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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have 5100 bilsteins with a leveling kit right now and the ride is so much worse than stock. ive ridden in lots of trucks and i dont mind a stiff ride but these are terrible on and off road. Im looking to soften up the ride alot and get a suspension with a comfortable ride.

im looking at the carli starter kit or king shocks all around (link below)

King Shocks Part 25001-222 - OEM Performance Coil Over Shock Kit for 0"-3.5" Lift Kits

thanks for all responses
 

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Subscribed. Bilstein 5100 shocks were recommended to me when I have to do mine at the next service interval. Curious what others have to say. The Carli starter kit also uses 5100 shocks. I guess they are valved for a Super Duty though.
 

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You might also want to look at #5160's..these were developed by Shane at Bilsteins racing division specificaly for the '05 up SD.

But if you really want to help the ride quality shocks won't make a huge difference..true 4 link arms will.

Cary
 

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I have 5100 bilsteins with a leveling kit right now and the ride is so much worse than stock. ive ridden in lots of trucks and i dont mind a stiff ride but these are terrible on and off road. Im looking to soften up the ride alot and get a suspension with a comfortable ride.

im looking at the carli starter kit or king shocks all around (link below)

King Shocks Part 25001-222 - OEM Performance Coil Over Shock Kit for 0"-3.5" Lift Kits

thanks for all responses
We use King to manufacture our shocks but the shocks are all Carli. We use a custom length can, custom shaft, custom pintop (to bolt into your stock towers), custom machined/coated piston, then custom tuning. You can only get these from us, not even king sells our proprietary products.

PS I just had a border patrol guy come in and rip those kings out to replace it with our 4.5" coilover system. He describled the ride as less than impressive. I rode in the truck and it was ok, but not as I expected from King.

When it comes down to it, we re-engineer the shock from a buggy shock with great offroad performance into a shock that is engineered to provide the best all around ride for a super duty. Further, we are now producing these in leveling kits for the 05-2012 superduties. You have the option of running our Kings in a 2.5" lift of 4.5".

As for the 5100s, they're a decent shock but definitly entry level. Without the external reservoir, you're limited on travel and tunability. They should be better than stock but definitly won't be up to the duty of our 5160s, 7100s, or King 2.5s.

To clarify, our 5160s are not the same as CT is referencing above; we developed our own proprietary valving to work with our suspension systems. Feel free to pm me of Skyd Ram (George at 8Lug) for further information, clarification or to chat about systems! :icon_ford:
 

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External Rez's have nothing to do with valving...or travel unless they are a short body version..they can have a longer shaft installed.

7100's, 9100's can come with the same valving as other series Bilsteins.

Their only so many valving options available from Bilstein...unless your having custom valve stacks milled.

I've sold thousands of Bilsteins and only had a couple of customers not happy with them...but very often when I see a Bilstein post you will get 1 person who says they are the worst shock they have ever had even worst that stock...that right theire makes me suspect...

Kings, Fox, Icon, Pure etc all are great shocks but they do cost much more than a #5100 and do not have a lifetime warranty...most just have 90 days...

Again True 4 link arms will make a bigger difference and where the $ should first be spent before $$$ shocks.

We do sell the above but sell very few for the reasons stated above. I would love customers to upgrade the shocks but its much less bang for the buck for them.
 

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I have 5100 bilsteins with a leveling kit right now and the ride is so much worse than stock.
In My opinion you did nothing to alter the ride quality other than the Shocks ,, I have never liked the 5100's stiff ride ,

I know there are some awesome shocks being thrown around up there but for Me an adjustable Ranch suits Me fine ,, if you go Hi end I suggest one that is tunable to your likes .. not one that someone else choose for you
 

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:thumb:
External Rez's have nothing to do with valving...or travel unless they are a short body version..they can have a longer shaft installed.

7100's, 9100's can come with the same valving as other series Bilsteins.

Their only so many valving options available from Bilstein...unless your having custom valve stacks milled.

I've sold thousands of Bilsteins and only had a couple of customers not happy with them...but very often when I see a Bilstein post you will get 1 person who says they are the worst shock they have ever had even worst that stock...that right theire makes me suspect...

Kings, Fox, Icon, Pure etc all are great shocks but they do cost much more than a #5100 and do not have a lifetime warranty...most just have 90 days...

Again True 4 link arms will make a bigger difference and where the $ should first be spent before $$$ shocks.

We do sell the above but sell very few for the reasons stated above. I would love customers to upgrade the shocks but its much less bang for the buck for them.
Wrong... External reservoirs allow for the dividing piston to be moved from the body into the reservoir giving the shock a longer stroke all other things held constant. To say a 4-link has more to do with ride quality than shock valving is incorrect. A single shim can make or break ride quality in a shock. Further, if you deal with 9100 ACVs are you really going to tell me an external reservoir has nothing to do with valving? Frankly, it has everything to do with it in many cases.

As for the four link, we've had this conversation numerous times... So long as the arms are parallel to the ground and the proper leverage is applied, there is little difference in ride quality of a 4-link; especially when using a stock sway bar which won't allow the front to articulate enough to bind the stock radius arms. If you want to see what a true 4-link rides like, go drive a stock dodge and you'll run back to your ford.

We will put our systems against anything out there, even with the stock radius arms.
 

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In My opinion you did nothing to alter the ride quality other than the Shocks ,, I have never liked the 5100's stiff ride ,

I know there are some awesome shocks being thrown around up there but for Me an adjustable Ranch suits Me fine ,, if you go Hi end I suggest one that is tunable to your likes .. not one that someone else choose for you
Many people will not see an increase in ride quality for the 5100s as they're not meant to be a plush ride. They're a budget off-road shock so they will be a bit more firm than a standard emulsion white body shock. The 5100s are decent for what they are. They are what's called an Internal Floating Piston design; this meand the oil and nitrogen are separated by a dividing pistion in the shock. The nitrogen pressure on the piston prevents the oil in the shock from cavitating. For the price, they're pretty decent shocks but again, not plush...
 

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I guess My point is they are stiff IMHO and that may Be his issue

so I was suggesting another "similar price shock that is adjustable and worked well for smoothing out my ride
 

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You might want to reread my post...you say I'm wrong then repeat the same info I gave in a different way...but adding a Rez will not in itself give you more travel unless its a SB version..IE a longer travel shaft in a short body. Example a 10" body with a 12" travel shaft with a RR will get you 12" of travel. Adding a RR to a 10" body using a 10" shaft will still only get you 10" of travel..

The Valve pack is the same doesn't matter if a RR is added or not....again we are not talking racing shocks or $$$$$$ shocks.

Larger diameter bodys can have finer valving control as the valve pack is a larger diameter..

We are not talking ACV's and pure racing shocks we are talking about street systems..The ACV restricts the flow of the oil in the reservoir at higher speeds giving you a stiffer valving that is ideal at higher speeds when you need to keep the front end elevated. This allows the valving in the main piston to be lighter, increasing overall smoothness and comfort at lower speeds while still delivering precision control at higher speeds. Because the ACV is velocity sensitive, the harder and faster you hit, the more it restricts flow, eliminating any possibility of oil cavitation...great for offroad apps but makes for a Very expensive shock also one thats not a direct replacement for a stock shock mount. Its just not needed for the street unless you want to spend the $$$

Look..if someone can afford a high end big buck shock and doesn't care about a 90 day warrentee I'm happy to sell him whats needed and have done so in the past for customers but 99.999999999999999999999999999% of customers don't want to spend this kind of $ or do what it takes to install them.
 

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If you want to order inexpensive adjustable shocks such as RS9000's or Pro Comp MX-6's, that is fine and you will be able to select the ride quality that suits your needs within reason. They are just not true off road performance shocks.

When looking at your truck as a whole and looking for ride quality, you really need to concider all factors.

Suspension System Geometry - 4 Link Versus Radius Arms
Tire/Wheel Combo
Springs and Shocks Front and Rear

Sometimes combining the wrong parts no matter what the brand is, it will hurt you!

OCVeloMan with Carli prefers radius arms, where as we prefer 4 links. Each one has their pros and cons and requires different levels of tuning in order to perform well in all conditions.

When you are out there looking at stuff, just think about it and ask lots of questions before you purchase!

JP
 

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You might want to reread my post...you say I'm wrong then repeat the same info I gave in a different way...but adding a Rez will not in itself give you more travel unless its a SB version..IE a longer travel shaft in a short body. Example a 10" body with a 12" travel shaft with a RR will get you 12" of travel. Adding a RR to a 10" body using a 10" shaft will still only get you 10" of travel..

The Valve pack is the same doesn't matter if a RR is added or not....again we are not talking racing shocks or $$$$$$ shocks.

Larger diameter bodys can have finer valving control as the valve pack is a larger diameter..

We are not talking ACV's and pure racing shocks we are talking about street systems..The ACV restricts the flow of the oil in the reservoir at higher speeds giving you a stiffer valving that is ideal at higher speeds when you need to keep the front end elevated. This allows the valving in the main piston to be lighter, increasing overall smoothness and comfort at lower speeds while still delivering precision control at higher speeds. Because the ACV is velocity sensitive, the harder and faster you hit, the more it restricts flow, eliminating any possibility of oil cavitation...great for offroad apps but makes for a Very expensive shock also one thats not a direct replacement for a stock shock mount. Its just not needed for the street unless you want to spend the $$$

Look..if someone can afford a high end big buck shock and doesn't care about a 90 day warrentee I'm happy to sell him whats needed and have done so in the past for customers but 99.999999999999999999999999999% of customers don't want to spend this kind of $ or do what it takes to install them.
Intersting perspective. Re-read your post and the main thing I was trying to get out is we find that emphasizing valving provides a better ride. Not to say you were wrong, what that was referring to was that the remote reservoir has no effect on valving as it can have a huge effect. In cheaper, light duty shocks, you're 100% correct as is Jeremy; factors like a 4-link and wheel and tire combo will have a larger effect on ride quality than jumping from a 5100 to a standard valved 5160.

This is why forums are tough, never easy to convey things and cover every angle. We deal more in the higher end shocks like the 5160 (custom valved), 7100, 9100 and King 2.0, 2.5, and 3.0. In these shocks, valving makes a huge difference. We've tried the 4-link and radius arms... When it comes to the dodges, they need to be addressed given they're very short and the ride quality suffers. In the Fords, the arm is long and well built. We could very well built a radius arm to match the one in our 6" dodge systems but would have a hard time selling the benefit to the customer for how much it would cost given we didn't see a huge benefit.

Not to mention, these Fords don't handle airtime like the dodges do, frames are a bit too flexy.

If you want to order inexpensive adjustable shocks such as RS9000's or Pro Comp MX-6's, that is fine and you will be able to select the ride quality that suits your needs within reason. They are just not true off road performance shocks.

When looking at your truck as a whole and looking for ride quality, you really need to concider all factors.

Suspension System Geometry - 4 Link Versus Radius Arms
Tire/Wheel Combo
Springs and Shocks Front and Rear

Sometimes combining the wrong parts no matter what the brand is, it will hurt you!

OCVeloMan with Carli prefers radius arms, where as we prefer 4 links. Each one has their pros and cons and requires different levels of tuning in order to perform well in all conditions.

When you are out there looking at stuff, just think about it and ask lots of questions before you purchase!

JP
Agreed. I don't disagree on the 4-link. I think it does improve the ride, i just think the money is better spent elsewhere (i.e. on better shocks) and that's where the opinions differ but they are just that; opinions!
 

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OCVeloMan

We (Pure Performance) are just different as are you (Carli). We like swapping over to 4 links because we feel they articulate better and easier than radius arms. For high speed stuff where full axle travel alone sets the standard, they both work fine.

We like what Carli does and have an appreciation for it. We just do our stuff differently. We each have an end goal.

For people who like "generic" there are alot of companies doing that too.

JP
 

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OCVeloMan

We (Pure Performance) are just different as are you (Carli). We like swapping over to 4 links because we feel they articulate better and easier than radius arms. For high speed stuff where full axle travel alone sets the standard, they both work fine.

We like what Carli does and have an appreciation for it. We just do our stuff differently. We each have an end goal.

For people who like "generic" there are alot of companies doing that too.

JP
Agreed! :thumb:
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
i dont know anyone who would like the way my truck rides. on road its so rough and everything rattles and off road if you go on a dirt road more than 5mph the truck feels like its about to brake and your being thrown around your seat and speed bumps feel like the windows are gonna break.

looks like im going with a true 4 link
 

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I have 7" icon front springs and track bar w/bearing, bilstein 5160s on front 5100s out back and it rides pretty dang good. Im happy with it!

Sent from my DROIDX using AutoGuide.Com Free App
 

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i dont know anyone who would like the way my truck rides. on road its so rough and everything rattles and off road if you go on a dirt road more than 5mph the truck feels like its about to brake and your being thrown around your seat and speed bumps feel like the windows are gonna break.

looks like im going with a true 4 link
Like others have posted on here, the biggest ride improvement will come from a combination of better spring rate. shock valving, and tire choice/psi. Before you start investigating 4-links and coilovers focus on springs/shocks and tire pressure. With the tires that you are running I would run the fronts around 45 psi and the rears around 30-35 when not towing heavy. I find that most tire shops will air the tires up to max psi which shoudl only be used when towing 15000 trailers.

I have run the factory radius arms as well as 4-links on my truck and the biggest overall ride improvements came from the following:

37" tires with proper psi
Mini packs in the rear to take out some of the harshness
Better shock valving-I went from 5100's to Pure Prodigy 2.0's with great results.
 

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Look into dual rate spring setup. It uses two springs, one softer one to soak up most street bumps, then the second larger spring is there for the real bad stuff. Its very tailorable, and will have a much improved ride even if you keep the 5100's.
Good luck,
Dom
 
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