Join Date: Sep 2013
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I feel your frustration.
I also installed a 6” BDS radius arm drop lift kit with replacement rear leaf springs. I installed the kit a little less than a year ago on my then brand new 2012 F250. I have not been happy with the steering and rear end wagging just like you. My truck now has rather poor steering when centered. It takes about 2” of steering input just to stay in my lane. Also I have the rear end wagging feeling as you explained. I tell people it’s like landing a small plane in a cross wind. If I give the steering a wiggle back and forth, the truck feels like it’s just leaning over and then yawing, but not steering and changing direction. I have not solved any of my problems either. I have been thinking the steering gear box could have some problem but it is brand new.
I agree with you 100%, if every lifted truck drove as loose, and squirmy as our trucks, I can’t imagine there would be so many out there. I have been moments away from putting the truck back to stock, but then I figure there must be a solution so I stick it out hoping I will find something wrong. Don't get me wrong I don't blame BDS at all. I believe thier kit is very good.
Here are the steps I’ve completed trying to solve the issue and the amount of success each produced.
- I replaced the caster/camber alignment cams provided by BDS with a pair that had the most caster I could find. BDS provides 2.3/.6 cams and I found some 2.5/.3. They provide just a bit more caster and a bit less camber. This did help some of my straight line wandering and provide a bit better self centering, but only very marginally.
- I was told by my local 4X4 shop to retighten the rear axle u-bolts again. He said things will settle in and the bolts will need re-torquing a few times. This has been the best advice so far. The first time I checked the torque they definitely needed two or more rounds to make the torque spec. This did help the rear end wag feeling the most.
- I installed an aftermarket solid tubing steering link, equipped with the problem solver ball joint at the pitman arm. I was told the stock link had a tendency to flex and provide play. This made no improvement at all.
- I’m not sure what tires you have, but I was also told about tread squirm. I have 37x12.5X18 Proc Comp Extreme AT. These have rather large tall tread blocks. I have been told these tires can also move around at speed and make the truck feel like its floating. We will see as they wear down if that improves. Also we have to keep them aired up rather high to satisfy the TPMS. I think they may feel better if we could air them down a bit.
- I have been searching long and hard for a longer pitman arm to speed up my steering and help eliminate the play. Not many people have a ton of options for the '11, '12, 13 super duty.
Good luck. I hope we can both improve our trucks handling.