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Old 12-02-2008, 01:49 PM   #1
JamesWilson
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Question Tokico HTS struts?

What is the general consensus on the Tokico HTS/D-Spec struts for autocross and track applications? I have run the AGX's on my Impreza and they were fine for the price...looking for a very budget-oriented strut.

Info-- http://www.hitachi-hap-la.com/TokicoGasShocks/hts.html





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Old 12-02-2008, 04:26 PM   #2
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there are some guys running these locally....they like them...even better than AGx's....the dampening is a bit better than the AGX...and seems to last as long or longer...

PM Uncle Scotty if you want....he's running them and swears by them..


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Old 12-03-2008, 07:37 AM   #3
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i am running the d-specs over swift spec r springs and am very happy with the results. i road race the car a few times a year, and have found the setup just about perfect for my amount of driving experience. i've also had 2 instructors (one who has an sti) comment that they felt the setup was more balanced than the porsche one of the other students was driving.

the adjustability is great, and simple ~ especially if you get the adjustment extensions for the rear struts, and you won't even have to pull the seat to adjust.

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Old 12-03-2008, 09:10 AM   #4
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$870 with springs for all 4 corners -- not bad.
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Old 12-03-2008, 12:23 PM   #5
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Wait wait wait.... Are people seriously using these for stage rally like the ad says? I know rallycrossers like them, but stage rally? They cant be that strong...
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Old 12-03-2008, 12:27 PM   #6
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Considering D-specs w/RCE Yellows. In for the opinions of the struts.
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Old 12-03-2008, 02:03 PM   #7
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I'm sure you'll have better luck than I did. I installed the D-specs a few weeks ago and the fronts weren't blown but the car bounced like they weren't there. It's like they weren't set up to hold the weight of the engine. I'm sending the fronts back and will see what they say.
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Old 12-06-2008, 03:30 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brown's Mazda View Post
I'm sure you'll have better luck than I did. I installed the D-specs a few weeks ago and the fronts weren't blown but the car bounced like they weren't there. It's like they weren't set up to hold the weight of the engine. I'm sending the fronts back and will see what they say.
sounds like you had them set at full stiff or full soft

the dspec can handle a pretty stiff spring(#350 I should think, easily) and at full stiff they would be quite hard
also, if you have the stock strut tops, that will become the weak link and cause lots of 'bouncieness'
do not use the stock tops----front or rear---they are marshmallows

and....they do need to 'break in' for a couple hundred miles......I set mine to -3 turns from full stiff for the first week or so and adjusted from there
and have loved the results ever since
being able to adjust these---and making as little as 1/8 turn of the adjuster screws can be felt(there are 7 1/2 full turns of adjustement)....to suite spring rate and/or conditions is great....the adjustement is 'continuous' with NO 'clicks' and makes the AGX obsolete
no doubt.

I had the AGX.....thought it was great, and was great, compared to stock struts.

The Dspec is in a whole better galaxy than the AGX.
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Old 12-06-2008, 05:23 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jblaine View Post
$870 with springs for all 4 corners -- not bad.
do NOT buy the setup that includes the springs from Tokico....they are WAY TOO SOFT for anything but grandma use
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Old 12-06-2008, 08:42 PM   #10
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Have you ever tried Koni inserts Uncle Scotty? I'm curious as to how the D-Specs compare to them?
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Old 12-06-2008, 11:18 PM   #11
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i have some experience with both tokico dspecs and koni inserts...but nothing motorsports related

koni inserts + rce blacks > tokico dspecs + oem sti springs

not a the best comparison, but the ride of the koni/rce package felt more composed going over bumps. however, the dspecs i installed for my ex hadn't been broken in yet and the dampers were set to a 1/2 turn from full soft. the koni/rce setup is on an 04/05 wrx wagon and the dspec/sti setup is on a swapped 05 rs.
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Old 12-07-2008, 02:21 PM   #12
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Why would you not run Konis? Use what wins, not "Tokico"
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Old 12-07-2008, 03:24 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trhoppe View Post
Why would you not run Konis? Use what wins, not "Tokico"
I have to agree- the KYB and Tokico dampers tune rebound and compression together- not ideal when trying to dial a car in- the Koni's adjust rebound only (the heigh speed compression on the Koni's could be a little lower for daily driving, but it's not too bad w/ the rebound dialed back)

the Koni's are one of the few dampers that can handle oe spring rates to 400 #+ springs- pretty flexible
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Old 12-07-2008, 03:57 PM   #14
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I installed RCE wagon specific springs, D-specs, Group-N top hats, and additional camber bolts (for the wagon). I am still amazed at the versatility of this setup. The RCE's look very stiff on paper, but they don't feel like kidney busters at all. I did not run Konis because I was under the impression that they do not like going offroad all that much (damages the valving apparently). I offroad a lot so I went with the Tokicos.

Anyway, the D-specs handle those springs and their high rates like a champ. Uncle Scotty is right, you can actually feel very small adjustments (I dunno about 1/8 turn, but I can tell 1/4 turn). Because of this I would imagine they are very tunable for motorsports applications. Daily driving they rule, spirited mountain runs they make the car come alive. So much more control than the stockers. I got them from a vendor on ebay in a best offer type auction for 495 shipped.

My biggest complaints:
1) No in-cab adjustability (but I'm working on a solution now, stay tuned).
2) The paint chips off pretty easily, but only down to the grey primer so rust has not been an issue yet.

PM me with questions.
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Old 12-07-2008, 06:09 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nhat View Post
i have some experience with both tokico dspecs and koni inserts...but nothing motorsports related

koni inserts + rce blacks > tokico dspecs + oem sti springs

not a the best comparison, but the ride of the koni/rce package felt more composed going over bumps. however, the dspecs i installed for my ex hadn't been broken in yet and the dampers were set to a 1/2 turn from full soft. the koni/rce setup is on an 04/05 wrx wagon and the dspec/sti setup is on a swapped 05 rs.
WAY too soft
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Old 12-07-2008, 07:40 PM   #16
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Yeah, a good starting point is about 4 turns from full hard.
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Old 12-08-2008, 12:38 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OppositeLock View Post
Considering D-specs w/RCE Yellows. In for the opinions of the struts.
Had this exact setup.

Short opinion: It kicked ass.

Ill expound upon that later when Im not at work.
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Old 12-08-2008, 12:43 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cucamelsmd15 View Post
Had this exact setup.

Short opinion: It kicked ass.

Ill expound upon that later when Im not at work.
will look forward to your add'l feedback. i had a hard time choosing between the RCE yellows and the swift spec R springs.
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Old 12-08-2008, 01:03 PM   #19
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There has been a lot of discussions about D-specs vs Koni. I opted for D-specs because I didn't want to cut up my stock struts. Everyone's settings for the D-specs are going to be a little different. It all depends on your choice of springs to run with them. I'm currently running Crucial Racing Springs (basically a improved set of pinks) w/D-specs. I'm very happy with the way my car handles. I spent about a hour or so driving around to try and find a setting that was a good compromise between highway and street. After much driving I keep them at about a 6. 7 is just to stiff for the highway. If your on a budget D-specs are a good choice. Pair them with a good spring like prodrive, RCE, or pinks and you'll be happy. Do a bit of searching in the suspension forum and you'll find plenty of discussion about this topic. If I had to do it all over again. I would still choose the D-specs.
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Old 12-08-2008, 01:19 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris_Lee View Post
There has been a lot of discussions about D-specs vs Koni. I opted for D-specs because I didn't want to cut up my stock struts. Everyone's settings for the D-specs are going to be a little different. It all depends on your choice of springs to run with them. I'm currently running Crucial Racing Springs (basically a improved set of pinks) w/D-specs. I'm very happy with the way my car handles. I spent about a hour or so driving around to try and find a setting that was a good compromise between highway and street. After much driving I keep them at about a 6. 7 is just to stiff for the highway. If your on a budget D-specs are a good choice. Pair them with a good spring like prodrive, RCE, or pinks and you'll be happy. Do a bit of searching in the suspension forum and you'll find plenty of discussion about this topic. If I had to do it all over again. I would still choose the D-specs.
Notice that "autox and track" were the primary applications. In those two applications, adjustments affecting only what you WANT to affect, is a very important feature.

In a shock like the Tokico (and pretty much all "cheap" shocks*), the compression damping is adjusted along with your rebound. Compression and rebound are two completely different adjustments and affect different areas of the corner in different ways. If your shock is changing both of those adjustments with only one knob, its very hard to dial in the car to fix certain areas of the corner.

If all you care about is ride comfort on highway and street, that doesn't apply to you at all. For that, you need to pick a shock which has good compression and rebound valving that work together, and for your particular spring. Thats a reason the Tokico could work well with "x" spring for the street, but then not be the best choice (or even a "good" choice) for an autox or track application where you are trying to make the car handle first and foremost.

-Tom

* all the "cheap" coilovers do this as well, which is why most of them suck for a motorsports application. From my research (back in 04 when I cared about "cheap"), some of the Teins are the best at this, and adjust rebound, with little crosstalk into compression, but nothing in the "budget" range is as good as the Koni Yellows (8610/8611/insert). Once you get into the Koni 28 series (which is what I use now)/Moton/Penske $$ range, its all a matter of shock type/personal preference.
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Old 12-08-2008, 02:49 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trhoppe View Post
Notice that "autox and track" were the primary applications. In those two applications, adjustments affecting only what you WANT to affect, is a very important feature.

In a shock like the Tokico (and pretty much all "cheap" shocks*), the compression damping is adjusted along with your rebound. Compression and rebound are two completely different adjustments and affect different areas of the corner in different ways. If your shock is changing both of those adjustments with only one knob, its very hard to dial in the car to fix certain areas of the corner.

If all you care about is ride comfort on highway and street, that doesn't apply to you at all. For that, you need to pick a shock which has good compression and rebound valving that work together, and for your particular spring. Thats a reason the Tokico could work well with "x" spring for the street, but then not be the best choice (or even a "good" choice) for an autox or track application where you are trying to make the car handle first and foremost.

-Tom

* all the "cheap" coilovers do this as well, which is why most of them suck for a motorsports application. From my research (back in 04 when I cared about "cheap"), some of the Teins are the best at this, and adjust rebound, with little crosstalk into compression, but nothing in the "budget" range is as good as the Koni Yellows (8610/8611/insert). Once you get into the Koni 28 series (which is what I use now)/Moton/Penske $$ range, its all a matter of shock type/personal preference.
I guess no one is tracking their daily driver?

...compression damping is adjusted along with your rebound...yes we know this already. There is a whole array technical jargon to go along with that. The op was looking for a general consensus. I've been using mine in all kinds of driving conditions for two years with no problems. So, as far as reliability goes. I think they are very dependable and I run mine near the stiffest setting all the time. I like Koni's and from all my research they do perform better than the D-specs and many people that have used them will tell you the same. But for those of us that don't want to go through the hassle of cutting up our stock struts or finding donor struts or switching to a full coilover set-up the D-specs are a great choice. There are many other factors that play into the overall handling. I wasn't trying to get all technical. I just wanted to provide some general input.

The Koni vs every other strut in the world argument will go on forever.
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Old 12-08-2008, 04:13 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris_Lee View Post
I guess no one is tracking their daily driver?
If you are tracking your daily driver, you do not care about the ultimate in handling. Or if you, then you are destined to be HPDE champion, so there is nothing that anyone can do to make you better.

Quote:
The Koni vs every other strut in the world argument will go on forever.
What you are saying is that people will try to justify their purchase of an inferior product because of this or that or this other thing

There are a LOT of choices in shocks and konis are not the best for every application, but knowing how James will use them, in this application they are

-Tom
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Old 12-08-2008, 04:26 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trhoppe View Post
then you are destined to be HPDE champion, so there is nothing that anyone can do to make you better.
quoted for the truth.

And this is in the motorsports forum why? Maybe this should be moved to the suspension forum...

Chris H.
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Old 12-08-2008, 04:55 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Draken View Post
And this is in the motorsports forum why? Maybe this should be moved to the suspension forum...
Well James asked about autox and track :giles:

-Tom
PS. hi chris
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Old 12-08-2008, 05:04 PM   #25
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Sorry, for some reason there is an error with my NASIOC account and I can't post/edit/etc. So now I am "JamesWilson2", and lose my post status and member #. Mods and Admin cannot fix for some reason. STUPID!!!!

Anyway, I was thinking primarily for Stock Class autocrossing, but in the future maybe add a low-ish rate spring later. Sounds like those who have run them like them, may be worth a shot.
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