Question:I have a 1996 Ford E350 club wagon with a 7.3 diesel with 250k. I take it on long trips hauling 1,500 - 2,500 pounds in gear/people on a semi-regular basis. It is usually used as a daily driver with no weight being carried.
I want to buy the Bilstein shocks and I am wondering if I should get the heavy duty shocks. As I understand it the Diesel engine adds a lot of weight to the front end and sags out the suspension. I am tempted to get the heavy duty in the front and regular in the rear (B46-1917 front heavy duty vs. B46-1613 front regular), but that brings up the question of running such different valving on the 2 ends of the van. Please advise what you think is best Heavy duty both ends, regular both ends or a combination with heavy duty in front and regular in the rear.
Answer:The heavy dutys are the popular choice. The only difference between them and the light dutys is the vavling, the HDs are slightly stiffer, for better control and dampening. Other than the valving the units are identical. You can also mix them if you want to, front to rear. That's normal. But they are so close to being the same thing, it's hard to say it would be something you could tell right away between them. Both are a monotube high pressure shock design, far superior than the OE twin tube low pressure shocks the van came with.