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King vs Fox vs Icon 2.5... experience?

Discussion in '4th Gen 4Runners (2003-2009)' started by DAH_2727, Jul 5, 2022.

  1. Jul 5, 2022 at 8:32 AM
    #1
    DAH_2727

    DAH_2727 [OP] New Member

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    I am planning to replace the torn CV boots on my 2005 4x4 and I am also considering a suspension upgrade while i'm in there.

    Having trouble deciding how much money I want to throw at suspension. Seems I can get a pretty nice Icon or Fox 2.5 setup, both with UCA's for around 3k. Similar King setup would be $3500. But I had an Old Man Emu kit on my old Tacoma and never really had any complaints about that setup. I mostly just drive forest roads, desert washboard and some camping. So no long desert runs at high speed or anything.

    I have heard some bad things about icon shocks needing serviced earlier than the Fox or Kings. Just curious if any of you guys are running any of these setups and have real experience with them?
     
  2. Jul 5, 2022 at 8:50 AM
    #2
    kmeeg

    kmeeg Less code less bugs, same story for a 4Runner.

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    May not be much useful but this is the reasoning what I got from the 4x4 shop.

    Kings are great suspension if you do high speed runs. Single adjuster would only control mid speed. If you want best comfort go for something like ELKA 2.5DC where you have more adjustment with low and high speed. Twin tube suspension like OME BP-51 are great for comfort but adjusters are pain in the A** to adjust with provided tool, you might not be able to adjust them on the trail like monotube options like King / ELKA / Fox where adjust by hand.

    Edit -

    They are on the expensive side as this price is only for front coil overs and rear shocks. I think for the same money you can get complete Kings setup.
    upload_2022-7-5_10-2-57.jpg

    Haven't seen 4th gens though. Mine is 5th gen.
    https://youtu.be/WCyzwYRZqwc

    Here's another, 5th gen though..
    upload_2022-7-5_10-9-31.jpg
     
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2022
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  3. Jul 6, 2022 at 8:48 AM
    #3
    DAH_2727

    DAH_2727 [OP] New Member

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    I think i'd probably prefer to go with something like fox, king or icon since I don't know a ton about this stuff and those 3 have a pretty solid track record. But that Elka stuff looks killer!
     
  4. Jul 6, 2022 at 8:49 AM
    #4
    Mtbpsych

    Mtbpsych New Member

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    Icon, fox, and king will all ride different just FYI. The valving on icons is digressive, fox is linear, and kings are progressive.
     
  5. Jul 6, 2022 at 8:52 AM
    #5
    DAH_2727

    DAH_2727 [OP] New Member

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    I have just kinda scratched the surface on this, sounds like the digressive icons ride a little rougher on the street? I assume the variations in valving are aimed at accommodating different styles of use or terrain?
     
  6. Jul 9, 2022 at 10:15 AM
    #6
    TX4runner21

    TX4runner21 New Member

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    Fox or King are the way to go. Icon has great marketing and that's pretty much the only reason why they are popular, their products are doo doo and have design flaws. If you have a little extra coin to throw around, go with King.

    Edit: If you go Fox, go the reservoir route for the front. While the 2.5 IFP (non reservoir) shocks ride great, they don't have as much tunability and have to be sent to Fox for service. The 2.5 reservoirs can be tuned at a local shop.
     
  7. Jul 9, 2022 at 10:21 AM
    #7
    PVT Pablo

    PVT Pablo

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    Can you explain or link Icon's doo dooness? Not calling you out, genuinely curious on your thoughts.
     
  8. Jul 9, 2022 at 10:40 AM
    #8
    TX4runner21

    TX4runner21 New Member

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    I take it you have them? Their top hat design is very flawed, it can break if stressed. TW even has a ton of discussions about it, it's pretty well known. Years ago I considered getting Icons, but after some digging about their design and the amount of warranty work they have to do on their shocks I chose to go a different route. If you pay attention, most of the Icon customers are pretty new to the offroad world and Icon's marketing is very good. I'd bet a lot of people choose them based on the fact that they're black and they look good. Plus, in terms of comfort, Fox and King are typically reported as more comfortable. Lots of Icon customers request "slow speed valving" because Icon's are more harsh out of the box.
     
  9. Jul 9, 2022 at 10:44 AM
    #9
    DAH_2727

    DAH_2727 [OP] New Member

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    Interesting to hear that because I have a buddy who is a climbing/canyoneering guide and travels in his GX all year long. Spoke with him a couple nights ago and he kind of steered me away from icon as well. Says he seems to see seal failures earlier on icons vs fox or king.

    He now runs fox 2.5 RR’s in front and 2.0 RR’s in the rear on his rig, says they have been great.
     
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  10. Jul 9, 2022 at 11:00 AM
    #10
    TX4runner21

    TX4runner21 New Member

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    I'm very happy with my Fox's, no problems at all. I do like the way Icon's look tho, but not interested in their design flaws and longevity issues
     
  11. Jul 9, 2022 at 11:11 AM
    #11
    Antman

    Antman New Member

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    2021 4Runner: King Coilovers King rear shocks Camburg UCA’s Spc rear Trail arms Icon 52700 rear springs Icon panhard bar SCS Ray10’s Rci Sliders Rci Full Skids 2022 Tacoma Offroad: King Coilovers King rear shocks Deaver leaf springs Camburg UCA Scs Gen 5 Bamf front hybrid bumper Rci Full Skids Rci Sliders
    I have Kings on my wife’s 4runner and my Tacoma. I probably won’t ever buy a different companies suspension. If you order from accutune offroad they will pressure the shock and coil to your exact vehicle and what you want. I believe they also do this with fox shocks.

    Never heard bad things about king or fox. A lot of complaints about icons.

    As far as Elka, don’t know anything about them other than what 2 members here post. But yeah, king gets my vote.
    2986AC4B-BD8D-405A-ABD6-94952E6E7FFD.jpg
     
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  12. Jul 9, 2022 at 2:12 PM
    #12
    PVT Pablo

    PVT Pablo

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    I do not own any Icon products, I'm currently running all Bilstein. I avoided Icon because I wasn't interested in dealing with their rebuild schedule. Really any of the brands that have frequent rebuild schedules as I don't use my suspension to its fullest to necessitate so much maintenance.
     
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  13. Jul 9, 2022 at 2:20 PM
    #13
    TX4runner21

    TX4runner21 New Member

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    I hear ya. I've noticed that a lot of the rebuild schedules are a bit conservative, and can go a bit longer than they say. If you do decide to upgrade later, you could always hang on to your bilsteins and swap those in while you are rebuilding your other ones. If you are handy, swapping in/out shocks are not a big deal and can save considerable cost if you feel comfortable. There is a very noticeable difference between standard shocks and coilovers.
     
  14. Jul 9, 2022 at 9:37 PM
    #14
    Antman

    Antman New Member

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    2021 4Runner: King Coilovers King rear shocks Camburg UCA’s Spc rear Trail arms Icon 52700 rear springs Icon panhard bar SCS Ray10’s Rci Sliders Rci Full Skids 2022 Tacoma Offroad: King Coilovers King rear shocks Deaver leaf springs Camburg UCA Scs Gen 5 Bamf front hybrid bumper Rci Full Skids Rci Sliders
    most the rebuild schedules on kings/fox/icon assume you’re putting on miles and miles of offroad use every month. If it’s a daily driver and occasional offroad use you’ll typically get 50k+ miles on them until a rebuild is needed.
     
  15. Jul 20, 2022 at 4:57 PM
    #15
    Shock Surplus

    Shock Surplus New Member

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    Yup those rebuild "schedules" are just a suggestion, it really depends on how hard you have been driving with the truck. If you are out on a trail constantly heating up the oil, putting it through lots of motion and putting the seals under more pressure then usual you will need a rebuild much sooner. We've seen some shock come in with 60K miles with the oil still looking pristine and we have seen others in at 40K with their shock oil looking like mud.
     
  16. Jul 20, 2022 at 5:29 PM
    #16
    Jynarik

    Jynarik I like boobies

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    Didn’t read any of the replies but my .02 cents

    icon is bottom of the barrel these days
    King is fantastic and will be one of the leaders for a long time. More maintenance involved, more suited for someone who spends the majority of their time off road.
    fox 2.5 is the best all around.
     
  17. Jul 20, 2022 at 9:09 PM
    #17
    Altitude4x4

    Altitude4x4 New Member

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    Fox > King > Icon
     
  18. Jul 21, 2022 at 10:36 AM
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    nimby

    nimby in the drink

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    Bilstein 8100/8112's with internal bypasses and the adjustability that goes along with it is tops in my book at the moment.
     
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  19. Jul 24, 2022 at 6:34 PM
    #19
    Klinsman55

    Klinsman55 New Member

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    Ironman Foam Cell Pro vs Fox 2.0 or 2.5 IFP? Which better for less maintenance and runs smooth at moderate speed off road desert roads (30-35mph)
     
  20. Jul 24, 2022 at 7:00 PM
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    Jynarik

    Jynarik I like boobies

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    Depends on your budget.

    Ironman is fine, but by no means does it compare to the quality of Fox.
     
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  21. Jul 24, 2022 at 7:14 PM
    #21
    kmeeg

    kmeeg Less code less bugs, same story for a 4Runner.

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    So far with my experience Ironman is good but can't compare to highend shocks like ELKA 2.5DC (dual adjusters). So i bet Fox 2.5 DCS (dual adjusters) would be on the same line. Plus with remote reservoir you get less pressure to improve comfort and more gas for better cooling (as far as ive learned).
    Per my 4x4shop if I have to tow I could just dial up the adjusters.
     
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  22. Jul 24, 2022 at 7:57 PM
    #22
    TX4runner21

    TX4runner21 New Member

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    Ironman is not fine, Bilstein over Ironman. Just about any monotube shock is better than Ironman
     
  23. Jul 24, 2022 at 8:01 PM
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    Jynarik

    Jynarik I like boobies

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    I’ll take Ironman foam over anything other than bilstein 81 series, by a long shot.
     
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  24. Jul 24, 2022 at 8:06 PM
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    TX4runner21

    TX4runner21 New Member

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    [​IMG]
     
  25. Jul 24, 2022 at 8:20 PM
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    Jynarik

    Jynarik I like boobies

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    Go ahead and roll around with your 5100’s. Ironman offers an affordable option with a 10x better ride than bilstein. Bilstein doesn’t even get into the realm of comparison with all the above until they released their 81 series.
     
  26. Jul 24, 2022 at 8:27 PM
    #26
    TX4runner21

    TX4runner21 New Member

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    You think Bilstein's 8100 series competes with Ironman? Says the dude with the snorkel
     
  27. Jul 24, 2022 at 8:38 PM
    #27
    Jynarik

    Jynarik I like boobies

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    Do you even read English? What did I just say?
     
  28. Jul 24, 2022 at 9:12 PM
    #28
    TX4runner21

    TX4runner21 New Member

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    Been a long day man, apparently can't read english lol. Saying what you said about Ironman and Bilstein is a bit of a stretch
     
  29. Jul 25, 2022 at 7:22 AM
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    Klinsman55

    Klinsman55 New Member

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    I looked at Bilstein’s. I would put them on my top 3 list (FCP and Fox the other two).

    5100’s are a good price ($500 or so ). Upgraded ride from stock, firmer ride, not for super hardcore off road. Not rebuildable, but at that price probably cheaper to just get a new set after a few years.

    6112/5160 combo would probably be combo I would go with if I did Bilstein. But sounds like still gives a firmer ride compared to FCP and Fox. Rebuildable but still can probably get 30-50k miles then throw em out and get new set. I think set up costs around $1,400. Probably less maintenance and chance of breaking than Fox I think?

    FCP would probably cost me $3,800. A little softer ride than Bilstein. Less likely to overheat or fade or break and last longer is what I am thinking and hearing? Hope I would get at least 60k-80k miles out of these hogs before I would have to replace them?

    Fox 2.5 coil over with reservoirs front and 2.0 in back with reservoirs would run about $3k. Can probably be tuned for softest ride of the 3 on and off road. But maintenance schedule would be much shorter and I would probably just have to toss them out and buy a new set at 30-40k miles. Also more chance of leaks and other failures due to more complexity of the shocks and reservoirs.
     
  30. Jul 25, 2022 at 7:53 AM
    #30
    coryanderson

    coryanderson New Member

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    FWIW: I believe King shocks are 1+ years out right now. Someone on a RDC waited over a year to get a set of 4 king shocks for his new ranger.
     

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