1. Welcome to PlowSite. Notice a fresh look and new features? It’s now easier to share photos and videos, find popular topics fast, and enjoy expanded user profiles. If you have any questions, click HELP at the top or bottom of any page, or send an email to help@plowsite.com. We welcome your feedback.

    Dismiss Notice

Timbrens v. additional springs

Discussion in 'Import and Other Trucks (Light Duty)' started by Class IV livin', Dec 23, 2004.

  1. Class IV livin'

    Class IV livin' Junior Member
    Messages: 9

    I've got a '96 Tacoma TRD that I use all over my property. I've had an additional leaf springs installed so that it can handle the extra (ie: overload) weight that I subject it to. I think it's great, but it DEFINITLY provides for a stiff ride. We've got some pretty fast dirt roads that I drive to get home, ~60mph as a routine, more if I'm in a hurry or for a firecall. My question is how would Timbrens ride as opposed to the additional leaf spring. For most of the year the truck doesn't carry much additional weight, but when I load it, I tend to really load it. In the winter I tend to leave my Curtis 550 sander in the bed so there's a little extra weight. Obviously, with the sander full, or a bed full of wood or feed, the truck gets pushed nearer it's limit. With the extra springs I've had a ton in it and am still an inch from the 'overload' blocks. I'm also curious about the Timbrens for the front. I'm having a 6'9" Fisher LD mounted on it next week. (Plowing our road with the Kubota gets a bit brisk.) Thanks for any insight.

    Cheers :drinkup:

    '96 Tacoma TRD w/ 6'9" Fisher LD & Curtis 550
    30hp Kubota w/ 7'6" Curtis
  2. Chainlink

    Chainlink Member
    from Vermont
    Messages: 70

    Just my .02 I prefer spings on the Tacomas due to axel wrap, Tiberens will do nothing to help this. As for being stiff, I have aal in the rear that ride very smooth( 2" fabtechs). You might notice quite a bit of sag in the front with a plow so timberens or tundra lift in front might be what the doctor ordered (Check my thread on tundra lift)

    edit: the Tundra tacoma lift involves Tundra Trd parts on tacomas
    Last edited: Dec 26, 2004
  3. Class IV livin'

    Class IV livin' Junior Member
    Messages: 9

    What's your opinion on 'bang for the buck' on the front suspension upgrades? It seems like the Timbrens are an inexpensive aftermarket add-on. I'd imagine that Tundra spring would cost a bit more between parts and labor.
  4. Chainlink

    Chainlink Member
    from Vermont
    Messages: 70

    well I had labor free but in ran total with springs in rear also, plus some other do dads just under 500 but the front could be done for like 280 if memory serves, but dont quote me i will have to look at actual numbers, I love my set up but that said maybe for expense and ease of install going with timbrens would work for you.
  5. Bolts Indus.

    Bolts Indus. PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,176

    IMO timbrens are a cheap sustitute for suspension deficiency. The right way and not the cheapest way to solve load problems is with the proper suspension upgrade. Heavier springs.
  6. sixspeed

    sixspeed Senior Member
    Messages: 306

    Timbrens or spring change????

    There are a few valid points here. For permanently installed items such as winches or v-box salters or lift gates, springs might be the best way to go because the suspension is always carrying the load.

    It's also a fact that factory Tacoma springs are soft and you can have axle wrap - this might occur when the truck is loaded and you get into really deep snow or are having traction problems. The soft springs will allow axle wrap which will lead to wheel hop when the truck loses traction in really, really deep snow. This could break things if you let it hammer so you should be easy on the gas if you get into really deep snow and it starts to hop.

    As for Timbrens, if your truck isn't lifted and the plow isn't hanging on it all year long, Timbrens are a pretty good way to fly for the front. They don't cause ride problems with the plow off and really help keep the front end up when the plow is on it. As for the back, they are short and only come into use when there is at least a few hundred pounds in the bed or on the hitch. so for a Tacoma, the back Timbrens seem to be only okay for medium loads. I'd use an air bag for the rear if I were really carrying a lot of weight. When necessary, and if engineered properly, there's nothing wrong with a rubber air spring. Class 8 (heavy trucks, tractor trailers, up to and including 80,000 pound gross cement mixers) often now use air bags for much better ride control than a heavy pack of steel springs.

    Myself, I don't like stiff suspensions, either lifted or stock height. Along with the bad ride they limit articulation and beat up trucks and components. Don't get me wrong, too soft is bad also and bottoming out from soft suspensions can break things too.

    Timbrens wouldn't be so good for a lifted truck since they wouldn't be anywhere near the components they are designed to fit between and they are larger so they limit articulation.

    Bolts is right, rubber blocks (which is what Timbrens basically are) aren't a good subsitute for a bad or really inadequate suspension. But for a Tacoma, I've found that Timbrens do just fine, especially on the front.

    PS - how did you get a 96 TRD??? They didn't start offering that package till 1998??? Do you have an SX with locker????
  7. Class IV livin'

    Class IV livin' Junior Member
    Messages: 9

    I've got my mechanic checking on prices for me to go with either option, Timbrens or Tundra springs, for the front. With my add-a-leaf installed for the rear suspension it seems like timbrens would not work as they are designed. Seeing as the add-a-leaf not only beefs up the rear, but also provides some lift.

    As for the TRD v. SX... I don't know what to tell you. I bought the truck used. It's registered as a 96. The book in the glovebox says 96. The grill and front end of the truck are definitely not 96 though. Those parts came off a 98. The bed says TRD. And it's got a push button rear locker. Obviously, as parts are interchangeable, it may be a 98 TRD thats registered as a 96. Are there other features to distinguish between a TRD and a SX?
  8. sixspeed

    sixspeed Senior Member
    Messages: 306

    Timbresns v. springs

    The TRD was the push button locker, some bilstein shocks, and the "TRD off road" decal and I think it all started in 1998.

    Before 1998, the trucks had the model in decals on the tailgate - it said "TACOMA SX" or "TACOMA LX" on the bottom left of the tailgate.

    IMHO the best thing about the timbrens (front only) is that the ride stays soft... Back are kind of useless. As for the front, if you have a floor jack and 10 minutes you can do them yourself. Just use a pipe wrench to turn out the factory bump stops and an allen wrench to put the new ones in.

    Mine would have been a 10 minute job but the factory nut INSIDE the control arm fell off. Since the truck was under warranty the dealer had to replace the entire control arm...

    Should be a 15 minute job though!!! If you do them yourself order them from Michigan Truck Spring who will drop ship them direct from Timbren with free shipping.