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Discussion Starter #1
Following on from refurbishing the EAS drier I am now looking at possibly replacing the dampers (aka shock absorbers) on my 118k mile vehicle.

OEM units seem more expensive than some of the well known and quality branded manufacturers and I see Terrafirma now have adjustable units although I’m not sure of their actual utility. So, over to you guys that have changed dampers and what to go for or avoid.
 

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I went for Monroe stock dampers on my "new" P38, which are absolutely fine. The old rears were OK, but the fronts were shredded (130K)

I recently put std terrafirma on my Defender, they're nice too.
 

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Original were Boge but it appears that only fronts are available from Island 4x4 and LRDirect although Rimmers list OEM rears so should, in theory, be Boge. I'd be concerned about fitting the Monroes as they are described as uprated which usually means non-standard.
 

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Who describes Monroe as uprated? Anyway, plenty of choices above, without needing to spend a fortune
 

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Ah OK, Island do, bit of salesmanship on their part, I guess
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks for the replies so far. As a bit of further information I don’t require uprated units as I do not want to stiffen the ride (I have other vehicles to loosen my fillings with) and I am not into off-road rock crawling!
 

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Likewise... According to their website the Monroe ones are interchangeable, not uprated, but they are gas, not oil, so Island may consider them uprated in that regard, and so justifies a fractionally higher price. And even though most of the pics on eBay are yellow, it seems most units are actually supplied black
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thanks for the link. Seems from both there and here the OEM setup is the one for me - Boges and/or Munroes. Better start searching for the best deal.
 

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If you do a lot of high speed highway driving, you might want to consider Bilstein as well. I have a set installed on mine. I really like the way the car corners with them. I see a lot of comments about Bilsteins making the ride harsher. However, to me, feels fine.
 

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I went with the cheapest I could find for my old bomb - didn't know what was being delivered until it turned up lol. The fronts turned out to be BOGE and these are pretty good. The rears however were Britpart.....cut my hand on the steel burrs around the welds. The rears do the job for now but its obvious they won't last anything like the fronts. I've had Boge, Koni, Bilsteins, OME, monroe, sachs on other cars and my view is that Bilstein are the best you can get.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Having researched all available units the Britpart one’s are the cheapest . . . . . by far . . . . . . . too cheap, methinks, to have any real quality built in! Bilsteins are up there in terms of quality, no doubt about it. But value for money on a vehicle that can in no way be described as a performance vehicle? They are also probably too ‘firm’ for what I’m looking for.

For me it is now a ‘toss up’ between the Terrafirma (TFAT) and a Boge (front)/Monroe (rear) set up. Need more information on the ride quality of the TF units before making a final decision.
 

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I'd go Boge front from Island 4x4 and OEM rear from Rimmers. Although nobody seems to list Boge rear anywhere, OEM was Boge so the ones from Rimmers should be fine. Avoid Britpart unless you like changing things very regularly. But, do you need new shocks? One of my original Boge rears had something come loose inside so was rattling, so, as the car had done over 300,000 miles at the time, I decided to replace all 4. Other than the one that rattled, the damping on those I took off was still the same as the new ones I was fitting.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Do the shocks need changing? Not sure. Mostly all is OK but on rutted/broken surfaces the suspension tends to 'patter'. All four air bags have been changed over the past couple of years and there are no leaks in the system so the only thing left is either a) the shocks are getting a bit past their sell by date; or b) this is normal behaviour for the suspension.

I had considered the Rimmer OEM rears but there is no information on the manufacturer. I might give Rimmers a ring to see if they can tell me. Also, I was wondering whether a change of manufacturer i.e. to Terrafirma, might improve things regarding the 'pattering' - they are gas shocks.
 

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When stock shocks are good quality and not super expensive, why change? Shock quality is obviously important but so is the valving. I tried Bilsteins years ago on my first P38 and felt the valving wasn't right and went back to stock. So "higher" quality didn't really work out. Of course if you are trying to change things, that's a different choice.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
The Terrafirma All Terrain (TF125 & TF126) are advertised as being a strait swap for the OEM Boge units. Being gas struts they should have faster reactions than the oil filled stock shocks which might help with the pattering over rutted/broken surfaces. However, as a general rule, gas shocks are firmer and might ‘harm’ the general ride. As with most things it’s always a compromise somewhere. I’m a bit wary as I’d hate to find the TFs are firmer and the pattering still persists.

I know the Bilsteins will be firmer and they are much more expensive so are out of the running.

If I could get original Boge units for both front and rear then that would probably be the best solution but they do not appear to be available for the rear.

Ah, first world problems eh?
 

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I can't stand it when resellers don't give you the brand name or source of what they're selling...or just say OEM.
Depending on the integrity of the seller, OEM doesn't necessarily mean they made that particular part for land rover, or even that they made parts for land rover.
Re always buying "stock" I think we can agree that the LR engineers wd have changed re-engineered quite a few things on the P38 in hindsight. Most often you have to go stock because a part's bespoke, or part of an integrated system. Shocks are one example where we can fiddle a bit (whilst poly bushes are not!!!) I'm sure there were various options they considered at the time.
 

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Depends on what you want and what car you are fitting them to. On a sportier car maybe but many have found that Bilsteins and Terrafirma are too stiff for a P38 with EAS. Gas shocks will extend themselves compared with standard oil filled shocks which are dampers in the true sense of the word, they damp the movement rather than adding to the effect of the springs.
 
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