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Help soften up the front end!!

Discussion in '1973-1991 K5 Blazer | Truck | Suburban' started by Kyle89K5, Mar 25, 2002.

  1. Kyle89K5

    Kyle89K5 1/2 ton status

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    Alrighty folks, after this weekend in Disney, I've discovered that the front end is WAY to stiff. I'm using the 4" HD springs from Tuff Country and Rancho 5000 shocks. I'm pretty sure it's not the shocks doing it as I drove the truck for about 2 weeks without them and the ride was stiff as hell. I've even swapped on some different shocks to see if that was a difference and NOPE.

    What's you folks opinion on mixing and matching leafs for a smoother ride. Any ideas?
    After trying to follow Steve F. all over the rocks on Saturday, I'm still sore from the ride. I know he's running Kings, but DANG!!!
     
  2. DesertDueler

    DesertDueler 1/2 ton status

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    I run the 4" TF ez-ride and it rides like a caddy. You might want to go to ez-ride springs. Also run Doestech shocks, they make it much softer than the Rancho 5000s.
     
  3. BIGRIG

    BIGRIG 1/2 ton status

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    The ez-ride springs are a lot softer, thats what I'm runnin and it rides nice and smooth also how long have you had those? Mine were rough at first but after a couple of months they broke in and dropped a little also.
     
  4. Kyle89K5

    Kyle89K5 1/2 ton status

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    I've had the springs on for about 7 months and the ride hasn't changed a bit. I can turn a corner at around 30 mph (ask DP90K5 /forums/images/icons/smile.gif)and the thing is level. I may try a new set of shocks next but then it's gonna be new spring time. I got rid of the front bumper and pushbar so I don't know if shedding all that weight is giving me the flack, but the ride is getting OLD!
     
  5. ChadH82

    ChadH82 1/2 ton status

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    I think the Tuff Country HD's still have one of the softest spring rates. You might try loosening your shackle and spring bolts a little before buying new springs.
     
  6. Kyle89K5

    Kyle89K5 1/2 ton status

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    HMMMMMMM, didn't think of that one, I may do that in the next day or two and see how it loks. Forgot about it. Damn.
     
  7. BorregoK5

    BorregoK5 1/2 ton status

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    My Rancho front leafs were very stiff untill I added a heavy front bumper. the ride is much better now, perhaps shedding that weight made more of a difference than you think.
     
  8. laketex

    laketex 3/4 ton status

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    I've got the TC EZ rides. Rides better than my 2wd phord if that counts for anything. Love it.
     
  9. muddysub

    muddysub 1 ton suburban status Staff Member Moderator GMOTM Winner

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    so if i get a big honkin' winch bumper, my ride will soften up? my pro-comp springs are STIFF, haven't changed a bit since i put em on about a year ago.
     
  10. DesertDueler

    DesertDueler 1/2 ton status

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    Anytime you add more weight to the springs it has a softer ride. The Jimmy rides rougher now( No doors, no top, gutted tailgate, no carpet, plexyglass windshield, etc.) then it did at full weight. Still alot smoother then any other lift out there.
     
  11. Grim-Reaper

    Grim-Reaper 3/4 ton status Author

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    How many Leafs in the pack? Yank one or two. See if you can yank one mid pack. I was to soft in the rear and I added two. it Transfered some weight to the front and the thing rides better than ever on the street. Need to ramp it to see how bad I hurt the flex. I was goingto yank a leaf on the front but needed to see how my clearince went. Most of the time if you yank a leafe mid pack you loose about 3/4 of an inch unless the springs were WAY stiff. then you may only loose a 1/2 inch but soften up the pac dramaticly. You want to leave the main and the leaf directly below alone but any after that you can play with. If you get the ride you want but come up short in ride hightthen throw a Zero rate Add-a-leaf in there to get the hight back.
     
  12. SAVAGE1

    SAVAGE1 1/2 ton status

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    I hear you can loosen or cut the tops off the clamps. I have some stiff a$$ ProCom 6 inchers and I plan on cutting the clamps and taking the 3rd leaf off.
     
  13. 79Beast

    79Beast 1/2 ton status

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    Grim reaper has the most cost effective approach. I would never add weight on purpose just to soften the ride. I also recommend a "soft ride" spring like the ones I bought from Skyjacker.
     
  14. Kyle89K5

    Kyle89K5 1/2 ton status

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    Thanks for all the help folks. I"ve got a couple of good ideas to work on this weekend. I got the rear to loosen up, but the front still rides like a buggy. I'll let you all know how it works out.

    Oh, BTW, i wouldn't be adding weight just to soften the ride, I have to add the bumper and all any way, just don't want a nice cushy ride right now then turn around, add the winch and have a fawking drag car.
     
  15. Greg72

    Greg72 "Might As Well..." Staff Member Super Moderator

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    Kyle,

    Since I've already BTDT on this topic, I'll tell you what I did.

    Test 1: Disconnect front shocks to isolate if it's a stiff spring problem or a stiff shock problem. You said you've already done that and the ride is still just as stiff. Obviously, it's your springs....so adding new shocks isn't going to get you anywhere.

    Test 2: Add a set of ORD greaseable bushings to the front spring eye and the upper & lower shackle areas. (3 pairs of bushings). This will help out a bit....maybe it's enough to make you happy. If not, you've already got the bushings you'll need for the next step.

    Test 3: Replace the springs. There's really nothing else you can do but change the "spring rate" that you've got. Either by messing with the existing spring pack (removing leaves) or getting a whole new leafpack.

    I replaced a 700 lb-in set of Rough Country leafs with a custom-made set from ORD (around 237 Lb-in) and the difference was Night-and Day!!! Now instead of keeping my RS9000s set on "1" (Full Soft), I run them at "5" (Full Hard) since the spring is allowing the shock to finally work like it's supposed to.

    That's my story, and I'm sticking to it.....! /forums/images/icons/laugh.gif
     
  16. 6.2Blazer

    6.2Blazer 1/2 ton status

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    As already mentioned, having the spring and shackle bolts too tight will cause the bushings to bind and result in a rough ride. For the shocks, if the springs are stiff without shocks installed then installing shocks is not going to make it any smoother. Remember, shocks are only supposed to dampen the movement of the springs, they are not supposed to really make any huge difference in how the springs move (unless the shocks are overly stiff).
     
  17. Kyle89K5

    Kyle89K5 1/2 ton status

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    #1 Done
    #2 Done
    #3 May be the ticket

    I'm gonna try lossening up the bolts to see if that helps any. The springs I've got should ride pretty good, but they DON'T.

    I just gone done with a nice long drive and I think I've got two problems.

    1: Springs are too stiff. The ride is downright painful.
    2: When the springs do start giving, I get a NICE pogo action with the truck.

    I think I'll start with the bushings like I said before then move onto shocks. I'm gonna hold the spring itself to the dying end.

    I understand that this is a truck, and a lifted one at that, but I'm really thinking this is not normal.
     
  18. DesertDueler

    DesertDueler 1/2 ton status

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    The trick to loseing up the bolts to see if that helps is you need to make them finger tight and drive around the block, but no farther or the bolts will come out. Then tighten them to what TC suggests, which I believe is only like 40 ft/lbs.
     
  19. Greg72

    Greg72 "Might As Well..." Staff Member Super Moderator

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    Kyle,

    While we're on the subject....how much lift are we talking about here....I didn't see the setup in your profile or sig line.

    Other than that......assuming we're talking about something reasonable (like around a 4" lift)......it's like I'm reading a story about my own truck! /forums/images/icons/laugh.gif

    I don't know all the "scientific" reasons behind it, but with my Rough Country springs (700 lb-in) in front, and my "stock" springs (w / shackle flip ) in the rear, my truck was VERY bouncy feeling...my wife HATED it! She really lost interest in riding anywhere with me because of that.

    I don't think she's even going to recongize the truck now....I've done a LOT of suspension work to it, and the ride is WAY better....it feels safer too, not like such a "death trap" the way it did with the stiff springs.

    Unfortunately, your next step is probably going to be a set of TC EZ Rides.....so it's a more expensive step than #1 & #2, and you're going to have to spend the money to find out if your theory is correct.
     
  20. 84_Chevy_K10

    84_Chevy_K10 Banned

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    Too bad you don't have 6" springs. I've got a set of 4" soft ride Ranchos I'll trade anyone straight up any 6" springs. They're 1 year old and they're soft as can be (only the Tuff Country easy rides are softer I do believe).
     

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