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Upgrading My Moke Suspension


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#1 maystro

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Posted 12 September 2021 - 07:15 AM

Hi guy's

 

I'm thinking of upgrading my suspension because the clearance between the tyres and the front guards is getting pretty close and the smallest bump is taking its toll on my back.  I'm guessing those original donuts are looking more like pancakes.

 

I drive my Moke most days and intend on doing some long road trips so I am after comfort over rally performance but I would like to keep the lowered stance it has now.  

 

I have herd the donuts give a much smoother ride than the coil overs so I would like to keep the donuts unless someone suggests otherwise.

 

I was looking at this kit from Minispares in England.

 

http://www.minispare...px|Back to shop

 

Also I like the look of their own EVO brand donuts.  Has anyone had any experience with these? 

 

 http://www.minispare...px|Back to shop

 

Is their anything else I may need like knuckle joints etc?  

 

Oh yeah the big question, are all these suspension components compatible with a 1981 Australian Moke that has disc brakes?

 

Thanks

 

Brad

 

 



#2 Spider

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Posted 12 September 2021 - 08:58 PM

I have noticed that your Moke does sit very low, it must be on the bump stops and I'm thinking these maybe split ? I can understand how rough a ride it must be.

I think you already know, but in order to get some comfort back, you will need to raise it up a bit, about 2" as a minimum, but to a point, the more the better here, especially given the battered roads of Queensland.

 

Sorry, but I can't say I'd recommend that kit for your Moke and also, the EVO Cones, while good, are about 25% stiffer / harder than stock cones. Given the light weight of a Moke compared to a Mini, I'd suggest you want softer cones and in this regards, I'd be suggesting the standard rubber cone;-

 

http://www.minispare...px|Back to shop

 

I did once look at those Hilos and on the set I looked at, I found the threads in the main body of them had a lot of play in them (there isn't full thread engagement) and the bolt & lock nut have different size hexes, needing 2 sized spanners. Some might like this feature ? I thought it a bit of an inconvenience as you will need to 2 spanners where as most other only need 1, then again, not a job that's done often. For Hilos, I'd actually steer you to Matt Read - he has his own made to his own design and for a road car, you won't get a better ride.

The Adjustable Arms and Radius Rods from Mini Spares are fine, but just be aware, in Aust, they are not road legal (bangs head in to wall), though probably every second Mini you look at will have them fitted. Fit new rubbers here.

 

Moving to the Rear, the adjustable brackets when fitted to a Moke do need to be fairly sturdy types, these are probably the only ones I'd recommend;-

 

http://www.minispare...px|Back to shop

In regards to shocks, you have a wide range available to suit the front, just use standard length, not the lowered types. On the Rear, your pickings are a bit slimmer on a Moke, they use (and need) a longer Shock, there are a few more available here than there was a year ago;-

http://www.minispare...px|Back to shop

 

KYB also have a suitable shock. It's the same as specifically for fitting on the Mini Van and Mini Pick-up. They have an Extended Length of 410 mm and most importantly, a Compressed length of 255 mm. If they are any shorter than this, you can expect to break Trailing Arm Pins which will also gouge out the side wall in your type as an added bonus.

 

While you have it all in bits, I'd suggest an overhaul of the suspension, as from here ^ there's only a few more parts that need to be changed;-

 

All Knuckle Joints - Mini Spares currently have a great one;-

 

http://www.minispare...MS.aspx|Back to

Pins and Bearings in the Arms. Mini Sport in SA have good kits, but throw away the bearings in them and get some Japanese ones from your local bearing supplier. 4 x B1212 in the front and 4 x B1316 in the back. Ask for NSK Bearings, they are quite good.

I'd also recommend changing out the front bump stops, even if yours seem OK. If (read: when) they need changing, you pretty much need to take the front suspension apart to get to the nuts. While it's in bits, take them off and fit a set of there;-

http://www.minispare...|Back to search

 

These fit to the Arms and so if a new rubber is ever needed, they are easy to change. They also give a very improved 'bump' characteristic. You'll need to file the holes in the brackets a bit bigger though to fit them, don't try and drill them as the holes are on different centres.

The other one to change out is the Rebound stop;-

 

http://www.minispare...px|Back to shop

 

 

 



#3 maystro

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Posted 13 September 2021 - 10:56 AM

Thanks Chris, I think?

 

Why is everything so hard for a  Moke.  This reminds me of trying to get seats and wheels ;-(

 

I was trying to buy a kit that I could just bolt in myself to make things simple and save a buck but if I have to buy individual components for a better ride well my ass and back will thank me ;-)    That kit I was looking at has the same rear brackets you were talking about and that is it.  

 

I'm not worried about legalities if I am going to upgrade something to give me a safer and better ride.  I'm the least of the cops worries up here in Townsville.   

 

Just a question about these adjustable shocks.  Most seem to be adjustable, so I am guessing that is only the dampness and not altering the length which you said I require.  I remember in the 80's when I could just pull up at the garage and put some air into the shocks and raise the back of my Monaro to give that cool look.

 

I'm definitely getting Hilos because I'm sure they must be better than my old tin trumpets or what ever I have.  Surely in 40 years they have come up with something better?

 

I might give Mat a call and see what he has?

 

Thanks

 

Brad



#4 Spider

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Posted 13 September 2021 - 08:27 PM

Hehehehehehe,,,,,, sorry there Brad !

 

I do like the idea of kits as they usually represent value for money, even if some parts aren't used (like I tend to do with the arm pin kits).

 

 

Just a question about these adjustable shocks.  Most seem to be adjustable, so I am guessing that is only the dampness and not altering the length which you said I require.  I remember in the 80's when I could just pull up at the garage and put some air into the shocks and raise the back of my Monaro to give that cool look.

 

Like this ?

PGosJC4.jpg

 

They are very effective but sadly to fit them in, it does require some body modifications.

 

In regards to Hilos (or an adjustable trumpet), yes, I agree with you there, in fact, given that over time, the rubber cones settle, I don't know why something similar wasn't factory fitted.

 

Just so I can get a bit of a better handle here, apart from a better ride, what are you hoping to get from your suspension ? Back to factory specs (as far as ride height, and angles go). Lowered (within reason), the '4x4' look ?



#5 Magneto

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Posted 14 September 2021 - 02:59 AM

For a much nicer ride I've fit more than a few sets of MiniSport's Smooth a Ride kit, it includes both the hi-los and shocks. I think that's how I would go....



#6 maystro

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Posted 14 September 2021 - 09:18 AM

Hi Chris, 

 

Yeah they are the old pump shocks I'm talking about....so that is your secret weapon for those creek crossings on your Moke adventures ;-)

 

I would like my Moke as low as possible while still having a reasonably comfortable ride.  I am willing to forgive some comfort for the lower look, after all I don't think I would be that fussy because like you said I have probably been running around on yes those split bump stops for 10 years and my now new comfy seats don't have a piece of ply wood in the base.

 

I'm thinking if I am keeping it low I mightn't need the longer shocks on the back. 

 

Oh yeah I have already broke one of those trailing arms pins and it made a beautiful gouge around my whole tyre and rendered it useless.  I think this was more from me never have greased the nipple which I didn't know existed.

 

Anyway just tossing ideas around till I hear from matt?

 

Thanks

 

Brad 



#7 Spider

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Posted 14 September 2021 - 09:39 AM

Hey Brad,

 

Yeah, the Air Bag Shocks do help a bit with ground clearance, but are there mainly to help take the weight :proud:  I love them and would never go back, but I also know they aren't what everyone wants.

 

I'm thinking if I am keeping it low I mightn't need the longer shocks on the back.

 

The Rear Suspension in Mokes (and Minis) doesn't have a conventional Bump Stop, like you have on the Front. The Bump Stop that's built in to the system is actually when the Rubber Cone bottoms out on the Subframe, but that's also what breaks the Trailing Arm Pins. With the Standard Length Moke Shocks there's a shared arrangement between the Shock bottoming out and the rubber Cone, though more is taken on the Shock. Fitting shorter shocks in there on a Moke that's already riding low will break these pins with regular monotony.

 

The Moke I pulled this one from had done less than 1000 km since it's last pin broke

 

pIgyeJv.jpg

 

and yes, it was fitted with standard Mini Shocks on the back.

I have noticed and get annoyed that as the proper length Moke Shocks are thin on the ground, they advertise Mini Shocks as being suitable, when they certainly are not.

 

Keep in mind here that the Rear Arms have a Leverage Ratio of 5:1 on to the Cone and also on to the Trailing Arm Pins. So what ever you might have in the back (even when empty), 5 times that is on the Pins. Put another way, say 2 x 20 kg bags of cement isn't terribly heavy, yeah ? They put 200 kg 'pressure' (it's not the correct engineering term, but for the sake of discussion) on to these Pins. That's static. When you start driving and going over those Potholes and bumps in the road that Anastasia has left for you :D  this goes up to 2 - 3 times that and that's what guillotines the ends of the Pins off. Shorter than standard Moke shocks aren't wise.

 

I get that you'd like it low and I think you get that it does need to be raise some to get some movement back in the suspension, just keep in mind here that pretty much a lower ride does come at the expense of comfort.If you fit Hilos, as you are planning, it does give you an option if going on a trip to Raise it up some more to 'dial in' more comfort.



#8 maystro

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Posted 14 September 2021 - 10:32 AM

Ok Chris,  you have scared me off standard mini suspension kits for my Moke.  Thanks buddy probably not as scary as breaking one of those trailing arms on a road trip half way between Townsville and Adelaide.  

 

If I don't hear from Matt,  I will make up my custom kit from Minispares using the parts you suggested.  

 

Just a question when you say replace the bearings and pins, what bearings are you talking about?  Wheel bearings I know but is their some other bearings in the suspension system which I don't know about?   I have never messed around with my suspension?

 

Brad  



#9 Spider

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Posted 14 September 2021 - 06:37 PM

To fit new cones in the front, you'll need to remove the Top Suspension Arms, not the most fun job if you've not done them before. While that's out there's a Pin that it swings on and a pair of Bearings, No. 4 in this drawing;-

 

18xMvQC.jpg

 

While you don't need to remove the Arm on the Rear, all the same, it would be a good chance to give it all a birthday, the Pin I see you are familiar with, it too has a set of Bearings, No.5 in this drawing;-

 

dkWXvOo.jpg

 

The other items that may also be a good idea to replace are the Brake Hoses, Front and Rear. Again. not entirely a fun job, but it is recommended these be replaced every 3 years or 65 000 km (which ever is sooner). The Hoses are quite inexpensive.






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