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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I researched the crap out of the Rancho Quicklifts vs the Bilstein 5100's before I purchased them. I made a mistake and would like to share it with you because even with all the research I did, I never could find a true answer from an experienced user who has tried them both. Soooooo:
I purchased the Rancho Quicklift set of 4 close to 600 bucks. The ability to adjust them on the fly is what really sold me. I wanted the Cadillac ride for everyday driving without ruining the offroad feel. Well, the Ranchos just flat out suck. Sure they were easy to install. Infact it was a no brainer. Maybe 1 hour for all four. I didn't have to change out springs and I had the adjustment to change the "stiffness". Boy what a marketing gimmick! They road like crap. They bounced, had no rebound, they were stiff as could be no matter if I had them set to the lowest settings or highest setting. It was like I had no shocks at all. Hitting a sharp bump in the road felt like I bottomed out the springs every time. I purchased new tires and it scalloped the fronts within 5,000 miles. Needless to say, for the first time in my life, I have used a warranty. The Ranchos come with a "90 Day Free Ride" and I have contacted the seller who gave me the RMA to return them for a full refund.
I am not one trying to get a free ride and respect business's trying to make a dollar. I asked the customer service rep if they carried Bilstien. He did and was so willing to keep a sale he emailed me a link to choose my poison. Well, I called back after a day to think about how i was going to manage a truck without shocks until I got new ones. I placed the order for the Bilstein 5100 shock kit. He also gave me a discount with free shipping. 350 bucks for the set. not great, but not bad either.
After my attempt to change out the springs myself, I gave up because it was getting a bit freaky watching the spring compressor bolts start to bend. No Thanks!!. I took them to a shop to have them put the springs in. When I went to pick them up, no charge ( it's great living in a small Texas town :) ). Well I gave Stan 20 bucks anyway.
Once again, 1 hour to install the set of 4. I used the second notch down from the top and got exactly 2 inch lift. I've got 36 inches from ground to fender on all fours now. Exactly what I was wanting. I took a test drive and HOLY COW!
I could feel the difference immediately while pulling out of the garage. I drove down the street and it felt better then a Lincoln MKT . I hit a big ditch which would normally be bumpy as heck and it was now like it wasn't even there. Took a sharp corner that has ripples in the inside corner that would normally cause my rear end to bounce and skip to now hardly feeling a thing. Took it down the highway at 70 and I was in a 1972 Ford Country Squire Wagon. It floated like a boat. So freakin cool. So, then I hit some quick off road bumps.... um, what bumps? :)
Ok folks, Bilsteins just flat out smoke the Ranchos.
Nothing more to say :)
 

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Bilsteins are a quality product. I've installed them on Saabs, BMWs and Porsches and have never been disappointed. A rebound adjustment would be nice, like Konis, but Konis tend to be pretty harsh even on the softest settings. Love Bilsteins!
 

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Old tech and poorly matched valving.
I have heard the very same results in other vheicles when comparing Rancho QS to 5100s
 
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