I was about to pull the trigger on these until I saw not only a few posts about problems people were faced: This one was the hardest: http://www.team-integra.net/forum/display_topic_threads.asp?get=last&ForumID=14&TopicID=226796
I've seen that one before. The link posted above says his were from the first batch BEFORE the seals were redesigned with NOK's. I personally wouldn't want the older ones either. That's why they've improved their materials and engineering, so I'll give them a shot.
For the record, there's evidence of JIC failures:
And a recent TEIN failure:
Even SHOWA's (like on the NSX-R) had problems when the name was bought out.
I've heard of KONI 3012 (the COMPTECH dampeners) shafts snapping too.
I could search on the net for TEIN, JIC, etc. failures on other less expensive but more popular vehicles, and I'm 99.9% positive I would find as many complaints as with the D2's or KSports. Actually, I have found a lot, but it's not worth my time to repost. Do I assume they are crap? NO!
For a $2k and under budget, I personally didn't like the TEINS (the N1 may have been another story though if you could find some), thought the JIC was overpriced, etc. I think John's buddy sells TEINs, maybe that's why he overreacted to my post.
In fact, I would rather have lightweight OEM's, but with more dampening for stiff springs, and ride height adjustability. They felt fine when new. From Honda literature:
"Unique shock absorbers have been developed which use a variable resistance disc instead of a fixed orifice to control fluid flow in the shock cylinders. This system exercises more precise damping control, improves ride quality and enhances stability."
The shock absorbers are gas filled and feature a newly designed HPV piston and bottom valve which opens progressively under vertical loads. The progressive opening of this valve produces a more favorable damping profile and more precise damping control than a conventional valve system in which the fluid control orifices are either fully opened or closed."
I've researched KSports extensively (see my first post where I described problems others have seen), and feel comfortable with my decision so far. We'll see how they do longevity-wise and on the street under "spirited driving."
Finally, you don't need to spend a lot to get decent performance. Look at the KW's that are German made :wink: I didn't feel like waiting on those since I generally don't like the feel of German dampening (personal, I know), and I think the Version 3 looks a little silly :biggrin: