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Old 11-28-2011, 05:49 AM   #1
Slo Krt
 
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Default Pinto (short shock) how to - For Static Drops

Since there seems to be a lot of questions about installing Pinto Shocks and what is necessary to make them work, I thought I would put together a quick write up on how to and my perception of the outcome (how they feel).

Step – 1
1. Jack up your truck and place jack stands under the frame – Be safe, you can’t enjoy your truck if it crushes you.

2. Remove both front wheels.


Step - 2
Removal:
1. First, you will need to remove your existing shock. Mine were very rusty so I soaked them with penetrating lube, (i.e. PB spray lube or WD-40) I prefer PB…

2. You will beed a 14mm wrench for the nut on the top of the shock. The body of the shock will most likely spin when you turn the bolt, use a set of channel locks on the body of the shock as. There is a flat tab on top of the shock, but mine was too corroded and I couldn’t get enough grip (even with the vice grips).



3. The Bottom shock bolts were 17mm on mine, this may be different depending on if this bolt has ever been changed.

4. To get the old shock out, you may need to use a pry bar to get it to release from the mounting tabs.

5. With the shock out, you will need to remove the factory bump stops. You won’t need them since the pinto shocks have one built into the shock. (Just my Opinion… I would recommend saving them just in case you choose to revert your set up to stock at any time)

6. Remove the factory bump stop. You will need a 12mm wrench. The nut is on top of the metal plate that the bump stop is attached to. On mine it was completely covered with dirt, so i had to scrape the dirt out. You may need to use some penetrating lube here...


Step - 3
Pinto Shock modification:

1. To fit the Pinto shock into the Nissan mounting tabs you will first need to cut off the bushing insert. I used a cut off wheel on my grinder, you could use a hack saw or die grinder with a cut off wheel.





Here is what you should end up with – make sure to cut as close to the bushing as possible.



The bushing and sleeve on the pinto shock is slightly smaller than the stock Nissan shock bolt. You can attempt to swap the Nissan busing and sleve with the one in the Pinto shock, or replace the bolt. Because mine were so corroded, I decided to get a new bolt. I purchased a 7/16 x 2.5” Grade 8 Bolt and nut.


Step – 5
Re-Installation:

1. Depending on how close you cut the sleeve to the bushing, you may need to bend the lower mounting tabs out slightly. I used my channel locks on the tabs and pulled each side out slightly (about 1/8”). This will pull back into place when you tighten up the bolt.

2. Compress the shock with the bushings (provided with the new shock) on the top and thread the nut on to hold it in place.

3. Because the Pinto shock is shorter you will need to jack the control arm up to line up the mounting tabs with the hole in the shock.

4. Insert Bolt and tighten bolts up.
Here's what it should look like when finished…


5. Re install your wheels.

6. Properly torque your lug nuts.

7. Jack up the truck (again), remove the jack stands and lower it back to the ground

8. Go for a drive and see what you think – ENJOY!

RESULTS

I am running on about a 3.5” tortion bar drop in the front and with the pinto shocks I am pretty satisfied with the ride. I haven’t hit any bumps large enough to hit the bump stops. The ride is pretty smooth, a little stiffer than stock. I actually would prefer to have a little stiffer, but they will do for now.

A shot of my truck after Installation and for ride height refference:



(edited to add info on fitment)

Pinto Shocks will work on 86-2002 hard bodies and Frontiers.

(edited) *A quick check on rock auto says that they use the same part number for the hard body as the 720. Looks like it will work on a 720 as well. *

I used 76' pinto shocks. but you can use any year of pinto shocks (pinto made from 71'-80 *Thanks to SkinnyG for confirming*).

Cost for Pinto shocks will vary but you can expect to pay between $13-$20 for a basic Pinto shock.

Last edited by Slo Krt; 11-29-2011 at 06:19 AM.
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Old 11-28-2011, 02:28 PM   #2
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Great write up, thanks for taking the time to do this.

How do the front bump stops come off? I tried to get mine off while it was lowered and could not get them out.
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Old 11-28-2011, 02:35 PM   #3
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good write up, did mine yesterday and they ride great
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Old 11-28-2011, 05:40 PM   #4
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im assuming this will work for fronty's also? more specifically a 2000 model lol
and how much do new pinto shocks usually go for? and is there a more specific like year model to look for ?
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Old 11-28-2011, 07:13 PM   #5
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I only have my phone now so ill get additional pics and add details to answer the questions noted above later tonight.
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Old 11-28-2011, 09:18 PM   #6
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yes they work on frontiers i used to have them.

go price them at the parts store. mine were like 16.99/ea

i think i used the 70s year range
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Old 11-28-2011, 09:43 PM   #7
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Stock shocks appear to be the same for 86-2002. Looks like they will work on the frontier. You can get them on rock auto for about $10-$12 each plus shipping. Mine were 15.99. Each at my local parts store.

For the bump stops, there is a nut on top holding the bump stop in. It is likely burried in dirt like mine was. Just clear out the debris avbove the plate the bump stop is mounted to and the nut will appear. I will double check but I think it was a 14mm. You will need a channel lock oe vice grip on the bump stop to keep it from spinning much like when removing the shock.I purchased 76' pinto shocks. Basically just picked a year...

Last edited by Slo Krt; 11-28-2011 at 09:57 PM.
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Old 11-28-2011, 10:01 PM   #8
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sawzall works wonders as well. and it's more fun
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Old 11-29-2011, 12:42 AM   #9
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The OEM bumpstop nut is 12mm.

The pinto was made from 1971 to 1980. Any year will do - they are all the same shock.
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Old 11-29-2011, 12:50 AM   #10
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New to the Mini Truck world....What is the advantage of using these over the OEM ones?
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