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· Registered
1,125 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I gotta be honest I had been putting off doing shocks for like 5 years. Wasn't a money thing, or time, or whatever... Just never did it and I didn't think ride feel was bad enough. So I kept putting it off. Finally replaced them. And it was nightmare on elm street. The rears came off easy enough, some PB blaster, time and a breaker bar got the nuts off just fine. Think a half hour for both and I was in no rush. The old shocks were lifeless. I'm not sure how I didn't feel them not working. The fronts... my god. It had been a while since I had inspected the condition of the bolts at the top mounts. The bearing plate bolts were unrecognizable, and the top bolts of the shocks were one large rusted mess. The bottom bolts came off just fine with some PB blaster and time and breaker bar. I had to cut off the bearing plate bolts. In the process I think my dremel multimax started to burn up. I went through two flush cut metal blades and called that quits. On the other shock I used my regular dremel and cut off wheels and made two slices through each nut then knocked them off the bolts. Should have used the small dremel from the onset... it was much faster. After removing the shock and coil spring, applied spring compressors and got the spring restrained. At this point I had an O f*ck moment. I wasn't sure how I was going to get the darn thing apart. The top nut and bolt were destroyed by rust. I thought I was going to have to walk down the road to a garage with two coilovers in hand and ask them to work magic. I was kicking myself for not ordering new springs at this point. I wasn't sure I would have been able to cut off the top bolt because I figured it was a hardened steel of some sort. After googling a while and pondering I remembered my sawzall. I cut through the reservoir end of the shocks like butter. Drained the oil, unbolted the rod from the inside, and pulled it all apart. All in the clear, got the new shocks together and installed. Total time for the fronts was about 7 hours. Nightmare on elm street.

Got the shocks done, tire rotation, oil/filter change. Still need to do the spark plugs, O2 sensors, clean throttle body, inspect and clean if need MAF, replace PCV, and a drain and fill on coolant.

I used bilstein 4600 on the front, 5100 on the back. I think I am perceiving a difference in how it feels. For all the effort I expected more lol. :)

Pic is after getting the first shock done and contemplating my decision to do my own work.


· Super Moderator
12,714 Posts
Yes the front shocks were a b itch to do. I took the sawzall and cut down the side of the nut and then used a cold chisel to unwrap it from the threaded rod, it was pretty straight forward.
Bet it felt great once you were done and had it behind you.


· Premium Member
3,922 Posts
Just a note: KYB now has their version of the "quick-strut" available for the 05 and newer Frontier; they are called NGK "Strut Plus" and come as a complete assembly with coil spring and mount and it has a lifetime limited warranty for $128 each (+ shipping) at

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