Home Forums Truck Camper Adventure Forum Rancho RS9000 shocks

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    • #32705
      ardvark
      Participant

      In my ongoing efforts to improve the ride quality of our F350 I installed a set of Rancho 9000s adjustable shocks yesterday and ran them for the first time today. When we bought our truck it had the optional plow springs already on the front so the spring rating was 6000 pounds rather than the 4800 pound standard.

      Given the stiff springs, I was not expecting the shocks to make much of a difference, but I was wrong. They have completely transformed the ride quality and we can now tell that our truck has a front suspension system whereas before it felt like it just bounced on the tires.

      Not sure what it will do for others, but for us it was well worth the coin!

      Steve and Andra
      2012 F350 6.2 gasser SRW LB
      Fab Fours front and rear in case we run into a rhino
      2019 Northstar Laredo SC

    • #32707
      Dumb Mick
      Participant

      Maybe the old shocks were shot after 6 or 7 years?

      It’s good to be a n00b - so I can aspire to be just stoopid.

      Monrovia, CA

    • #32708
      ardvark
      Participant

      The old shots acted as though they were shot when we bought the truck at 23,000. Just never got around to changing them sooner. I expected worn shocks to allow for more rebound and bounce. These were just the opposite, but they were not frozen. One thing I did discover in reading the reviews on Ranchos prior to purchase was first the reviews were very good and secondly, they were dominated by Ford owners for whatever that may mean. 🙂

      Steve and Andra
      2012 F350 6.2 gasser SRW LB
      Fab Fours front and rear in case we run into a rhino
      2019 Northstar Laredo SC

    • #32733
      Mello Mike
      Keymaster

      Hi Steve,
      Glad they’re working out for you. I never had good luck with Ranchos. Good shocks until they fail which happened twice on our 2003 Excursion. Went with Bilsteins after that and never looked back.

      2021 Bundutec Roadrunner
      2013 Ram 3500 4x4
      2015 Toyota 4Runner

    • #32736
      ardvark
      Participant

      Mike,

      I have always gone with Bilsteins in the past on everything so this is my first break to try something else. Time will tell. I did like the way Ranchos expand better than the Bilstein strap. I had an easier time managing them.

      Steve

      Steve and Andra
      2012 F350 6.2 gasser SRW LB
      Fab Fours front and rear in case we run into a rhino
      2019 Northstar Laredo SC

    • #32749
      Travels with Yoly
      Participant

      Hi Steve,
      Glad they’re working out for you. I never had good luck with Ranchos. Good shocks until they fail which happened twice on our 2003 Excursion. Went with Bilsteins after that and never looked back.

      Yoly and I were discussing a possible upgrade of our Ram 2500’s rear shocks. I had done some research on the Ranchos but now have to consider the Bilsteins as well. Thank you !

      While on the subject of upgrading, can anyone recommend a reasonable outlet for having them installed. I’ve never had reasonable quotes on labor from the local Ram dealer. They wanted $350 to replace the headlight assemblies (labor). Took me about 40 minutes !

      Neil & Yoly
      2016 Ram 2500HD Tradesman, 2WD Crew Cab, 6.4L Hemi
      2018 Travel Lite 840 SBRX
      Honda EU2000i

    • #32750
      ardvark
      Participant

      Hi Steve,
      Glad they’re working out for you. I never had good luck with Ranchos. Good shocks until they fail which happened twice on our 2003 Excursion. Went with Bilsteins after that and never looked back.

      Yoly and I were discussing a possible upgrade of our Ram 2500’s rear shocks. I had done some research on the Ranchos but now have to consider the Bilsteins as well. Thank you !
      While on the subject of upgrading, can anyone recommend a reasonable outlet for having them installed. I’ve never had reasonable quotes on labor from the local Ram dealer. They wanted $350 to replace the headlight assemblies (labor). Took me about 40 minutes !

      I have nothing bad to say about Bilsteins having had them for years on multiple vehicles. I went with the Ranchos this time in part based on their reviews and in part based on the encouragement to give them a try based on suggestions from the slide-In truck camper forum on the Ford Truck Enthusiasts website.

      We bought our current F350 long bed used and when I first complained about how hard it rode I kept hearing “well its a big truck what do you expect” (already had owned anF350 dually and this was much worse), so we tolerated it for several years.

      It rode as though it had no front suspension I think largely due to the plow spring option of the previous owner (never plowed, just thought with the camper package he should order it also). Now with the Ranchos it is a night and day difference. The one thing I do like is the adjustability of the Ranchos as folks are changing the setting when they are hauling versus running empty and that takes only a minute or two. A couple of folks said by changing the setting they also could do away with porpoising, something we have not had a chance to test with this constant rain. As I said, time will tell. 🙂

      Steve and Andra
      2012 F350 6.2 gasser SRW LB
      Fab Fours front and rear in case we run into a rhino
      2019 Northstar Laredo SC

    • #32902
      sourdough
      Participant

      My Ram/Tiger weighs 11,200 lbs. Factory shocks were horribly inadequate and at 10,000 miles I was looking for replacements. Installed Rancho 9,000xl’s on the rear and Bilstein 5160’s on the front. I wasn’t happy with either and by another 10,000(20,00 on the rig0 I was looking for a 3rd set. miles.For the last 30,000 miles I’ve had a set of custom tuned King 2.5’s front and back.They made a very noticeable improvement.In another 15/20 thousand I’ll send them in for a rebuild.

      2012 Tiger CX Ram diesel 4x4

    • #32903
      ardvark
      Participant

      Not familiar with that brand. Looks pricey; glad to hear they are working out for you. The search for better ride and handling is often a frustrating one.

      Steve and Andra
      2012 F350 6.2 gasser SRW LB
      Fab Fours front and rear in case we run into a rhino
      2019 Northstar Laredo SC

    • #32907
      sourdough
      Participant

      Not familiar with that brand. Looks pricey; glad to hear they are working out for you. The search for better ride and handling is often a frustrating one.

      They do the job where others couldn’t or degraded so quickly they are not worth the time or money. If these King shocks last 50,000 and rebuilding isn’t more than a set of cheapie’s, they will be very cost effective in the long run.

      2012 Tiger CX Ram diesel 4x4

    • #32944
      Jefe4x4
      Moderator

      The only shocks I’ve really liked on the front are 4WParts single action shocks. They have worn like iron, giving me just the right dampening with the weight and 3″ lift. Since I have no weight change in front, i don’t need adjustable in front.
      The rears are another story. I think I’ve been through 4 sets of Rancho 9K’s in 16 years. Each set were replaced by 4WParts, no questions asked. They just go south after a while. One set rusted out (soda is a killer of sheet metal) after a couple runs over the Mojave Road. I run them on 1 or 0 when the camper is off and right up to 9 (the stiffest valving) when the camper is on. I still think I need 2 sets of shocks on the rear axle, the way I have it set up. A lot of the minute suspension changes are absorbed by the single, thicker overload spring IN the main pack.
      I’m thinking double shocks would be good on the rear of Sourdough’s Tiger
      Has anyone tried KYB’s? I used these on lighter 4WD’s (up to 6K pounds) back in the day and for a gas shock they were hard to beat. Their claim to fame was the shocks got stiffer when they got hotter, not the other way around as with most shocks. This worked on long rough dirt roads.
      jefe

      2020 Ford F-350 XLT FX4 4WD SRW SB SC 7.3L Godzilla Gas TorqShift 10R140 397 amps dual Alt dual batts Frnt Dana 60; Rr Dana M275 E-locker 4.30's 4580/4320/4066# payload 7243# curb wt. 11,300# GVWR 5-er prepped. 2020 Northstar Laredo SC, 12v compressor fridge, cassette, 320w Solar sub zero insulation.

    • #33018
      sourdough
      Participant

      No, double shocks aren’t needed Jefe4x4. The right springs(I’m close), BigWig sway bar and a single shock(custom valved King 2.5’s) is all that’s needed. ? Ever hear of a factory HD Truck with double shocks,NO. True, my Tiger was sick as delivered but though much R&D on my own it’s rides pretty sweet now. I still would like custom multi-thin leaf springs for the rear. In the future… dialing in a ’19 JLR towed right now.

      2012 Tiger CX Ram diesel 4x4

    • #33196
      Jefe4x4
      Moderator

      Sourdough,
      You are correct about 2X shock from the factory. None found. When I was a hard core jeeper, i did a lot of work on leaf spring suspensions on a variety of machines, including about a dozen SOA’s (springs-over-axle) which adds another twist. You are good aiming for many and thinner leaves for your RAM. This was the SOP paradigm for WW II Jeeps and domestic 4WD’s up until the 1970’s and beyond.
      My current Dodge Cummins has a unique rear suspension which was added onto, not started from scratch. It came originally as the camper package for the 2001- single rear wheel 2500 4WD. At the time, there was no 3500 SRW Dodge, so this was the defacto version with a thick upper overload (or secondary) spring, which got the payload range up to 2600 pounds. This set up carried my Lance Lite camper just fine but I wanted to experiment with more leaves in the upper pack. I bought a set of Stable Loads, essentially a rubber/composite block which allows the overloads to engage sooner. A friend asked me if i would like his upper overloads from his 2001 3500 Dodge, which were a pair of thinner leaves on top per side and had just a little more capacity than my thicker single spring. Now i have 3 upper overloads. When I lifted the front end 3 inches, the rear was now looking lower by comparison. I looked around and found a pair of 1800 pound, single leaf helper springs: rather thick but flexible enough and added them to the pack now at 8 leaves per side. This required longer U bolts. Along the way I rebuilt the factory anti sway bar with soft parts.
      Now it gets weird. I found by trial and error that i now have a triple range suspension. The single leaf helper takes most of the small changes of the suspension, whereas the uppers only come into play when I have a full and heavy load. The stock leaves work in the middle. Remember the only difference between a 2500 and 3500 in this era Dodge was the rear axle is narrower for the duals and hub extensions in front to accept the 7.5″ back spacing the dualies use. Oh, and those upper overloads. I’ve carried 5K pounds of crushed rock in the bed (for 20 miles) and the truck suspension acted normal with all 3 subsystems operating and in control with minimal sagging. The only thing i noticed was the stopping power going downhill was diminished. After a trip to Anza a couple years ago I noticed in this video https://www.dropbox.com/s/bfj5y93wsd7vfkw/jefe%20does%20sand%20hill%20at%20dry%20wash%20of%20the%20devil%20Anza.m4v?dl=0
      that i had too much up and down springing on the whoops. I’ve done dual shocks before with light and flexible springs and a lot of shocking basically to allow more range of motion when you get the axles twisted up.
      jefe

      2020 Ford F-350 XLT FX4 4WD SRW SB SC 7.3L Godzilla Gas TorqShift 10R140 397 amps dual Alt dual batts Frnt Dana 60; Rr Dana M275 E-locker 4.30's 4580/4320/4066# payload 7243# curb wt. 11,300# GVWR 5-er prepped. 2020 Northstar Laredo SC, 12v compressor fridge, cassette, 320w Solar sub zero insulation.

    • #33213
      Hemi Joel
      Participant

      The vast difference of opinion on shocks is interesting. Hauling a big Arctic Fox 1150 on my 93 Ram dually, the original rear shocks and the Monroe front shocks did not have enuff control. After reading everything on the internet, I spent the big bucks on Bilstien 4600’s. They were way worse than what I had. Because they were so expensive, I stuck with them for a couple years. When I switched to a bigger heavier, Eagle Cap 1165, they were even worse. So I bit the bullet and bought Rancho 9000’s for the rear and Monroe for the front. (Unfortunately, they don’t make a rancho 9000 for the front of my truck.) This was a huge improvement over the Bilstiens, the backs are adjusted to 8 out of 9. The front is still a little too soft, but better. I don’t know what I can buy that would be stiffer. So I’ll never waste my $ Bilstein again, and I will use Rancho on everything I can.

    • #33240
      sourdough
      Participant

      My issue with Rancho RS 9000xl shocks on the rear of my rig was, they faded too quickly. I.E. They over heated and became soft during bumpy road travel. They do have a bigger oil volume than OEM shocks but it wasn’t enough. Some think, OK dial up to a higher setting of 1 thru 9. Doesn’t work that way, a higher setting # will not help a cooling issue. That’s why I installed a set front and rear with an even larger oil volume with a remote reservoir. King 2.5 but there are others.
      Going into the replacement shocks on my Ram 3500 I already discovered how OEM style shocks can over heat on bumpy back roads. My Ram has coil springs on front and they really give a shock a work out. Coils have no friction during cycling and all the movement has to be controled by the shock. That’s why on the front I tried Bilstein 5160 remote reservoir shocks. Idea was right but the shock volume was still too small for my Ram and it’s load.
      With shocks size matters as to volume. OEM trucks and there OEM sized shocks might work for a while but will never last on a Truck/camper. Some have experienced OEM sized shocks might not work at all.
      BTW, the 9000xl I took off my Ram3500 are the same size has my ’19 Wrangler Rubicon rear shocks. Wrangler has lite coil springs and heavy shocks, great for a light off road vehicle. One rear OEM shock was leaking (only 3,000 miles but mostly offroad) so I intalled the Ram 9000 xl’s and on #1 setting. They ride so nice on the Wrangler I leaving them on. Not going to bother with a warranty replacement. I’m thinking the front OEM shocks are going bye-bye and Rancho 9000 xls will be on the front soon. There bigger volume seems just right for my Wrangler Rubicon and heavy off roading. FYI, Wrangler Rubicon weighs 4500 lbs. and Ram/Tiger RV weighs 11,200 lbs.

      2012 Tiger CX Ram diesel 4x4

    • #33262
      ardvark
      Participant

      I think variances in equipment as well decisions about what makes a ride satisfactory are so great it is impossible to assume what works with one truck/TC combination will work for others. It is not that the statements justifying a choice are inaccurate. The statement almost always makes sense, the hard part is determining if it is applicable to my personal situation. Any component someone favors is always open to challenge by someone else. Similar discussions about handling/suspension have been going on for at least the last 20 years. I’m not sure I know a bit more now than I knew then, but boy do I have a lot more choices! 🙂

      Steve and Andra
      2012 F350 6.2 gasser SRW LB
      Fab Fours front and rear in case we run into a rhino
      2019 Northstar Laredo SC

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