Dismiss Notice

Welcome To CK5!

Registering is free and easy! Hope to see you on the forums soon.

Score a FREE t-shirt and membership sticker when you sign up for a Premium Membership and choose the recurring plan.

air bags?

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by scott85, Feb 19, 2007.

  1. scott85

    scott85 Registered Member

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2005
    Posts:
    27
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Commack, NY
    anyone have any experience with either the air lift air bag suspension, or the firestone ride rite suspension? i will be hauling heavy loads, but not all the time. I had put beefier leafs and air shocks in my old 85. I sold her after i picked up the 4x4 '86. Im not convinced that the air shocks did a whole lot, but the springs helped significantly over stock. Id like to avoid changing the leafs in my '86 if at all possible, and i thought that the air bags might be a good option.

    thanks for the input
    Scott
     
  2. K5er4Life

    K5er4Life 1/2 ton status

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2002
    Posts:
    1,456
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Bellflower, Ca
    I was kind of wondering the same thing actually. I was thinking about doing a shackle flip on my crew cab to gain a better, less brick like ride. Then with the use of airbags I can crank them up and haul a heavy load. I did have air shocks originally on my blazer and while they helped the load carrying capacity they ended breaking one shock mount and cracking the other side. I dont really like the idea of relying upon the shock mounts for help in supporting a heavy load.
     
  3. sled_dog

    sled_dog 1 ton status

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2002
    Posts:
    16,870
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Austin, TX
    factory shock mounts are not at all intended to carry a load.

    My Dad has Air Lift bags on his 2500HD. With all the tools in the bed it sat just about level. If he hooked to a trailer, it sagged bad. Then I found him a Utility Body. He threw that on and it just sagged all the time. So he threw on the airbags. 40psi at standard load and it sits with the slightest little rake now. I am certain it is WAY better on the leaf springs than before.

    Only thing to say for them, I am scared everytime I lift that thing on the lift that I will tear a bag. Most of the kits are double convuluted bags that don't extend a whole lot. So if you plan to flex a rig, well expect to install limiting straps and not flex a ton.

    For just load capacity and even a little sway control, they get my vote. I've often considered them on my 97 c2500, and eventually I'm sure I will install them, just don't tow enough at the moment to warrant it.

    Oh and do not get the added compressor setup. They sell 2 kits, one that is just air chucks you fill up with any outside compressor. The other has a compressor with the kit. A friend has the kit with the compressor and it burned up after light use over I'd say a year. Also they have you plumb the 2 bags to the 1 compressor. As anyone who knows anything about air bags knows, if you have both bags plumbed together, you lose any sway control they could be adding. When the rig leans, it pushes air from one bag to the other. Can actually HURT sway control. With the 2 air chucks like Dad has, its adding spring rate independently to each side, helping to reduce sway.

    Though that truck could still use a rear anti-swaybar...
     
  4. scott85

    scott85 Registered Member

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2005
    Posts:
    27
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Commack, NY
    air bags

    thanks for the info. i wonder if there is a difference between the firestone and the air lift as far as quality is concerned?

    on a related note....i noticed that on my 85 (2wd) that even though i changed the rear leafs to beefier ones, the 86 (4wd) still sat higher, even wtih a lower leaf count. i know there must be a reason, i just dont know what it is. the 86 is not lifted, and they both have 31" tall tires on them. just curious.

    thanks
    Scott
     

Share This Page