Search the Community
Showing results for tags 'leaf'.
This has been an on-going research project of mine. I discovered when I inquired about having the Trail Boss (TB) factory lift kit (GM part# 84629787) added to my 2019 LT Z71, that I could not have the kit installed due to the secondary composite leaf springs on my truck. Upon further investigation, I found that ONLY the LT with 5.3L (and LT with 3.0 diesel and short box) had the composite leaf springs preventing the truck from having a TB lift added. On the GMC side, I found out the Sierra Denali also uses the same leaf springs with composite secondary as the LT 5.3L. My first impression was, “why the heck would GM do this?” Why wouldn’t the LTZ or High Country (HC) have the the composite leaf? Why would only the mid-level LT have it? The Sierra Denali has it and it’s a $60K+ truck. My LT averages around $45K. I might be a little upset as a LTZ or HC owner to find out my rear suspension is the same as on any Custom trim truck, or even, the base W/T model. I’ve doing a lot of reading on composite leaf springs and there are more advantages to them than disadvantages. Though they are dimensionally bigger (thicker) than the steel counterpart, they weight a lot less, last longer, and offer better damping properties than steel. GM has had a good track record using composite leaf springs. The same technology has been used on the corvette since 1997 with the introduction of the C5. Disadvantages are minimal, such as, they are more expensive to produce, can burn up in a fire, and in this case, can’t be further bent or altered out of original specification. This must be the reason GM won’t allow the lift to be added to vehicles with a composite leaf. I’m sure the leaf could take the additional stress, GM engineers just want to play it safer than sorry. So with this, the Silverado LT 5.3L (and LT 3.0 diesel with short bed) and the Sierra Denali are the only trucks to use the composite leaf. Though I’m disappointed I won’t be able to get the TB lift added, I’m now pretty stoked to find out my LT has more mechanical innovation put into the suspension and I didn’t have to spend $15K+ more for a Sierra Denali to get it. However with this, it seems that if someone is looking for a top-end truck, the Denali would be the better choice over the HC which lacks the particular composite leaf spring feature, if that mattered to the buyer. For reference, attached here are the GM compatibility charts for the Silverado and Sierra to see if you can add the TB lift kit. Also here is a link to the previous discussion about the TB lift kit where you can find more detail about installation and issues surrounding the composite leaf springs.
Hello, I have been helped by various posts on this forum for a long time but now joined mainly to ask some questions about upgrading my van. Here is the scenario; my dad purchased the 2000 Chevy Express Conversion Van new from a dealership back in 2001. We used it as a family vehicle for many years but as us 'kids' grew up and married off, the van was left unused. So I purchased it from my dad and have been fixing it up. Whoever did the conversion was an idiot. They took an Express 1500 and made it into a conversion van that weighs 6,800# empty. *The front doors are so heavy we had to reweld the hinges because the factory spot welds were peeling off. *The van had front DRUM brakes which we changed out for a set of Brembo slotted disk brakes. *Changed rear axle ratio from whatever stock was down to 3:73 *I upgraded the wheels from 15" to 17" and the tire size from 26" to 30.5" (yes the front tires rub sometimes, but it is 10X better in snow and rides better.). *I replaced the rear leaf springs with 3/4 ton leaf springs and coil-over heavy duty shocks. *Upgraded the full exhaust system from the manifolds back with 3" pipe and a high flow cat and Thrush muffler. *Replaced the engine after I was a dumbA$$ and never refilled the coolant with coolant after having to add water due to a leak and the block froze and cracked. The replacement engine was taken from a 1999 Chevy Suburban. *The transmission was replaced with a Monster Transmission brand 4L60-E rated up to 600hp and tuned for towing (quick firm shifts) and a heavy duty torque converter. *Replaced all ball-joints and steering bushings. *New "heavy duty" shocks for front suspension - which didn't change anything like I was hoping. Anyway, now I want to upgrade the front suspension because it is SO SOFT that the van struggles to ride flat if the road has any bumps in it. It is 2WD, so no front axle. 1: I want to upgrade the front and rear sway bars, can I just put 3/4-ton or 1-ton sway bars on it? Will they fit? 2: I want to upgrade the front springs and shocks with 3/4 ton springs and shocks. Is this possible? 2b: I would also be happy if anyone new of an air suspension or air-adjustable shocks that might work as well. I can't seem to find anything for front suspension for 2wd Chevy vans or trucks. Thanks for any help.
I am looking at a 2-3.5in lift for my 2016 Silverado LT 1500, but I tow 3000-4000lbs daily for my job. To prevent the rear end from sagging, I want to add an additional leaf or a helwig helper. Basic vehicle dynamics tells us that stiffening the rear suspension and doing nothing to the front will create oversteering issues at higher speeds. What does everyone do to the front suspension to create proportionate front/rear stiffness when adding a rear leaf?