well guys..... my contour has 170k on it now. i just did the 3L swap, and i have a lot of bolt ons. it was long due for some suspension improvements but i really didnt want to spend mucho bucks for something that would be too low for minnesota's crappy roads, or ride too rough, or cost a ton. so i gave myself a limit, and i almost made it. here's what i ended up with.
4 new SVT struts from Steve at Tousley. after discount, 199$+tax
Eibach Springs (these are highly debatable, these are slightly used, and i hear about the a$$ sag all the time. if the rear sags, i'll simply replace them with some higher quality rear springs.) 140$ from icefury
Stock rubber Sway bar bushings, front, rear, and end-link bushings-43$
(polyeurethane bushings are 6 weeks back ordered from everywhere i looked including the pep boys in inver grove heights MN that carries energy suspension and eibach suspension components on the shelf)
my parts just barely exceeded my spending limit of 400$ , it was about 444$ after tax on the struts and bushings. hopefully this will give me a decent look, and a new feel again. and stop the clunking!!!!