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Discussion Starter #1
My new tacoma has many uses, the main one being a family camping trail rig. It wont see the wheeling my 92 saw, but oh well. I installed a 1.75" level kit and its perfect, but the hitch would sag too far with a bed full of gear and tounge weight, so it was airbag time. I thought about AAL, but dont want the extra ride height or spring rate all the time, OEM ride is great..

I looked into the Air Ride and Firestone bags. The Air Ride bags mount aft of the axle, and this really discouraged me, I didnt want an odd shape being forced into my springs. The firestone kit is a little overkill, but shouldnt limit travel.. havent tested this yet.

So I orderd the kit from Summit $242 to the door, and it showed up yesterday. The brackets and air bags are very very nice, the hardware SUCKS!!! It is bad for taiwan standards. Half way thru the install I said screw it and bought some new stuff, not all the hardware is new, but I will change it all out eventually.

The kit went on very smoothly, the hardest thing being trimming the bump stops.. .other than the POS hardware. The only fitment issue is at the brake line, but I will bend the mount a little in the next few days and feel safer.

Here you can see the "assemebled" kit and the bag.



The bag at static height



The bad fully compressed



Trimmed bump stop (In reality I should have removed them, espically with the PITA the driver side one was with the fuel tank there)



In place, starting to bolt up



Fully bolted up



Air line



10psi



50psi



0psi



40psi



50psi



Area that may need some clearancing, by the brake line..



Some height measurments

0psi 15.5" to the bottom of my hitch 36" to the wheelwell
10psi 17" to the bottom of my hitch 37" to the wheelwell
20psi 17.75" to the bottom of my hitch 37.75" to the wheelwell
40 psi 18.5" to the bottom of my hitch 38" to the wheelwell
50psi 19" to the bottom of my hitch 38.5" to the wheelwell

So it does what I want, brings the hitch up and keeps me level. My rear is bone stock otherwise...

On a side note, 50psi with and empty bed (about 2.5" lift) has a nice vibration at 5mph.

I also plan to have a line made with screw-on valves to use on the trail, this will allow load leveling and wheel travel. It will move air from one bag to the other as one side compresses.

Its about 50lbs per psi of leveling capibilities. So at 1000 lbs thats only 20psi, so they should never be worked too hard.
 

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i wish i wouldn't have seen this, because know it will probably be put on my to do list:D. So does it ride stiffer when it is inflated at around 20 psi?
 

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AH64: Looks good bud! Should do exactly what you want it to do. You may want to re-think connecting the bags together with a common line. When you get a leak, you can't diagnose which side is causing the problem.:2cents:
 

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If you connect the bags together then you can not run different pressure left and right. I run 80 on drive side and 70 on passenger side to level the truck.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
i wish i wouldn't have seen this, because know it will probably be put on my to do list:D. So does it ride stiffer when it is inflated at around 20 psi?
At 7psi you cannot tell a difference, except that the truck is a hair higher. There is no reason to run them at 20psi with nothing in the bed, and I would guess it would be real stiff.

AH64: Looks good bud! Should do exactly what you want it to do. You may want to re-think connecting the bags together with a common line. When you get a leak, you can't diagnose which side is causing the problem.:2cents:
If you connect the bags together then you can not run different pressure left and right. I run 80 on drive side and 70 on passenger side to level the truck.
The common line will only be once I hit the dirt road when camping. It will allow the rear to flex more. Once I leave the dirt the common line will be removed and any side/side leveling will be accomplioshed...

slooowr6, that is a TON of air, 4000lbs leveling on the driver and 3500 on the pass... My dad uses that much is his 2500 diesel with a bed full of hunting gear and the 4-horse hooked up... what do you haul? Or are you using it for lift?
 

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So, you are going to run a valve between the 2 lines, then just switch it on when you leave the hardpack? Seems reasonable enough.
 

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At 7psi you cannot tell a difference, except that the truck is a hair higher. There is no reason to run them at 20psi with nothing in the bed, and I would guess it would be real stiff.





The common line will only be once I hit the dirt road when camping. It will allow the rear to flex more. Once I leave the dirt the common line will be removed and any side/side leveling will be accomplioshed...

slooowr6, that is a TON of air, 4000lbs leveling on the driver and 3500 on the pass... My dad uses that much is his 2500 diesel with a bed full of hunting gear and the 4-horse hooked up... what do you haul? Or are you using it for lift?

I've Air Life so the pressure is different from Firestone.:D There is a 1100lbs camper on my truck bed that why I need that much air. ;)
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I've Air Life so the pressure is different from Firestone.:D There is a 1100lbs camper on my truck bed that why I need that much air. ;)
Air Life = Air Lift?? But wow thats a TON of air for so little support...
 

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Discussion Starter #9
So I have been out playing a time or two and the bags do not limit travel at all... Its great.

I will post up info and photos next week of the truck loaded with trailer and how much air it took to keep level.







 

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Discussion Starter #11
:eek: Stretchy... Inflatable limiting straps? :rolleyes:
Shocks still limit droop, and according to firestone there are no issues stretching them that way, I specifically asked.
 

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Shocks still limit droop, and according to firestone there are no issues stretching them that way, I specifically asked.
x2 I didn't have any issues with my airlifts either. Even before I put the limit straps on. Shock is the limiting factor on a factory set up.
 

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"...I will post up info and photos next week of the truck loaded with trailer and how much air it took to keep level..."

I have an 07 4x4 Dbl cab sport long bed so I am very interested in seeing your photos of your truck loaded with all your gear!

I want to get a trailer that will weigh about 5500lbs plus another 600lbs in the bed. I was wondering how my Taco will do as I plan to install air bag system as well. I will have trailer brakers, and will be traveling distances that will include flat roads to steep grade roads in the the sierra's. You think thats asking too much of my truck?
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Oh yeah :D

I have used the trailer on two trips, with varying pressures. On both trips to camp it took 45psi (approx 2250 lbs of leveling capacity, not 2250 in the bed). That was about 150-200lbs of tounge weight, and probably 500-700 in the bed. Coming out of camp the last time, 150-200lbs tounge, with a few lbs of wood, an empty cooler, stroller, and baby backpack it only took 25 lbs to keep her level. Now thats level, with a leveling kit so the OEM overload spring isnt used at all, it would take less air if you wanted to stay level w/out a level kit. The ride is awesome with the bags. I know of a couple people who have complained about the ride with weight in the bed, too bouncy (none of which are TRD)... and that is not the case with the airbags, cant even tell the weight is there... on or off the pavement.
 

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One further question:

The dude at the place I ordered them from said to fill the bags first - then load the truck. He tried to convince me that the bags needed to be inflated beforehand, as they were not designed for lifting.:confused:

However, all the big rigs at work run on airbags - and have no problem airing up a fully loaded trailer.

What do you think - has his myth been busted?:rolleyes:
 

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Thanks for the post and install, it was an excellent read, you made it look pretty straight foreward.

Wally
 

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Discussion Starter #18
One further question:

The dude at the place I ordered them from said to fill the bags first - then load the truck. He tried to convince me that the bags needed to be inflated beforehand, as they were not designed for lifting.:confused:

However, all the big rigs at work run on airbags - and have no problem airing up a fully loaded trailer.

What do you think - has his myth been busted?:rolleyes:
I don't think it makes a bit of difference, I know some who inflate their bags first, but most inflate them after.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
If you use the bags to gain lift for larger tires is there a problem with travel when they are inflated?
You may have a harder time fully compressing... but my biggest concern would be driveline vib (no room for shims) and the ride is stupid stiff with just 20psi and no weight.
 
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