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  #41 (permalink)  
Old 08-19-2008, 09:17 PM
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Yep...I had a broken shock, actually two on my IRS car rear.
I had a bad instruction sheet and mounted them wrong way around. Both snapped while I was trailering it.

End result was I had to buy two more at full retail price.

My e mail to Dave Smith led to his recall involvng 8 zip ties and 4 washers.

I experienced the worst customer service ever, repeat ever! during this whole thing.

A year on these shocks are still breaking at an alarming rate and the thread on FFcobra starts again. I have never heard so much BS in the response from FFR. I know whats going on and I am just an owner...yet Dave smith who later admits to spending 50K on the problem believes all is well. His post comes after the thread has run for a week or two and is starting to get out of hand. He comments he just heard from a customer, as if they don't check FFcobra.com daily...please, we all know how unlikely that is.

Now the whole thread is deleted. This same thing happened a year ago. The thread got out of hand, Smith made some admissions and pufff, the thread is gone.

I am sick of it. They have dealt with it so badly it defies belief, They don't care about the customers only the money. Some of the Koolaid club are saying Bilstein has let them down...WRONG, bilstein supplied the shocks, FFR chose to use them in an application for which they were not designed.

Whatever the outcome, one thing is for sure. The owners will end up paying for their shocks twice.
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  #42 (permalink)  
Old 08-20-2008, 04:25 AM
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So your telling me that there is a design flaw....and FFR makes you guys PAY for a new set of shocks????

T'aint right.
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  #43 (permalink)  
Old 08-20-2008, 08:20 AM
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you have to love the comments from some of the guys stating how they bought a race car and you should expect things like this. How many guys race these cars? 5 percent maybe
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  #44 (permalink)  
Old 08-20-2008, 10:40 AM
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And one even broke while the driver was backing out of the garage.
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  #45 (permalink)  
Old 08-20-2008, 11:34 AM
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I always wonder when someone makes the statement that a manufacturer is going to supply a quantity of their product at a price well below their cost of manufacturing. Being in Marketing, I can't construct a good reason out of all this that makes sense for them to do that. It sounds like they're already the "Plan B", even at full price. Could there be some subsidizing going on?
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  #46 (permalink)  
Old 08-20-2008, 11:56 AM
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I think Koni is supplying shocks at a below cost price in order to solidify their exclusive relationship with FFR for the future.

Bilstein is covering it's collective butt by claiming there is no defect in their shock absorber but they will take it back and make it beefier for a $35 fee.
If they did it for free, it would make them look liable. This way, they have deniability.

That looks like lawyering up to me.

And FFR doesn't have the $$$$$ needed to recall all Bilstein shocks and replace them with the stouter Konis for free.

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  #47 (permalink)  
Old 08-20-2008, 12:44 PM
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I agree, I think when Dave immediately pulled the Bilsteins and replaced them with Konis, Bilstein knew they'd lost the business. Why would they pour more money down that hole, "admit" an error, etc.? Unfortunately, I think when he did that it guaranteed there would be costs that someone would have to pay.

Last year I spent $1800 on Gordon Levy's Konis for the performance gain and to avoid this entire issue. I am currently working with him to sort through a fitment issue with the rear that I haven't been able to sort out... it's always something. This shock thing is something that can never happen and I think it's been an expensive and painful lesson learned for those guys. I just hope it doesn't injure the company badly because I'd like to see that Dick Smith version soon.

Unless I am mistaken, I think Dave has agreed to pay for the Bilstein upgrade now.
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Last edited by jmimac351; 08-20-2008 at 03:16 PM.. Reason: typos
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  #48 (permalink)  
Old 08-20-2008, 02:00 PM
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I'm still a newbie over there so I haven't been around that long. I don't know about all the past issues with the Bil shocks. I wanted the konis right off the bat so I got the complete kit. Do I love the build and the car so far? Yep sure do. However I'm not like the majority of the others over there that are addicted to the koolaid. Does FFR make a great car? Yes. However it's not the end all be all to component cars. I'm aware of that. Over on the ffcobra site I bite my tongue alot cause I know how that place is run. Pretty much a close resemblance to a dictatorship. Not how I choose to run some other forums I mod on.

Having worked in a few performance shops in my short life I have a decent grasp of how to handle similar issues like this. When something comes up, multiple times, you have to do a little research into what is going on. If something is breaking as dangerous as a shock at highways speeds then you need to act, RIGHT AWAY. Not blame it soley on user error, print out some docs on how to install it correctly, and hope the situation goes away. Am I saying they need to give away upgraded shocks for free? Nope. However make it a deal with the customer at the beginning of the problem. Not who knows how many months or years down the road when you decided to go "Hey looks like there is a problem".

I will say kudos to FFR to making a great kit. Without them I wouldn't be able to build my dream car...


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  #49 (permalink)  
Old 08-25-2008, 09:43 PM
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Quote:
Unless I am mistaken, I think Dave has agreed to pay for the Bilstein upgrade now.
NOPE, everything is still on HOLD. I gave up and bought Konis. Once FFR offered to sell them below FFR cost I decided to buy them. Before the price was reduced I couldn't bring myself to reward FFR and pay full price for the Koni shocks. While I'm not thrilled about having to spend the extra money, I'm glad that I got out from under the Bilsteins and didn't have to reward FFR for selling me a kit with <IMHO> poorly engineered front suspension.
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  #50 (permalink)  
Old 08-26-2008, 10:44 AM
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I'm just fed up with whole situation, I was never OK with the zip ties/washer solution to the Bilstein coil over set up. So I decided to throw another $500 at the Cobra and switch to Koni on all 4 corners. I had a set 12 coil front springs that needed to be replaced anyhow,(earlier recall) so they further reduced the front Koni kit price. I figured to upgrade my suspect Bilstein shocks would have cost me at least $140 + shipping, I would cut my losses and improve my Cobra at the same time. I also should be able to sell off the remaining coil over parts at a later time (there is no problem with the rears).

I believe FFR should have removed the Bilstein coil over set up long ago (when washer/zip ties were sent out), then to let this boil sit and fester on their IMHO great reputation. One of my favorite saying applies here "Never provide the steel in which they can beat you up with".

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  #51 (permalink)  
Old 08-26-2008, 11:05 AM
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or "if you are stuck in a ditch, ask for a ladder, not a shovel"
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  #52 (permalink)  
Old 08-26-2008, 04:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stoney FFR View Post
NOPE, everything is still on HOLD. I gave up and bought Konis. Once FFR offered to sell them below FFR cost I decided to buy them. Before the price was reduced I couldn't bring myself to reward FFR and pay full price for the Koni shocks. While I'm not thrilled about having to spend the extra money, I'm glad that I got out from under the Bilsteins and didn't have to reward FFR for selling me a kit with <IMHO> poorly engineered front suspension.
Stoney, has something changed from when Dave indicated in this post that FFR will pick up this cost if the Bilstein upgrade is launched as described?

http://www.ffcobra.com/forums/showthread.php?t=193060
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  #53 (permalink)  
Old 09-10-2008, 07:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jmimac351 View Post
Stoney, has something changed from when Dave indicated in this post that FFR will pick up this cost if the Bilstein upgrade is launched as described?

http://www.ffcobra.com/forums/showthread.php?t=193060
The key words are "IF the Bilstein upgrade is launched as described." As of today nothing has been launched and the last post by Factory Five Racing (Dave Smith) addressing the Bilstein shock issues have been removed from the FFCOBRA forum. I hate to speculate, but I can't say that I'm feeling very confident about the situation.

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  #54 (permalink)  
Old 09-10-2008, 08:12 PM
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Stoney, it sounds like you're implying there is a conspiracy about that info on the other forum. I'm not sure what you mean in this instance because the link I posted still works and those pages still exist. Those posts are locked and given the 20 post per minute average over there they are many pages back. There's no question that Dave's going to have trouble getting it done if Bilstein doesn't want to play ball. Bilstein knows they lost the business and has no interest in participating - that's my guess. I think he's trying to get it done but he blew his wad when he immediately quarantined those shocks and went to Konis in all kits. If there's one thing I've learned about cars it's that if there is a problem you know about you'd better fix it soon and right because it'll bite you in the rear end eventually. Man is this a good example of that. They really stepped in do-do...
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  #55 (permalink)  
Old 09-10-2008, 10:00 PM
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I held back on saying anything intill I felt nothing was being done about the problem with the shocks. When I finally went on the forum and said, I felt I should'nt have to buy a new set of shocks becouse FFR sold me a set that they said were designed for my car. I also said I was out of work and did'nt have the extra $500.00 for new shocks.I was told by a member that maybe I could'nt afford this hobby. I've spent 30K in this car. I think some of the guy have forgotten that there is a wide range of people whom build these cars, and the builds go from low budget donor to high end works of art.As of now FFR has not stepped up to the plate. Guys shocks are still breaking,and FFR is replacing them with Koni for free.If the Bilsteins are so safe then why is'nt FFR replacing them with Bilsteins? I love the car, but I'm very dissapointed with FFR.I wonder when the thread will be closed? Roger
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  #56 (permalink)  
Old 09-11-2008, 07:42 AM
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Total cluster--ck over there. Bilstein has decided (and rightly so I think) that they shouldn't have to take care of a problem they didn't create and FFR let it go so long that they can't afford to.
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  #57 (permalink)  
Old 09-11-2008, 10:49 AM
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And don't even try to raise the issue again over there.

You will be shut down almost immediately.
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  #58 (permalink)  
Old 09-11-2008, 11:18 AM
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I bet if a number of FFR owners retained a lawyer, you'd get some answers.

Some of the solutions to me are a joke...adding washers, turning the shocks upside down....I mean, come on.

How long has this been going on now? Has to be a year or more, right?
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  #59 (permalink)  
Old 09-11-2008, 11:40 AM
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the zip ties seem like a good long term approach
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Old 09-11-2008, 12:39 PM
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Default shocks

Lets see where I'm at with this time. My wife said she will not ride in the car . The cars on jack stands, there's about 6 weeks driving season left and I have'nt a clue as to what FFR is going to do about this.My son inlaw and I were planning to build a coupe for him next year. If this turns out like I think it will. We will be looking else where on that build.I will never buy a Bilstein product ever again.I'm not sure about FFR. Roger
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