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TSB Springs, AAL, Air bags, or new springs???

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Old 08-26-2011, 11:53 AM   #1
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Question TSB Springs, AAL, Air bags, or new springs???

I have a 2006, TRD Sport, 4X4. I also have the non TSB, 3 leaf, factory springs. The problem is: When I tow a trailer or haul my Polaris (550lbs) in the back of the truck, I have a lot of rear end squat. To make it worse, the truck has a leveling kit on it, so it is even worse than if it didn't have the kit. When I go up in the mountains, I am on the bump stops a LOT! I tried to convince Toyota to give me a free set of TSB springs, but no dice. My truck has too many miles on it and too many years for them to give a frak. I put on some helper springs, but they are a temporary measure. (They were also free!) I would like to either pick up a set of the 4 leaf TSB springs second hand, or replace the springs completely. I know it will change the ride of the truck, but since I actually haul with the truck, I don't care. I am curious what direction I should go, and since there are lots of Taco owners on here, I thought I would ask for some advice. I called Toytotec, and the AAL they have only add about 100lbs to the capability of the truck. Airbags are a definite option, and I have looked into those, but don't have a lot of experience with airbags on a midsize trucks. Opinions would be helpful, links to products would be more helpful, and pics wowuld be great.
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Old 08-26-2011, 11:55 AM   #2
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Bags only because most new spring packs are lifting springs.
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Old 08-26-2011, 12:00 PM   #3
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i have the TSB rear springs and still needed air bags for hauling stuff. most leaf packs and all Add a Leafs will give you lift, and the TSB pack is not cheap. i would highly recommend the firestone bags, they are adjustable and really hold up
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Old 08-26-2011, 12:03 PM   #4
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I'd seriously consider air bags. A couple other options are timbren bump stops (basically a taller bump stop that's designed to hold weight) or a new leaf pack. If you want to avoid air bags and want the leaf pack to perform how it should, look into Alcan leaf springs. They can make a set to your specifications (lift, everyday load, etc). They aren't overly cheap though. Go to their website and you can get a quote through the internet (I looked into it and it was going to cost me about $500 shipped for a new leaf pack).
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Old 08-26-2011, 08:05 PM   #5
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I have a 2006 DC LB and had it loaded with camping stuff this past week and a small pop up trailer and there was only about 1/2" off the stops. It will also bottom out empty going over a whoop-dee-doo on the freeway. The springs are negatively arched just sitting empty.

I was looking at having the local spring company "RE-ARCH" them and when they do that, they also add a leaf to the pack, which I'm assuming is a matched leaf and not a bolt on "ADD-A-LEAF" type arrangement.

I did ask them if that I do this, what are the chances that they will go back to sagging again eventually? They stated, "That is why we had the extra leaf". They said it will also add 800-1000lbs of extra capacity.

Question: Has anyone had any experience in "RE-ARCHING" their exsisting springs?

Thanks in advance!
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Old 08-26-2011, 08:40 PM   #6
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Re-arcing springs will help short-term, long term they will sag back to where they are now. It's a band-aid at best.

I intalled the Firestone Ride-Rite kit on my '06 D/C 4x4, and am very happy with the results. A few weeks ago I had the truck loaded down pretty good with my 12' aluminum boat up top, and a weekend's worth of camping and fishing gear including boat motor, deep cycle battery, water, food, to put it simply, it would have been just off the bump stops with my 3 leaf springs. With even just 15 psi in the bags, it rode nicely at normal ride height, and never bottomed once even on rough gravel road. When empty you drop the pressure to 5 psi minimum and it rides like it did before. I highly recommend this route.
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Old 08-27-2011, 08:34 AM   #7
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Ride Rite Air Bags by Firestone (installed at Off Road Warehouse), along with Bilstein 5100 shocks in back... My '05 never bottomed out again after that!!!
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Old 08-27-2011, 08:42 AM   #8
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I agree with using air bags. I got them when I got my slide in camper that weighed approx 800 ibs.
The air bags where great, and as others have pointed out you just drop the air to 5psi and your truck rides the same when empty.
I had them in my 96 Tacoma for over 6 years without any issues.

Shawn
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Old 10-21-2011, 05:48 AM   #9
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I am looking into getting some of these for when I haul some heavy loads or tow my boat. Is there any reason I should have to lift the front of the vehicle with a spacer or anything. Does the ride height in the rear change much when un-inflated?
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Old 10-21-2011, 10:04 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wayne73 View Post
I am looking into getting some of these for when I haul some heavy loads or tow my boat. Is there any reason I should have to lift the front of the vehicle with a spacer or anything. Does the ride height in the rear change much when un-inflated?
Not in my case... the idea is to stop bottoming out and 'level' the truck from a sag due to weight added. The front never had an issue.

Empty/ normal air pressure in my Ride Rites was 15 psi... then 35-45psi tops when loaded.
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Old 10-21-2011, 10:54 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by David K View Post
Not in my case... the idea is to stop bottoming out and 'level' the truck from a sag due to weight added. The front never had an issue.

Empty/ normal air pressure in my Ride Rites was 15 psi... then 35-45psi tops when loaded.
Same here but I bougtht the http://www.autoanything.com/suspensi...A2966A0A0.aspx
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Old 10-21-2011, 11:15 AM   #12
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I'd second the Firestone Ride Rite system. I found a set of TSB springs for cheap and put them on. It certainly helps, but it isn't as beneficial as a Ride Rite. I'll be getting one soon. The TSB tradeoff is definitely a stiffer ride with marginal payload benefits. Not too bad, but you'll notice a vibration when driving on crappy highway surfaces. If I were to do things over, I'd get the Firestone Ride Rite system. We had that on a full-size farm pickup for when we hauled cattle and round bales with a fifth-wheel hitch. It certainly helped.
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Old 10-21-2011, 11:33 AM   #13
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The only problem with the ride-rites is that you still have the shitty leafs. I'd say get a custom leaf pack from Alcan, they make them to your specifications and can do so without lifting the truck I believe
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Old 10-21-2011, 02:41 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kirkofwimbo View Post
The only problem with the ride-rites is that you still have the shitty leafs. I'd say get a custom leaf pack from Alcan, they make them to your specifications and can do so without lifting the truck I believe
Firestone does call them 'Air Springs' and not 'air bags', so you are really taking over the weak leafs with the Ride Rites. It was like getting a new truck with the Ride Rites on my '05 DC...

When I traded it for the '10, I had them remove my Ride Rites (since my dealer never offered to do the TSB after my many complaints) in case the springs were still the same on the '10 DC. Thank God, the new truck springs have never allowed the truck to bottom out (with a heavy load)... even though there are only 3 leaves still... better springs indeed!

I still have my Ride Rites in a box waiting for a possible install... I did like them a lot and may one day add them to my '10 even though bottoming doesn't happen... It does raise the back end even with a super heavy load.
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Old 10-21-2011, 03:17 PM   #15
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Put an add on KIJIJI or Craigslist. I had the same prob. I was stupid, could hardly haul groceries without it bottoming out. I have an 05 SR5 so crap springs to start. Anyway found a complete 08 TRD suspension with only 3000kms for $100. Another guy at the office just put an OME in his 2011 TRD before he took it from the dealer so 0kms on his. There are complete sets collecting dust in peoples garages... for dirt cheap


I like the air bag idea too!
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