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Hey folks!

So I put new stuts on the beetle bug a few weeks ago. Everything looked pretty good and drives perfectly. Install was straight forward. I torqued everything to spec. The only this that caught my attention was a little space between the top cap and the body. I found some info on the web that this was normal; the space provides room for turning.

I was just washing the car and noticed the space has increased. Increased significantly. It's maybe 1/2 to 3/4 inch. More than I think I'm comfortable with. What do you guys think? I'm going to email the place I bought them from right now too, but am hopeful that someone around here may have some input.
 

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The purpose of that strut top isn't to hold tight, it's to keep the strut from falling out when you jack up the car or it bounces up.

The amount of space looks about right to me based on replacing my own struts last summer.

Did you replace the coils and other hardware with the strut?
 

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Thanks Janitz. A second thought always makes me feel better.

I replaced with new complete units (coils,mounts, etc...) with new hardware.
 

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Thanks Janitz. A second thought always makes me feel better.

I replaced with new complete units (coils,mounts, etc...) with new hardware.
May I ask which "Complete strut" you went with. I am about to order some Monroe Quick Struts for my Beetle and just wanted to see if anyone perhaps has them on their beetle and how they like them. Thanks for any input.

BTW, if that space is "Normal" then my car is totally abnormal since I don't have any gap/space between my strut and that hold down cap.
 

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I bought the struts from completestruts.com as per a recommendation by vwninjaz. (Haha, IndyTom, you actually commented on the thread from a while back when these were recommended to me) Like you saw, they are super super cheap but apparently good quality. They are still on sale too. I bought two single units instead of the bundle so I got free shipping. Total was somewhere around $157 for the pair. (free shipping over $150 (student loan repayment is KILLING me, so I'm pinching pennies to the extreme, kind of sad I know...)

I would have no problem recommending these struts despite this weird spacing question. Although it is strange yours are flush... I was hoping a whole bunch of people would all say they had space there, but I should have known that wasn't happening after a bird crapped on my freshly washed car.

Oh, about the monroes... I don't have much experience with them on bugs, but a friend of mine had them installed and claims they were noisey (squeaky on bumps) from the start. Maybe he just got some soso ones.
 

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I bought the struts from completestruts.com as per a recommendation by vwninjaz. (Haha, IndyTom, you actually commented on the thread from a while back when these were recommended to me) Like you saw, they are super super cheap but apparently good quality. They are still on sale too. I bought two single units instead of the bundle so I got free shipping. Total was somewhere around $157 for the pair. (free shipping over $150 (student loan repayment is KILLING me, so I'm pinching pennies to the extreme, kind of sad I know...)

I would have no problem recommending these struts despite this weird spacing question. Although it is strange yours are flush... I was hoping a whole bunch of people would all say they had space there, but I should have known that wasn't happening after a bird crapped on my freshly washed car.

Oh, about the monroes... I don't have much experience with them on bugs, but a friend of mine had them installed and claims they were noisey (squeaky on bumps) from the start. Maybe he just got some soso ones.
LOL :p about the Bird pooping ;) Happens way too often on my car. There must be a target with a big crosshair on top of my roof and those damn Scheibenpoopers are using it as target practice :D

Yup, I was considering the Complete Struts but then decided against it since I thought that guy that recommended it was a troll and was doing a bit of spamming. I can get the Monroes for about 200 bucks including shipping. But I don't want them to squeak either. Hmm, maybe I just have to save up for some Coilovers. I heard the Solowerks S1's were pretty decent for the money $499 for front and rear. But same as you. Money is tight right now and I just want to get something cheap that will last me a while.

How was the installation? Did you install them? Was it easy? Heard horror stories about the Passenger side. Well, I guess I will never find out until I give it a try. ;)

Thanks for your input!
 

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Haha... Damn birds.

I got the same spammy vibe from that comment, but went with it anyways because of the price. My bet is you would be fine with either monroe or completestrut... but you would be better than fine with some sweet coilovers. My guess is both monroe and completestrut quality are comparable. What you get from completestruts are struts from Unity Automotive. I couldn't find anything negative pertaining to the company, so I went for it.

In regards to the install, I installed them, and it was relatively painless, sort of. With the proper spreading tool (to spread the knuckle away from the strut) the job would have been substantially easier. I used a chisel to spread it and while I got it to work, is wasn't too fun. Other than that, the only other problem was the top nut. I was forced to use an impact wrench (cheapo electric one), which still was a little tricky. Let me give you some detail...

SO... The top nut needs to be removed while holding the center with an allen key. Mine were a tad rusty and the force just rounded the hex center. So, with some patience and many short zaps with an impact wrench, the top nut was loose.

The spreading of the knuckle... The special tool fits right below the little tab on the strut (as you can see from my sophisticated picture). Using a chisel spreads the knuckle, but also puts pressure on that tab. So it kind of holds the strut in place still. I used a rubber mallet to get it off. PITA....


The passenger side was noooo problem. There are a few ways to do it, but I doubt there is anything easier than unbolting the drive axle from the flange in the trans. All you need is a 12 point (triple square) bit, a friend, and a bugee cord. Bungee the axle so it doesn't fall when it is unbolted, have friend push brake pedal, unbolt flange bolts. Just be ready for the entire wheel assembly to be loose and floppy.

Let me know if you have any other questions or need clarification on anything. (as if my paint picture isn't perfectly clear haha)
 

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May I ask which "Complete strut" you went with. I am about to order some Monroe Quick Struts for my Beetle and just wanted to see if anyone perhaps has them on their beetle and how they like them. Thanks for any input.

BTW, if that space is "Normal" then my car is totally abnormal since I don't have any gap/space between my strut and that hold down cap.
My old struts were like that too, I think it's because the rubber mount compresses over time.
 

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I think he's worried cause he thinks the strut top is supposed to be compressed like a Honda or Ford. Mine have a 3/4" gap cause when I jacked my car up those bumpers actually sat on top of the strut tower. When I lowered the car, they went back up to 3/4". So its nothing I'd be worried about.

Sent from my ADR6350 using AutoGuide.Com Free App
 

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I think he's worried cause he thinks the strut top is supposed to be compressed like a Honda or Ford. Mine have a 3/4" gap cause when I jacked my car up those bumpers actually sat on top of the strut tower. When I lowered the car, they went back up to 3/4". So its nothing I'd be worried about.

Sent from my ADR6350 using AutoGuide.Com Free App
Thanks for the input. I've never seen this setup before. You hit the nail on the head... My honda was bolted up tight on the top end. This gap just seemed too weird to not inquire. The differing experiences makes this a bit curious, but my car is handling perfectly, so I suppose I'm satisfied. Thanks again. If anyone has any questions beyond the few strut front change 'how-tos' online, let me know; I may be able to help.
 

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Thanks for the input. I've never seen this setup before. You hit the nail on the head... My honda was bolted up tight on the top end. This gap just seemed too weird to not inquire. The differing experiences makes this a bit curious, but my car is handling perfectly, so I suppose I'm satisfied. Thanks again. If anyone has any questions beyond the few strut front change 'how-tos' online, let me know; I may be able to help.
I may take you up on that as soon as I decide which way I am going to go. I want to do cheap and leaning towards Monroe Quick Struts. But I really would like to try the Solo Werks Coil overs. Hmm, decisions decisions. :D
 

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Yeah I got mine from completestruts.com as well. Their prices used to be a lot higher, I looked at them back in January and then I looked again in March and they were definitely the best deal on the 'interweb'.
 

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Yeah I got mine from completestruts.com as well. Their prices used to be a lot higher, I looked at them back in January and then I looked again in March and they were definitely the best deal on the 'interweb'.
No doubt they have good prices, however I am more concerned with their quality. I am not familiar with the company that makes the strut for them, also I heard that the springs they are using are not really matched up for the beetle and are a bit harsh. I think I may just order the Monroe Quick Struts which aren't that much more expensive but at least I have heard of Monroe before and they do match up their springs with the proper spring rate for the New Beetle's.
 

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But he has brand new struts in there with new Strut mounts. So are you saying that there shouldn't be a space?
I am so confused :confused: :p
I guess he has defective strut mounts. Mine like like his with my worn mounts, but after putting new ones in the gap is gone. You dont want your stut moving up and down with every bump you go over.
 

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I guess he has defective strut mounts. Mine like like his with my worn mounts, but after putting new ones in the gap is gone. You dont want your stut moving up and down with every bump you go over.
Okay, so you are saying the Gap is "NOT" Normal? Well, that makes more sense. I have looked at a friends New Beetle and her beetle doesn't have that gap either and neither does mine but we both still have the stock suspension. I just ordered some Monroe Quick Struts and Sensatrac rear shocks. As soon as they come in I will install them and report back.
 

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Since the question has come up again regarding that space.

Last year I did install the Monroe Quick Struts Part Number 171525 and there definitely is NO GAP.

When ordering please make sure you have the correct part number for your application and be sure you have the proper tools for correct installation.
 

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strut mount

I think it depends on the rubber strut mount that you put in there. There are two sizes like that pictures above shows. Mine also has a small gap of about 1/2 inch. Maybe someone with original struts that have never been removed can take a picture of their upper strut mount and confirm if there is a gap or not....hhhmm?? :confused: here is a picture of the diy posted here in this thread, he has a space in this original?????? now u got me confused LOL
 

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update

I've been reading several postings around the net in tdi club and here and all say there is suppose to be a gap there. unless your bushing mounts are reall big. when i removed my original rubber mounts I also noticed the difference in size, the new one was about half inch bigger-fyi, still the top cup had a gap anyway.
 
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