Bilstein install ? - Type 44, rear

Bernie Benz b.benz at
Sun Jul 20 19:51:57 EDT 2003

> From: "Dave C." <conner at>
> Date: Sun, 20 Jul 2003 19:52:19 -0400
> To: 200q20v at
> Subject: Bilstein install ? - Type 44, rear
> Patient is an 87 5ktq w/ recent complete suspension rebuild incl Bilstein
> struts/shocks and Eibach springs.  Test drive reveals a rattle in rear end
> when going over even slight bumps.  I've checked torque on all fasteners,
> emptied the trunk of everything that might rattle, etc.  The remaining
> suspect is a loose top nut on the rear Bilsteins.  It isn't clear to me how
> tight this nut is supposed to be.
> Bentley says 15 ft/lbs for the '87.
> The Bentley for 89 and newer says 22 ft/lbs.
> The instruction sheet provided with the Bilstein shock says  "nut torque 37
> +7.5 ft lb"
> What does this mean?  If it means 42.5 ft lbs, why doesn't it just say that?
> 42.5 ft lbs sounds unreasonably high, and I'm afraid to go there.
> On the other hand, 7.5 sounds unreasonably low.
You're making way too much over bolt/nut torque!  Throw your torque wrench
away, only to be used for head bolts thereafter.  Tighten until it feels
right for that size thread.  My bet is that this is not your problem.  Is
the symptom a rattle or a squeek?  Spring not seated in the perch properly?
If a squeek, check and relube the upper link ball joints.  Had this problem
on an old '87 5K @ 250K.

> The initial install was torqued to 15 ft lbs in accordance with Bentley
> Does anyone know what this torque should be?
> Has anyone actually installed these things with torque of 42.5 ft lbs?
> BTW ... these nuts are tightened similar to the front struts, except the
> fastener sizes are different.  They require a 17 mm deep socket with the
> side cut out and holding the shaft with a 5 mm hex key.
> Dave C.

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