Another coil spring choice.. | Ford Explorer Forums - Serious Explorations

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Another coil spring choice..


Moderator-Stock 91-94
Elite Explorer
Moderator Emeritus
February 9, 1999
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City, State
Vail, Arizona
Year, Model & Trim Level
1992 XLT 4x4
I need some input on spring selection. I've gone through a bunch of threads and now my brain hurts..

I broke another set of Duff coils springs. This is the 2nd set of Duff VR springs I've broken. The last set was 2.5" VR. This time its was a 3.5" VR springs. Time to try another brand. The coil springs are the last piece of Duff I have on the truck..

Broken spring from 2008

Broken James Duff lift Spring by maniak_az, on Flickr

The spring I just broke.

Broken James Duff Springs - 2 by maniak_az, on Flickr


Broken James Duff Springs - 1 by maniak_az, on Flickr

I'm leaning towards 300ppi or so springs. I'm pretty sure 400ppi is just going to be too stiff.

My 1st choice is these springs.

My 2nd choice is

The Zuk-people :) are running but I haven't found the specs for them yet.

The duff 3.5" lift springs were about 1.5-2" too short. I was running f-150 spring seats and they were still a little short.


EDIT: I found the wildhorse spring rates..
3.5" lift coils
20.1 free length
15.5 installed length
204/375 spring rate

4.5 lift coils
20.6 free length
16.5 installed length
229/375 spring rate

5.5 lift coils
21.5 free length
17.5 listalled length
236/375 spring rate

EDIT2: According to this page, the Duff springs have more length/flex than the 3.5" Wildhorse ones.. and I need more than I have now.
Old page thanks to wayback machine.

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I could have sworn Superlift was > 400ppi.. I want soft/flex..

I have a pair of springs here that I can't remember what they are.. I can't find the for sale thread when I bought them to see what they are.. They are 5.5" and seem really stiff.


..The last 2 sets of Superlift coils I've ordered for my 2.3L I ordered as the heavier 4.0L springs..Both sets have been softer than my stock oem coil springs were..

I'm pretty sure what I have on my explorer are superlift 5.5" coils since the rest of the parts appear to be from superlift.

They have a lot of flex IMO. When I tap the brakes at a stop light, my front end moves up and down 4"-8" depending on how far forward i moved in between tapping the brakes.

It is enough movement to cause problems with my steering under moderate to hard braking, since I have an FA400 pitman arm instead of the FA600 that I need (still trying to locate one for cheap).

Also when I am driving down the road (even at highway speeds) and I hit the throttle, my front end lifts up a few inches.

I think it's time to go to a different set up. Somehow your putting way to much stress on the bottom of the spring where they tapper down. I haven't heard of any of the prerunner guys have problems, and they are probably harder on them then you.

Here are a couple shots I have with the front flexed. It does look like its twisting the spring some when I'm near full droop and it was limited by the length of the springs.


Close-up-front-suspension-RTI by maniak_az, on Flickr


Truckhaven-mlk 2012 -5 - close up by maniak_az, on Flickr

Its hard to see, but in the 2nd pic the driver side spring is almost completely compressed.

I know I am hard on them though. Video of when I was trying to get them dialed in (shocks). I have since replaced the shocks and its more controlled now.

I guess part of the issue is, I want lots of flex, but I also don't want to have to slow down.


I think it's a two fold problem. Your over stretching and compressing to much for this type of spring ( ie. tapered bottom) it's like bending something back and forth, eventually it will break. So change the set up to a different kind of spring or add bump stops and limiting straps.

i have super lift coils in mine now (had rc) they seem super flexy but with the winch and bumper on the front they lost a little hight to i added a puck to the front to level it

i think they r ( yellow springs)

agree with the other guys about the reason for breaking the tapered part, lots of force and wears out , may time to mod coil perch and go no tapered style

like the 44 front syle (sa) version

It never occurred to me to call them. When I was looking for Custom springs for the Neon I was quoted $500 for the pair and those were pretty short springs (used in struts).


I have to agree, you're flexing the spring in two different directions here, and it probably failed due to fatigue. I doubt any spring would be immune to this.

A solution I can see would be to loosen that lower retainer up some so that it doesn't clamp the spring down so tight (put a few small-O.D. washers as spacers in between the perch itself and the upper retaining washer). This way the spring is able to move around side-side some without it getting bound up & bowed out like that.

Like this:
Note how the drooped spring is still almost completely straight

Hrm.. I actually modified the lower washer to make it tight. When it wasn't tight it was possible for the spring to rotate and pull out of the top.

If I use one of those other springs and make a different mount I can leave slop at the bottom but I'll have to come up with something for the top to actually hold it so it won't rotate and unscrew itself. As I understand it, to run any of those springs I posted in my first post would require me to modify the upper bucket anyway.

Now I need to find that thread that showed the simple way to build a bottom mount. I know its around here somewhere.. Time to warm up my Google-fu.


Hose clamps up top have worked for me lol.

But certainly there are more elegant solutions that would work too.

Hose clamps up top have worked for me lol.

But certainly there are more elegant solutions that would work too.

I went from J-hooks to hose clamps.. The J-hooks didn't keep it from moving.. It never occurred to me that hose clamps would keep it from coming out. I saw someone use Cable crimp things there. I was thinking of trying that..

I dug out my spare set of 5.5" springs from the shed. I'll put them on (without the f150 seats) and make the lower mount loose and take it around here and see how it does. I'm pretty sure the springs are going to be too stiff (very stiff compared to my duff springs) but I can use them for a test.


..Is there a reason you haven't mentioned Superlift coil springs?

..Otherwise, I would lean toward the Wildhorse springs..:dunno:

..IDK if you already had read thru this thread..;)

I agree change the lower mounting plate and go with wild horses 5.5s i have had them since my first sas and now on my rockwells. Very good coil.

Dont mind the chick, just check the springs.


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    ex flex.jpg
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Try looking into Skyjacker springs. I'm currently running their 5.5" lift springs meant for the ttb, and they are a pretty good medium of stiff and flexy. For those who want a little bit softer, you could go with something like 4x4junkie is running:

This would be beneficial to you for two reasons:

1) The spring is softer than the average TTB without being total mush
2) With minor fabrication, you could design an upper coil tower with a tube center, allowing the spring to turn and even stretch beyond its limiting expansion within the upper mount at full droop. I believe the XJ has a stock upper spring retainer like this, and I don't see why it would be hard at all to weld up something similar in the X.