Ford E-Series Rear Shackle Flip

mgmetalworks

Explorer
I feel like it is relevant to share my academic background when someone like you repeatedly says things that are misguided or misinformed, especially about my work and livelihood. Again, I'd be happy to engage folks in a real, professional, technical discussion about 4x4 van suspension and steering geometry design in this or any other van related forum (or on the phone if people want to talk to me directly). You may have convinced a lot of people here that you're always right but at some point, folks will see that the emperor wears no clothes...
 

ujoint

Supporting Sponsor
I feel like it is relevant to share my academic background when someone like you repeatedly says things that are misguided or misinformed, especially about my work and livelihood. Again, I'd be happy to engage folks in a real, professional, technical discussion about 4x4 van suspension and steering geometry design in this or any other van related forum (or on the phone if people want to talk to me directly). You may have convinced a lot of people here that you're always right but at some point, folks will see that the emperor wears no clothes...
I'll keep doing my thing, you do yours. The info is all available for guys to make their own decisions.

Back to shackle flips, I advised Lee to remove his and go back to stock with his new springs and UJ kit.
 

Jsweezy

Explorer
Awesome. So I'm the new guy here at Sky's and really want to build a 4x4 E350, and have had a couple customers tell me they were using this kit on their van. I decided to do a little research to see just how it is working out. We don't have it listed as an application but I will add it to the website. We are considering offering an 05+ Super Duty Axle Swap Kit in the future. It's still in the research phase of R&D though.
Jsweezy can I use some of your pictures?
You can use any of the photos I have put on this thread.
 
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mk216v

Der Chef der Fahrzeuge
The coil setup binds up too much, this is what causes DW and bump steer.
I came up with a solution to help our customers instead of throwing bandaids at it like steering stabilizers/etc. We fixed it via crossover steering with a relocated trac bar
I have resolved DW issues on multiple suspensions including yours so i do understand it. None of them have had problems since, whether we added x-over steering and a new trac bar to the existing radius arm setup or ditched it completely for leaf springs.
Wait, what?? Unfortunately this isn't true, based on at least 2 vans on the west coast.
"I reached out to Chris [UJOR] who was addressing the [DW] issue with an update to the coil setup and was very confident that his update [kit] would solve the DW...Both Taylor and I ordered kits for $1500 and I found a local shop that had done some conversions and I brought them my van to do the swap. Art, the mechanic, got the kit installed and called me to say that it didn't fix the issue. I was absolutely crushed and headed out to test the van myself to see what it was like. The ride was about the same, the turning radius was a bit reduced and the wobble was absolutely...the same... My refrigerator repair man immediately told me that he knew who I should call - Leonard of Leonards Offroad - who was a personal friend. Leonard was one of the foremost 4x4 builders in the country before he retired (that's Leonards personal tube framed crawler on the right) running a small shop that billed out several million a year working on and building pretty outrageous 4x4's and was named one of the best shops in the country by several magazines. He said I should come by his house so he could take a look....After measuring the hub angles, checking caster, radius arm angle and feeling and testing for any play in the many joints of the steering Leonard offered that he liked the original MG conversion. The U-joint conversion might make more sense on an off road rig but he wasn't a fan of the drag link not being centered on the axle line. He suggested going back to the MG kit."

UJOR; "Its clear now that something else was at fault (radius arm bushings?) and I wish the x-over was still on it...Feel free to send the x-over parts back if you want for a partial refund."


We still have the largest brake option for the E series swaps.
Yes, by 0.2", however it should be conveyed that they come at the cost of an add'l $2700. UJOR RSC 14.5" F450/550 front brakes at $2700 add'l over stg2 axle price, vs MG/ExpoVans OEM 14.3" F350 front brakes at no add'l cost when using a '13+ front axle.
 

ujoint

Supporting Sponsor
I stand behind everything I say & do. The crossover steering & trac bar relocation is a massive improvement, I don't care what some unheard of offroad shop says. And I'm fairly confident the owner of that van wished he had gone with leaves at this point. A flat drag link/trac bar is always better. And yea, duh, if the van has trashed or bad parts the problem could still be there, common sense.

The RSC upgrade also includes x-over steering and serviceable wheel bearings too, worth every penny and why we built ~50 of them last year.

Wish I had time to screenshot all of the praise you gave UJOR when you had your UJ equipped van! I'll do my best to not respond to you in the future, I have a parking lot full of vans to build.
 

Raul

Adventurer
Awesome. So I'm the new guy here at Sky's and really want to build a 4x4 E350, and have had a couple customers tell me they were using this kit on their van. I decided to do a little research to see just how it is working out. We don't have it listed as an application but I will add it to the website. We are considering offering an 05+ Super Duty Axle Swap Kit in the future. It's still in the research phase of R&D though.
Jsweezy can I use some of your pictures?

I just placed my order for the 4.5" shackle flip kit. Hopefully it will not take too long. Again, thank you Jsweezy for the information and all the help.

I am removing the cc880 front as they have sag and the lift is not enough to keep the axle from hitting the engine cross member. I had before the cc880S and I though they were too stiff (Different wheel than needed 65 psi). I have a set of cc860S that I'll give a shot if I do nto like them I'll get the cc880s back since I can run 45 psi on the new wheels. I am hoping to be able to remove the 2" block in the rear and be level with the reverse shackle.
 

Raul

Adventurer
I got my kit yesterday. Very nice. Good looking welds and sturdy construction. I've replaced only one side. tonight I'll try to do the other. The hard part is removing the original hanger. Not too bad, just takes time. I used an angle grinder.

Unfortunately I've only gained 0.5" since my goal was to replace the 2.5" block and gain 1.5" to 2.5". So, the effective lift I am expected is about 3". It changed the differential angle upwards by a couple of degrees. I'll need a 4 deg. shim to get things in line. ****CORRECTION*** The fact that I've just lifted one side, makes that side work harder to lift the other. I think that after I change the other I'll see more lift overall. I may even get close to 4". ******

On the picture you can compare the driver side with the shackle flipped and the passenger side with the 2.5" block.

I'll drive it like this for a while. Once the new front springs settle I'll decide if I need more lift in the back. I am surprised how flat my leaves look.

1591806999942.png
 
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CaulkinsCo.

Member
Mine are worse right now but yes, those springs are shot.

I assume that kit leaves the shackle perfectly straight up but does anyone know if it has to be? Can a be a few degrees off as long as it doesn't bind under full flex?
 

CaptainBuilt

Active member
I got my kit yesterday. Very nice. Good looking welds and sturdy construction. I've replaced only one side. tonight I'll try to do the other. The hard part is removing the original hanger. Not too bad, just takes time. I used an angle grinder.

Unfortunately I've only gained 0.5" since my goal was to replace the 2.5" block and gain 1.5" to 2.5". So, the effective lift I am expected is about 3". It changed the differential angle upwards by a couple of degrees. I'll need a 4 deg. shim to get things in line. ****CORRECTION*** The fact that I've just lifted one side, makes that side work harder to lift the other. I think that after I change the other I'll see more lift overall. I may even get close to 4". ******

On the picture you can compare the driver side with the shackle flipped and the passenger side with the 2.5" block.

I'll drive it like this for a while. Once the new front springs settle I'll decide if I need more lift in the back. I am surprised how flat my leaves look.
Did you finish the other side? Overall lift? I have a set of these and never got around to installing them yet.

I'm deciding to either put these on or go with 6" springs.
 

Raul

Adventurer
Did you finish the other side? Overall lift? I have a set of these and never got around to installing them yet.

I'm deciding to either put these on or go with 6" springs.
At the end, after checking the original height, I am having 4" of lift (2.5" block removed +1.5" extra lift) and it looks like I am going to need a 6deg shim to correct the pinion angle. I guess getting rid of the block is a good thing it seems it rides better, but I have not been able to drive any decent distance yet.
 

Raul

Adventurer
Mine are worse right now but yes, those springs are shot.

I assume that kit leaves the shackle perfectly straight up but does anyone know if it has to be? Can a be a few degrees off as long as it doesn't bind under full flex?
Those leaf springs were installed new, exactly two years ago (about 25 k miles). It is upsetting how much have they shag, considering that I am not loading this thing at all.
The shackle installs at an angle. I'll try to get a better shot.
 

CaulkinsCo.

Member
Seems common for van springs. I got a set of 08+ F springs that still need to go in. 8 inches longer in the front so that mount will need to obviously move forward. Back mount from what I can guess is about 3/4 inch longer but I'm thinking the shackle can just lean back a bit. A photo of your shackle angle could definitely help me plan things.

I'm currently running a 5.5 inch block on dead flat and possibly dangerous springs. By my math the F springs should give 5 inches of lift. Will have to measure once the springs are in and then build a very small block or shim. Maybe just cut out a chunk of the E spring as a spacer.
 

Raul

Adventurer
Install picture of the shackle loaded in working position. Not a lot of angle, just a slight offset between the two bolts.


1592229887921.png

Front is slightly taller than the back with the new CC860S springs, but I expect them to give a little bit, specially with heavy bumper on.

1592230105617.png

I was able to correct the pinion angle lifting the transfer case support. I haven't measure the angles yet, but at least there is no vibration at hwy speed.
 

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Raul

Adventurer
I have a set of 4.5" lift shackle flip kit for sale. $100 + shipping.

I just ordered new 6" springs.
Where were you two weeks ago? That’s a great deal. I’ll check your springs on your build since I considered the same options.
 
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