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Air Ride Dump Truck ??

Discussion in 'Trucks' started by farmboy555, Apr 19, 2008.

  1. farmboy555

    farmboy555 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2006
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    Occupation:
    Owner Operator
    Location:
    KY
    Has anyone ever converted a Road Tractor with air ride into a box dump??
     
  2. Squizzy246B

    Squizzy246B Administrator

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  3. 12 Wyoming

    12 Wyoming Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2008
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    Location:
    Wyoming
    They seem to be everywhere. Most of the ones I have looked at were conversions. There are different opinions on there usefullness.

    Read up before you buy one.
     
  4. dg5

    dg5 New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2008
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    Location:
    nor cal
    They work just fine, but it keeps you on you toes when dumping. Now a water truck with air ride is a different story.
     
  5. Tri-Star

    Tri-Star Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2008
    Messages:
    74
    Location:
    TN
    I bought one as my first truck and it was as dangerous as a loaded gun! You HAD to be on flat ground to dump and if the truck wasnt loaded evenly or something hung in the bed it would lean to the side real bad. It was a tandem Pete 357 with a 18ft bed. Didnt keep it very long!
     
  6. dirt digger

    dirt digger Senior Member

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    Occupation:
    pushing dirt, baling hay, and hitting the books
    Location:
    PA
    all the stone trucks that deliver to us around here are air ride...they deflate the bags and dump
     
  7. rino

    rino Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 23, 2006
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    Occupation:
    Drive steel bed Dump Truck for a paving company
    Location:
    Barberton, Ohio
    Here in N. E. Ohio all the material trucks are air ride and about half are frameless to boot! ALWAYS ALWAYS ALWAYS Dump your load air first, trailer or drives on a straight truck! The auto levelers will try to compensate for the sway in the bed/ground! If they are off, they can't tip you over! As for frameless dumps, they can go over from a change in wind speed or direction! Been there done that and its not fun!
     
  8. Willis Bushogin

    Willis Bushogin Senior Member

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2007
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    Occupation:
    owner
    Location:
    NC
    Air bags

    :usa
    I have lots of experience on this subject. I have converted two of my road tractors "with air ride" to dump trucks. I had a dump body, with a sub frame, so I didnt have to worry about it being a double frame. Both trucks were a extra thick, or wide frame. This is very important, make sure that you have a double frame, or at least a sub frame. If you dont have either or, you are taking a gamble.
    If you have a wet line already, and the dump is a subframe and the chassis is the correct length, you can change it in a long day, if you have all your stuff ready.
    Now to the drama, I have heard all the stories, about if you dont dump the air bags and if you are not on level ground, you might be in for a surprise, so I had a heads up on the problems. I instructed the drivers about dumping the air bags and being on fairly level ground. I used these trucks for the last two years, without any problems. They do ride better than the walking beam, but they will scare you the first time you are loaded and going down a country rode and when you go around a curve, they will lean on you. I dont recall any major problems, with the air ride, it depends on the driver. Most of the air ride trucks have a lighter running gear and that may give problems and if you are working off road, you probrably wont have a LoLo in a road tractor. One of the things that didnt work for me was a Cat 3406B engine and light rears, I replaced 4 rears in this truck in two years. The drivers would get stuck and pop the clutch and either get a rear pumpkin, or drive shaft. Yes I know thats the driver mostly, but a regular dump is set up stronger.
    I just sold them bought and bought quad axle trucks, seems to be more work for them at the time.
    As for me, I had two road tractors and I needed two dump trucks, so it was cheaper for me to convert them, I was on a budget, so it worked for me, but I had rather had a different suspension, it would have been less worries.
    Final thought, if thats what you need to do, go for it, but watch the warnings and GOOD LUCK
     
  9. amscontr

    amscontr Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2008
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    136
    Occupation:
    Operating Engineer 520
    Location:
    Illinois
    They are not too good off road because of the air ride doesn't seem to have the ground pressure of steel or rubber block springs for traction in uneven and soft surfaces.
    Hendrickson air ride is good for off road use and Peterbilt makes a good off road air suspension. Dumping on an angle might make you "pucker" alittle also.