How to improve suspension performance without lifting the front end?

Gymkata

Tremor Buff
Joined
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Location
Maryland
Military
Army
Current Ride
2022 F350 Tremor 7.3l
Current Ride #2
2008 Lexus ISF & 2022 KTM 890 Adventure R
Hey all,

I recently purchased a certified '22 F350 Tremor 7.3l Lariat ultimate and plan to use it as a daily driver, for occasional but rigorous off-road/overland exploring, and get a slide-in camper (leaning toward Lance 850 - I'm guessing about 3500 lbs wet and loaded with gear).

I like the current height of the Tremor and would prefer to stick with the 285/75R18 tire size to maximize the combination of work/play/tire weight/mpg. I'm considering the Carli E-Venture system with progressive rear leafs and the long travel bags, but feel it would look funny if I don't move to 37s with the added front lift from that system. I'm also considering the Liquid Spring 2" F350 system, but it won't be available until late summer '24 and is even more expensive than a fully optioned Carli system. Both the two aforementioned systems would be amazing, albeit with strengths in different areas. While I'm not totally opposed to shelling out copious amounts of coin for an amazing suspension, I'm wondering if it is necessary to achieve my goals. I love the concept of an active electronic shock and have heard generally good things about Falcon. How much of an improvement do you think I would get if I went a bit more "budget" and tried something like:

- Install Falcon Sport e-Tow/Haul Shock System (0-2" level)
- Leave the rest of the front end stock
- Carli full progressive leaf spring pack (Carli website says it's a 1" lift, but it also says it ends up being only .5" rear high rake with the E-venture kit. That makes it seem more like it is stock rear height. After a quick measurement, my Tremor is sitting 2.5" higher in the rear empty)
- Full Travel Bags for use with towing/slide in camper

I'd probably run that setup with 18x9 Methods and 285/75R18 Toyo ATIIIs. What do you all think? Would retaining the factory front springs and sway bar still be a major limiting factor keeping it from being a comfy'ish daily driver? I'm curious to hear your thoughts and experiences. Thanks in advance.
 
carli gas tremor kit:
front will raise about 1" maybe 1.5".
full leafs add 1" over stock non-tremor 2" block. so you end up about the same height in the rear as a stock tremor.
i would do the shackle. shocks are up to you.
everyone says the sway bar makes a big improvement. i have had them, will probably skip it next time.
 
I've been racking my brain on what type of setup to get. I'm considering trying the Icon setup in the attached pic with a yet to be determined aftermarket steering stabilizer. I'd also get the Carli leaf spring shackle. The result would be maintaining stock front height and the rear would be lowered approximately .5" after removing factory block.

I could always add aftermarket coil springs and track bar components later if the stock spring proves to still be a major limiting factor as these shocks are good for 0 to+2.5" lift. I would likely go with the Carli gas coil spring though as the Icon spring is engine-agnostic and was tuned for the diesel engine weight. I believe this means it would sit at least .5" higher than the Carli gas spring.

This would still be a pretty expensive system, but is less than half of how I would build the Carli E-Venture system...and I maintain factory height/capacity while hopefully dramatically improving the ride. I would likely stick with 285/75R18 tires, but run two sets of wheels/tires...a more road friendly A/T for DD and factory wheels with aggressive tires for off road.

What do you all think? Think this setup would yield a substantially better ride quality on/off road? ...a good 75% as good as Carli E-Venture for less than 50% the price? I'm curious to get feedback from those with extensive experience with this stuff. Thanks in advance.

Components:
- 15-23 Ford F150 & 17-22 Ford Super Duty ICON Intelligent Control Install Kit: 93500
- Icon 05-22 Ford F250/F350 SD 4WD 0-2.5" Lift Front 2.5 VS RR/CDEV Shocks, Pair: 67800EP
- Icon 2017-Up Ford F250/F350 SD 4WD 0-2.5" Lift Rear 2.5 VS PB/CDEV Shocks, Pair: 37705EP
- Icon 2008-2023 Ford F250-350, Rear Leaf Spring Expansion Pack: 168507 (x2)
- Carli Leaf Spring Shackle: CS-FSHACKLE-11
- Aftermarket Steering Stabilizer: TBD
 

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if the rear "expansion pack" is anything like the carli add a pack (it looks very similar), you really can't add that to the tremor leaf pack. it would make the ride incredibly stiff. also, by removing the factory 3.25" block, you would be carolina squatting.
i would do a factory or pmf 2" block with the shackle
 
@kylant how tall is the regular F350 block? I didn't realize it was different. Thanks.
 
The front absolutely needs help over stock, both with extra travel and better dampening. But I would leave the rear alone other than upgrading the shocks to adjustables. You are planning to put a huge amount of weight in the bed so reducing rear spring rate is a really bad idea. I would load it up and test it out before making any changes.

A rear sway bar and both upper and lower stableloads are needed for a big heavy camper.

If your goal is to have a cushy ride both loaded and unloaded and both on and off road, “inexpensive” is not going to be possible.
 
2.5" body shocks are amazing. Run a lower tire pressure. No need to swap out too many "hard" suspension parts.
 
I recently went thru same decision making process and ultimately settled on just replacing shocks front and rear. I couldn't add lift as I park in quite a few parking garages and already within inches of hitting but I did want to improve the ride as much as possible. I went with Fox 2.0 shocks front and rear. It is definitely an improvement over stock, especially consider all 4 were past their useful life at 50k miles.

I'm curious what is meant by "rigorous off-roading"..... is that slower speed technical trails or is that west coast style blasting thru the desert at 70 mph? These require much different applications and buying for one because someone says that is best might leave you disappointed because you needed the other.

Have you considered airbags for the rear for when the camper is in leaving pretty much in stock form for all other driving? I'm assuming you are replacing shocks regardless.
 
Don't be shy of the Carli backcountry kit with full travel bags. It's really not that much higher and the ride difference is amazing. I added a 1.5" block under the full progressive leafs to maintain stock rake. I don't like the "level" look and hate sagging when loaded. Looks and drives amazingly.
 
Don't be shy of the Carli backcountry kit with full travel bags. It's really not that much higher and the ride difference is amazing. I added a 1.5" block under the full progressive leafs to maintain stock rake. I don't like the "level" look and hate sagging when loaded. Looks and drives amazingly.
I imagine the Carli Backcountry shocks ($1410) are about the best bang for the buck shocks you can get. I'd like a 2.5" shock though and feel intelligent electronically controlled shock dampening would be the best way to get precision dampening loaded and unloaded. I'm going back and forth on whether E-Venture SDI shocks ($4975) offer more performance for the money than Icon CDEV shocks ($3419). If I go for a full progressive leaf pack with whatever setup I chose, I'll definitely be getting full travel bags.
 
I recently went thru same decision making process and ultimately settled on just replacing shocks front and rear. I couldn't add lift as I park in quite a few parking garages and already within inches of hitting but I did want to improve the ride as much as possible. I went with Fox 2.0 shocks front and rear. It is definitely an improvement over stock, especially consider all 4 were past their useful life at 50k miles.

I'm curious what is meant by "rigorous off-roading"..... is that slower speed technical trails or is that west coast style blasting thru the desert at 70 mph? These require much different applications and buying for one because someone says that is best might leave you disappointed because you needed the other.

Have you considered airbags for the rear for when the camper is in leaving pretty much in stock form for all other driving? I'm assuming you are replacing shocks regardless.
I want a suspension setup that can do everything minus baja desert running at high speeds. I want compliant street manners, the ability to easily handle weight at GVWR, the ability to tackle medium difficulty technical trails, and the ability to drive quickly and comfortably over washboard roads/trails loaded and unloaded. That's why I'm coming to the conclusion that the E-Venture or CDEV shocks are probably going to be a must for that. I'll need to iron out spring setups, etc as well.
 
I want a suspension setup that can do everything minus baja desert running at high speeds. I want compliant street manners, the ability to easily handle weight at GVWR, the ability to tackle medium difficulty technical trails, and the ability to drive quickly and comfortably over washboard roads/trails loaded and unloaded. That's why I'm coming to the conclusion that the E-Venture or CDEV shocks are probably going to be a must for that. I'll need to iron out spring setups, etc as well.

Happy to chat with you more about this if you'd like. I run Icon Stage 5 2.5 kit on my personal truck and also installed their full CDEV system on our Bronco build last year.

With what you just said, it seems like CDEV would be right up your alley. We also carry Carli as well, so happy to compare/contrast the two systems with you - but they are very similar to one another.
 
I have almost the same requirements (though a lighter camper) and truck, so I'll be interested to see where you land. So far I've picked up the Carli torsion sway bar and was considering a set of Falcon adjustable shocks next to see how that goes.

The front springs and lack of travel are a big limiting factor, but you might also consider moving to 17" wheels with stock-height 35s for more sidewall compliance as alternative to added spring compliance/travel but with the same ride height.

I'd like to do the Carli level springs as well, and then go with some smaller 37s but that introduces the need for airbags, more parking garage clearance issues, and the spare tire conundrum.

Hope you end up happy with your setup!
 
I've been racking my brain on what type of setup to get. I'm considering trying the Icon setup in the attached pic with a yet to be determined aftermarket steering stabilizer. I'd also get the Carli leaf spring shackle. The result would be maintaining stock front height and the rear would be lowered approximately .5" after removing factory block.

I could always add aftermarket coil springs and track bar components later if the stock spring proves to still be a major limiting factor as these shocks are good for 0 to+2.5" lift. I would likely go with the Carli gas coil spring though as the Icon spring is engine-agnostic and was tuned for the diesel engine weight. I believe this means it would sit at least .5" higher than the Carli gas spring.

This would still be a pretty expensive system, but is less than half of how I would build the Carli E-Venture system...and I maintain factory height/capacity while hopefully dramatically improving the ride. I would likely stick with 285/75R18 tires, but run two sets of wheels/tires...a more road friendly A/T for DD and factory wheels with aggressive tires for off road.

What do you all think? Think this setup would yield a substantially better ride quality on/off road? ...a good 75% as good as Carli E-Venture for less than 50% the price? I'm curious to get feedback from those with extensive experience with this stuff. Thanks in advance.

Components:
- 15-23 Ford F150 & 17-22 Ford Super Duty ICON Intelligent Control Install Kit: 93500
- Icon 05-22 Ford F250/F350 SD 4WD 0-2.5" Lift Front 2.5 VS RR/CDEV Shocks, Pair: 67800EP
- Icon 2017-Up Ford F250/F350 SD 4WD 0-2.5" Lift Rear 2.5 VS PB/CDEV Shocks, Pair: 37705EP
- Icon 2008-2023 Ford F250-350, Rear Leaf Spring Expansion Pack: 168507 (x2)
- Carli Leaf Spring Shackle: CS-FSHACKLE-11
- Aftermarket Steering Stabilizer: TBD
I am thinking of going this route as well.

I have the CDEV Coil Overs on my 2 Broncos and this suspension system is amazing!

For the 7.3L Tremor I would install:

Carli Front Springs - Icon Does not make a Coil Spring or Coil Over Conversion for the 7.3L Gas. Yet. By the time I get to ordering a Level Lift they may have them ready and available.

Carli Torsion Sway Bar and Rear Shackles

CDEV Front and Rear Shocks with IIC to run them. I may do this first since they are 0-3" lift.
 
I am thinking of going this route as well.

I have the CDEV Coil Overs on my 2 Broncos and this suspension system is amazing!

For the 7.3L Tremor I would install:

Carli Front Springs - Icon Does not make a Coil Spring or Coil Over Conversion for the 7.3L Gas. Yet. By the time I get to ordering a Level Lift they may have them ready and available.

Carli Torsion Sway Bar and Rear Shackles

CDEV Front and Rear Shocks with IIC to run them. I may do this first since they are 0-3" lift.
You are exactly where I'm at. Icon does have a coil spring for the 7.3l now though. They have it on their website as a 2023 spring, but they just haven't test fit it to any other year so they don't market it for any other year. I confirmed with PMF suspension that the coil spring mounting locations haven't changes from '22 to '23+ so I'm going to order the '23 coils for my '22 (I believe the coil mounting points are the same MY '17-current, possibly MY '11-current according to Carli spring fitment). Part number 62513.
 
You are exactly where I'm at. Icon does have a coil spring for the 7.3l now though. They have it on their website as a 2023 spring, but they just haven't test fit it to any other year so they don't market it for any other year. I confirmed with PMF suspension that the coil spring mounting locations haven't changes from '22 to '23+ so I'm going to order the '23 coils for my '22 (I believe the coil mounting points are the same MY '17-current, possibly MY '11-current according to Carli spring fitment). Part number 62513.

Interesting.

The Icon 62513 Coil Spring Kit was not listed yesterday.
 
how about other parts?
i am specifically interested in the track bar and brake lines.
I have used the Carli track bar in the past. great piece, somewhat of a bitch to adjust. looking for something a bit easier to adjust, but have similar quality?
brake lines: not a huge fan of replacing lines, but also not a huge fan of relocating them...
the gas tremor supposedly on gets 1-1.5" of lift from carli gas springs. are the brake line mods even necessary? thoughts
 
Well, I just pulled the trigger while Icon has the sale still going and purchased the component shown in the pic. I will likely purchase the Carli shackle as well. I figure I can play around with the rear springs later if/when I am unhappy with how it rides with just a shock/shackle upgrade in the rear. I can also mess with the front sway bar if/when I want even more compliance in the front. I ended up choosing to get the front springs as I was pretty sure the stock springs' ride wouldn't be improved by just a shock upgrade enough for me to be happy.

Long story short: I abandoned the question/mission stated in the thread title and went a dual rate coil spring that should be 1.5" over stock a the most...oh and will be giving Icon's CDEV shocks a try. I'm hoping for great things.

Icon components.jpg
 
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