Air Bags

Longrange

Professor
Ok so I pulled the trigger and bought a Northstar TC650 for my 2004 Dodge 2500 diesel. I'm looking for air bag suggestions. I read Daystar has cradles that allow the bags to be only attached at the top. So with that in mind, does anyone have some input on the different bags and ones to stay away from? I will be off roading during hunting season in and around the Boise area. Thanks for any input
 

zidaro

Explorer
the bigger the bellow, the softer the ride and less pressure you have to run for heavier loads. standard harry Homeowners are 6". Bigger bags are 7-8"dia.

Firestone, Ride-rite Homeowner series- Id assume they are the same style quality.
 

smlobx

Wanderer
I just purchased a set of Air Lift 5000 Ultimate with the built in bump stops.
My truck (F-350) can handle the weight but I want to keep the truck riding at the empty height to maximize my off-road capabilities.
Another benefit is that I'll be able to,level the camper when we stop!

I purchased my kit through SD Truck Springs.
https://www.sdtrucksprings.com
 

ericvs

Active member
I ended up getting a set of the PacBrake air bags with the dual in cab controller. Very happy with them. I have put probably 60k miles on them with zero issues. Installation was a breeze too.
 

broncobowsher

Adventurer
As mentioned above, the bigger the bag, the softer the ride. Less pressure in the system. Less stress on the bags, the lines, the compressor. The biggest issue is packaging. How big of a bag can you fit in there.

Are you looking for a pure bolt on kit? Or are you willing to do some custom fab work?

Do you have a rear sway bar? Planning on putting one on?
 

dirtnadvil

Member
My 2 cents

I went the air bag route a couple of times, I never liked the handling or ride of the truck with them. I had to pump them up quite a bit to level out the truck. On this truck I went to Deavers and for 480 dollars they re arced my springs and built them up from a 3/4 ton to a 1.5 ton rear suspension. Night and day difference. Plusher and a lot better handling and safer to drive and no more fiddling with air and trying to balance out the suspension. On the downside is if the truck is empty it rides like a buckboard but my truck is a dedicated truck and not my commuter car. I have a 3/4 ton chevy short bed crew cab 4x4 with an Outfitter Apex 8 camper. It weighs in about 2400 pounds loaded with all the water, sulplies, dogs, people and other crap. As far as airbags I run Firestone Ride rites. Never had a problem other than the ride quality.
 
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Check out Timbrens. With a 2500 and a 650, you don't need a lot of help to carry the weight. Timbrens are installed to not make contact under a normal load. They will help you out with the camper, and no fuss with air bags. I'veused them on 2 trucks.
 

Regcabguy

Oil eater.
How heavy is the Northstar? I've never needed to modify my truck to carry my fwc.

My friends TC800 shortbed model states 1550# wet. I think it's more than that.
The TC650 would be less than that. The Northstars are wider and taller than the FWC's. More leverage on the suspension. The stock shocks are valved for a nice test ride unladen.
I chucked mine the 1st week.
 

Dave Bennett

Adventurist
I just purchased a set of Air Lift 5000 Ultimate with the built in bump stops.
My truck (F-350) can handle the weight but I want to keep the truck riding at the empty height to maximize my off-road capabilities.
Another benefit is that I'll be able to,level the camper when we stop!

I purchased my kit through SD Truck Springs.
https://www.sdtrucksprings.com

I put the Airlift 5000's on mine. Very happy so far.

IMG_6629.jpg
 

Longrange

Professor
I am looking for a bolt on kit vs fab work. No sway bar and no plans to put one on unless there is something I don't know. I thought the air bags would help with some sway. When driving it home with 25 mph crosswinds it did ok. I did not get hardly any sway.
 

Choff

Adventurer
I Have AIRLIFT air bags on a 1500 GMC Savana and love them, had them on for more than 100,000 miles in Wisconisn and only issue was a bad swivel air line into bag, replaced on both bags.
Run about 15 to 20 lbs on both bags which have separate lines. Fill the old way with an air hose when loading up for travel or towing.
Choff
 

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