shock on a Ranger, especially if you plan to upgrade to the DBR LT kit any time soon.

Of course, the HD's are not comparable to more expensive off road shocks. Three things to watch out for with higher end shocks like Fox, SwayAway, Bilstein 6100/7100, etc.:
  • The lower mount usually needs to be carefully relocated to keep the shock away from the CV boot, caliper and upper control arm. This means fabbing up a new mount to bolt or weld to the lower control arm.
  • The factory upper mount is set up for a pin type shock. There are relatively few higher end shocks available as a pin type. To get more choice in manufacturer annd shock versions, it is possible to build a complete fabbed upper mount or add a conventional mount inside the factory shock bucket.
  • In its stock form, the 98+ Ranger suspension uses the shock itself as the rebound travel limiter. Universal off road shocks usually come in incremental lengths that probably won't match the extended shock length that's needed and many manufacturers recommend against using the shock as a limiter anyway. In this scenario, the easiest solution may be a set of limit straps but these require their own upper and lower mount provisions. They need to be carefully set up for clearance to tires, suspension, steering and brake components.Since they stetch with use, an adjustable mount on one end of the strap is useful to maintain the correct rebound limit and help protect the rather weak factory CV's from binding.





Here's my homebrew setup with a pin type Bilstein 7100, custom lower mount, and limit strap with adjustable clevice:





[/QUOTE]
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Old 11-03-2010
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I called camburg before I bought my F150, they said they would still sell the kit although it has never been listed online, for what it's worth.
Depending on your use, the HD bilsteins will improve the ride, but if you're hauling out in the desert/dunes a good reservoir shock will be loads better, especially with a proper length limit strap. The HD bilsteins will still fade and wear out quicker playing in the dunes.
In my opinion, the best thing you can do without spending a ton of ton of money is disconnect the front anti-sway bar and run one of the shock upgrades, do NOT crank the torsion bars. It will kill the ride and the suspension will top out harshly all the time. You only get about 3" of droop from ride height from the factory as it is.
Some good rear shocks and traction bars will be a big help too.
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Old 11-03-2010
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Damn lot of good info there rwenzing and brianjwilson !! THANKS !, rwenzing, did you just weld that tab up for a lower shock mount? You fab it up ? Yeah I was looking for some sort of running a reservoir shock just cuz I usually spend a whole day or two out on the dunes and im killing my stocker kyb shocks, mostly just dune running mind you, Cant hit the big whoops yet.lol Any good reservoir shocks that are fairly easy to fit?
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Old 11-03-2010
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I used Bilstein 7100 pin tops, part number B46-1085R for the reservoir shock (B46-1085S for the NON-reservoir version). Damping should be set to 360/80.

Shock travel is 6.65", way more than it needs to produce the 7" stock wheel travel. The limit straps are 10" Beard/Redart quads with Redart adjustable clevises on fabbed upper mounts. The bottom of each strap bolts to the back of the LCA.

As delivered, there will be interference at the upper hose fitting on the B46-1085R reservoir version. I did a heat and bend on the lip of the factory upper shock mount for clearance. The reservoirs are hose clamped to bolt on angle brackets

The lower shock mount is a simple piece that I fabbed. It bolts to the 2 stock shock holes plus one more that I drilled in the LCA.

My setup is a near clone of the Camburg 4x4 upgrade kit. The Camburg lower mounts are slightly different and they supply similar limit straps but without the adjustable clevises.



Here's the original Camburg version:





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Old 11-03-2010
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Sorry if I sound like a noob, but why would you need a custom fabbed lower shock mount when the stock shocks are already an eye hole type? If length is an issue as well as the upper pin type would these ,JKS Shock Conversions at TRS Fab & Off-Road fix it ?
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Old 11-03-2010
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The stock lower mount point is too close to the CV boot for full size shocks. The 98+ factory Ranger 4x4 shocks have a strut rod there to elevate the small shock body above the boot. The relocated mount in the upgrade kit moves the bottom mount about an inch or so toward the rear of the LCA to give just enough clearance for the boot.
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Old 11-03-2010
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Yeah those shock mounts are easy enough to fab up, performance accessories sells some universal shock brackets that I could bolt p or weld. Thanks for all the info !! Ill look into picking some bilstein 7100 and straps from poly performance hopefully next week. So how bigs the the ride improvement on those ressi bisteins?
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Old 11-04-2010
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Street ride is similar to the Bilstein HDs that came stock with my LII, meaning quite good for a compact pickup. Off road is a lot better than stock but still limited by the short stock travel. For my purposes, these shocks are overkill but for more hardcore off roading they would undoubtedly give much better fade resistance than the OE "stilt" shocks


Side by side comparison of a factory LII Bilstein HD and a Bilstein 7100 reservoir shock.


The B46-1085Rs are actually rear shocks for VW buggies. If you do order them, be sure to have the damping changed to 360/80.
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Old 11-06-2011
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Great info on this site!

I just called Camburg today, they don't stock the kit but will put one together for $550 and install it for another $200. It is fox remote res shocks tuned to Camburg specs, a custom lower shock mount, and I'm guessing a limit strap. They were really knowledgeable and helpful, and reminded me that even with these killer shocks the stock suspension doesn't have a lot of travel so it isn't going to get me much extra capability.
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