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Discussion Starter #1
Just purchased this 2019 F-150 4X4 and I’m looking into leveling kit for the front. Debating on a 2inch or 2 1/2inch Kit. Who’s got what ?
 

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Just do it the easy way and get Bilstien 5100 all the way around and set the front on the highest setting. The handling will be better and the rear end won't jump around on washboard roads.

Right now I'm running a 2.5" spacer but have the new 5100's in the garage waiting to go on. Right now mine sits perfectly (or as close to) level but I want to get some of the rake back so the front is coming down about 3/4".
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Just do it the easy way and get Bilstien 5100 all the way around and set the front on the highest setting. The handling will be better and the rear end won't jump around on washboard roads.

Right now I'm running a 2.5" spacer but have the new 5100's in the garage waiting to go on. Right now mine sits perfectly (or as close to) level but I want to get some of the rake back so the front is coming down about 3/4".
So the 2.5 is the best bet for getting it as level as possible. Wow I didt realize the ride comfort would be effected. What’s the 5100s ? Struts/Shocks ?
 

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So the 2.5 is the best bet for getting it as level as possible. Wow I didt realize the ride comfort would be effected. What’s the 5100s ? Struts/Shocks ?
The ride won't change one single bit if using stock shocks and springs.
 

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I have a MotoFab 2.5 level on my truck, and it's too much. It looks like the truck has a little squat. I have an add a leaf kit to install on the rear to bring it up some and fix that.

2016 2.7 4x4 screw
 

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I'm seriously considering leveling my truck.... The other way. I've always been about lifts and big tires, but I can't break this feeling that my truck would like T!TS with the rear lowered to level. I've never lowered before. Anyone have any advice?

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This simply isn’t true. At 2.5” you lose almost all suspension down travel if using stock control arms. The ride will definitely be harsher.
^^^this

I've done aftermarket coilovers for levels on trucks and the pucks, the coilovers or Mets better for a ride quality. In other words I would never use pucks again.
Now if your truck is pretty much a street truck it won't make a whole lot of difference

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My truck beat you to death off road stock too, not much difference that I can tell. I absolutely wouldn't argue that there is no change, just not that I actually notice. Off road was rough before and after, on the street isn't much different. I would imagine once the shocks are upgraded it'll be fine.

I fail to see whether adding length to the strut assembly with a puck or whether adding it with a longer shock would make any difference geometrically. It does the same thing to the control arms and the droop, no?
@GearHead_1 (He and @[email protected] with stage three are my go to suspension advice guys. Lol)

2016 2.7 4x4 screw
 

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I fail to see whether adding length to the strut assembly with a puck or whether adding it with a longer shock would make any difference geometrically. It does the same thing to the control arms and the droop, no?
@GearHead_1 (He and @[email protected] with stage three are my go to suspension advice guys. Lol)
From a pure geometry standpoint, there’s not a difference between a strut spacer leveling kit and a coilover/leveled strut.

That being said, geometry (or lack thereof) is only one factor in determining ride quality and performance on or off road.
 

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From a pure geometry standpoint, there’s not a difference between a strut spacer leveling kit and a coilover/leveled strut.

That being said, geometry (or lack thereof) is only one factor in determining ride quality and performance on or off road.
And technically doesn’t the puck let the suspension drop farther. the thickness of the puck. And your suspension isn’t designed to drop 2.5 inches farther then stock. Bilstien 5100 are stock length ? Don’t know if I’m explaining that correctly.
 

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The geometry is pretty much the same either way as the truck sits with weight on it. I’m making this next statement half cocked as I haven’t really measured the Ford verses Bilstein coil over assembly lengths. As I understand it, the Bilstein assembly when fully extended is the same length as the factory coil over dimension. It simply squeezes the spring tighter resulting in lift. The coil over assembly is the limiter when it comes to full droop on these suspensions. The block will however allow the control arm/s to droop the extra height of the block potentially putting more strain on ball joints, sway bar links, control arm bushings etc. at full droop.

In essence the packaged length of the assembly becomes coil over plus block height vs. OEM length. In my mind the potential for over extension on these pieces could result in accelerated wear. Keep in mind that in either case these pieces are working closer to their designed limits than Ford intended so one could make a case that either way you go you might accelerate wear. Unless I were able to run an A vs. B vs. C comparison I have no idea if this really happens, I suspect it does.

I’m helping a friend put a set on his 2018 this Friday. I’ll try to take actual measurements of the intact assemblies.
 

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The geometry is pretty much the same either way as the truck sits with weight on it. I’m making this next statement half cocked as I haven’t really measured the Ford verses Bilstein coil over assembly lengths. As I understand it, the Bilstein assembly when fully extended is the same length as the factory coil over dimension. It simply squeezes the spring tighter resulting in lift. The coil over assembly is the limiter when it comes to full droop on these suspensions. The block will however allow the control arm/s to droop the extra height of the block potentially putting more strain on ball joints, sway bar links, control arm bushings etc. at full droop.

In essence the packaged length of the assembly becomes coil over plus block height vs. OEM length. In my mind the potential for over extension on these pieces could result in accelerated wear. Keep in mind that in either case these pieces are working closer to their designed limits than Ford intended so one could make a case that either way you go you might accelerate wear. Unless I were able to run an A vs. B vs. C comparison I have no idea if this really happens, I suspect it does.

I’m helping a friend put a set on his 2018 this Friday. I’ll try to take actual measurements of the intact assemblies.
Yes but this is about ride feel not wear.

I drove on a 2" level kit for 30k km. It felt zero different than driving sans 2" aluminum puck.

Seriously how many guys on just levelling kits are out hitting full droop on an IFS suspension and stock coil overs... Um practically zero.


The upper control arm geometry may change but the physical feel of the suspension and drove does not change.

My only complaint was the hollow feeling you got over wash board feedback from the steering rack.

But that's steering feel not ride.
 

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Yes but this is about ride feel not wear...
Actually the thread was about who’s got’em. Wasn’t making a case for what THIS was about but at least I know now. ;) Just making a comment on potential consequences. Admittedly I’ve never run a set of pucks. I can’t speak to their ride quality in any way meaningful.

I personally like a firmer ride and Bilstein’s are certainly firmer than OE.
 

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Yes but this is about ride feel not wear.

I drove on a 2" level kit for 30k km. It felt zero different than driving sans 2" aluminum puck.

Seriously how many guys on just levelling kits are out hitting full droop on an IFS suspension and stock coil overs... Um practically zero.


The upper control arm geometry may change but the physical feel of the suspension and drove does not change.

My only complaint was the hollow feeling you got over wash board feedback from the steering rack.

But that's steering feel not ride.
Yeah with a puck,technically you would have to get air to droop the suspension to far. Or any time you jack the vehicle up by the frame.
By the way Jason brought up geometry and it’s a valid point. Not the first time a thread went in a different direction.
Ill be curious what measurements Gearhead comes up with. I think I read they should be the same as stock. So no extra droop. But since it’s lifted you get to maximum droop sooner.
 

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I'm having a hard time getting my mind around how you achieve the same ride height without the same distance between the top and bottom of the strut mounts .

Spacer is easy. It goes on top of my strut and makes it longer. So we have that out of the way.

Bilsteins, if they are the same length, I guess achieve the height by putting more preload on the spring. If this is the case, doesn't that cause the shock to extend...making it longer? (To achieve an identical ride height to the spacer)


Edit-I'm guessing since the lift is coming from preload, the difference is that once the shock is fully extended that's it. You're not overextending anything, you're just limiting yourself to less down travel more or less. (I think I'm getting it now. Lol)

At any rate, I haven't noticed much of anything that is less desirable after adding my 2.5" spacers. I've seen Jason say as far as increased wear we're okay at 2.5 but no more, so that's good enough for me in that department. If I have to service some parts sooner due to that it's okay. Soon I'll be upgrading my shocks and I think she's going to ride well.


Edit. Found some specs, I'll look for these same specs soon for oem shocks.



2016 2.7 4x4 screw
 

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The spacer just compresses the spring, pretty simple. Its not ideal but hey, many of us have it and it works.
 

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And technically doesn’t the puck let the suspension drop farther. the thickness of the puck. And your suspension isn’t designed to drop 2.5 inches farther then stock. Bilstien 5100 are stock length ? Don’t know if I’m explaining that correctly.
Not really. Increased ride height is increased ride height regardless of how it's achieved. The Bilstein 5100s are at least close to stock length. They add ride height via spring preload, but it still throws off geometry/angles regardless.

The geometry is pretty much the same either way as the truck sits with weight on it. I’m making this next statement half cocked as I haven’t really measured the Ford verses Bilstein coil over assembly lengths. As I understand it, the Bilstein assembly when fully extended is the same length as the factory coil over dimension.
It's at least close. I'm not sure if it's 100% dead-on the same, but it's close enough to not make a difference with the perch settings for the spring.

In my mind the potential for over extension on these pieces could result in accelerated wear. Keep in mind that in either case these pieces are working closer to their designed limits than Ford intended so one could make a case that either way you go you might accelerate wear. Unless I were able to run an A vs. B vs. C comparison I have no idea if this really happens, I suspect it does.
While extra wear is technically the case, the real question (which probably can't be answered due to sample size issues) is whether or not the "extra" wear actually causes more failures on a long enough timeline than the variances of quality in the stock hardware to begin with.

In our experience, I've got to say it's not anywhere near as big of an issue as it's made out to be.

I'm having a hard time getting my mind around how you achieve the same ride height without the same distance between the top and bottom of the strut mounts .

Spacer is easy. It goes on top of my strut and makes it longer. So we have that out of the way.

Bilsteins, if they are the same length, I guess achieve the height by putting more preload on the spring. If this is the case, doesn't that cause the shock to extend...making it longer? (To achieve an identical ride height to the spacer)

Edit-I'm guessing since the lift is coming from preload, the difference is that once the shock is fully extended that's it. You're not overextending anything, you're just limiting yourself to less down travel more or less. (I think I'm getting it now. Lol)
The key word here is "ride height" which is where the truck rides on a level surface. Both spacers and preload-based leveling kits have the same effect on geometry and downtravel, just via different methods.

At any rate, I haven't noticed much of anything that is less desirable after adding my 2.5" spacers. I've seen Jason say as far as increased wear we're okay at 2.5 but no more, so that's good enough for me in that department. If I have to service some parts sooner due to that it's okay. Soon I'll be upgrading my shocks and I think she's going to ride well.
We recommend not going beyond 2.5" of leveling with the factory UCAs. You already risk spring contact with the stock UCAs at that point.

In theory, you can go up to about 3" with aftermarket UCAs, but you'd be pushing it.

My truck's been at 2.75" over stock on a set of Halo Lifts coilovers for nearly three years now, and no issues other than the fact that the uniballs in my FabTech UCAs have about had it.

The spacer just compresses the spring, pretty simple. Its not ideal but hey, many of us have it and it works.
If you're talking about a preload spacer (and there are some kits that use those), then yes. If you're talking about a strut spacer, then no. Strut spacers just increase the length of the strut assembly, and don't have anything to do with the coilover spring.
 
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