How many inches of play on strut? pix included

Under regular stationary load, how much inches of rod should be showing on the strut between the gas chamber and the bump stop?

I’m trying to find out of my springs are saggy (therefore not pushing the strut back down) or if my bumpstops are too long and need to be cut.


Neil, are you talking about the stock shocks and aftermarket springs? more info. would be helpful on your setup.

These are aftermarket KYB struts on the wife’s teg. They are coupled with no-name coilover sleeve springs.

There’s no real right answer to this. Spring rate and ride height dictate how low you can be. I probably have ~1.25" of shock-to-hardstop travel (maybe 0.5" to bumpstop), but I’m running 450lb/in springs in front. The softer the spring, the more travel you need.

If its any help, I seem to recall that DA Koni Yellow shocks are designed to have 2" of up and down travel, for a total of 4" of travel. A call to Koni could verify this, but splitting it in half gives ~2" of compression travel.

Right now she has zero travel - the strut housing is up against the bumpstop. But she has about 3 inches of bumpstop. So I was going to cut the bumpstops – maybe take an inch off or so and see if the spring is strong enough to at least keep the strut piston at the same position. If I do that and the shock still retracts all the way up to the bumpstop again, can I assume that these springs are shot?

3" seems too big. But what is the effective springrate of the bumpstop versus the springrate of the spring?

I remember when I had the Koni Yellows with the Ground Controls (made for the Koni’s) installed, they required me to cut the bumpstops.

Well the spring is supposed to keep the car on the ground by pushing down on the strut. It doesn’t appear to be doing that. Or it may be (since the springs seem to be a good deal shorter than my GCs) and the strut just can’t move anywhere to absorb bumps in the road.

Different companies sell different length springs for our cars. Sounds like you should try cutting the bumpstops in half and see how it goes.

Cool, since you’ve had your teg since 2002, I should believe you.


I was hoping I was on the same wavelength as someone else, so thanks for the reinforcement. I’ll post with results.

Haha, that sig was so I didn’t have to post it every f’ing time some n00b would question my logic.

I think you’re on the right logic path. So a few years ago, I had Skunk2 coilovers on Tokico Illuminas with the stock 3" bumpstops. I was too low, and riding on the bumpstops and when I took them off 2 things happened:

  1. It rode way smoother because the suspension could compress easier.
  2. It rode waaaaaaaaaaaaay smoother because the shocks were blown. :wink:

Just be careful, anything (over the shelf) but Koni yellows doesn’t do too well with high spring rates.

Okay I finally got the time to remove some bumpstops. The rear ones I removed about an inch. I lowered the car back down and there’s still some rod showing so we’ll see how that works.

The front though is another story. I just don’t get this. Compare the two images below. The yellow one is on my teg: Koni Yellows and Ground Control springs. The grey/black set is on the wife’s teg. They’re KYBs on no-name spring sleeves. (Apologies for the crappy cell phone pictures; too poor to replace camera damaged by cold weather.)

The images are shown with just a wheel load on the strut (i.e. the car is jacked up so that the wheel is off the ground). Why is there no rod showing on the wife’s teg? I can’t even push up on the strut, it doesn’t go anywhere. Can struts get “FROZEN” ? What’s wrong with this picture? This MUST be why bumps feel so FREAKING STRONG on her car!

Suggestions will be fantastic! Thanks!

if I’m seeing the picture right the rubber sleeve is blocking the view of the piston. on some coil overs it comes with a rubber sleeve to go between the shock and the sleeve of the coil over to stop rattle an to keep it in place. the kybs are silver not black. see if the rubber sleeve that needs to be pushed back down.

either its the rubber sleeve (like mentioned above) or its the dust shield (which should be removed when using coilovers).

I agree with the above posters, it is the dust shield. My stock struts all had those, the bumpstops are inside of there.

Would that explain why I can’t push up on the strut ?

The only experience I have with this is when I tried pushing up on my Skunk2 PRO-S coilovers while my car was on a lift. I can’t physically push the wheel up very far at all (probably just a couple mm), it feels pretty much completely solid. I think it is because the spring rates are 600 or so lb/in, and I cant produce that much pressure by pushing or something. That is just my theory. It rides good though when the weight of the car is on it. The dust boot would have nothing to do with pushing up on the struts though, sorry I couldnt be of more help.

yes they can. your not suppose to run dust boots with coilovers. the dust boots are only large enough to fit the shock. if they’re still on they’ll hit the sleeve. but they would bend and stuff when you drop the car to the ground.

Those stock dust boots rarely, if ever, work on a lowered car. As a general rule I always remove them. Depending on the exact suspension setup and amount of drop you definitely could be running into clearance issues with that metal boot. Remove it, it’s not needed.

In regard to the initial questions.

Springs RARELY sag, I never worry about this. Even if they did, if you have coilovers you can still adjust for height. The amount of travel you should have is situation specific. In general as spring rates go up you require less travel as the same amount of load will compress the system less. But it really depends on the spring rates you’re running, what you’re doing with the car, and what your personal preferences are.