GTE Shocks and Lenses

I was on the hunt for a set of SI Ferrari 250GTE shocks for a few weeks, and discovered how rare these shocks really are! Most Ferrari suppliers have a stock of rebuilt Koni shocks that are available for exchange, but not only did I not have a set to trade, I couldn’t find an available set! I ended up going overseas for new set, but had to pay dearly for the core exchange. The story I get is Koni is making “Classic” shocks, but in limited runs. For it to be worthwhile for the factory to make a run of a specific shock, they want large orders in the hundreds. The Vintage Ferrari Market just can’t support this volume, so when worldwide stocks run down, prices go up, and eventually someone orders a new run. To add insult to injury, Ferrari SpA requires specific model numbers stamped on the body of the shock if a car ever wants to be “Classiche Certified,” so installing a suitable replacement may come back and haunt the owner if Certification is in its future.

When the new Konis arrived, I noticed a couple of differences in the shape of the shock body and the mounting eyes, not to mention they were red! Koni’s modern color for their shocks is more of a red color instead of the orange we see on Vintage cars. Having gone through the search, expense, and time of finding the right shocks with the right model number stamps, I wasn’t going to install red shocks!

Red is a hard color to show with digital cameras, but the difference between orange and red is significant to the eye despite the photos. What orange did I use? “Chevrolet Orange” engine paint is a good match. This was the rare time I can go to the auto parts store in the US and buy something that worked great for Ferraris. What would you use in Europe? You’re on your own!

Another item on the list of to-dos for this GTE is to get new license plate light lenses. I usually call Yolanda in Los Angeles to see if she has molds from previous jobs. The funny thing is she has dozens of molds for many past customers, but often forgets what they’re for! She usually recognizes them on sight, so sending a picture of what I need will get a yes or no answer. I’m happy to help her identify her mold catalog so she can better serve the community!

A common problem is the heat from bulbs melts the lenses, so I want to try a set of LED bulbs. I’m not a fan of the cold color temperatures of these diodes, but they’re getting better at selling warmer (color temperature) bulbs. I will probably do a temperature (heat) comparison between the incandescent and LED bulbs before installing them. Stay Tuned!