F150 suspension questions

Kottonwood

Adventurer
I put an add a leaf in the rear of my f150. It is a cheap and effective way to go. The downside is the lack of ability to adjust it. however, my truck is almost always loaded so It handles exactly as it should. It was definitely a stiff ride unloaded but if you are permanently mounting your camper there should always be enough weight to make it ride as normal. The front is a more complicated problem, though obviously that doesn't see as much weight except when you are going downhill or braking. I am running a leveling kit and stock everything up front, I am a little worried about ball joints and tie rod ends but I am 20000 miles on it with lots of off road and pot holes, so far so good.
 

escadventure

Adventurer
Hi SD. Interesting idea with the Deavers. I've heard they do custom work, so they might be able to come up with a good set up.

I don't think cost is so much a factor, as everything I've seen so far regarding truck suspension is fairly inexpensive.

Hopefully the front won't be too much of a problem perhaps with Timbrens or something… With the big bumper on there now (pics on my build thread) the front doesn't appear to be sagging. And I will try to minimize the forward loading as possible.
 

uscg2008

Explorer
Ride rite air bags with daystar lower cups so you can still flex but still have the ability to carry loads
 

red87

Adventurer
Why not call up Deaver or National Spring and have them make you some custom leaf springs? Or ask around in your country. I noticed you're in Germany so I feel like shipping leaf springs from the States would be pretty expensive.
 

kojackJKU

Autism Family Travellers!
Timbrens work really good actully. I use them on my suburban in winter with my plow. takes the weight perfect.
 

Scoutn79

Adventurer
One thought about air bag reliability.
Many over the road trucks use these both on the tractor and the trailer. If this design was flawed and unreliable it wouldn't be used. Of course this assumes you buy a good quality bag not some cheap junk.

Darrell
 

Stumpalump

Expedition Leader
Ford made light duty F250's with your body on it. Find one in a yard and snag the axels and suspension.
From wiki:

With the initial introduction of the new F-Series in 1997, only the F-150 was produced. To bridge the gap between the F-150 and the previous generation heavier-duty models (to be replaced by the Super Duty series for 1999), the light-duty F-250 was produced as a temporary model for 1997-1999. While externally identical to the F-150 (with the exception of its 7-lug wheels), the F-250 gained increased load capability from a heavy-duty rear axle and load-leveling rear suspension. The F-250 HD (Heavy Duty) was in the same series as the F-350.
 

dave1014

Adventurer
Ford made light duty F250's with your body on it. Find one in a yard and snag the axels and suspension.
From wiki:

With the initial introduction of the new F-Series in 1997, only the F-150 was produced. To bridge the gap between the F-150 and the previous generation heavier-duty models (to be replaced by the Super Duty series for 1999), the light-duty F-250 was produced as a temporary model for 1997-1999. While externally identical to the F-150 (with the exception of its 7-lug wheels), the F-250 gained increased load capability from a heavy-duty rear axle and load-leveling rear suspension. The F-250 HD (Heavy Duty) was in the same series as the F-350.
That thing was a turd. No real additional capacity whatsoever

Sent from my SCH-I925 using Tapatalk
 

escadventure

Adventurer
dave1014 - any time you the word turd in a forum thread, it's just funny... even if it's true...

SDDiver - truck is here and all is good. I need to get some pics up on my build thread. Had to cut the headache rack down a bit to accomodate the camper cab-over. And I installed a set of Helwig 2500 helper springs in the back. (I emailed Deaver and they seemed more interested in getting the truck into their shop so it didn't seem like a good fit to go that route at the moment) and intalled the Timbrens up front. Fitment and install went well all around. We'll see how it shakes out when the camper is ready (hopefully in a week or two).

These suspension upgrades weren't too expensive so even if it's an abysmal failure and I end up needing to go with airbags or a complete new leaf spring set up, I haven't lost much. I'm hopeful...
 

BCHauler

Adventurer
I recommend the f250ld or 7700 suspension and axles upgrade as a very simple, cheap and effective way to more effectively carry a load. I haul an old 8' camper and I have researched those upgrades. All a straight bolt-in. I use a set of Hellwig overload springs and they work well, but are noisy when unloaded and the suspension is working. I have also used Timbrens in the past and like them a lot. They do limit articulation though.
 

Ben7982

Observer
Hello Escadventure,

I´ve read both threads with great interesst as I´m planing to buy the same model as a 7700lbs version and a truck camper to travel America for a couble of months. (I´m German too, blood krauts everywhere ;-))

As far as I got everything right this is a summary of your vehicle and mods.

2000 F150 XL

Engine: 4.6 L
Axle Ratio: i = 3.55
Crown wheel: Ø 8.8"

Suspension
- Front: Timbrens
- Rear: Helwig 2500 helper springs

Bumper:
Front and Rear: made by Tactical Armor Group (but no good reputation)

Bed and underbed boxes from UTE

What size of tyre and rims did you put on?
Is the spare tyre the same size and does it fit between the frame in the back?
Do you have wheel spacers (track extension) mounted?
Did you lift the truck in the end at all?
Did you changed the shocks for HD / Offroad shocks (Brand / Model)?

Whats your impression after the frist year with your camper set up? Anything you would do differently the second time?

Thanks

Ben
 

Ben7982

Observer
Hello Escadventure,

I´ve read both threads with great interesst as I´m planing to buy the same model as a 7700lbs version and a truck camper to travel America for a couble of months. (I´m German too, blood krauts everywhere ;-))

As far as I got everything right this is a summary of your vehicle and mods.

2000 F150 XL

Engine: 4.6 L
Axle Ratio: i = 3.55
Crown wheel: Ø 8.8"

Suspension
- Front: Timbrens
- Rear: Helwig 2500 helper springs

Bumper:
Front and Rear: made by Tactical Armor Group (but no good reputation)

Bed and underbed boxes from UTE

What size of tyre and rims did you put on?
Is the spare tyre the same size and does it fit between the frame in the back?
Do you have wheel spacers (track extension) mounted?
Did you lift the truck in the end at all?
Did you changed the shocks for HD / Offroad shocks (Brand / Model)?

Whats your impression after the frist year with your camper set up? Anything you would do differently the second time?

Thanks

Ben
 

escadventure

Adventurer
Hi Ben, your summary of my truck is accurate.

I too would have liked to find a 7700 model. But when I saw this truck with 60,000 miles and in such good condition, I figured I better buy it. And a bit of mods have made it work well.
To answer your questions:
The rims are stock and the tires are 32" tall- 3" taller than stock. The matching spare fits in the factory storage spot.
No wheel spacers.
No lift, although the Timbrens and Helwig appear to have raised it a bit.
Factory shocks, although I may install Bilsteins.

The truck works quite well and I've been happy with it. As is my wife who also finds it quite easy to drive.

One more mod of some importance which I plan to do this winter: Change the differentials gearing. The 32" tires have lowered the highway speed engine rpm's to about 1500rpm, which is too low for my comfort. It works like it is but I don't like the frequent downshifting of the auto trans. While it's not really needed, it is however a fairly inexpensive mod and may give me an MPG or two, while making it even more comfortable to drive. So I think it'll be worth it.

It has been my intent to keep it as stock as possible, while getting it kitted out for my use. My truck isn't the offroad monster like some on this forum, but it does what we need it to quite well- which is to provide a comfortable vehicle based travel platform that will get us away from the crowds to some great places.
 

Ben7982

Observer
Hey Escadventure,

thanks for your feedback and answers.

The 32" tyre is something like a 265/75R16?
What about the spare tyre? is it the same and does it fit between the frame in the back?

I can imagin that the truck drives a bit lazy with the big tyres on and the "small" engine.
I´ve changed tha ratio on my Syncro in respect to the bigger tyre size from 4,57 to 5,43 which made a huge diffrence.
I´ve been on the dyno to measure the hp and made the calculations which ratio fits best my needs. I also did change some gears in the gear box and installed the lockers front and rear ;-)

Does anybody has a dyno print of the stock engines?

For the 7700 with the 10.25" carrier, it will be hard to find an aftermarket solution, I recon...
What ratioas are aviailable for the 7700?

Lets see what we gonna do after our trip. Maybe we keep the camper and spend the next holidays in the US as well. If so, I´ll think about getting the gearing right.

Thanks again and have a nice day

Ben
 
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