So what’s the theory here? Infrquently portions of the driveline “dry out” and need to be splashed around in fluid on occasion? Not questioning your observations. This seems as plausible a fix as anything else that’s been tried. Just working through the logic.
You have the student "prove himself wrong" in front of the class????? WTH man??? This is a truly horrific method of teaching!!! So lemme get this straight. If you're teaching, and a student asks a question or offers an alternative solution (like Canada resides north of the mainland USA), then you would what? Berate them until they agreed with you, and then publicly shame them so that everyone else doesn't get any bright ideas??? WTH?
I don't recall refusing to answer anything. Been busy a couple of days, and I was kinda hoping you'd get it out of your system so I didn't have to continue explaining how it works. I was wrong. I didn't weigh each axle (never said I did, but why do you care if I have the time?). Truck weighs right at 6k with my usual gear. The trailer and load I pull most often is the TA on an 18' open, full steel bed with a good bit of equipment up front. Car is very near 4k when I have my usual load of accessories, chairs, supplied, etc. in her. Yes, she's a big girl. And she's a Pontiac, so the weight distribution is like 90/10 or something stupid like that. It's not good. Trailer is 1,850 with around another 150 near the front (jack, tools, battery, winch, yadda) so call it 2k. Car on the trailer is 6k. With the car in the usual position, tongue weight is on the high side, about 1,175 (granted this varies, doesn't take a lot of movement of the car on the trailer to move this around). This wasn't calculated, I weighed the tongue. With everything hitched up, no WD but with bars attached, the whole rig came in super close to 12k. Rear sag was substantial, but nothing I'd be afraid to drive under normal circumstances. It's the abnormal ones that would have concerned me, not to mention just the overall comfort in piloting the rig. Front axle lift was ~320lb, def more than I wanted. Admittedly I didn't bother measuring the rear axle after this since I knew it would be within range once I was done with the front axle. I was shooting for near 50% FALR (in this case, about two standard issue jockeys), but mindful of the rear lift which is a critical point. Restored 150lb to the front, which resulted in 190lb going back to the trailer axle pair. Based on math, rear loading should be near ~835lbs. The rear was still slightly sagged below level, but nothing like it was. Plenty of travel left. Forgot to mention, I usually have nothing or extremely little in the bed when I'm towing like this. Certainly nothing of any appreciable weight. Rides fantastically. Bumps/dips/sags/maneuvers, I really don't think it can tow any better overall. Even the wife noted how nice it felt. For those interested, the same exercise with airbags would yield very nearly the exact same before/after even with a highly accurate scale. If your scale has a 20lb resolution, it'll be the same. That should tell you all you need to know when asking if airbags will help. I've never even ONCE suggested that ANYONE remove "all that weight" from the rear. In fact, I emphasized very early on in this thread the inherent danger in doing so. I did not say that, and I don't appreciate your attempt to put words in my mouth to try and make your case. But man it's hard to drown one! Very nicely said Donstar! We are constantly monitoring not only our performance in the classroom itself, but the day to day performance of our students in the workforce. Given normalizing factors, if our students aren't improving or performing well, it reflects on the house of instruction first and foremost. Jon A, I'm going to skim the rest to see if I accidentally missed responding to a question. No guarantees, but please, make no assumptions as to my intent.
Some of us have state certified scales at their disposal. And some have ACTUALLY pulled their fully loaded trailer across said scales to make sure their rig is operating within manufacturer’s guidelines. One axle at a time. Just sayin. But yeah go ahead and put all of that weight on the bag in the rear 🤪
Thread stalker, nice! How much does it suck having to dig so hard to try and find something you could possibly use to make your point? But yes I said that, before several important changes. Wasn't nonsense then, nor now, and I stand by my statements. Since that time I've mostly leveled the truck using 5100s (which as we know have very different and imho improved dampening characteristics) and, most importantly, had a job change which much to my surprise involves regularly carrying around 1,000+lbs of equipment in the bed. Not crazy about that, but so be it. This resulted in way too much sag in the rear, to the point that it was at times uncomfortable to drive looking at the sky. So I found a gently used Air Lift 2k set and installed them, but rarely run more than about 15psi. Which, considering the NHT package only provides something like an additional 300lbs of oomph in addition to revised shock rates in the rear, seems pretty reasonable to me. So if you paid attention while stalking, then you'd see that this wasn't in any way a reversal. It's very much in line with my recommendations all along. If you're simply carrying heavy loads in the bed and you want a more stable experience, then add a reasonable amount of spring rate along with dampening and call it a day (gotta stick to all of the factory weight ratings, you're not changing axles, brakes, bearings, yadda yadda). If you're towing, consider a WDH as it is the more appropriate tool for the job. Don't use a WDH if you're not towing and have a heavy load in the bed because...well...basically you're going to be disappointed. If I have both, then yes it can most certainly be a choice of one or the other. Or both for that matter. I use the proper tool for the job. I don't just throw on whatever I have because someone said it worked well for them. Airbags do NOT make your suspension "better". They change the characteristics of your suspension. Whether or not it's "better" depends on numerous factors, some of the biggest being A-did it address the root cause of the issue you were having and B-did it do so safely? If you can answer yes to both of those, then yeah, it probably made it "better". And I think I've mentioned several times, and even went into depth on the risks of not properly adjusting a WDH. Namely over-adjusting them (ie transferring an excessive amount of weight) and you quickly risk jackknifing. Don't want to jackknife? Don't buy a 10k WDH and set on max for your 1,500lb gross single axle you bought at Harbor Freight. But fear mongering isn't helping anyone dude. If you really want to help, try and help explain what works, what doesn't, and why. Well if all you do is add a large amount of weight to the rear springs, then yeah go ahead and stiffen up the spring rate AND the dampening rate to match. And GM does put slightly stiffer rear springs AND "revised rear shocks". Whaddaya know? They increased the spring rate AND the dampening together. And the additional stiffness out back helps support a heavier tongue load, which GM assumes people will want to do with their NHT. Of course if you use a properly adjusted WDH, then you don't add a large amount of weight to the rear. That's kinda how it works. It "distributes" (right there in the name dude....seriously) what would have rested only on the rear and lifting the front, to the front, rear and the trailer rear axles at a rate that you set. So if you're not adding a lot of weight...why increase the spring rate??? Kinda like adding oil when you're low on gas. Almost sounds like what you're advocating is that you should add air bags if you're going to, say, haul 1k+lbs of equipment in your bed pretty regular, and use a WDH whenever you're hauling a trailer. Proper tool for the job. Wish someone else had said that....oh....wait.... Firebird is still a heck of a lot of fun btw. Fuel pump is laying down on me though, gotta swap it soon. Kills the fun :/ I somehow magically solved the front end issues without bags though. Kinda sucks for those who want everyone to think that WDHs are dangerous snake oil. On this we totally agree. So use the proper equipment to make a conscious decision on what affect your towing has on your rig and you won't have to hope for the best by simply bagging up a single spot on the chassis! Regarding the previous science experience, suggest you reconsider while including additional mass and placement considerations. Juuuuust a suggestion. Using a WDH to redistribute the load does restore rear travel as it's carrying less of the load. And if you're so heavily loaded that you're nailing the bump stops, then you have big issues and neither a WDH nor air bags will likely (there's that nasty word again!) sufficiently address the issue. But yes, stiffer springs can handle large loads better than soft springs. This lands firmly in the "DUH" category. But the whole point of the WDH is to keep the loading of the rear axle down to a level that it can handle safely without the need to greatly increase the spring rate thereby addressing the root cause of the problem instead of simply applying a band-aid.
I've seen the same issue on boats myself. Those sales guys know how to make a living. Air bags have their place. I wouldn't have them if that wasn't the case. But do realize that bags only increase your rear spring rate. That's what they do. They do nothing to increase your rear dampening, which technically you should do if you're increasing your spring rate. So those weak shocks have to try and wrangle in even stiffer springs. Sure stiffening the rear end can make it seem more stable, but so would welding your springs together. Also don't forget that bagging up the rear doesn't help the front axle situation. If you have a lot of tongue weight (not necessarily too much, just a lot), you're lifting up the front of the truck. Think of it like a seesaw. Any weight applied behind the rear axle takes weight off of the front steer. It's not a 1:1 ratio because your hitch is closer to the rear axle than the front axle is to the rear (shorter lever), but it makes the front end lighter and more difficult to control. Gives it that "floaty" bounce around feeling. Bags will jack the rear back up, but it doesn't put any weight back onto the front axle, so the front is still loosey goosey. This is one reason why some prefer 5th wheels or goosenecks. They put the weight directly over the rear without affecting the front or steer axle. And then there's the really scary scenario (which I'm a little concerned that OP has going on), which is an oversized or overly preloaded WD hitch that it transferring way too much weight onto the front, and lifting the rear. With a big enough hitch and a low tongue weight, you can actually lift the rear end up over stock height, greatly reducing the weight on the rear axle. And, you have to stop suddenly, and all of the weight is taken off of the rear axle and placed onto the front (which, incidentally is now VERY firmly planted into the pavement) and the whole rig jackknifes going down the road. Very dangerous, and I see it way too often. Not the actual jackknifing, the improper setup.
I’ll just let the results speak for themselves. Hopefully OP will work things out and report back. In the meantime, I’m not going to waste any more of my time engaged in nonesense. But for the record I inflated my bags yesterday on the way back from the local bulk supplier with 1.5 cu yds of topsoil in the bed. Leveled her out and made the ride a bit nicer. I’ve never even considered inflating them while towing regardless of which trailer I have behind me since I have a nice WDH and I know how to use it.
Shouldn't be very hard at all. Not sure which hitch you have? But if you’re asking, that leads me to believe that your bars are probably too tight. With that tongue weight, you really don’t need much weight distribution (and I’m admittedly a big fan of WDH). In this context, preload basically refers to “how tight are your bars”.
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