Author Topic: AIR SHOCKS  (Read 2765 times)

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Offline 78trans1

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AIR SHOCKS
« on: January 12, 2007, 04:08:24 PM »
WHEN I DROPPED THE REAR END OF MY 78 WS6 403 A WHILE BACK

AGO, I NOTICED IT HAD AIR SHOCKS IN THE BACK. WERE AIR SHOCKS

AVAILABLE OPTION BACK THEN? HOW DO I FIND OUT IF AIR SHOCKS

CAME ON MY CAR? ALSO IS IT A MISTAKE TO USE AIR SHOCKS ON

THESE CARS (FRAME). THANKS
"I actually like looking at other cars, they look real nice in the rear view mirror"

Offline RENOVATIONS

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AIR SHOCKS
« Reply #1 on: January 12, 2007, 04:20:43 PM »
Although most of them have seen them at some point in their life, they didn't come factory. I've ran them before to but have heard varied opinions on whether or not they are hard on the shock/spring mount.
Jeff

Projects:
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1978 Trans Am
1970 Camaro
1970 'Cuda

Offline HughJass

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AIR SHOCKS
« Reply #2 on: January 12, 2007, 05:18:45 PM »
The only reason that I can see to use them would be to raise the car to give you clearance to tires that stick out past your fenders.
If your rear is sagging already without the shocks then you need to look at the springs.
The shocks were not meant to support the rear end of the car.
Light travels faster than sound. That's why some people appear bright until you hear them speak.



79 W72 WS6,  work in progress - nicknamed Lucy

Offline '79 Blvd Bird

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AIR SHOCKS
« Reply #3 on: January 13, 2007, 10:03:52 AM »
I put AIR SHOCKS on mine way back when TA's were "just another car".
The original shocks (that were not air shocks) went bad and I needed to pull a little U-haul trailer when I was moving.

The air shocks are still on there (14 or 15 years later), but I'm going to put regular shocks back on now that the TA is not "just another car."

Offline milly

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AIR SHOCKS
« Reply #4 on: February 18, 2007, 02:50:59 PM »
The only reason to use air shocks would be if you were going to tow a small trailer with the car. If the rear end is sagging, it's time for new springs. I've seen guys use air shocks to raise the rear end high enough to clear wider wheels and tires. Sure it looks cool, but you trade of traction and handling when they are filled too high.
John
1981 Trans Am
1996 Firebird

Central Illinois Firebirds
Ohio Firebirds

Offline AmFan

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AIR SHOCKS
« Reply #5 on: February 19, 2007, 07:40:07 AM »
During the summer of 2006 I put air shocks on my 78 because of the lack of clearance underneath.  It is a temp fix.  I plan on changing out the springs here shortly.

The air shocks made the ride horrible.  Can't wait to get new springs on and get the normal shocks back on.

tom
1978 Trans Am
Bought April 2001
Restoration: 2001 - 2004
Summer enjoyment ever since

Offline rkellerjr

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AIR SHOCKS
« Reply #6 on: February 19, 2007, 07:42:19 AM »
So what spring/shock combination would you recommend so that the rear end doesn't sag or is even slightly higher than the front?
Rich

Offline O'Neall

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« Reply #7 on: February 19, 2007, 02:14:51 PM »
Brand new stock ride height springs (coils and leafs) will ride pretty high until they settle (which can take a while).  I'm going to avoid that by going with some drop springs from www.pro-touringf-body.com.  The "drop" isn't really all that big of a deal since any original spring on these cars has long since sagged considerably.  The "drop" springs are as compared to a new stock spring... so comparatively speaking the "drop" should put me right back where my current old springs have sagged to.  Which is a nice ride height.  I am also going to relocate the spring perch mounting hole per Herb Adams to both lower the rear a bit more and provide good anti-squat coming out the corners... but then again, my car is going to be sort of a pro-touring car (well, not true pro-touring, kind of "semi-pro" touring) with a pretty seriously upgraded suspension.

If you just want to return totally to stock, just buy some new stock units from Eaton Detroit.
Jon O'Neall
1977 Y81 Trans Am
W72-400/Auto (1 of 549)
"Trans Am!  What's your pleasure?"

Offline 78trans1

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AIR SHOCKS
« Reply #8 on: February 19, 2007, 07:24:38 PM »
since you guys brought this subject back, i have a question? on either

npd or the other magazine (the name escapes me), i saw a repro sticker

for rear air shock for 78. anyone know what that sticker is about?
"I actually like looking at other cars, they look real nice in the rear view mirror"

Offline milly

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« Reply #9 on: February 20, 2007, 12:14:57 AM »
I might be wrong, but I think you could get air shocks as part of a towing package. If someone else has any insight into this I'm sure they'll chime in.
John
1981 Trans Am
1996 Firebird

Central Illinois Firebirds
Ohio Firebirds

Offline 78trans1

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AIR SHOCKS
« Reply #10 on: February 27, 2007, 03:37:29 PM »
can anyone else chime in please.
"I actually like looking at other cars, they look real nice in the rear view mirror"

Offline O'Neall

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AIR SHOCKS
« Reply #11 on: February 28, 2007, 09:20:53 AM »
Air shocks were not offered by the factory... not even in a tow package.  Stiffer springs (and up thru 77 a larger rear sway bar) were what the Y96 towing package (called Firm Ride Pkg) used to add extra stiffness to these cars... and to what extent the spring rates were increased depended on whether the car was an auto or 4spd.

The shock mounts are not designed/meant to provide the extra stiffness.  Air shocks have a habit of breaking the shock mounts if really abused... not a good scenario. :lol:

Air shocks were most likely put on for 1 of 3 reasons... 1) for that classic jacked up hot rod look, or 2) because the rear springs had sagged so bad, and putting air shocks on was cheaper than replacing the springs, or 3) because the factory shocks had gone bad and air shocks were seen as an "upgrade" back in "the day". :lol:

My car has air shocks right now... they are definitely not original.  They are/will be coming off pronto in the resto and replaced with a full set of Konis.
Jon O'Neall
1977 Y81 Trans Am
W72-400/Auto (1 of 549)
"Trans Am!  What's your pleasure?"

Offline GK_STAR

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AIR SHOCKS
« Reply #12 on: February 28, 2007, 09:42:11 AM »
One of the 1st things I did when I got my T/A was take the air shocks off and replace them with stock shocks (all the way around) The next was the Catalytic converter...Man that thing was the size of a Volkswagen (Olds 403 Calf car)

Trans Am Towing package? Well I guess but I wonder how many were sold  :lol:  I have seen stranger sights. Neat looking boat.

But Hey...Thats just Me..I could be Wrong
Greg

78 T/A 403ci Olds
80 T/A 350ci Olds Rocket
78 Indy Pace Car Vette
64 Olds 88 2 Door Hardtop 394ci


Offline 78trans1

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« Reply #13 on: February 28, 2007, 02:22:29 PM »
thanks guys!
"I actually like looking at other cars, they look real nice in the rear view mirror"

Offline milly

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AIR SHOCKS
« Reply #14 on: February 28, 2007, 11:49:48 PM »
Thanks O'neall for the air shock info. :D
John
1981 Trans Am
1996 Firebird

Central Illinois Firebirds
Ohio Firebirds