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Hi all,

The Mangusta we're restoring currently has red Koni shocks fitted. Aside from needing new bushes are in great shape. Are these considered original? The car also has yellow springs. Again, is yellow considered the original colour? Looking to get this as original as possible! I've seen some people mention DeDion shocks, was this up to a certain build date?

Cheers, Chris.

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factory sheet 1266_b

Fronts springs were silver and rears were yellow (IIRC). The 3 sets of build sheets I have note DeCarbon shocks.  Koni are replacement parts from the 80s. DeCarbon are rebuildable. One restorer had his rebuilt recently.


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  • factory sheet 1266_b

Chris, see this thread, here was on 8ma1046 (note that fronts and rears on it were different color). The Konis are not original, only very popular replacements...Steve's advice was to paint replacements with Decarbon colors, and (seeing the Girling Decarbon spares on Ebay) the blue on the rears here may just be original.  Following the color coding on the springs and painting QA1's black may be considered over-restoring , and if your Konis are in good shape maybe just paint is a reasonable thing...Lee

Last edited by leea

Chris, you may very well be the first person, ever, who has restored shock or spring color on the Mangusta! But at least, the parts manual lists 2 options each for front and rear shocks. Decarbon is the only description, and applied to one of each choice. The color Denis sees in the build sheet is for the spring, where the rear is noted as yellow and black: Which I believe means black with yellow markings (even if not apparent on ‘1046).

Springbok had Detomaso-supplied NOS spares, using the “decarbon” part number but instead from Ariston. Alternate part numbers in the parts manual suggest there could have been a different vendor (well, at least, leaves the question wide open). Note that the springs Springbok had in their NOS stash match the flat-silver finish on 8ma1046 fronts.

But truly authentic color for the fronts may be “underspray splatter” !Lee


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  • 8ma1046 front shock
  • goose springs and shocks
Last edited by leea

Thanks Lee, more information to mull over! Yes, it may seem strange to be going as close to original as possible, but that's what were being paid to do! I've looked for DeCarbon colours, and this blue keeps appearing. Seem correct to anyone?

Would be good to get a definite colour for the springs, seems the fronts are definitely silver, rears not so sure on?


...another view of the shock...Chris, not the yellow insert nylock and the red inspection marks on black oxide bolts in the background   And yeah, this is the car directly after yours, 8ma1046 was unrestored and 12k miles. I think this is what the customer is looking for on detail ! I have a few hundred pictures on the car, some better than others, hopefully I can fill in some blanks...

The Renault pictures are on ebay, girling decarbon....Lee


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  • 8ma1046
  • renault decarbon girling
Last edited by leea

Thank you again Lee! Definite difference in colours between those two shocks. I think the plan with them is to have the Koni rebuilt, then paint in what we feel is as close to the DeCarbon colour. I don't suppose you know if there was a sticker on the shock body do you? I've Found a couple online that might look period....

DE CARBON Sticker -

Interesting on the rear suspension colour - on 1044 all rear suspension parts are gold passivate. Front wishbones are black. Rear hubs are also painted black. We'd like to keep it all passivated for looks when in a concours event. The good thing with the Mangusta is you have a certain amount of 'artistic licence' due to no one really knowing what is correct!

Chris, looking at the pictures of NOS Girling-DeCarbon, I think 'no' on the stickers...that greenish tint in the banner may be in the right ballpark for the shocks, but I had lived in the UK I'd buy one of those NOS shocks on ebay and match it...!

Btw, interesting that 1044 does Not have the gussets to to the sides...the gold treatment on the torsion bar, etc is definitely added excitement...The coolant tank also looks different (looks thinner?) and though should be black, as I scrubbed mine that polished brass popped out and I clear-lacquered mine...Lee

The factory colors on the DeCarbon shocks is a very similar orange to Koni. The springs were actually ALL yellow. It would take a good eye to see the difference without spotting the decal inside the springs. ( the quick identification is in the retainers)

@denisc posted:

The factory colors on the DeCarbon shocks is a very similar orange to Koni. The springs were actually ALL yellow. It would take a good eye to see the difference without spotting the decal inside the springs. ( the quick identification is in the retainers)

Thank you Denis. What makes you think that the shocks were originally orange? I see on another post regarding suspension you mention your car had green DeCarbon shocks fitted to the rear?

To reply to Lee's statement I an earlier post. There were 2 different sizes of FIM coolant tanks. The thinner one being more prevalent (it should be black BTW).  They are getting hard to find as they are also found on Bizzarrini and Ferrari cars of the period. IMG_0783 Pic of a NOS tank I sold a few years back.

  As to the side gussets, these are a modification on later cars, maybe to correct what early road tests claim cars could over and under-steer at the same time.


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  • IMG_0783

Denis, thanks, really interesting. Chris, I think the good news is: You can pick the colors you want! Looks like history supports any of these combinations.

Denis, thanks also---I never realized that 1046 didn't have the gussets either, looking at Provamo they were at least added around '1056. 1046 did have the 'wide' FIM tank.

Chris, I'd thought that the only choices of color in the engine bay otherwise were just shades of black...On one hand, the "cutaway view" of the engine compartment is eye candy for seeing the car parts, but of course its almost a cave once the carpeted engine covers are in place. But at least for textures and gloss;

   - the most unusual text are the support bars between the roof B pillar and the tops of the wheel wells. I remember these as some kind of texture, not exactly a crackle finish, in semi-flat gloss.

  - inside of the engine covers looks like a heavy enamel...see pic.

- side walls are high build texture

- lots of splatter everywhere.

I think at least, perfectly safe to finish all suspension in 3/4 gloss.


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  • engine cover paint: 8ma1046 engine cover paint texture
  • 8ma1046 battery quarter: non-original ground wire/term/bootie
Last edited by leea

Wow, I hate it when my computer looses all my pictures......even the ones that I didn't take with my digital camera(s)!!!!   I thought for certain that I had pictures of my rear shocks as removed......

I do recall that the springs were yellow, shock bodies were green.   There were also some red paint dots/stripes on the springs.

The front springs were silver. My car already had the Koni's installed (which were GREAT shocks for the car!).

Biggest issue for the deCarbons and the period Konis, besides the gas coming out of the deCarbons, is the silly rubber bushings.   Surely they were made of chewing gum.

I replaced some of my original bushings with new ones, and in VERY short order, 6 months or so, they looked similar to this pic.....

Metal to metal on the center steel insert. 

Note that these same bushings are used in the ends of the trans cross member!!! So if you find you actually have a good shock bushing, it can be repurposed!

The unit on the LH side in pic is the old "period" Koni, and the RH unit is a Carerra/QA1 verison with their nylon liner/steel ball....  This nylon/steel ball insert is crap! The nylon pounded itself out in very short order also and was replaced with a more conventional metal to ball version that they offer.    The nylon version is fine for cars that will just be sitting.....not so good for driving..... Just need to inspect them for wear periodically!


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  • mceclip0

See that bare-of-paint spot on Steve's red Koni shown above? That indicates metal to metal contact between shock & a-arm, which produces a difficult to locate click or clunk while driving. It is nearly always on the lower rear shocks due to them having the highest load in either Mangusta or Pantera. If you want the stock look AND also drive your car, resign yourself to inspecting & changing lower rear rubber bushings every few years.

* Contrary to rumor, using Koni's heim-joints in the shocks will NOT increase NVH in your DeTomaso. I have all-urethane or metal in our entire suspension and the car is not any more noisy that it was full-stock. But it sure handles better!

* Early red Konis are stamped with a part number just above this area and the number includes the date of mfg- usually in the early '80s (82V-1684-SP-1= 16" long 1982 frts for a 'Goose, and 82V-1701-SP-1= 17" long 1982 frt shocks for the Pantera, according to Koni).

* Early red Konis cannot work if mounted upside down; that advantage is only for their yellow-painted high pressure gas-charged shocks. Which add 25 lbs to the suspension spring load just from gas pressure inside.

* An original flat-top bump rubber is usually for front shocks and a slightly longer more pointed one is for a rear shock. Front shocks often have a splash shield while rears do not. Usually, the damping varies front to rear as well and the shocks might not have been originally designed for a mid-engined car.  So "front" shocks designed for front-engined cars are often valved backwards when adapted to limited production Mangustas or Panteras, and long bump-rubbers can limit shock travel. To adjust travel, Koni says to cut the large OD end of bump rubbers, NOT the pointed end. Browse to for lots more info.

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