My truck is mighty tippy - YotaTech Forums



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My truck is mighty tippy

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Old 12-05-2017, 04:32 AM   #1
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My truck is mighty tippy

Hey guys, I have a 1980 pickup with what measures out to around 4.5-5" of lift and 35's, with a v8 swap, which I'm sure is way heavier than the stock engine was. I can tell that one of the previous owners cut off the front hangers for the rear leaves and welded some on further forward to run longer springs (maybe Chevy 63's?), and it looks to have newer springs in front, possibly some replacement stock rears. It looks to have stock shackles.

My issue with this truck (especially after 20 years of wheeling jeeps with maybe 3" lifts and 32's) is that it always feels like it wants to flop in off camber situations, and often floats a rear tire when going downhill in really uneven terrain (deep V's and boulders).
I see guys wheeling yotas that are way taller, and with much bigger tires all the time. Should i just get used to this feeling, or is there something I can do to help it?
I'd really like to get some stability sorted out since this will be my primary off-road machine now. I traded a '97 wrangler on 32's for this truck.
I have a rear locker, but haven't put one in the front yet.

It has a later model v6 rear axle under it, and 1' wheel spacers in front to match track width.
Any ideas? I don't really want to lower it because I like my current approach and departure angles.
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Old 12-06-2017, 08:48 AM   #2
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I did some measuring, and the rear leaves are more like 58" long, and have 7 leaves per pack, and what appear to be stock shackles.
The fronts have 4 leaves, and seem to be stock length with stock shackles.
Maybe some longer shackles would help with flex, and by extension, off-road stability, but in turn would lift it a little more, making it even less stable on pavement?
What would you guys do, assuming I'm fairly happy with my ride height, and not looking to spend a lot of money on parts, although a junkyard run and/or a welding/fabrication project wouldn't hurt my feelings too bad.
The front locker is the very next thing on the list, as I'm trying to get the thing mechanically sorted before I start putting real time and money into things like bumpers, sliders, rollcage, etc...
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Old 12-06-2017, 04:04 PM   #3
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Kinda a tough but to crack if you donít want to make changes that will effect ride height.

Canít tell full flex in your pics. You can play with spring packs by removing one leaf each and testing flex out.

Might consider changing shocks.

What tire pressure are you running?
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Old 12-06-2017, 06:27 PM   #4
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Well, the tires have been run on the road at 35 psi all around, but I lowered them to around 18 psi to wheel, and ended up keeping them there for the drive home from the trails, without noticing much change (on pavement) aside from a slightly smoother ride.
The tires are Goodyear MT/R with Kevlar, 35x12.5x15.
I'm thinking I just need to get used to being higher off the ground, and maybe remove a leaf or two from the rear pack, and get longer shackles front and rear.
What are your opinions on the double rear shackle idea? It looks to provide a buttload of droop, but are they safe to drive on the road with? And to they pretty much always go back to the right spot when the terrain flattens out, as opposed to flipping the other way?
The current shocks are some ranchos that look to be just longer versions of stockish replacements. Not real sure what I'd need to change about them other than maybe length? As slow as I'm creeping in this thing off-road, even really stiff shocks should have time to react.

Last edited by thechief86; 12-06-2017 at 06:30 PM.
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Old 12-06-2017, 07:08 PM   #5
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Keep in mind that changing shackles particularly on the front my effect castor.

I DD mine on 35s, Allpro 4Ē fronts (5-5.5 inch lift) and 63ís rear with 1Ē steel block welded to perch. Flexie springs and lift make it so i wonít be running any rally races. Have to watch speed on bumpy winding roads; get pushed by heavy winds. Havenít ran double shackles so no 1st hand experience.
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Old 12-07-2017, 03:34 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by muddpigg View Post
Keep in mind that changing shackles particularly on the front my effect castor.

I DD mine on 35s, Allpro 4Ē fronts (5-5.5 inch lift) and 63ís rear with 1Ē steel block welded to perch. Flexie springs and lift make it so i wonít be running any rally races. Have to watch speed on bumpy winding roads; get pushed by heavy winds. Havenít ran double shackles so no 1st hand experience.
Do your flexy springs make the truck feel less tippy off-road? I'm wondering if I should put and angle finder or clinometer on the dash to remind myself how much further the truck can tip without danger of rolling on over. I've had the truck way over (accidentally before a rear locker and fuel injection, just kinda how it ended up) and it didn't tip. But it sure felt like it was gonna, lol.
I have side-flopped jeeps a time or two, both in XJ Cherokees and a TJ Wrangler, but never even felt close in my Wagoneers, even with 7" of lift and 37's.
The XJ's and TJ were between 3" of lift and 4.5", (I've had several Cherokees of varying levels of bigness, lol)
I dunno, Maybe after 5 years of daily driving and wheeling a mostly stock TJ with a small lift, 32's, and lockers at both ends, I just developed an illusion of what stability feels like.
For the last year, I've been DD'ing a stock 2017 Tacoma, and it feels as stable as the days when I did my offroading in a clapped out Honda civic, even going over Black Bear Pass in Colorado this summer.
Maybe the problem is me, and not so much the truck. The thing seems to flex pretty well, although it does float a rear tire in strange downhill sections where a front tire ends up 2 feet deep in a v-notch.
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Old 12-07-2017, 03:48 AM   #7
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It didn't roll in either of these photos, but as you can see, it floated the front tire a bit.
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Old 12-07-2017, 04:58 AM   #8
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An inclinometer of some sort is probably a good idea. Iíve got an app for phone. Kinda put things in perspective. Helped me realize feel vrs reality. Places I thought was really sketch really werenít as bad as they felt. Lot less work and money and gives actual feed back not ďfeelĒ

The imbankment in pic looks close to 30* which is close to max iíll Push mine. Flex looks pretty good. Might get a little more by removing a spring.
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Old 12-07-2017, 12:24 PM   #9
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Thanks man. Maybe I don't have much to worry about, then.
I'll try to find an inclinometer like came in the old 4runner and just pay attention to it when I'm feeling puny, lol.
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Old 12-07-2017, 01:43 PM   #10
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Most likely youíre used to driving with sway bars. Now no sway bars added to flexie springs, rocky rocky swayie swayie
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Old 12-07-2017, 01:47 PM   #11
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Definitely not used to wheeling with swaybars, lol. I usually throw them in the dumpster, haha.
Wheeling with swaybars makes stuff more tippy off road because it kills flex. This thing is just way taller, and the suspension is pretty stiff.
I think I'll get used to it, and the suspension may soften up with some abuse, haha.
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