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Suspension

dutchny

E500E Newbie
Getting ready to order some things for E500.... Lowering and More Sporty Setup is the goal.

Shocks, Springs, Sway Bars, Brakes and Rotors.

Couple questions,
What is the part number for rear shocks? Preferably Bilstein Sports. I cant find anything anywhere for rear shocks.
Should SLS be deleted? Disconnect or Replace with Aftermarket Kit?
Recommendations for Calipers?

Thanks,
 

gsxr

.036 Hoonigan™, E500E Boffin
Staff member
Lowering springs and/or dampers is a major can of worms... search the forum for past discussions. There are no SLS rear shocks available other than new OE (unless you can still get the AMG E60 rear SLS shocks). You don't want to delete SLS, trust me. Be careful going too low, the only commonly available aftermarket springs available are H&R, which tend to drop the front too much, and the rear not enough. I had them on our 500E and ended up re-installing stock springs with the rears cut 1/4 coil.

Sway bars is easy, hit up Jono at Blue Ridge MB.

Brakes, probably want to go with the "Silver Arrow" setup, it's been proven to work well and is a complete bolt-on for 1994 E500's.

I would strongly recommend driving the car for a few months at stock ride height BEFORE you shell out for different springs / dampers...

:duck:
 

gsxr

.036 Hoonigan™, E500E Boffin
Staff member
I think there was an old thread discussing coil-overs, but in general, I would avoid them like the plague on a 124. The upper strut tower was never meant to support the weight of the car. And there isn't space in the rear for a true coil-over (and, same issue with the upper shock mount not supporting the weight of the car). There is little if anything to be gained with these on a 124, IMO.

The holy grail for lowering an E500E properly is a full AMG E60 spring+damper kit, but some of the parts are NLA (and what may be available, is $$$$).

Found the old thread - make sure to read Klink's explanation in post #4: https://www.500eboard.co/forums/index.php?threads/intrax-w124-coilovers.8705/

:seesaw:
 

LWB250

"But - but - he'll see the big board!!!"
I think you're missing a point here....

The rear suspension uses SLS, or hydraulic load leveling, meaning it has no rear shocks in the form that you are thinking. The rear suspension has hydraulic cylinders that are pressurized with a pump driven off the engine. At each of the rear cylinders is a nitrogen "cell", containing a bladder charged with nitrogen. This provides the "spring" in the rear hydraulic cylinders, much like the nitrogen charge does in a standard shock absorber.

Tied into all this is a leveling valve that is attached to the rear sway bar. This monitors ride height and load, and when necessary, either opens or closes to increase or decrease hydraulic pressure in the system. A good example would be if you put a heavy load in the trunk or had a couple of adult passengers in the rear seats - the car would lower from the increased weight, the valve would see this change and open, increasing the hydraulic pressure, thereby raising the level of the car to the point at which the valve would shut off.

"Converting" one of these system to stock shock absorbers never, ever yields results that are equal to or better than the stock system. Period. I'm not terribly familiar with the system on the W124 sedans, but I am very familiar with a similar system utilized on W123 and W124 wagons that works in exactly the same way. People have converted these cars to stock shock absorbers because they (the people) are either ignorant or cheap. They never yield the same ride characteristics, and the car does not perform as intended as it has to be set up for an approximation of a "good ride". Get outside of that range and performance suffers significantly.

Don't take this personally, but you're not smarter than the engineering resources that designed the system. Efforts to "re-engineer" these systems yield marginal, if that, results at best.

Dan
 
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gsxr

.036 Hoonigan™, E500E Boffin
Staff member
Bilstein Sport struts up front will work fine, if you want firmer than stock.

You cannot use Bilstein Sport shocks in the rear without deleting SLS, which I personally would not recommend. Dan's explanation above is spot-on. If you just want the car lowered, this can be done with SLS present, no need to delete it. If you want better handling, the larger sway bars are going to help... SLS delete will probably not.

Offhand, I can't think of any success stories reported in 15+ years across both .036-specific forums, where someone has deleted SLS and found any positive benefits in performance (ride, handling, etc). Note this assumes street use, not a hardcore track rat with gutted interior and not much of the chassis in stock form.

:hiding:
 

atg

Active member
An e420 on skinny tires is a very nice handling car. I struggle to understand what the same car with wider tires would need in the way of upgrades.
 

jhodg5ck

"Nit-Picky and, Bitter Mechanic"
IDK, we do more swaps to Sports and H&R's then I can shake a stick out down here and the result is Awesome. Doing 3 cars as such right now..well, 4 if you could the R129/500SL. I suppose if the roads were straight Garbage it could annoying but I've had good luck tailoring that with speed ratings on tires: side walls with more or less give.

IF you want to make this car handle what We do all in:

Full heim link rear, camber, caster, toe etc..
H&R springs, shims according to taste.
Bilstein Sports and Sport bump stops.
RDM Camber plates
Our custom front and rear sway bars, 19mm rear, 32mm front.
Sportline front control arm bushings

..and to top it off a Wavetrac LSD to Really make her respond how she Should when pushing it.

That outside of retaining the rear SLS shocks is what we run on the track car/what I run in my Brumos. I've surprised more then a few folks on and off the track.

Brakes, there are lots of choices....

Ring me up if you'd like to chat.

404.805.1357

jono
 

northNH

Member
Awesome, but I know I don't have the time to get out of the trouble exercising this setup surely would get me into.

What happens to any still-good take-offs from these lucky cars?
 

jhodg5ck

"Nit-Picky and, Bitter Mechanic"
Don't so much need time as a capable attorney IME.

Struts are always shot, used strut to mounts unless they are Near new get dumped back into the recycle bin...the stock bars sometimes you can find buyers for them for lesser 124's.

..and old rear end links, more fodder for the recycle machine...;-)

jono
 

northNH

Member
If I may ask, have you a set of skinny old regular 500E F/R ASBs that are looking for a ready buyer?
 

gerryvz

Site Honcho
Staff member
Jono,

Can you kindly place an ad with photos for the new "Mondo-Jono" 124 sway bars you are selling?

Do I see above that you are selling RDMTek camber plates?
You have these camber plates new, and in stock? What is availability? Cost?

Are you selling both front and rear, or just rear?
How do these compare to the former "Feind" rear 124 bars?
Are you selling 126 bars, as well?

Cheers,
Gerry
 

jhodg5ck

"Nit-Picky and, Bitter Mechanic"
Yes!

I've been meaning to take pics...that's why I have a draft post just hanging out...:p

Yes, I re-bush the RDM tek mounts and we sell them for appropriate cars.

The rear bar is the same as the Feind spec, the front is the same as the RENNtech.

Yup, got 126 rear bars as well...also full heim link rears...all kinds of snazzy.


got a few sets of Sportline lower control arm bushings...that was a nice find:)

Jono
 

Melville

Active member
I suppose if the roads were straight Garbage it could annoying but I've had good luck tailoring that with speed ratings on tires: side walls with more or less give.
Road condition is definitely the controlling factor. When I was on the highway or on good roads, the car was great with H&R springs. Amazing. But around DC, road conditions are rarely great. When I realized I was constantly intensely scanning for potholes to avoid instead of enjoying my drive, it was clear it was time to switch.
 

northNH

Member
Dave, my mom used to take left-over spaghetti, fry it up in butter with garlic 'til nice and crispy, scramble in an egg and some old cheese and serve it with apple sauce...
Freshly cooked noodles just don't fry up right.
 
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