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Air bags.

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Air bags.

Unread postby cwit on Tue Apr 29, 2008 5:37 pm

How many people use air bags and why? I use them to help save my springs.
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Re: Air bags.

Unread postby kilbrider on Tue Apr 29, 2008 7:16 pm

Having a set installed next week. Same reason as you.
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Re: Air bags.

Unread postby Frank Henn on Tue Apr 29, 2008 7:58 pm

Springs are all right on the truck, just going to a redesigned Monroe shock that is suppose to help the Chucking. They will be here Friday, I will have one of the mechanics put them on. The bad thing, is this week end is the big poker run in La, so will not be able to try them out for another week
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Re: Air bags.

Unread postby cwit on Wed Apr 30, 2008 8:13 am

My air bags did help with the chucking you talked about but my big help came when someone told me to readjust my P3 break controller to a heavier setting,this really helped a lot. I was banging hard on the pin. The best thing about air bags is they cure the concrete road. I no longer feel the crack in the road. :D
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Re: Air bags.

Unread postby Carolina Cruiser on Wed Apr 30, 2008 10:56 am

I had a set put on the Suburban due to tongue weight and they have really helped a lot. New heavier duty Shocks really finished the deal. The only problem is that when I forget to drop the air pressure when not towing, It feels like I am driving a semi.
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Re: Air bags.

Unread postby ReedMan on Wed Apr 30, 2008 12:39 pm

Ok, I'll chime in. Where did you get them and how much were they? Do you have any pics of them? Did you install them yourself?
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Re: Air bags.

Unread postby cwit on Wed Apr 30, 2008 3:05 pm

I use firestone bags. I bought them from JCwhitney the bag kit cost about 230.00 dollars and if you are lazy like me the pump I used was 174.00 dollars. I did enstall my self, they come with great instructions. As far as springs in the truck I did not need them, but they are worth it just for the concrete roads. One other nice feature you don't have to adjust your headlights because you can set your ride hight. If you are planning to keep your truck the bags take all the weight off the springs. Hay I could be a sales person for these things. :D
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Re: Air bags.

Unread postby MCBOWERS on Wed Apr 30, 2008 10:06 pm

Interesting topic!!!!!!!! With my TV,hitch weight is not a issue,less than 3/4 " of squat when fully loaded.My question would be ,why do so many folks use bars to level the ride heigth on ther TV's instead of going to airbags.The bags would be so much simpler & i think SAFER????????????????????? No silly bars on my TT
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Re: Air bags.

Unread postby Limey on Wed Apr 30, 2008 10:47 pm

MCBOWERS wrote:Interesting topic!!!!!!!! With my TV,hitch weight is not a issue,less than 3/4 " of squat when fully loaded.My question would be ,why do so many folks use bars to level the ride heigth on ther TV's instead of going to airbags.The bags would be so much simpler & i think SAFER????????????????????? No silly bars on my TT


Air bags will not distribute the load from the hitch to some of the front wheels of the TV. Not an issue with a 5er but with Travel Trailers the hitch load is often at or above the limit for the class of the hitch being used. Consequently the weight distribution hitches are desirable and much safer.

Generally the use of air bags is in order to allow the truck to carry a greater load than the manufacturer has recommended. I don't intend to get into an argument about that - in some cases, as has been mentioned above, the user is 'saving' the springs. If the truck's springs are capable of carrying the load and the load is within the capacities for the truck, I personally see no reason why you would want to do that. JMHO
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Re: Air bags.

Unread postby skipnchar on Thu May 01, 2008 11:00 pm

Limey wrote:
MCBOWERS wrote:Interesting topic!!!!!!!! With my TV,hitch weight is not a issue,less than 3/4 " of squat when fully loaded.My question would be ,why do so many folks use bars to level the ride heigth on ther TV's instead of going to airbags.The bags would be so much simpler & i think SAFER????????????????????? No silly bars on my TT


Air bags will not distribute the load from the hitch to some of the front wheels of the TV. Not an issue with a 5er but with Travel Trailers the hitch load is often at or above the limit for the class of the hitch being used. Consequently the weight distribution hitches are desirable and much safer.

Generally the use of air bags is in order to allow the truck to carry a greater load than the manufacturer has recommended. I don't intend to get into an argument about that - in some cases, as has been mentioned above, the user is 'saving' the springs. If the truck's springs are capable of carrying the load and the load is within the capacities for the truck, I personally see no reason why you would want to do that. JMHO

Limey makes an excellent point. Most half ton and many 3/4 ton trucks are supplied from the factory with a class IV receiver on them. Class IV receivers are rated for only 600 lb. of tongue weight WITHOUT a weight distributing hitch on the trailer. My current trailer has been weighed as much as 1,200 lb. hitch weight. You sure won't find ME putting DOUBLE the rated weight on my receiver cause that's just nuts to stretch it that far.
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Re: Air bags.

Unread postby cwit on Sun May 04, 2008 8:00 am

Some of us can't or don't want to respring every few years so air bags save us money, and for a bonus we don't have bright lights coming at us. No matter if you have a half ton or a 1 ton truck if you put weight on the back the front will raise some. There are people out here that buy the best truck they can for every day driving and not just a truck for towing our campers. :) :roll:
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Re: Air bags.

Unread postby skipnchar on Sun May 04, 2008 11:42 am

cwit wrote:Some of us can't or don't want to respring every few years so air bags save us money, and for a bonus we don't have bright lights coming at us. No matter if you have a half ton or a 1 ton truck if you put weight on the back the front will raise some. There are people out here that buy the best truck they can for every day driving and not just a truck for towing our campers. :) :roll:

That's the whole point of a weight distributing hitch (well at least part of the point :) ) It keeps the rig towing at the proper angle AND distributes the weight on front are rear axles. It makes the truck ride smoother, handle rough terrain like there wasn't a trailer attached and keeps from disturbing roosting birds at night. After well over 100,000 miles and towing close to my maximum the truck still sits at the same attitude as when new.
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Re: Air bags.

Unread postby MCBOWERS on Sun May 04, 2008 11:07 pm

cwit wrote:Some of us can't or don't want to respring every few years so air bags save us money, and for a bonus we don't have bright lights coming at us. No matter if you have a half ton or a 1 ton truck if you put weight on the back the front will raise some. There are people out here that buy the best truck they can for every day driving and not just a truck for towing our campers. :) :roll:



cwit,
I wish u had posted this as a question on the 5ers forum instead of this one cause i would not have responded,but i must admit some of the responses really surprise me.An example would be how many times have u replaced your springs because u didn't have airbags.

Limey &skipnchar,
Don't u think it is EVERYONE'S best interest that if we are going to tow a TT that we purchase a PROPER reciever to handle the task at hand[class 5 instead of whatever is on our truck] instead depending on a WDH that may or may not be up to the task.

I say this because after towing since1960 i have probably made more towing mistakes than most of you.With my current combo air bags are not needed but when i towed w/a ElCamino i learned that there is no substitute for weak springs other than air shocks or air bags.

I would sure like to hear from someone who uses AIR to maintain a level ride FIRST,then wether WDH & BARS were necessary or an insurance factor.

I am not trying to argue the issue of WDH & bars being benificial, they can be when towin too large a TT !BUT W/a proper TV,using the PROPER reciever[3/4,1ton]are they necessary if TV is LEVEL.
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Re: Air bags.

Unread postby Limey on Mon May 05, 2008 12:22 am

MCBOWERS wrote:Limey &skipnchar,
Don't u think it is EVERYONE'S best interest that if we are going to tow a TT that we purchase a PROPER reciever to handle the task at hand[class 5 instead of whatever is on our truck] instead depending on a WDH that may or may not be up to the task.


Looks like we're going to have to agree to differ!

Class 3 and 4 hitches are designed to be used with a WDH and are therefore up to the task. If you have a truck which does not squat when hitching a TT then, I agree, you do not necessarily need WD but just good anti sway. A squatting truck needs to be levelled one way or another and IMHO the use of a WDH which transfers some of the weight to the front axle is a better option than beefing up the rear suspension only - you may get close to the GAWR and that would not be good. Additionally, the better WDHs offer combined antisway functionality which are inherrently superior to the friction systems, especially for longer trailers.

Like you I have been towing for many years - started in 1969 - and have made about every mistake out there! My DW will testify that I an anal about being safe while towing and that is why I bought a high quality Dual Cam system when I bought my first TT in this country. I switched to a 5er in 2006 and now do not need my WDH. As for squatting with my 5er - my truck dips about 1" when hitched up - not enough to make a noticeable difference when using headlights - I carefully selected my 5er so as to have a safe pin weight and to be within all my limits. :)
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Re: Air bags.

Unread postby cwit on Mon May 05, 2008 7:56 am

I have personally never had a broken spring because I will respring or air bag a week truck before this happens to me. The load I carry is in the box not behind the bumper. I do believe in preventive maintanance . In my opinion if you haul a tt you should use a wdh. air bags are a helper not a cover up. If your truck is border line on gvw air bags can help you keep the truckyou just paid good money for. :)
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