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Old 08-17-2017, 10:13 PM   #1
Brad54
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Best way to lower 3500 dually?

What's the best way to lower a '96 Dually (King cab long-bed), without using air bags?
I don't want to lay it on the ground or anything ridiculous, I just want to drop it a "reasonable" amount, and still be able to haul and tow with it, and not deal with bump steer.

Suggestions?
(companies and components would be appreciated!)

-Brad
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Old 08-18-2017, 08:52 AM   #2
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Re: Best way to lower 3500 dually?

Contact, Bell Tech, and they will give you a list of truck shops.

When I lived in Southern California, I knew of a few good shops that "slightly lowered" some 4-door dually's that towed trailers for F1-Tunnelboat racing boats and Ski racing boats.
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Old 08-18-2017, 06:44 PM   #3
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Re: Best way to lower 3500 dually?

G'day, this is my dually. It has been working in paddocks and towing down highways for over 12 years now.
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4" drop spindles in the front. Then the front of the rear spring mounts were moved higher on the chassis rail. Long shackles simply bolted in. A set of Rancho 9000 adjustable shocks and it rides real smooth and handle well also.
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We often load up the 2700lb truck camper and head out and it goes well.
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although I have been working on a custom set of air bags, so that when backing up to a trailer I simply deflate and then raise when under the hitch, just because I am lazy and it looks so cool.
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Old 08-18-2017, 07:40 PM   #4
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Re: Best way to lower 3500 dually?

Nice ... I can bet you have some long drives down there!!
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Old 08-19-2017, 02:55 PM   #5
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Re: Best way to lower 3500 dually?

Slam it down and add air helper bags for load capacity. Its the only way to go.
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Old 08-22-2017, 01:18 AM   #6
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Re: Best way to lower 3500 dually?

The thing I don't like about airbags is if something fails, you're stranded with a collapsed bag.
I'd rather just lower it mechanically and be done with it.
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Old 08-22-2017, 01:17 PM   #7
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Re: Best way to lower 3500 dually?

Quote:
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The thing I don't like about airbags is if something fails, you're stranded with a collapsed bag.
I'd rather just lower it mechanically and be done with it.
While I get your point, an air bag is no different than a tire, starter, water pump etc.... Anything can fail (especially if not installed correctly). A simple AOL set-up installed correctly will be trouble free. I've had them on multiple trucks that pulled trailers & never had an issue.
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Old 08-22-2017, 05:11 PM   #8
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Re: Best way to lower 3500 dually?

Hey, Scott is taking you to your next step. You will love the AOL set up for a number of reasons. And then you can have both worlds of driving without many of the bad points.
EG, when I back up to a trailer I just air out completely and reverse, as soon as the ball is under the hitch I air up. It is so handy. I have a cheap camera just on top of the licence tag and can see the hitch perfectly.
Have a thought about this,, you can do it in two stages as your budget allows!

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This is the pic of my little trailer hitch and the truck camper.
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Old 08-23-2017, 01:25 PM   #9
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Re: Best way to lower 3500 dually?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brad54 View Post
The thing I don't like about airbags is if something fails, you're stranded with a collapsed bag.
I'd rather just lower it mechanically and be done with it.
Thats why you use helper bags. They only get air when there is a load in the bed. Unloaded your riding on leaf springs. Loaded you have springs plus bags. Bag fails and you still have springs, just less travel.
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-06 CBR600F4i: 110mph in 2nd at 14,000rpm= happiness.
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Old 08-23-2017, 05:42 PM   #10
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Re: Best way to lower 3500 dually?

Yep, some places call them "load lifters", or "load levellers". My first set was a "slam bag setup". They were helpful in making up my mind as to what to do.
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Old 08-23-2017, 06:47 PM   #11
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Re: Best way to lower 3500 dually?

Okay, that makes more sense to me! I thought you were talking about full air ride.
So what are the best components to lower it?
I'm most concerned about the front suspension, in terms of bump steer, and camber/tire wear.
Back is easy: only have to worry about maintaining pinion angle. Might have to C-notch, but the options are flip kit or new hangers. That's easy.
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'62 K-10 long-step project
Nostalgia Altered drag car with 2x4 FE Ford.
'57 Chevy 2dr 150 wagon gasser
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'56 Chevy 2dr basket case
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Old 08-23-2017, 08:26 PM   #12
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Re: Best way to lower 3500 dually?

Spindles and coils for 1/2tons, but I'm not sure with 1tons. Never had any front end issues from lowering with several trucks.
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-78 c10 short/step: 388cid, M20, 5/5 drop, lots more. Playtoy and first vehicle.
-98 c1500 x-cab: 5.7L, 17" rims, 5/6 drop, flowmaster, helper bags,NBS rear disk brakes.
-06 CBR600F4i: 110mph in 2nd at 14,000rpm= happiness.
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Old 08-23-2017, 09:37 PM   #13
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Re: Best way to lower 3500 dually?

Spindles first up front, then if you need a bit lower then you know how much. Buy well known brands and you should be ok. If the top arms need it, you can buy 1 degree offset bushes. I have them in our daily and are very happy.
If you are towing then buy an engineered notch setup, because when you cut the rails it can weaken them, if not done properly. JMHO.
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