Best Leaf Springs for HJ60 Landcruiser?

Submitted: Thursday, Nov 13, 2003 at 19:30
ThreadID: 8512 Views:13904 Replies:8 FollowUps:15
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Is more expensive necessarily better when it comes to springs? My HJ60's desperately needs new suspension and I've been ringing around for prices and going to places to look at their springs, but they all tell you that theirs are the best! I've looked at ARB's Old man emu Springs (they are made from BHP steel but really expensive), Carroll’s springs (they are really cheap but made from Malaysian steel), and a small place in Hoppers Crossing Victoria called Motorco who sell Strongmore springs (made in Oz from BHP steel but don’t look very well finished off). Can I get some feedback from people who have bought leaf springs for their vehicles and put them through their paces? I want to hear about the good, the bad and the ugly!
Cheers,
Elgin
(from Victoria)
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Reply By: The J - Man - Thursday, Nov 13, 2003 at 19:40

Thursday, Nov 13, 2003 at 19:40
G'day Elgin,

Just wonderin' if you've considered having them re-tempered. A mate of mine had
His done about 3 months ago for about $700. Got a 20 warranty as well.

Cheers,

J - Man.
AnswerID: 37224

Follow Up By: The J - Man - Thursday, Nov 13, 2003 at 22:03

Thursday, Nov 13, 2003 at 22:03
Elgin,

Forgot to mention that this price included new bushes / clamps etc.
All up, less than half price for new.

Regards,

J - Man.
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Follow Up By: ross - Thursday, Nov 13, 2003 at 23:56

Thursday, Nov 13, 2003 at 23:56
I bought 4 brand new Dobinsons leaf springs for my landcruiser for under $600 .Obviously the bushes,shackles , pins and labour bumped it up to $1200 but its all new and is good for the remainder of the life of the vehicle.Incidentally it is a 73 series mwb landcruiser which takes 75 series on the front and 60 series on the rear.
My advice is shop till you drop and get a good price .You dont have to spend big money at the big names to get quality.
Some of the big names I looked at are nothing but crooks in my opinion and play on the fact their brand is involved in competition blah blah blah .Just remember who the mug is that pays for all that exposure and advertising.
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Reply By: mcgra - Thursday, Nov 13, 2003 at 20:00

Thursday, Nov 13, 2003 at 20:00
hi elgin

old man emu premium price for a premium product, i dont think you can go past they really.

its about the ride at the end of the day and how its handles.
i also have a hj60 and had the springs retempered lasted about 24 months now showing signs of needing a up grade.

i will be buying the ome because they are the best and give the best ride which at the end of the day is what i want.

gra
AnswerID: 37228

Follow Up By: Brett - Thursday, Nov 13, 2003 at 20:06

Thursday, Nov 13, 2003 at 20:06
How do you know they will give you the best ride??
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Follow Up By: mcgra - Thursday, Nov 13, 2003 at 21:05

Thursday, Nov 13, 2003 at 21:05
hi brett
the reason i say that is because i have heard from others that have used the cheaper brands and found the ride hard like a rock.
if yr driving on bitumen then no worries but if you do venter out and drive rough terrain then better be sure of the comfort nothing worse than not enjoying the ride.

and that is them using the same number of springs.
also heard for leafs cracking.
gra
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FollowupID: 26952

Follow Up By: Hero - Friday, Nov 14, 2003 at 08:49

Friday, Nov 14, 2003 at 08:49
Any well designed spring will give you a good ride as long as it is matched correctly to your trucks weight requirements, any spring can have any number of problems if it is misused, please dont spend too much at the big 2, they are no better than the rest. Just have it fitted correctly because that plays a huge part of the longevity of the components.
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Reply By: diamond(bendigo) - Thursday, Nov 13, 2003 at 21:30

Thursday, Nov 13, 2003 at 21:30
try pedders.back by popular demand
:-)
AnswerID: 37235

Follow Up By: ross - Friday, Nov 14, 2003 at 00:04

Friday, Nov 14, 2003 at 00:04
Pedders quote for my 73 series =$1800
My final price =$1200
Of all the places I had prices from they were the most expensive and they could not explain the massive price difference when I tackled them on it and I can only assume they took me for a mug like all the young guys in there that that day buying overpriced suspension components with a brand name plastered all over it but which actually comes from the same factories as the cheaper stuff.
No wonder the manager went red in the face .
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Reply By: david - Friday, Nov 14, 2003 at 00:14

Friday, Nov 14, 2003 at 00:14
Hi Elgin.
In my opinion you do get what you pay for.
If you want a good reliable suspension set-up that will give you many years of good
service you will pay for them , however there are a lot of variables.
Bull bar? winch? rear bar? constant heavy loads etc etc.
A happy medium is the place to aim for.
As for getting your springs re-set, I would'nt both it wont last very long and usaully gives a rough ride.
Definantly shop around but skimp to much.
hope that helps
David.
AnswerID: 37258

Reply By: Tony - Friday, Nov 14, 2003 at 08:01

Friday, Nov 14, 2003 at 08:01
I have had a 60 series with OME and the ride was as good as coils and with a far better load carry. Very supple springs, a little bit firm empty, that was until I put a set of draws in the back and a rear wheel carrier.

The ride and wheel travel in the bush was great, the friction pads between the leaves made the spring movement a lot smoother.

Yes you pay a bit more, but if you are thinking about keeping the vehicle for a few more years and intend to do a bit of travelling, you will not regret the extra cost.
AnswerID: 37269

Reply By: Eric from Cape York Connections - Friday, Nov 14, 2003 at 09:12

Friday, Nov 14, 2003 at 09:12
Elin I have had 2 60s and both have had ome gear and I cant fault the stuff. I swaped it over from the 83 mod to the 85 modle.
I went through the retempering thing and it cost about $1000 all up and 12 months later tryed to claim from the company that did it that they had sagged again. In short they were not interested. So went down the same path as you and then forked out the dough on the ome.That was 7 years ago. Now the ome gear has been on two trucks and done many trips. I still have the same shocks but will be replacing them for next season in the cape. A mate of mine always boasts how good coils are but I cant tell the difference from his 80 to my 60 for ride .
All the best
Eric

4x4 tag alongs to the cape.

www.capeyorkconnections.com.auCape York Connections
AnswerID: 37275

Reply By: Elgin - Friday, Nov 14, 2003 at 12:20

Friday, Nov 14, 2003 at 12:20
Thanks Guys for all your great responses!
I have a friend who had his old springs re-set and they sagged after about 18 months so I have already ruled out that option. And yes a lot of the bigger mobs sell spring sets that you can buy cheaper elsewhere, I spoke to a guy from Duncans and he sells EFS(enhanced four wheel drive suspension). He told me that his suspension is better than anyones blah blah, they all say that.... $2118 for the kit (4 springs, shockers, bushes) not fitted... oh yes and they are carrolls springs, australian steel he says. Oh I say, they are malaysian steel and carrols sells the same kit direct for $1333, well... he didnt want to talk to me after that. I tell you there are some rip off merchants ou there. I will definitely give OME some serious thought but I will keep shopping around some more.
Thanks again for all the feedback, I am very grateful!
Elgin
AnswerID: 37291

Follow Up By: CT - Friday, Nov 14, 2003 at 14:41

Friday, Nov 14, 2003 at 14:41
Elgin,
I bought the "Enforcer" brand kit from Carrolls. At the time I was led to believe that they were in fact Aussie steel. Maybe not hey.

Anyway, the whole kit with the big bore shocks, bushes, anti-inversion shackles etc. has performed flawlessly (75 series cruiser ute), given me the lift that they said it would, and rides very nicely. Their guide for which springs for which load has definately worked for me.

I also paid the $1300, and figured that if they suck, I can throw them away in a year or so, try something else in the price bracket and still be nearly a grand better off than if I paid for OME.

Also interesting to note that when I went into TJM, he grabbed the Enforcer catalogue from under the counter.........rebadging at work again.......?

So far a very happy camper.
Craig
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Follow Up By: Elgin - Saturday, Nov 15, 2003 at 00:13

Saturday, Nov 15, 2003 at 00:13
Craig,

Hmmm.... I've been leaning towards Carrolls springs, quite a few of the bigger mobs seem to rebadge and sell them as their own, and they are pretty cheap if you buy them from Carrolls.

How long have you had the Enforcer kit on your vehicle? Have you done many trips or much off road work since fitting them?

Did you fit them or have them fitted. I am planning buying the kit and fitting it my self.

Elgin
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Follow Up By: Brett - Saturday, Nov 15, 2003 at 14:18

Saturday, Nov 15, 2003 at 14:18
Several years ago I had cause to ring Carrolls in Sydney about a spring change on a twin steer bogie drive truck and because I called early in the morning I ended up talking to the workshop manager.

He helped me a lot with the truck springs and I slipped in a question about 4x4 gear for my troopy. I basically asked whay the huge price difference between different spring manufacturers.

He got a bit cranky and told me

"I have no "effen Idea" he then went on to say..

We do a runs of the same spring, as many as 100 at a time. We get the sets togther paint some blue and put them over there , some yellow and they go over here and others brown and they go over there, and we only sell the blue ones through Carrolls.

As with many items these days I think the suspension differences are far fewer than we are led to believe marketing and perception probably is the major influencing factor.

With this in mind you may not always get what you think you are paying for...
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FollowupID: 27096

Follow Up By: CT - Monday, Nov 17, 2003 at 14:16

Monday, Nov 17, 2003 at 14:16
Elgin,
Have only had them on for about 6 months now. The only big trip they've done in that time is Fraser Is. (hardly any sort of test for suspension, but the car was perfectly level when fully loaded /overloaded with minimal body roll). Otherwise just a lot of high speed gravel roads locally.

I got the fitting done by my local mechanic. Easy enough job but when your four foot nothing and weigh in accordingly, the average spring pack in a cruiser weighs more than me!

Cheers
Craig
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FollowupID: 27197

Reply By: Mark from Getaway Portable Refrigerator Hire - Friday, Nov 14, 2003 at 15:28

Friday, Nov 14, 2003 at 15:28
Elgin, I will go against the trend as far as the resets go. I have a 60 Series and had the springs heat re set about 3 years ago with additional leaf insert and a 4 inch lift. This was done by Ape Springs in Perth and todate they are as good as gold with no sign of sag. The Cruiser has drawer system and a fridge in the back all the time (trailblaza 42 Litre).

Regards

Mark
AnswerID: 37309

Follow Up By: ross - Friday, Nov 14, 2003 at 18:58

Friday, Nov 14, 2003 at 18:58
Just to clarify a point on resetting springs,the success depends on how far gone they are.The more deformed they become the less likely they will last .If you want to reset them its best done at the 1st sign of sag not when they are bent back the opposite way.
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Follow Up By: Eric from Cape York Connections - Saturday, Nov 15, 2003 at 07:18

Saturday, Nov 15, 2003 at 07:18
Ross thats fine but the good old 60s sagged when they came out the show room .

All the best
EricCape York Connections
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Follow Up By: ToyMotor - Saturday, Nov 15, 2003 at 10:24

Saturday, Nov 15, 2003 at 10:24
How far the springs have sagged before re-setting has no bearing on the longevity of the job. What matters is the use of the correct temperatures for the annealing, hardening and tempering of the springs. I had the springs reset on my HJ60, with an extra leaf added to the front, after another 150,000 km they still hadn't sagged again when I sold it.

Cheers
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Follow Up By: ross - Sunday, Nov 16, 2003 at 01:05

Sunday, Nov 16, 2003 at 01:05
Well Eric I woudnt bother resetting them any way
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Follow Up By: ross - Sunday, Nov 16, 2003 at 01:17

Sunday, Nov 16, 2003 at 01:17
Toymotor I got that advice off a someone who does it for a job and stands to reason when anything has become deformed (eg sagging) it will never be the same again thats why you have an extra leaf there holding it all up.
Maybe yours have held up but I know plenty of others who havent especially if the vehicle is used extensively off road and for load carrying purposes.
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FollowupID: 27121

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