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SuperSprings vs. Air Bags - FWC Hawk

Tundra supersprings hawk air bags

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#11 MotoDave

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Posted 02 March 2019 - 05:28 AM

I'll weigh in with my experience with my 2012 Tundra DC with a Hawk. I am running Icon leaf spring packs, Airlift airbags with daystar cradles, and Bilstein 5100 shocks all around, with the spring perch on the middle height setting in the front. Truck sits about as raked as stock except 1.5" lift. I'm now happy with how the truck handles the weight, and when the camper is removed ride is pretty close to stock. I could see custom springs being better loaded, but I run w/o the camper at least half the year and I cant see it doing both well.

 

I started out with just the Bilstein shocks. The back sagged a lot when I loaded the camper on, and I wasn't happy with sway on twisty roads either. I added the airbags, choosing Airlift because they have a bump stop inside the bag. The way any of the airbags mount  limits droop travel, and I found out the hard way that the airlift end caps are plastic and when used as a limit strap the inserts pull out. Airlift did replace the bags for free, but in order to not have it happen again I installed Daystar cradles to disconnect the bottom of the bag and let it droop out. Off road articulation was back to (almost) normal, but the Daystar cradles eat up ~1.5" of uptravel and I was bottoming out on the super stiff Airlift bump stops constantly. The Icon leaf spring pack added just enough height to get me off the bump stops, and seem to articulate better than the stock leafs as well.

 

I'd really like to know how a 3/4 or 1 ton truck with stock suspension handles the camper, I'm always surprised when I see people adding air bags to these trucks, I guess they also have to be tuned to ride decently unloaded at the expense of load capacity.


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#12 CougarCouple

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Posted 02 March 2019 - 04:27 PM

Morning MotoDave
We have a F-250 with ATC's Cougar similar to a Grandby. I feel the truck handled the weight and we are around 600-700 lbs from the GVWR. I added Hellwig air springs for a couple reasons. When adding a trailer it did affect the headlamps, so night driving oncoming traffic was constantly flashing us to turn high beams off. Secondly the stance of the truck, and the Hellwig's did correct this. After install it does feel like the truck handling and ride is improved, I do not have a rear sway bar. PSI is around 25-30. Our truck w/o camper and gear two people and 30 gallons of fuel is 7,300 lbs, last summer fully loaded was 9,300 lbs. (sorry don't remember the exact numbers but first two digits are correct)

Russ

PS have the cradles but didn't install yet. Cradle manufacturer said they were working with Hellwig, might give it a try this summer. Too little time too many projects.

Edited by CougarCouple, 02 March 2019 - 04:33 PM.

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F250 extended cab, Cougar from ATC. You guys rock thank you!

#13 Vic Harder

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Posted 02 March 2019 - 08:50 PM

I'd really like to know how a 3/4 or 1 ton truck with stock suspension handles the camper, I'm always surprised when I see people adding air bags to these trucks, I guess they also have to be tuned to ride decently unloaded at the expense of load capacity.

My 2500 HD handles the camper just fine.  I never feel the need to slow down because of sway or a misbehaving suspension on paved roads.


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2002 GMC Sierra 8.1L 2500HD

2005 Hawk Shell built the way I like it

ShoulderingOurShare


#14 klahanie

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Posted 03 March 2019 - 01:45 AM

I'd really like to know how a 3/4 or 1 ton truck with stock suspension handles the camper, I'm always surprised when I see people adding air bags to these trucks, I guess they also have to be tuned to ride decently unloaded at the expense of load capacity.

I can report for our current truck we were able to put the entire allowable vehicle payload onto the rear axle and the truck handled it just fine. Mind you it came with "HD" springs being a cab and chassis and of course a rear sway bar. Don't recall the amount of defection/squat but that's more estetics. No way I think we could have hit the bump stop with that load and usual driving, maybe crossed up thru a ditch etc but not that I recall.

"Empty" was a different matter, natch the ride was/is firmer than many would be used to; toleration and acceptance a personal choice.
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~David.  2010 F350 C&C w camper deck. 1997 Granby, orig owners.


#15 rubberlegs

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Posted 03 March 2019 - 03:07 AM

A third option to springs and airbags are Sumosprings. Basically they are like airbags, but a lot simpler. We've been happy.


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Tacoma/Fleet 2018.


#16 ntsqd

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Posted 03 March 2019 - 03:57 PM

The new to us Cuchara 9.5XL sagged the rear suspension notably with the flipped over-loads. Adding them back into the system leveled us out again. The one trip that I took prior to Ruben working his usual magic had me wallowing all over the road in the twisty-curvy's. Haven't had it out on a trip since the change, but just driving it home it felt a lot more stable.


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Thom

Where does that road go?





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