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 Post subject: S2 Suspension Help
PostPosted: Sun Feb 14, 2016 10:39 pm 
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Hi folks,

After 25 years of loyal service, the suspension on my MY1990 S2 cab is showing some obvious signs of wear and tear, so needs to be replaced.

I've never worked on a car's suspension, so have spent a few hours reading various articles online and done watched a few youtube videos. I've decided that I'm probably going to give it a go myself. My 944 isn't may daily driver and I have a garage.

The replacement of the rear shocks looks pretty straight forward and is documented at http://www.clarks-garage.com

For the front, I'll be replacing the springs at the same time. The front looks a lot more involved. I don't really care about it being adjustable, nor do I want to lower it, so it makes sense to stay with stock. I realise that I'm actually replacing the strut, rather than just the damper itself, which is where inserts would come in, if I went down the Koni / Bisltein route - which I'm not. There's a bit that's puzzling me though. Do I need to compress the springs? That looks incredibly dangerous if I get it wrong with one of those tools.

I'm also a little confused about which parts I need. Looking at design911, they have part number 94434303, which is for "Porsche 944S2 1989-91 Cars Without Sport Suspension" i.e. mine for £232.26 each side, but they also have 95134303, which is for "Porsche 944S2 1990-91 Cars With Sport Suspension/Without Vertical Adjustment" which also describes mine for £185.04 each side.

Any help on either question would be great.

Cheers,
Bryan

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Previous car : 1990 Porsche 944 Cab
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 Post subject: Re: S2 Suspension Help
PostPosted: Sun Feb 14, 2016 11:46 pm 
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Hi Bryan,
Quote:
Looking at design911, they have part number 94434303, which is for "Porsche 944S2 1989-91 Cars Without Sport Suspension" i.e. mine for £232.26 each side, but they also have 95134303, which is for "Porsche 944S2 1990-91 Cars With Sport Suspension/Without Vertical Adjustment" which also describes mine for £185.04 each side.


If you have the normal S2 suspension it'll be the 1st part number you describe that you need with (full) number(s) P944.343.032.19 + P944.343.031.19

Check the option codes on the Vehicle Identification sticker in your Service Book (or in the boot) against the list on this page to see if your car had an upgraded suspension option (which will require the 2nd part number you mention):
http://www.connact.com/~kgross/FAQ/944faq944S2optioncodes.html

Buy the struts + rear suspension from an OPC for best price. Reading OPC near you know their stuff or try Mark at Leicester OPC. My S2 suspension parts (the same as you need) came from Germany in Nov 14 but arrived inside a week.
With the discount offered by the OPC I paid £185 + VAT for each of the 2 front struts and £241 for a pair of rears + VAT.

Be warned though, when my parts arrived the front struts were date stamped 2004 and the rears 2009 which shows how long the stock suspension stock has been on Porsche's shelves. You may be lucky and find a newer batch is now being offered - let us know please, I'd be really interested to know how old the items you receive are.

Not sure if S2 Cabs have the same Coil Springs but for ref my springs part no. = P944.343.531.02 904.

Huge improvement with the new parts though. Don't forget to re-bush things for the best improvement and get the alignment right.

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Porsche 944 S2 1989 Alpine White (204,600 miles and ready for another 204,600)
BMW e36 328i Sport Coupe 1998 Titan Silver


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 Post subject: Re: S2 Suspension Help
PostPosted: Mon Feb 15, 2016 7:46 am 
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briggy wrote:
Hi folks,

After 25 years of loyal service, the suspension on my MY1990 S2 cab is showing some obvious signs of wear and tear, so needs to be replaced.

I've never worked on a car's suspension, so have spent a few hours reading various articles online and done watched a few youtube videos. I've decided that I'm probably going to give it a go myself. My 944 isn't may daily driver and I have a garage.

The replacement of the rear shocks looks pretty straight forward and is documented at http://www.clarks-garage.com

For the front, I'll be replacing the springs at the same time. The front looks a lot more involved. I don't really care about it being adjustable, nor do I want to lower it, so it makes sense to stay with stock. I realise that I'm actually replacing the strut, rather than just the damper itself, which is where inserts would come in, if I went down the Koni / Bisltein route - which I'm not. There's a bit that's puzzling me though. Do I need to compress the springs? That looks incredibly dangerous if I get it wrong with one of those tools.

I'm also a little confused about which parts I need. Looking at design911, they have part number 94434303, which is for "Porsche 944S2 1989-91 Cars Without Sport Suspension" i.e. mine for £232.26 each side, but they also have 95134303, which is for "Porsche 944S2 1990-91 Cars With Sport Suspension/Without Vertical Adjustment" which also describes mine for £185.04 each side.

Any help on either question would be great.

Cheers,
Bryan


Hi Bryan,

Do you have anyone local that could help? Removing and replacing the springs can be a little daunting the first time and having an experienced person on site would really help. If you were local I'd glady help. I would also recommend you get the front camber set up again as one of the lower strut bolts is eccentric. You could mark it up and get it pretty close but to be certain it would need proper alignment. No special tools required, though an electric impact wrench is very useful :) Also trying and loosen the top nut whilst its in still on the car. If that doesn't work have some decent locking pliers to hold the strut rod still whilst you undo the nut. As you're binning the shock no need to worry about marking them.

Do some searching online for Sachs replacement struts and rear shocks, you can get them from the likes of ECP at really good prices. I am in the process of replacing my suspension with Koni (need a dry day to finish it off) and will have a pair of Sachs rear shocks available, they are about 12 months old and not even had a 1000 miles of use. If you want to save a few pennies....

Rich

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2005 Cayenne S V8 Basalt Black - current Porsche
2001 Boxster S - moved on
Porsche 944S - now gone to a new home
Mondeo TitSportX TDCi - 210bhp - current daily
997 C4S - may have to give it back one day :(


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 Post subject: Re: S2 Suspension Help
PostPosted: Mon Feb 15, 2016 9:08 am 
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Thanks for the replies Rich & Mark.

The state of the suspension came up during a service at OPC Tewkesbury. They quoted £2,250 all in to do the work (including top mounts), so they already know the parts required. Just dropped them an email to see what they can do supply-only.

ECP seem to only have the rear shocks.

Looking at the option codes, mine does not have M474 or M757 so my front struts are the more expensive 951.343.031/2.12.

Bushes will be replaced as necessary. I already know the ARB ones are out of shape.

I will mark the eccentric bolt for the camber, but wouldn't hurt to get things checked properly.

Still not sure if I have to compress the springs at any point. Can anyone advise? Unfortunately, I don't know anyone local who can help me.

Cheers,
Bryan

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Previous car : 1990 Porsche 944 Cab
Current cars : 987.2 Porsche Cayman S


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 Post subject: Re: S2 Suspension Help
PostPosted: Mon Feb 15, 2016 9:29 am 
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Bryan,

Yes you will have to compress the front springs to remove and re-fit them.

I haven't checked ECP recently but last year they had most in stock, I did get my rears from them.

When I recently decided to overhaul the front end it was clear that changing to Koni was far cheaper than by 'standard' parts, to replace all four corners was just over £500. The work to adapt the front strut for the inserts was minimal too. It won't be lower as I want to remain standard height.

Rich

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2005 Cayenne S V8 Basalt Black - current Porsche
2001 Boxster S - moved on
Porsche 944S - now gone to a new home
Mondeo TitSportX TDCi - 210bhp - current daily
997 C4S - may have to give it back one day :(


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 Post subject: Re: S2 Suspension Help
PostPosted: Mon Feb 15, 2016 9:40 am 
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Rich,

I don't have the facilities to adapt the strut for the insert - I've never done any welding, so probably not the best time to learn! Is there anywhere that does this as a service i.e. I send them the old and new bits, they install the insert and send it back?

Cheers,
Bryan

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Previous car : 1990 Porsche 944 Cab
Current cars : 987.2 Porsche Cayman S


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 Post subject: Re: S2 Suspension Help
PostPosted: Mon Feb 15, 2016 9:50 am 
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briggy wrote:
Rich,

I don't have the facilities to adapt the strut for the insert - I've never done any welding, so probably not the best time to learn! Is there anywhere that does this as a service i.e. I send them the old and new bits, they install the insert and send it back?

Cheers,
Bryan


There's no welding required which is lucky as I have never welded before either! You only need a measurement then use an angle grinder or even a hacksaw if you've got all day :) I am not sure if there is that service available but it would be useful for people if there was. My 'old' struts will be off my car shortly and I will be adapting them for inserts then getting rid. Be cheaper to post with all the insides removed!

_________________
2005 Cayenne S V8 Basalt Black - current Porsche
2001 Boxster S - moved on
Porsche 944S - now gone to a new home
Mondeo TitSportX TDCi - 210bhp - current daily
997 C4S - may have to give it back one day :(


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 Post subject: Re: S2 Suspension Help
PostPosted: Mon Feb 15, 2016 10:07 am 
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pilch wrote:
briggy wrote:
Rich,

I don't have the facilities to adapt the strut for the insert - I've never done any welding, so probably not the best time to learn! Is there anywhere that does this as a service i.e. I send them the old and new bits, they install the insert and send it back?

Cheers,
Bryan


There's no welding required which is lucky as I have never welded before either! You only need a measurement then use an angle grinder or even a hacksaw if you've got all day :) I am not sure if there is that service available but it would be useful for people if there was. My 'old' struts will be off my car shortly and I will be adapting them for inserts then getting rid. Be cheaper to post with all the insides removed!


I'm getting a little confused now. I thought that the strut needed to be shortened, but then resealed because the strut is filled with oil, as per https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mgrRt0Hyhr0. Did you use a guide from somewhere as I'd be keen to know what's different. Looks like I'm on a bit of a learning curve!

Cheers,
Bryan

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Previous car : 1990 Porsche 944 Cab
Current cars : 987.2 Porsche Cayman S


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 Post subject: Re: S2 Suspension Help
PostPosted: Mon Feb 15, 2016 10:18 am 
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briggy wrote:
pilch wrote:
briggy wrote:
Rich,

I don't have the facilities to adapt the strut for the insert - I've never done any welding, so probably not the best time to learn! Is there anywhere that does this as a service i.e. I send them the old and new bits, they install the insert and send it back?

Cheers,
Bryan


There's no welding required which is lucky as I have never welded before either! You only need a measurement then use an angle grinder or even a hacksaw if you've got all day :) I am not sure if there is that service available but it would be useful for people if there was. My 'old' struts will be off my car shortly and I will be adapting them for inserts then getting rid. Be cheaper to post with all the insides removed!


I'm getting a little confused now. I thought that the strut needed to be shortened, but then resealed because the strut is filled with oil, as per https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mgrRt0Hyhr0. Did you use a guide from somewhere as I'd be keen to know what's different. Looks like I'm on a bit of a learning curve!

Cheers,
Bryan


The insert is sealed, it is housed inside the adapted strut. That will have oil in but its drained and cleaned out. Here is a really good explaination of how its done........

https://www.paragon-products.com/kb_results.asp?ID=50

It doesn't take long at all to do the adaption, I would say about 30 mins per strut. I didn't fit the inserts straight away as I took the struts for shotblasting prior to repainting in black to tidy things up.

_________________
2005 Cayenne S V8 Basalt Black - current Porsche
2001 Boxster S - moved on
Porsche 944S - now gone to a new home
Mondeo TitSportX TDCi - 210bhp - current daily
997 C4S - may have to give it back one day :(


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 Post subject: Re: S2 Suspension Help
PostPosted: Mon Feb 15, 2016 10:56 am 
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pilch wrote:
The insert is sealed, it is housed inside the adapted strut. That will have oil in but its drained and cleaned out. Here is a really good explaination of how its done........

https://www.paragon-products.com/kb_results.asp?ID=50

It doesn't take long at all to do the adaption, I would say about 30 mins per strut. I didn't fit the inserts straight away as I took the struts for shotblasting prior to repainting in black to tidy things up.


Rich,

Ah, that makes a lot more sense. I'd ruled this out as I thought it was a far more complicated. I'll price it up and compare with what OPC quote for stock. I think we already know the answer...

Still nervous about compressing the springs. Any recommendations? Machine Mart do a couple of different sets at less than £40. They also clamp the spring i.e. not just hook over it.

Cheers,
Bryan

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Previous car : 1990 Porsche 944 Cab
Current cars : 987.2 Porsche Cayman S


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 Post subject: Re: S2 Suspension Help
PostPosted: Mon Feb 15, 2016 11:21 am 
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briggy wrote:
pilch wrote:
The insert is sealed, it is housed inside the adapted strut. That will have oil in but its drained and cleaned out. Here is a really good explaination of how its done........

https://www.paragon-products.com/kb_results.asp?ID=50

It doesn't take long at all to do the adaption, I would say about 30 mins per strut. I didn't fit the inserts straight away as I took the struts for shotblasting prior to repainting in black to tidy things up.


Rich,

Ah, that makes a lot more sense. I'd ruled this out as I thought it was a far more complicated. I'll price it up and compare with what OPC quote for stock. I think we already know the answer...

Still nervous about compressing the springs. Any recommendations? Machine Mart do a couple of different sets at less than £40. They also clamp the spring i.e. not just hook over it.

Cheers,
Bryan


Yes it will definitely work out a lot cheaper!

These would be fine https://www.machinemart.co.uk/p/cht224- ... ompressor/ I have a similar two-piece set

The key with using these is to just do a couple of turns on one compressor then move to the next and keep going round until the spring is compressed enough. Same with releasing them, just do it gradually and you'll be fine. The first spring you do will be your learing curve and the second one you'll be fine and probably wonder what the nerves were about!

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2005 Cayenne S V8 Basalt Black - current Porsche
2001 Boxster S - moved on
Porsche 944S - now gone to a new home
Mondeo TitSportX TDCi - 210bhp - current daily
997 C4S - may have to give it back one day :(


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 Post subject: Re: S2 Suspension Help
PostPosted: Mon Feb 15, 2016 12:44 pm 
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If you are really concerned and have a friendly local garage the alternative would be to remove the strut unit complete with spring from the car (4 bolts at the top mount and 2 at the knuckle) and take the struts to the garage. Ask them to remove the springs, it will take them 10mins to do both, and just bye them a drink. Thats what i did.

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 Post subject: Re: S2 Suspension Help
PostPosted: Mon Feb 15, 2016 7:38 pm 
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Ok, so it looks my confusion earlier was because I was looking at Bilsteins, which require welding, so I'm ruling that out. My options are now stock all round or Konis all round.

Porscheshop do a kit (2 front inserts, 2 front springs and 2 rear dampers) for £884.33
Design 911 will do dampers all round (no front springs) for £684.00. Add on OEM springs from ECP at £170.11, that totals £854.11

OPC will do front struts for £477.79, rear dampers for £309.86 and front springs for £170.11. ECP do the rear dampers for £165.98, so if I either get OPC to price match ECP or I just mix and match suppliers, I can get the full OEM set for £813.88 and not have to modify the strut.

All the above include VAT.

The only thing that's putting me off OPC is the age of everything.

Cheers,
Bryan

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Previous car : 1990 Porsche 944 Cab
Current cars : 987.2 Porsche Cayman S


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 Post subject: Re: S2 Suspension Help
PostPosted: Tue Feb 16, 2016 9:09 pm 
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Say I buy an impact wrench and use it to loosen the top nut and then again to tighten it when refitting, how do I control the torque to the correct value? Having never used an impact wrench*, I'm not too sure how they work. I'd rather ask silly questions than make silly mistakes!

Cheers,
Bryan

* edited to correct myself as originally said I'd never used a torque wrench.

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Last edited by briggy on Wed Feb 24, 2016 10:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: S2 Suspension Help
PostPosted: Tue Feb 16, 2016 9:17 pm 
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briggy wrote:
Say I buy an impact wrench and use it to loosen the top nut and then again to tighten it when refitting, how do I control the torque to the correct value? Having never used a torque wrench, I'm not too sure how they work. I'd rather ask silly questions than make silly mistakes!

Cheers,
Bryan


Hi Bryan,

If using the impact wrench to tighten, just nip it up then finish it off with a torque wrench. Once you've set the desired torque setting, usually by adjusting the base of the wrench, thighten the nut till your hear a loud 'click' and thats it torqued up.

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2005 Cayenne S V8 Basalt Black - current Porsche
2001 Boxster S - moved on
Porsche 944S - now gone to a new home
Mondeo TitSportX TDCi - 210bhp - current daily
997 C4S - may have to give it back one day :(


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