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Behavior or OEM shock absorbers when hand-tested

22 Mar 2019 08:53 - 22 Mar 2019 08:55 #204922 by Bosanek
I have a set of second hand all four OEM Suzuki Jimny 3 shock absorbers. I do not know their service history or if they are in good condition.

I noticed that both front shock absorbers remain in whichever (un)compressed position I move them with my hands, while both rear shock absorbers immediately elongate back to their largest length after being compressed by hands.
Moving any of the four shock absorbers does require a proper effort.

Is this behavior of the pair of front shock absorbers normal?

Two mechanics, who I asked the same question, told me that every functioning shock absorber should strive to return to a certain elongation after being forced to be in a different (un)compressed state (depending on the model). Therefore, their deduction is that both front shock absorbers are faulty.

However, I also have a full set of OEM Jimny 3 shock absorbers (dismantled from a brand new Jimny 3 after traveling less than 500 km) and I tested that the front pair of shock absorbers behave the same way as described above !?
Last edit: 22 Mar 2019 08:55 by Bosanek. Reason: Minor clarifications

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22 Mar 2019 09:37 #204924 by Lambert
Genuine front dampers don't return to elongated as they are just oil. The rears are gas over oil so will attempt to return to full extension. Most reputable after market dampers are gas over oil in both locations. There are pros and cons for each type but i a road car those differences are not really important compared with the general condition of the dampers and that they have been developed for the specific application they are being used in.

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22 Mar 2019 20:24 #204937 by S200KYS
I wouldn't rate those two mechanics then Bosanek?!


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24 Mar 2019 20:05 #205016 by Bosanek
Lambert, thank you very much for the explanation. So it's normal for OEM front shock absorbers not to return to elongated position after compressing them by hand.

S200KYS, yes it appears quite so. That's why I never trust a mechanic. I learned that a long time ago.
Don't trust a mechanic to diagnose a mechanical issue (only to repair it), don't trust a general to wage a war (only a battle) and don't trust a programmer to make a functional program (only to make it).

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