[Vwdiesel] Spring Notes

Roger Brown r.c.brown at ieee.org
Thu Oct 20 13:21:26 EDT 2005

James Hansen wrote:
> I like your suspension setup.   I've added leaves to some of the the farm
> trucks to compensate for wear as well.  It works. I've tried re-arching and
> that just goes away over time, adding leaves is the better long term
> solution for older stuff in my opinion too.  Gonna have to do the rears on
> my VW truck one day soon.  Ever thought of air bags?  I've kicked that
> around for the caddy... remove leaves, use the leaf spring as more of a
> locating device and use air bags to maintain suspension height and ride
> quality with varied loads.  In theory it seems like a good idea... Ignoring
> costs that is.

I'm planning to add a single air bag to the rear of my 4Runner for leveling the rear under load.  Some folks have been doing 
the same with coil springs, but an air bag gives an adjustability factor.  This way, I can keep the nice soft, flexible springs 
yet handle the extra load of the gear I carry on the trail.  Problem I have now is that when I load up the truck for a long 
trip, the rear end settles about 2", throwing off my driveline angles (CV joint driveshafts are finicky about that).  I have 
everything set up to work fine unloaded, so if I pump up the air bag to restore the ride height, it should work much better.

A few folks are running air bags on the VW pickups.  Usually as part of a lowered setup, they remove all but the main load leaf 
(using it mainly to locate the axle) then use the air bags to support the weight.  I'm still happy with my 5 leaf pack in the 
rear of the pickup:


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