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!/2 ton upgrade, I goofed!!!!

Discussion in 'Trucks and Trailers' started by LB Landscaping, Aug 29, 2002.

  1. LB Landscaping

    LB Landscaping LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Maine
    Posts: 1,309

    Hi All,
    I'm new but I love this site. I was wondering if any of you know of a suspension upgrade you can get for a 2001 Chevy 1/2 ton. I bought it last year in a rush and wish I had gotten a 3/4 ton HD. Live and learn!!! I use my 1/2 ton to plow and tow my 12 ft open trailer with a Walker 20 HP 48 GHS, a Troy Bilt 33" wide cut, trimmers, blowers etc. The truck pulls and plows pretty good but I hear we are in for a nasty winter. I will also be hauling more mulch, loam etc. next summer.:confused:
  2. The Good Earth

    The Good Earth LawnSite Member
    Posts: 171

    About the only thing you can do to keep the rear end from sagging is a set of air bags. Air Lift Super Duty bags are what we have. They work well for us. I have a set on my 1/2 ton GMC. Supposedly they add an additional 5000 lbs to the GVW of your truck. That being said I wouldn't go throw an additional 5000 lbs. of stuff in the bed to try 'em out!
  3. Brickman

    Brickman LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,249


    $235 US for air bags. Another route you could go is to get more leafs from a junk yard and put them in your spring pack.
  4. Gravel Rat

    Gravel Rat LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 9,544

    You can always go to a set of Timbrens they are a rubber spring that goes between the frame and the rear axle, they are less maintanance compared to air bags.

    You gotta remember you only got a 1/2 ton truck and its a light truck the rear axle isn't designed to pack heavyloads a beefed up suspension just helps with keeping the truck level. I used to own a 79 F-150 4x4 and I made the rear suspension into a 3/4 ton and ended up bending the rear axle and burning up wheelbearings from packing too heavy loads.
  5. Brickman

    Brickman LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,249

    Very good point Gravel. I thought of that too, but was too tired last night to type all of that. :)
  6. bob

    bob LawnSite Platinum Member
    from DE
    Posts: 4,254

    When I had my K1500 , I added leaf spring helpers. They we easy to install. They were rated at 2500lbs. I got them from Dick Cepek (sp). Can't remember the price, but they worked. I upgraded my truck to a 02' 2500HD Duramax CC.
  7. LB Landscaping

    LB Landscaping LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Maine
    Posts: 1,309

    Thanks for the info guys!!! I have called a few places about adding leaf springs to the rear-end, that might be the route I should go.
  8. Bill Davis

    Bill Davis LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 397

    I installed a set of overload springs on my truck and they work great, They are a set of leaf springs that bolt on top of your stock leaf springs and they attach at each end using U bolts, so when your springs start to sag at the ends the weight is distributed to the springs. They are made by Hellwig. You can do a search on the net and find their site. I got the brackets and springs for about $200.00. I put them on my Z-71 in about three hours by myself and i had never seem them installed before. If i did it again it wouldn't take near as long. It was a lot of trial and error. The only problem that i had was that they were so dang heavy. They work great though and the amount of weight that you want them to abosorb is adjustable by just tightening down on the U bolts on either end of the springs. They also do not affect the ride of your truck when you are un-loaded which is so nice.
  9. I also put on a set of the hellwig helper springs, much better control when loaded. (F150 4X4) Not too tough a job with a floor jack.
    Got them at www.jcwhitney.com
  10. bubble boy

    bubble boy LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,020

    add tranny cooler if you dont have one.

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