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Considering "Helper" Leaf Springs

Discussion in '2nd Gen. Tacomas (2005-2015)' started by jmgtp, Sep 13, 2017.

  1. Sep 13, 2017 at 4:40 AM
    #1
    jmgtp

    jmgtp [OP] Well-Known Member

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    Hello All,

    To begin, I have a '13 2.7, 5sp manual, 4x4, SR5 with ~40k miles. The truck is completely stock other than the addition of fog lights and frame mounted trailer hitch. The most I've towed is about 2500 lbs. The 2.7 manages fine but certainly makes you well aware of the weight.

    A few times a year I'll haul heavy things in the bed and/or tow a trailer. I've noticed it doesn't take much weight in the bed or much tongue weight from the trailer to really sag the rear of the truck and pitch up the front. I have a home move coming up next year in which I'd be utilizing the bed and trailer at the same time to move. Thus the inquiry over helper leaf.

    I've seen two types. Half leaf and full leaf, with the latter of course offering more capacity than the half. I'm leaning towards the full leaf version but worry about the no load characteristics. Will it make the rear of the truck feel bouncy? Is the half leaf the more happy medium between no load ride quality and additional support?

    To be clear I'm not going to be pushing the truck beyond its rated limits. We're talking couches and other furniture primarily. Likely less than 500 lb in the bed and 1000 lb in the trailer per trip. So, not cords of wood or the space shuttle. But with as little as 500 in the bed of the truck the rear squats considerably. The move next year will be primarily highway driven and about 30 miles. Off highway is curvy country backroads.

    Appreciate your input on helper leaf suggestions/experiences or reasons to leave it as is.
     
  2. Sep 13, 2017 at 6:17 AM
    #2
    ejl923

    ejl923 Well-Known Member

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    I hear ya. Im interested in this as well. Been looking at campers, as well as considering all the stuff in the bed when going camping. I think they rated the max load at when the frame hits the bump stops!
    Look forward to everyones suggestions. I was thinking airbags.
     
  3. Sep 13, 2017 at 9:13 AM
    #3
    el_smurfo

    el_smurfo Well-Known Member

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  4. Sep 13, 2017 at 9:47 AM
    #4
    Thyces

    Thyces Above average size member

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    Nitrocharger on 886 1/2" spacer Fox 2.0 12" in the rear Allpro expedition leafs (garbage) Pelfreybilt aluminum single hoop front Full size pickup bedslide modded to fit Satoshi grill Ubolt flip kit Archive garage shackle flip Sumo supersprings 1500lbs SPC uca's Full set RCI skid plates Weld on sliders ABS killswitch Pop'n'lock power tailgate lock Cooper s/t maxx 255 80 17 Plastidipped emblems Ebay projector headlights Smoked aftermarket tail lights High output led reverse lights Hella horns 330w 5d led bumper bar 18w spots on track facing rear (fuck you lights) B&m trans cooler Bussmann fuse box ECGS bushing Big 4 (0 gauge ofc wire) upgrade Mechman 240 amp alternator Jl 10w7 in a 1 1/2" thick wall custom box Alpine 1000w rms mono amp Group 31 AGM battery installed next to sub Yaesu 2800 Bearcat 980 in dash with wireless mic and stainless whip Diff breather mod Hilux snorkel Turbine pre filter Baja Rack low profile cab rack Rifle case on rack Shovel and axe on quick fists in bed Flat and spade shovel mounted in bed Highlift mount in bed Tech deck with magnetic ram mount Tab s4 on ram mount
    Don't waste your money. I thought I was going the proper route with a progressive aal (3 leaf) but quickly realized I needed a full aftermarket pack. I had the recall done so my aal was on a fresh 4 leaf pack. I use my truck for work and play. Every time I loaded weight in the bed she sagged. I now run allpro expo leafs (need to be installed) and sumo springs. Aal did help but the whole thing started to negative arch within 2 months. I've not heard any comments about about the helper springs but can't imagine them working better than a full aal.
     
  5. Sep 13, 2017 at 9:50 AM
    #5
    Mully

    Mully Well-Known Member

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    Lifted, King Shocks, TC UCA, Full set of Skids, Pirrelli's, Air-bags, ARB locker, BAMF hangers and more +++.
    This works very well for me and my towing needs.

    IMG_1612.jpg
     
    Thyces likes this.
  6. Sep 13, 2017 at 9:51 AM
    #6
    Thyces

    Thyces Above average size member

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    From what I've heard and read bags are best for towing.
     
  7. Sep 13, 2017 at 9:52 AM
    #7
    Mully

    Mully Well-Known Member

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    Lifted, King Shocks, TC UCA, Full set of Skids, Pirrelli's, Air-bags, ARB locker, BAMF hangers and more +++.
    Yep, I tow this with a bed full of camping gear at over 80mph.

    IMG_0439.jpg
     
    Sharpish likes this.
  8. Sep 13, 2017 at 10:02 AM
    #8
    nd4spdbh

    nd4spdbh Well-Known Member

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    That sounds like a horrible accident waiting to happen.
     
    SlimTim, HawkShot99 and Mully like this.
  9. Sep 13, 2017 at 10:04 AM
    #9
    HawkShot99

    HawkShot99 Well-Known Member

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    I have a DCLB with a cap and added a platform in the bed. Combined maybe 400#'s. The back end had started to sag downward, really bothering me. I looked into new steonger leaf packs, but all of them added lift to a stock truck. I did not want lift beyond stock.
    I finally decided to go with Hellwig helper springs. I think I have the 979's but not 100%.
    They raised the back end up to stock height (about 1.5" higher than sagged height). I do not notice a harsher ride. I only adjusted the springs about 1/2 way. So I can raise the truck more if needed.
    When I sit on the tailgate the bed barely drops down.
     
    sailtowery likes this.
  10. Sep 13, 2017 at 10:05 AM
    #10
    Mully

    Mully Well-Known Member

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    Lifted, King Shocks, TC UCA, Full set of Skids, Pirrelli's, Air-bags, ARB locker, BAMF hangers and more +++.
    Towed from CA to Moab and back with no problems. Tacoma performed like a champ. The truck gets the Jeep to and back from the trail, that's what I use it for.

    IMG_1018.jpg
     
  11. Sep 13, 2017 at 11:52 AM
    #11
    nd4spdbh

    nd4spdbh Well-Known Member

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    @ 80 mph sounds a lil crazy. But if i had to build a trail rig, it would be exactly like that jeep. Cheap(er) and that I6 is perfect for stuff like that.
     
    Mully likes this.
  12. Sep 13, 2017 at 12:54 PM
    #12
    jmgtp

    jmgtp [OP] Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the replies. For my purposes the air bags seem overkill. I ended up ordering Hellwig 550 which is the half leaf size and claims 550lb load leveling. If it ends up not being enough I can order a second pair and add them in to the front side of the leaf packs.

    From what I've read here and in my own online research they seem to fit the bill for what I want.
     
  13. Sep 13, 2017 at 12:54 PM
    #13
    azreb

    azreb Geezer

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    I had the half leaf helper springs on my original springs. They seemed to help when I had a load in the bed. I didn't notice any problems running empty. They came off with the leaf spring recall and I haven't found a need for helpers since.
     
  14. Sep 13, 2017 at 3:05 PM
    #14
    el_smurfo

    el_smurfo Well-Known Member

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    Weird...the TSB springs are the reason I'm considering helper springs... They are softer than the 3 leaf I had before and have already sagged so the rear is below level with 0.85" 5100 on the front. When towing, it's trampoline city.
     
  15. Sep 14, 2017 at 6:00 PM
    #15
    azreb

    azreb Geezer

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    I've had the recall springs on it only a few weeks. Time will tell if they are adequate. Somehow I got the impression that the half leaf overload springs I have will not work on the new springs. ???
     
  16. Sep 14, 2017 at 6:39 PM
    #16
    HawkShot99

    HawkShot99 Well-Known Member

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    Very possible they won't fit. I have full size ones, but when emailing with Hellwig, the correct part # for me changed based on if I had had my springs recalled or not.
    You can email them to check. They were pretty helpful with me.
     
  17. Sep 20, 2017 at 3:51 AM
    #17
    MarcoTaco

    MarcoTaco Active Member

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    Hellwig rear leaf, BFG 265/70 KO2 tires, Method rims, Bilstein 5100 frt struts, OVT
    I put the Hellwig EZ-990 AaL springs on the rear my truck. It's a gen 3 TRD Sport.
    I didn't want to pervert the stock ride. I also wanted to tow my 1100 lbs. utility trailer - and haul some - without any rear sagging.

    These springs worked very nicely to do just that.
    They can also be set up to provide a small amount of lift, (up to about 2") if you desire it.
    Installation was easy, but requires you to slide the leaf under the bump stop on each side.

    So to do this, you have to remove the OEM U-bolts, then re-install them as before, (without modification).
    Two sets of U-bolts are also provided to secure the ends of the leaf and provide the means for adjustment (stiffness/height).
    I have no complaints with this kit and it completely satisfied my requirements. My two cents.
     
    sailtowery likes this.

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