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Help me pick a new rear suspension setup

Help, Advice and DIY Tutorials on Volvo's extremely popular car line -- Volvo's 1990s "bread and butter" cars -- powered by the ubiquitous and durable Volvo inline 5-cylinder engine.

1992 - 1997 850, 850 R, 850 T5-R, 850 T5, 850 GLT
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Help me pick a new rear suspension setup

Post by callahanoffroad » Sat Mar 14, 2020 10:07 am

As some of you may know I deliver groceries in my '95 non-turbo sedan. The orders can sometimes be regular sized, and under 100 pounds all the way to huge bulk orders from costco and sam's club weighing around 500 pounds. I run about 10-12 orders a day. So that weight is almost always in the car.

I'm going to be ordering some IPD heavy duty springs/overload springs to help level out the back of the car. But it seems to me that with extra load comes greater responsibility for the shocks.

I'm currently running Bilstein Tourings, but they're reaching the end of their service life.

I'm considering Bilstein HD's, Sachs or some Koni's

Any thoughts?
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Re: Help me pick a new rear suspension setup

Post by volvolugnut » Sat Mar 14, 2020 10:48 am

Back when I had a '75 245 Volvo, I got a shock catalog and checked all the dimensions for match to original Volvo rear shocks. I found a coil over shock of the same dimensions. These needed some extra washers to provide body clearance, but I used these for several years. Like you, I routinely carried heavy loads in the back.
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Re: Help me pick a new rear suspension setup

Post by volvolugnut » Sat Mar 14, 2020 10:49 am

Continuation of thoughts:
You may not want coil over shocks, but comparing dimensions may find a shock rated for heavier loads.
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Re: Help me pick a new rear suspension setup

Post by MoVolvos » Sat Mar 14, 2020 11:35 am

volvolugnut wrote:
Sat Mar 14, 2020 10:48 am
Back when I had a '75 245 Volvo, I got a shock catalog and checked all the dimensions for match to original Volvo rear shocks. I found a coil over shock of the same dimensions. These needed some extra washers to provide body clearance, but I used these for several years. Like you, I routinely carried heavy loads in the back.
volvolugnut
I think you mean helper spring shocks rather than coil overs as in adjustable ones on a McPherson Strut setup?

I installed these on our 03 Odyssey over 7 years ago and they are great for maintaining height besides the extra load capacity. The turn in and neutral steer for corners and big off ramp sweepers increased dramatically. Always interesting to see (and don't see) the tailgater and their surprise following me too fast into a turn. Perhaps the OP can find something similar.

https://www.amazon.com/Monroe-58645-Adj ... da+Odyssey
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Helper Spring Shocks.jpg
.
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Re: Help me pick a new rear suspension setup

Post by abscate » Sat Mar 14, 2020 1:38 pm

I put the IPD blue springs on my T5 for hauling boats , about 500 pounds and 100 pounds tongue weight.

Standard shocks are fine. Springs carry the weight , shocks use the damping
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Re: Help me pick a new rear suspension setup

Post by volvolugnut » Sat Mar 14, 2020 2:41 pm

I think you mean helper spring shocks rather than coil overs as in adjustable ones on a McPherson Strut setup?

Yes, I should have called these helper (or overload) springs.

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Re: Help me pick a new rear suspension setup

Post by j-dawg » Sat Mar 14, 2020 3:53 pm

An underdamped rear will bounce around, but the rear shocks are easy enough to swap out that I'd stick with what you have and see how it feels before committing to a change. Unlike the struts up front, there's minimal labor savings in changing the spring and shock at the same time out back, so there's little risk in doing it piecewise until you find the combination that works.
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Re: Help me pick a new rear suspension setup

Post by callahanoffroad » Sat Mar 14, 2020 8:04 pm

20200312_130928.jpg
Sagging butt
Thought I should add a photo.

I had originally thought of using shocks with helper springs. I actually almost typed that idea out 😂. I used them on my old Toyota pickup.

Abscate, if those overload springs work to tow that boat then I may just be in business with those springs!
Author, Chef, and Shade Tree Mechanic

1995 Volvo 850, Non-Turbo, VVIS, LH FI, Green, 215,000 miles. B5254FS engine. Herman. viewtopic.php?f=1&t=84393

1996 Volvo 850, died at 280,000

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Re: Help me pick a new rear suspension setup

Post by BlackBart » Sat Mar 14, 2020 11:53 pm

I've noticed your helper is always cheerful and positive! A thumbs up to both of you from all of us!
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Re: Help me pick a new rear suspension setup

Post by abscate » Sun Mar 15, 2020 12:07 pm

See jdawg comment above, 100% on point.
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