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Thread: What's the best suspension setup for the '80 D50 Sport?

  1. #1

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    What's the best suspension setup for the '80 D50 Sport?

    I am shopping around for new suspension, front and rear, with 2 things in mind. What is going to give it the best handling? And what is going to slightly lower and level the truck? Any suggestions?

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    i would do 2" spindles (these will keep your alingment ability) in the front,new shocks,new springs (stiffing it up) and fresh bushings (energy suspension style) In the rear 2 inch blocks max and new shocks. if you want more drop remove the middle leaf and add air shocks (as it may drop a little more than 3 inches. But before all this pick your wheel and tire combo. Definitely get some stick tires on your truck first

    mike

  3. #3

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    I run Rancho stuff, but then it's a custom built 4x4 ... so it's probably a lot different than what you want. Springs are on top of rear axle, etc. Front springs rest on a Low Manufacturing Baja front axle ... etc.

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    I have a first-gen Sport as well, so this post I did a while ago might help you get an idea:

    FWIW, here are the part numbers for what I put on my '86. Belltech stuff. Perfect fit.

    Part # 4270 Belltech coil spring set, 83-97 Mighty Max, 2.5" front drop

    Part # 6200 Belltech lowering block kit, universal 3" block, blocks, u-bolts, hardware

    Part # 8000, 8517 Belltech shock absorber, Nitro Drop 2 (front, rear)


    -RHP

  5. #5



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    Coil over springs on a Fox remote reservoir shocks. Major mods must me made but you can set the suspension the way you want it.
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    now would that not depend on 2wd or 4wd for the major mods, i know on my 4x4 the upper shock mount for front end is bolted to frame so i could in theroy just drill holes from side to side with spacers and run ACOS delete the torsions bars. Future mod.

  7. #7

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    Just received my Rancho add-a-leaf set for the spring-over-axle setup on Mitzi. Hope to get rid of the 1-1/2" butt sag and give her a little better load capacity without Big Sag setting in ;-)

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    Check this i typed in 83 montero for this to work, this says they make 1.5 inch over stock leafs for first gen montero and other cool sh*t

    http://www.arbusa.com/Vehicle/1983-m...eropajero.aspx

  9. #9



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    look in the wiki under suspension types. It will give you an idea of different suspensions.
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  10. #10

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    Pretty cool. I'm putting Rancho helper leafs under the existing spring-over-axle setup on the '80 D-50 to get rid of the butt-sag when I throw 50 lbs in the back. Will also give the rear about 1-1/2" lift.

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    thought i had better correct myself i check again and my shock mount is welded to frame, i was looking at the control arm bolted to shock mount.

  12. #12

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    Just installed the Rancho Helper Spring on Mitzi's over-axle rear springs. Picked the sagging rear end up about 2" and now the truck sits level. Hoping it will help carry some load weight without dropping down toward the axle. Looks a lot better!

  13. #13

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    I like your suggestions. I am hoping to find a set of 17" X 8" rims w/ some low profile tires. So I think a 2 inch drop would be perfect, especially in the back since the front is pretty much right where I want it. I just know that the front end will probably come back up with removing the front brush guard and replacing it with the stock bumper, and installing new shocks and springs. Overall I think that will put me exactly where I wanna be.

  14. #14

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    I put in the helper spring to raise the rear end, which was sagging.

    Quote Originally Posted by OCD Boss View Post
    I like your suggestions. I am hoping to find a set of 17" X 8" rims w/ some low profile tires. So I think a 2 inch drop would be perfect, especially in the back since the front is pretty much right where I want it. I just know that the front end will probably come back up with removing the front brush guard and replacing it with the stock bumper, and installing new shocks and springs. Overall I think that will put me exactly where I wanna be.

  15. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kerrigan View Post
    I put in the helper spring to raise the rear end, which was sagging.
    Gotcha, I have the exact opposite problem. My back end is up too high for my taste. But again I know my front suspension is pretty well shot, and needs to be replaced too. I think my biggest problem though is I need to find the rims I'm looking for first, and then figure out how much I need to raise/lower. I won't lie, I made my decision on rim size based on pennyman's D50 since he has a fantastic truck, I just plan to do different cosmetic scemes. But I remember him saying that his rims are 16", and I did find those to be slightly smaller than what I would like for my truck. So doing basic math, I figured 17's would be perfect.

  16. #16



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    What - no pink?!? lol. I am considering going to 17 or 18" wheels if I can find a set that isn't 2K and fits the way I need them to be. Thanks for the comps on Geronimo - it took 20 years before Pittsburgh found it to be cool. BTW 22 yrs and still in great shape - the paint that is.
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    Quote Originally Posted by pennyman1 View Post
    What - no pink?!? lol. I am considering going to 17 or 18" wheels if I can find a set that isn't 2K and fits the way I need them to be. Thanks for the comps on Geronimo - it took 20 years before Pittsburgh found it to be cool. BTW 22 yrs and still in great shape - the paint that is.
    HAHA, yeah no pink for me, mostly Yellow/Black with some touches of red is what I have in mind. I have a feeling that this thing is going to be 20 years in the making for me as well the way things are going lol.

    First, I found these rims which I was liking the idea of not going with a low profile tire. They are a 15x8 rim and extreemly inexpensive.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    http://www.summitracing.com/parts/pcw-52-5884/overview/

    The only problem I have is that these would only be an inch bigger than stock, and I don't think I'll be satisfied with that in the long run. On the other side of the coin though, I do like the design. I would save tons of money on new wheels, and could purchase cheap center caps and paint them whatever color.

    I found these wheels, they are 17x8, and I was thinking these with a 50 series tire. My biggest concern is if that is too much tire.


    Click image for larger version. 

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    http://www.summitracing.com/parts/us...8860/overview/

    The biggest difference between the two is 2" and the 17's are double the price.

    Thoughts?

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    215/45/17's in front 235/40/17's in back will give you the same tire diameter as the stock 185/75/14's if its the 2wd that's what I have mounted on my 17x8's

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    Quote Originally Posted by Fordubishi View Post
    215/45/17's in front 235/40/17's in back will give you the same tire diameter as the stock 185/75/14's if its the 2wd that's what I have mounted on my 17x8's
    I like your set-up, but I think those would be a lil too low profile for rims that I'm looking at. But that gave me a good idea of how big 17's are on the truck. If anything I would say that I feel even stronger about a 50 series or larger tire. So the question is, "Is a 50 series tire on a 17" rim too large for the D50 without modifying it?". I love large rims, but I am trying to stay away from the "low pro" look. If anything, I'm thinking about trying to raise it [the truck] up an inch or two.

  20. #20

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    I'm running 32" tires which required changing the rear end gears to 4.22 Montero High Altitude gears.

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    you should be able to run larger but then you have to change the speedo gear in the trans to correct the difference.Not a big deal if you can find the gear.

  22. #22



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    stock tires on an 1980 d-50 were 26" tall, so when looking for tires that work without affecting the speedo keep that size in mind. the other issue is the backspacing of the rims - 8" wide rims with too wide of a tire will rub if taller than 25" in Diameter when lowered.
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  23. #23

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    I think it had something to do with keeping the torque up to turn the big wheels .... as well as the speedo situation.

    Quote Originally Posted by Fordubishi View Post
    you should be able to run larger but then you have to change the speedo gear in the trans to correct the difference.Not a big deal if you can find the gear.

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