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Old 10-12-2016, 10:31 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by jchristian11 View Post
Not true, if you load any rear axle close to it's rating it will sag, air bags will level it out.
Agree with JC11. Additionally leveling things out gives you better steering and it's Waaaaaaayyyy more cost effective than more truck. We put them on our F450 2+ years ago. It was a nice add and we would do it again if our rear was within weight limits and still squatting. The 450 was just over a year old at the time of the add.
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Old 10-12-2016, 10:58 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by 450Donn View Post
IMHO if you need air bags, what you really need is more truck.
That used to be true but the demand for a boulevard ride by people that never let their trucks bed get dirty has changed what the manufacturers build now. My '79 and '92 Ford SDs had a stack of 6-7 leaves plus an overload vs the current F250/350's, a puny 3+1
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Old 10-12-2016, 12:40 PM   #17
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As mentioned before air bags cannot increase your rating and are used primarily for leveling the load and to keep the truck suspension from sagging. Fords do have a tendency to do that even when they are no where near overloaded. The other thing air bags will help you with is stability when cornering (something most people overlook) and also as mentioned firming up the ride.

The other thing air bags are good for (especially for people with in bed campers) is the ability to air up one side or another for leveling when parked on uneven surfaces.
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Old 10-12-2016, 02:02 PM   #18
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Wink Air Lift . . .

If you decide to go forward with air bags I would recommend the Air Lift 5000 set and install a Wireless One compresser that allows you to inflate and deflate from your cab. Hand held remote lets you set 3 preset settings: mine are 50 lbs loaded & 10 lbs unloaded. Don't need the 3rd one. Here is web site as an FYI: www.airliftco.com

You plug in all your truck info and it gives you the options. Have fun . . .
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Old 10-12-2016, 02:18 PM   #19
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If you decide to go forward with air bags I would recommend the Air Lift 5000 set and install a Wireless One compresser that allows you to inflate and deflate from your cab. Hand held remote lets you set 3 preset settings: mine are 50 lbs loaded & 10 lbs unloaded. Don't need the 3rd one. Here is web site as an FYI: www.airliftco.com

You plug in all your truck info and it gives you the options. Have fun . . .
I just ordered this combo to see if it makes anything better. Difficult install?
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Old 10-12-2016, 04:20 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by lonewolftx View Post
If you decide to go forward with air bags I would recommend the Air Lift 5000 set and install a Wireless One compresser that allows you to inflate and deflate from your cab. Hand held remote lets you set 3 preset settings: mine are 50 lbs loaded & 10 lbs unloaded. Don't need the 3rd one. Here is web site as an FYI: www.airliftco.com

You plug in all your truck info and it gives you the options. Have fun . . .
The one downside to this set-up (which I currently have for my F150) was that somehow the compressor froze up and also caused communication errors for the system. The remote and the control box are a PITA to sync together. The firestone bags do not have this pairing issue and on my next vehicle I may look into them. What happened for me was my wiring harness (factory) got filled with water after a storm we had and it put water all inside the wiring harness which had to be replaced under extended warranty. It came loose at the back of the 7 pin connector. Since then i have taped it up like crazy to hopefully ensure that does not happen again, however the trucking business that installed the Air Lift system had a hell of a time getting it to work again. They ended up replacing the compressor, then the board, etc. ten they just couldn't get the remote to sync. Finally they ordered the remaining new parts and it finally paired. Just something to think about with this system. BTW the system was about a year old when all this happened.
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Old 10-12-2016, 07:25 PM   #21
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Not true, if you load any rear axle close to it's rating it will sag, air bags will level it out.
^^^X2

Airbags provide for adjustment between uses of your truck. I don't need "more truck" as someone said. I need more support at certain times. Do people wear hip waders around their house? Do you use an excavator to dig one fence post? Of course not. There are varying degrees of tools and equipment for varying situations.
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Old 10-12-2016, 07:52 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 450Donn View Post
IMHO if you need air bags, what you really need is more truck.
Quote:
Originally Posted by IC2 View Post
That used to be true but the demand for a boulevard ride by people that never let their trucks bed get dirty has changed what the manufacturers build now. My '79 and '92 Ford SDs had a stack of 6-7 leaves plus an overload vs the current F250/350's, a puny 3+1
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Originally Posted by mtofell View Post
I don't need "more truck" as someone said. I need more support at certain times. Do people wear hip waders around their house? Do you use an excavator to dig one fence post? Of course not. There are varying degrees of tools and equipment for varying situations.
Keep in mind that with the marketing and stiff competition with manufacturers the ratings may be exaggerated a bit. I agree that trucks today are a lot softer than years past. From that standpoint - airbags will level the truck so it isn't squatting.

In regards to what 450Donn states - I don't disagree. When talking about load handling and a trucks' ability to pull a trailer most people only look at it as a one-way question - "Can my truck PULL such and such trailer?". Well, yea, trucks can "PULL" a lot more than they are rated for. The real questions are can you STOP and how STABLE will the truck be? To that point - you can change the stability with air bags, but stopping and the rest of the handling equation is up in the air. Running your tires and/or rear axle right up against their weight limit may not be such a good idea.

I've been looking at some heavy 5th wheels and researching what kind of tow vehicle they would take. With pin weights over 4,000lbs, pushing 5,000lbs, you may be able to squeeze some of them on to a 1 ton dually truck, but you are at least max'ing out the capacity. There is no "pickup truck" produced that will be at home with some of those rigs. Can a "pick up truck" pull them? Yeah. However, it probably isn't going to be a safe rig. The kicker is - when you start looking at class 4 and 5 trucks you're in an interesting territory. A class 4 may have less rated capacity than a 3 (1 ton dually). That puts you in the class 5 range. Then if you want to have some head room on the capacities you really should look at a class 6. So once you are in the range of max'ing out "pick up trucks" to get a truck that will be well within its limits a class 6 is probably where you want to be.

So yeah - if you are going to be on the road all the time with the rig and you want the peace of mind of a safe rig that is not going to make the pit in your stomach fall through the floor when you need to make a quick/emergency maneuver pulling that big 5th wheel... you may want "more truck".
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Old 10-12-2016, 09:04 PM   #23
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I never add bags unless the truck sags too much. I would use the rig first and then decide if bags are needed.
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Old 10-13-2016, 06:16 AM   #24
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Wink Not at all. . .

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Originally Posted by Fishalaska1 View Post
I just ordered this combo to see if it makes anything better. Difficult install?
The install is pretty straight forward. I mounted the compresser above the spare tire to keep it away from the elements. This is my second setup like this and the only pairing issues develope when the hand held remote batteries die. Obviously it doesn't work then. Also I wired my compressed to a "key on hot" terminal as you don't want the compressed to run if a line ever leaks. All in all I've been very pleased with this setup. All the manuels are very clear and informative. Web site says about a 3 hour project but who knows. Have at it.
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Old 10-13-2016, 06:20 AM   #25
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The install is pretty straight forward. I mounted the compresser above the spare tire to keep it away from the elements. This is my second setup like this and the only pairing issues develope when the hand held remote batteries die. Obviously it doesn't work then. Also I wired my compressed to a "key on hot" terminal as you don't want the compressed to run if a line ever leaks. All in all I've been very pleased with this setup. All the manuels are very clear and informative. Web site says about a 3 hour project but who knows. Have at it.
Is the trailer plug hot wire a key on hot? I would think so.
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Old 10-14-2016, 08:13 AM   #26
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Wink Yes it is . . .

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Is the trailer plug hot wire a key on hot? I would think so.
Yes that is where I hooked into my power. Have to dig into the wire loom to get to it but it will work. You will hear the compressor kick on every time you start the truck as it revs up. If it lasts more than 3 to 5 seconds then you might have a leak. Nice way to always test the system too.
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Old 10-15-2016, 06:40 PM   #27
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Originally Posted by 450Donn View Post
IMHO if you need air bags, what you really need is more truck.
I beg to differ and you will probably find that most will as well.

If the weight numbers don't work, that's when you need more truck!
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Old 10-15-2016, 07:34 PM   #28
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Airbags or not

I won't get dragged into the not enough truck discussion. I put the airlift 5000 on my 03 f250 and love them. Like most I run 10lbs empty but only 35 lbs loaded. Levels my fifth wheel perfectly. You will be glad you put them on. I did not add the compressor could not see the extra expense when I carry a compressor anyway.
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