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  Topic Review (Newest First)
09-12-2019 02:36 AM
White95f250 Mods, please move to appropriate forum.

You'll get more views from the right people.
09-11-2019 01:30 PM
HoundDog
Quote:
Originally Posted by kbnw15 View Post
I'll jump in with my two cents. I don't have an excursion nor had much experience with air shocks on a personal vehicle, but in my experience with air ride in other applications it seems like the more air bags in the right places will make ride substantially better.

I know in the Ag industry some of the Challenger tractors have a much improved suspension that makes the ride exponentially better and then they also created an air ride cab that made the tractors ride dangerously smooth for the operator.

I use that example as reason(without looking to much into the extra reading material you provided) to deduce that the kelderman system sounds like it would net you what you are looking for much more than the airlift system. The way I perceive the air lift system is that it will basically level you when towing but I don't believe will help your ride that much. Again referring to the example above I also believe that would be the best reason for airbags front and back for improved ride.

Again my first hand knowledge on this is minimal and some of the more experienced guys may log on and completely destroy what my reasoning was in this. Just some food for thought.
Thanks for the reply. If I understand what you're saying the Kelderman system floats the vehicle on airbags whereas the Air Lift system helps the leaf springs support the vehicle. Probably why some systems like Air Lift are referred to as "Air Helper Springs".

I have read that air bags can make the ride more harsh but I assumed (maybe incorrectly) it depends on PSI. Where higher PSI = more stiffness to offset payload and trailer tongue weight.

I do need leveling for payload and bumper towing but I was hoping with minimal PSI in the bags, say 5lbs, the ride would be greatly improved. I'm worried about spending $ on air bags but still not achieve a significantly better ride with Air Lift (or Kelderman). I am upgrading the shocks if/when I install air bags.

Hopefully we hear back from someone with firsthand knowledge.

My Ex:
2002 Ford Excursion Limited 7.3L 4WD
Towing: 32ft Boat or 32' Travel Trailer
09-11-2019 12:24 PM
kbnw15 I'll jump in with my two cents. I don't have an excursion nor had much experience with air shocks on a personal vehicle, but in my experience with air ride in other applications it seems like the more air bags in the right places will make ride substantially better.

I know in the Ag industry some of the Challenger tractors have a much improved suspension that makes the ride exponentially better and then they also created an air ride cab that made the tractors ride dangerously smooth for the operator.

I use that example as reason(without looking to much into the extra reading material you provided) to deduce that the kelderman system sounds like it would net you what you are looking for much more than the airlift system. The way I perceive the air lift system is that it will basically level you when towing but I don't believe will help your ride that much. Again referring to the example above I also believe that would be the best reason for airbags front and back for improved ride.

Again my first hand knowledge on this is minimal and some of the more experienced guys may log on and completely destroy what my reasoning was in this. Just some food for thought.
09-11-2019 11:49 AM
HoundDog
Improved Ride Quality

Looking for advice/recommendations for improving the ride on my Ford Excursion. Just bought a 2002 Excursion Limited 7.3L 4WD with 120k miles that is lifted/blocked up about 6". Rides like crap – very stiff with a bit of sway on highway even when not towing. Sits way too high - hard to get in/out - especially difficult for wife. Sags terribly towing 32' TT but surprisingly the sway is not too bad.

Even though it rides like crap I love the vehicle and want to invest a few bucks to set it up right for my needs. However, I do not want to over-invest/over-upgrade a 17+ year old vehicle. I bought it knowing I’d want to lower it to 2" to 4" above stock and replace the shocks, linkages, ball joints and upgrading from 34" to 35" AT tires for off-road and looks.

Plans for the Excursion are to use it as our family camping, fishing, hunting and towing (boat and TT) vehicle. Planning cross-country tent camping and fishing trip in 2020. No plans to tow 32' TT cross-country but I do tow TT up to 2000 miles roundtrip from Florida to the Appalachian Mountains. Don't plan to tow boat over a few hundred miles. I off-road for tent camping (without TT), fishing and hunting trips with lots of rocky, unpaved, single lane roads with occasion snow, ice, mud and hard bottom stream crossings. I will not be rock crawling, racing, jumping or mudding.

For me, an improved ride (softer and more stable) on highway and in city is more important than towing performance because I’m towing less than 10% of the time.

I want the following:
- Ride – much improved (softer and more stable) on highway and in city
- Towing – level with no sag when vehicle is packed with family and gear
- Off-roading – level, stable, not too stiff ride with clearance when vehicle is packed with family and gear
- Automatic – auto leveling with remote
- Quality – durable components made in USA

I’ve done research online and talked to a few off-road shops and everything seems to be leading me to an air suspension (helper?) system with upgraded shocks. I know ASBs and WDS will improve sway and sag when towing but neither will improve ride quality when not towing.

What’s been recommend are either a Kelderman system ($8000) or an Air Lift Load Lifter 5000 ($2900) system. From what I understand the Kelderman system is pretty much a complete replacement of the vehicle’s leaf suspension while Air Lift is more of a “helper” system that bolts onto the existing leaf suspension. Firestone has a system too that’s pretty much the same quality and price as Air Lift. I’m leaning Air Lift because it seems like Kelderman might be more of a commercial vehicle system and is overkill for what I intend to use the vehicle.

Kelderman:
Front: Kelderman 1999-2004 FORD SUPER DUTY/EXCURSION 4X4 2-STAGE FRONT AIR SUSPENSION LEVELING KIT
Rear: Kelderman 1999-2005 FORD EXCURSION 2-STAGE REAR AIR SUSPENSION
Controller: Kelderman MECHANICAL SELF-LEVELING AIR CONTROL SYSTEM (2-STAGE SUSPENSION)

Air Lift:
Front: Air Lift-88154-loadlifter-5000-ultimate-air-spring-kit
Rear: Air Lift-88340-loadlifter-5000-ultimate-air-spring-kit
Compressor control system: Air Lift-wireless air-leveling-compressor-control-system

My questions for the Forum:
• What are your experiences and thoughts on air suspension systems given my needs?
• Will the ride quality improve with an air bag system? I know it levels.
• Do I need both a front and rear air system for a quality ride?
• What’s your experiences and thoughts on Kelderman vs Air Lift systems?
• Is Kelderman and $8000 overkill for what I want to do?
• Is my thinking off-base or is there anything I’m not thinking of?
• Any Ford Excursion specific advice is welcome

Thanks in advance.

My Ex:
2002 Ford Excursion Limited 7.3L 4WD
Towing: 32ft Boat or 32' Travel Trailer

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