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Leaf Spring vs. Coil Spring (Ford Superduty)

Old 01-28-2010, 04:09 PM
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Default Leaf Spring vs. Coil Spring (Ford Superduty)

I am in the process of looking for another Powerstroke truck and am a bit on the fence about what I want in terms of looks/driveability. Ideally I want the 2005-2006 front end though the pricing on the 2005 F250 trucks makes me shy away a bit.

Important fact to mention is that whatever truck I buy will already have an 8-10" lift and 37"+ tires (that has been the criteria for most trucks I have taken interest in).

My last truck (1997 F250) had a 9" lift via leaf springs. It rode pretty rough, primarily as the previous owner used add-a-leafs to accomplish most of the front lift. As well, the 38.5" boggers rubbed the springs alot when making a sharp parking lot turn (even when nowhere near full lock). The crappy turning radius is something I REALLY want to avoid this time around.

The 2005 truck I looked at recently had a 10" lift and the coil springs made both the ride and turning radius substantially better than my 97.

My question is, if the lift is done correctly with leaf springs on an '01 F250 (8-10" lift) will 37" tires rub on the leaf springs no matter what and will the leaf springs never ride as well as a truck on coil springs?

Thanks!
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Old 01-28-2010, 07:20 PM
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Default Re: Leaf Spring vs. Coil Spring (Ford Superduty)

The issue with the tires rubbing the leaf springs up front will be mostly dependent on the back spacing of the wheels. Another issue maybe the tire choice, or the sidewall lugs of your tire choice. For instance ...compare the huge sidewall lugs of a TSL to say a Dirt Grip by Parnelli Jones. I run 38" PJ Dirt Grips on my '97 F350 with a wheel that has 4.5" of back spacing and they don't rub at full lock. The amount of lift won't change whether or not the tires scrub the leaf springs at full or close to full lock. The amount of lift or lack of could be the factor that determines if the tires scrub the bottom of the fender wells.

Generally coil springs will ride better than leaf springs.
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Old 01-28-2010, 07:24 PM
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Default Re: Leaf Spring vs. Coil Spring (Ford Superduty)

Originally Posted by SMOKEYBEAR View Post
The issue with the tires rubbing the leaf springs up front will be mostly dependent on the back spacing of the wheels. Another issue maybe the tire choice, or the sidewall lugs of your tire choice. For instance ...compare the huge sidewall lugs of a TSL to say a Dirt Grip by Parnelli Jones. I run 38" PJ Dirt Grips on my '97 F350 with a wheel that has 4.5" of back spacing and they don't rub at full lock. The amount of lift won't change whether or not the tires scrub the leaf springs at full or close to full lock. The amount of lift or lack of could be the factor that determines if the tires scrub the bottom of the fender wells.

Generally coil springs will ride better than leaf springs.
Thank for the info. The more I think about it the more I worry about the 6.0 motor being a nightmare and am kinda leaning towards an 01 or 02 truck and then doing the 2005 grill and lights swap.

Here is my '97 F250 that I sold in October. It rubbed like no tomorrow way before full lock which I guess was a product of both the boggers and wheels:

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Old 01-28-2010, 07:50 PM
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Default Re: Leaf Spring vs. Coil Spring (Ford Superduty)

My old super poopy .... shouldn't have sold it but bills are bills and I've moved onto better things, like a 12V Cummins

9 inches - 6" spring, 3" hanger (the less arch on the front springs, the better the ride, On these trucks it's allll in the springs and shocks on how it rides, make sure the front springs you get have like 10-12 leafs in the pack, not like 4 or 5 really thick ones. If you go dual shocks, make sure they are valved right. Full rear springs will make the rear of the truck ride worse then a spring/block combo. If you dont mind running some traction bars in the rear to help axle wrap, the blocks help get some of the arch out of the rear spring while still giving 8-10 inches of lift.)

38x14.50 Toyos on 16x12 Weld Cheyenne 8's

No rub lock to lock. Just don't get wheels with a high positive offset and you will be good.





oh.... and do yourself a favor and DON'T buy a pos 6.0. The 7.3 is far superior. Brian Jelich, a good friend of mine, set the record on Fuel only with a 7.3 powerstroke with 200k+ MILES ON IT. 680hp 1282 ft lbs. Show me a 6.0 with 225k miles that can do that

Last edited by Zack; 01-28-2010 at 08:00 PM.
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Old 01-29-2010, 08:52 AM
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Default Re: Leaf Spring vs. Coil Spring (Ford Superduty)

Originally Posted by 95RogueM3 View Post
Thank for the info. The more I think about it the more I worry about the 6.0 motor being a nightmare and am kinda leaning towards an 01 or 02 truck and then doing the 2005 grill and lights swap.

Here is my '97 F250 that I sold in October. It rubbed like no tomorrow way before full lock which I guess was a product of both the boggers and wheels:

If you buy a stock truck with leafs and lift it yourself, contact Denver Springs...I hear they make great leaf spring packs.

I know nothing about the diesels as mine is a 460ci big block. What size boggers are those?39's? I'm almost due for a new set of tires. I'm debating between 39 boggers or 40 Toyo mud terrains. I know they are on opposite ends of the ride quality spectrum but I only drive it when I need a truck (bad weather, towing or hauling). If I go with the 40 Toyo's I plan to run an 18" or 20" wheel.


Zack, How good or bad did those Toyo's wear?

Last edited by SMOKEYBEAR; 01-29-2010 at 08:57 AM.
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Old 01-29-2010, 08:55 AM
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Default Re: Leaf Spring vs. Coil Spring (Ford Superduty)

Awesome, another big-ass ford 6 feet off the groud that'll never see even the slightest bit of dirt, grime, or work.
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Old 01-29-2010, 01:46 PM
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Default Re: Leaf Spring vs. Coil Spring (Ford Superduty)

It's Deaver Springs, not denver springs and I believe both Fabtech and SkyJacker make a leaf-spring to coil-over conversion lift for the leafer super duties. .

For the money, I'd do Fabtech, good product name and it ain't bright ass red everything.
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Old 01-29-2010, 01:49 PM
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Default Re: Leaf Spring vs. Coil Spring (Ford Superduty)

Originally Posted by SMOKEYBEAR View Post
If you buy a stock truck with leafs and lift it yourself, contact Denver Springs...I hear they make great leaf spring packs.


Zack, How good or bad did those Toyo's wear?
Toyos are the best tire out there for an aggressive mud terrain that still has good street manners. I had 30k miles on a set of 38s and they are still on the road. Boggers, good luck with 15k. Ive put toyo m/t's on everything that I've had to replace tires on, I swear by them. Pricey, but worth every penny.

Originally Posted by Kris.Is.Foamin View Post
Awesome, another big-ass ford 6 feet off the groud that'll never see even the slightest bit of dirt, grime, or work.
Awww cry to the momma.
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Old 02-02-2010, 03:53 AM
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Default Re: Leaf Spring vs. Coil Spring (Ford Superduty)

Like Zack said, use a bracket/shackle lift and run a smaller lift spring. If you were to go with the 3" brackets and 6" Icon springs (made by deaver) it would ride great. Also run a shackle flip in the rear so you don't have to use huge lift springs. As you probably already know, avoid lift blocks at all cost in the rear, axle wrap kills!


On a sidenote, there are a couple people running around in the OBS fords with 05-up coil spring suspension under the front. It's said to be a very straight-forward install if you have a donor truck. http://good-times.webshots.com/album/567614363vnbRCl
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Old 02-02-2010, 04:05 AM
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Default Re: Leaf Spring vs. Coil Spring (Ford Superduty)

Originally Posted by SMOKEYBEAR View Post
I know nothing about the diesels as mine is a 460ci big block. What size boggers are those?39's? I'm almost due for a new set of tires. I'm debating between 39 boggers or 40 Toyo mud terrains. I know they are on opposite ends of the ride quality spectrum but I only drive it when I need a truck (bad weather, towing or hauling). If I go with the 40 Toyo's I plan to run an 18" or 20" wheel.
Mine were 38.5" Boggers. I would NEVER have them again. They really aren't so hot in the snow (act kinda like paddle wheels and just throw snow really high in the air) and those noise/wear are the worst I am aware of. As was mentioned 15k miles/set is expected given proper rotation and the noise has got to be the loudest I am aware of.

Originally Posted by Kris.Is.Foamin View Post
Awesome, another big-ass ford 6 feet off the groud that'll never see even the slightest bit of dirt, grime, or work.
Its my truck and my $$...I'll do whatever I damn well please.

Originally Posted by Brennan View Post
Like Zack said, use a bracket/shackle lift and run a smaller lift spring. If you were to go with the 3" brackets and 6" Icon springs (made by deaver) it would ride great. Also run a shackle flip in the rear so you don't have to use huge lift springs. As you probably already know, avoid lift blocks at all cost in the rear, axle wrap kills!
Yeah, if I were going to up the power, I would install ladder bars, but thats unlikely. That said, I would be going for a spring lift, not a block lift.

I'm still scowering ebay and craiglook everyday to try and find something really nice...soon enough something should pop up (and I have to sell my WRX before moving back to a diesel)...
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