Mazda BT 50 suspension upgrade

Submitted: Saturday, Nov 01, 2014 at 14:30
ThreadID: 110009 Views:4695 Replies:6 FollowUps:7
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Gid-day all
We are soon to purchase a Mazda Bt50 4x4 freestyle cab and a tray back camper. The BT50s specification indicate a payload of 1,163kg. The tray back weighs approximately 400kg. It has been suggested that we should get the suspension upgraded to increase the payload by approximately 150kg which makes sense to me. We will also be getting a 2inch lift on the car. Our question is what is the best way to do this?
Many thanks in advance
Daz
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Reply By: Member - Robert R1 (SA) - Saturday, Nov 01, 2014 at 15:05

Saturday, Nov 01, 2014 at 15:05
Darryl n (NSW),

I have a 2014 BT50 single cab with an alloy tray and a 700kg canopy on the tray. I upgraded to an OME EK4006B3 which was recommended for loads of 600kg up to GVM with a 50mm lift front and rear. In your case an EK4006B2 would fit which is "recommended for vehicles with steel bull bar and carrying loads of 300kg to GVM. Optimum performance will be achieved with loads of 300kg to 600kg. Front lift: 50mm, rear lift: 50mm."

I was worried about losing the comfortable ride but it has worked out perfectly. I recently drove to Innamincka , Birdsville, Bedourie, Boulia, Mount Isa, Comooweal, Gregory River, Burketown and along the Savannah way to Borooloola and Roper Bar. A lot of kms on some pretty rough roads. I am very happy with the suspension.

Regards,
Bob
AnswerID: 541177

Follow Up By: Member - Daryl N (NSW) - Sunday, Nov 02, 2014 at 14:12

Sunday, Nov 02, 2014 at 14:12
Thanks Bob
Will have a chat to the folk at ARB
Cheers
Daryl
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Reply By: AlbyNSW - Saturday, Nov 01, 2014 at 15:51

Saturday, Nov 01, 2014 at 15:51
What I did was fit the vehicle up with our intended touring setup and then took the vehicle to Ultimate Suspension at Minto in Sydney and they made up a specific suspension package to suit my weight. Price wise it was comparable to the other gear on the market but with the advantage of a custom made solution
If you can find someone like that it takes the guesswork out of what you need or having to buy twice to get it right
AnswerID: 541178

Follow Up By: AlbyNSW - Saturday, Nov 01, 2014 at 19:03

Saturday, Nov 01, 2014 at 19:03
Forgot to mention they did a GVM upgrade in the process
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Reply By: Member - John - Saturday, Nov 01, 2014 at 16:54

Saturday, Nov 01, 2014 at 16:54
G'day, to increase the payload legally you will have to get a GVM increase. Lovells suspension do them, but the website doesn't list your vehicle. I have a brochure at home that lists a lot more that the website. May be worth a call to them or if you have no joy I can chase up the brochure for you. Cheers, John
John and Jan

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AnswerID: 541181

Follow Up By: Member - Daryl N (NSW) - Sunday, Nov 02, 2014 at 14:11

Sunday, Nov 02, 2014 at 14:11
Thanks John.
Found out ARB does an upgrade for BT-50's
Cheers
Daryl
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FollowupID: 827253

Reply By: Hoyks - Sunday, Nov 02, 2014 at 09:21

Sunday, Nov 02, 2014 at 09:21
Hi Daryl. I was in the same position, I have the dual cab with an alloy tray and a slide on camper.

My problem was I wanted it a bit taller and to be able to carry the weight of a 500kg camper, but didn't want to rattle my fillings loose when the camper wasn't on there. I looked at the springs on offer and was ready to order some, so went into climax suspension in Berrisfield. There was a bit of sucking air through his teeth and he said it was going to be a tough one, but I'm glad I did as all the ratings for "constant 150kg to 300kg load etc" are for a vehicle with the factory body on it. The alloy tray weighs in around 130kg less, so if you get the springs the catalog suggests you need, then with a alloy tray they are way too stiff.

In the end I got some Tough Dog springs with a 2" lift and designed for 150kg constant load and left the stock shocks in there. With the camper on these let the vehicle sit at the almost the same height as it did with no load and the factory springs. It is also comfortable to drive with no load on and doesn't skip around on uneven surfaces.

When you replace the springs you also need to replace he U bolts. If you are doing this yourself or paying someone, make sure the excess thread on the inside U bolts is cut off as it will strike the chassis rail on full compression. It took me a while to work out what was the knocking sound and it is much easier to do this in the shed at home than in the dust of The Cape.

AnswerID: 541203

Follow Up By: Hoyks - Sunday, Nov 02, 2014 at 12:06

Sunday, Nov 02, 2014 at 12:06
BTW, I fitted it all myself, so it wasn't Climax's fault the bolts were too long.
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Follow Up By: Member - Daryl N (NSW) - Sunday, Nov 02, 2014 at 14:15

Sunday, Nov 02, 2014 at 14:15
Thanks Hoyks
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FollowupID: 827256

Reply By: Member - Rod N (QLD) - Sunday, Nov 02, 2014 at 13:08

Sunday, Nov 02, 2014 at 13:08
ARB does it ARB GVM Upgrade
I am in the process of getting a new Dmax done. Get it done before first registration and it goes on the rego certificate for Australia wide.
AnswerID: 541212

Follow Up By: Member - Daryl N (NSW) - Sunday, Nov 02, 2014 at 14:14

Sunday, Nov 02, 2014 at 14:14
Thanks Rod
Will have a chat to ARB
Cheers
Daryl
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FollowupID: 827255

Reply By: Mazdave - Monday, Nov 03, 2014 at 13:50

Monday, Nov 03, 2014 at 13:50
HI Daryl,
I too have a BT50 freestyle cab chassis with a steel tray and on weekends and holidays a Carry me Camper slides on the back. The original suspension was nowhere near efficient even with only the steel tray, so I upgraded to the 600kg OME springs on rear with the OME Nitrochargers shockers all round. Fully loaded with the camper, still wasn't 100% happy with the ride and decided between an extra / stiffer rear spring setup or Airbags. Now I know the do-gooders out there will vehemently oppose Airbags because of a somewhat minute history of bent chassis's, however in my view it was the better option given that I can inflate and deflate them depending if the tray is empty or with the camper on. Maximum I inflate them is 45psi and drop to 5psi when empty. Had this setup for 2 years now with no issues.
AnswerID: 541253

Follow Up By: Member - Daryl N (NSW) - Monday, Nov 03, 2014 at 16:18

Monday, Nov 03, 2014 at 16:18
Hi Dave
Airbags was one option that I had considered and rejected because of the rumoured potential for bent chassis.
I have wondered whether this was a just a chance occurrence and bad things happen sometimes ( bleep happens) or whether operator error caused the problem.
Would be interested in other peoples thoughts
Daz
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FollowupID: 827323

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